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PCs are Lame

Discussion in 'Whatnots' started by Intentioner of the Damned, Apr 16, 2003.

  1. Intentioner of the Damned Gems: 14/31
    Latest gem: Chrysoberyl


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    This is totally bent, it's untrue. When i got home from work yesterday, i went to my room, turned on my PC, put on some tunes, got changed. I then went downstairs to get some food. When i returned to my room about 30minutes later, my computer was off. "Hmm, that's strange" i thought.

    Then, i tried to turn it back on, and absolutely nothing happened. :bang: :flaming:

    Diagnosis: The standby light on the monitor still lights up (it draws it's power from the pc power supply), the processor fan and power supply fan both jolt slightly when i try to turn the power on, and, an LED on the motherboard still lights up. My mate took a look and thinks it might be the power supply that has failed.

    I'm going to take it back to the shop where i got it from, as it is still under warrantee (sp), but have any of you guys got any clues/ideas about my problem. Would be nice to have some ideas, so that the shop owner can't try to fob me off with some lame excuses.
     
  2. Faragon Gems: 25/31
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    Perhaps your screen died? Try it out with a different monitor? (If you have a spare one that is.)

    What you describe is similar to what I've had with my computer, except that mine also had smoke coming out of my screen :grin:
     
  3. Intentioner of the Damned Gems: 14/31
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    It doesn't even get to a point where you'd see anything on the screen. As in, press the power, and absolutely nothing happens, as if the power switch was non existent.
     
  4. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    I agree with your friend, failed power supply. I roasted it myself once when I set the switch to too high voltage, and one other time it just blew up itself. 'Tis common. ;)

    The replacement won't cost much, so don't worry if that's all that is wrong with it.
     
  5. 8people

    8people 8 is just another way of looking at infinite ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    [​IMG] I just have a wee lil question here.

    Sometimes my PC restarts itself, Win98, quite old (but still the coolest :thumb: :cool: ) could it possibly be that it does this because it is near a radiator, I have heard that most PCs restart every so often, my friends PC often restarted.

    It has only happened 3 times but was wondering if it will get worse or if it can be solved simply
     
  6. Loerand

    Loerand My heart holds no fear for death

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    It's the same with me. Sometimes when I'm on the internet the PC just restarts itself. Weird :confused:
     
  7. Kitrax

    Kitrax Pantaloons are supposed to go where!?!?

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    @8people: My computer used to do that a lot when I had Win98, but it has stopped since I installed Win2K Pro on it *hint* *hint*. But at about the same time, I got all the dust out of it, and installed another fan pointed directly at my HD. So it could have been any one of those things. :rolling:
     
  8. ejsmith Gems: 25/31
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    Sometimes when a PSU goes out, it's localized to the PSU. Other times, it takes the mainboard power regulator (and cpu) with it.

    If you get a PUS with thermal protection, they usually cutoff before anything terrible happens, because the trip circuit is monitoring output from the transformers.

    It's usually a good idea to get a psu that is running at 75% or under it's known maximum output. Which is almost never what the company markets it as.
     
  9. trillex Gems: 13/31
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    I once toasted one of my power supplys because there weren't any earth connection (think that's the right way to put it in english) and the material it standed on was highly electric .. leading.. I guess that how to put it.
     
  10. Darkwolf Gems: 18/31
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    I am working on racking up computer Certs right now (A+, Network+, Win2KPro) and I have built my own PC's for years.

    @Intentioner, I concur with Tal, you most likely have a bad PS.

    @Those with PC's that randomly restart: This actually is a lot harder to diagnose. I would start by looking at your case and making sure that the panels are installed properly (my case came with the panels reversed, putting the vents at the top, swapping them lowered the CPU temp by 5 degrees centigrade), the unused expansion slots in the back are covered, and that there is about 3 inches of clearance around your PC (and that it is not in an enclosed cabinet). If you are running Win98 consider Win2K, but check your hardware against the compatability list at Microsoft.com (I couldn't use my Voodoo2 card in my old PC because there are no drivers for Win2K). If that is not an option turn off the Power Management options in Windows (PM me if you need help with that). Next go into your bios setting and diasble Advanced Power Management. Write down everthing you do in your bios, if it stops working you want to be able to reset it, or give the info to a tech so they know what you have done. There are even BIOS backup utlities available, just search the Web and you can find one (it is a good idea) If you are not comfortable with doing this, DON'T do it, you can really screw up a computer this way, :eek: and it can be terminal! If this doesn't cure the problem, you have to start looking at your power supply and heat. unplug your PC, crack open the case and look to make sure your ribbon cables aren't blocking airflow around your CPU, memory or chipset. Look for an excess amount of dust, especially around your CPU. If that doesn't cure it you want to consider another case fan. They are cheap ($10) and you don't need to worry about ESD frying any components on this upgrade. Make sure that you insall it so it is helping and not hurting. Figure out which way your other fans are blowing and use logic to figure out if the new fan is going to help more by pulling air in or sucking it out depending on where you are going to mount it. Generally blowing air in from the front and sucking it out the back works best, but I have seen power supplies that blew air into the case and the front fan sucked it out. Be careful with front mounted fans, some cases, like mine, have a mount for a 60mm fan, but the front panel has no vents for air to flow through.

    The options you have left now start getting more expensive. You can consider a new, better CPU heatsink assembly, a new power supply or a small backup power supply. If your computer tends to crash when you are playing games that with minimum requirements that push your computers resources, or other CPU intensive processes, I would consider the cooler. If you have a lot of components (multiple drives (CD & hard), lots of RAM, and a powerful video card, your power supply my not have enough wattage to support all of them. Modern systems need at least a 300w PS, and I would go at least 400w myself. If you live in an area with poor electrical supply, or older power grids, I would consider a UPS. Most good backup power supplies condition the electricity, and this will eliminate random re-boots caused by spikes and brown-outs.

    Of course your problem can be a combination of some or all of these.

    Great sources for info on these or any PC issues are PC Guide and How Stuff Works .

    Feel free to PM me if you have any questions. I will help if I can, or tell you that you need to seek professional help if you should. :)

    Just thought of one more thing, make sure that your backgroud apps are not causing problems. On Win 95, 98, ME, or XP you can go to the start button, run, type in MSCONFIG and a list of your start up files pops up. Turn off any that you don't use. A lot of them are cryptic, so a good place to find a list of what they are is www.pacs-portal.co.uk/startup_content.htm Click of any that you don't need. This doesn't delete them, so the will be there next time you run MSCONFIG, so if you have problems, you can click them back on.

    @Trillex, good try! :) The term is grounded. And that can cause problems from dead computers to dead people. Always make sure your computer is grounded. In the US that means never, ever remove the 3 prong, and don't use an adapter to bypass it.

    [ April 17, 2003, 03:53: Message edited by: Darkwolf ]
     
  11. trillex Gems: 13/31
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    Ah yes, thanks for that DarkWolf. *writes it down in notepad* - Somehow, my english is getting worse..
     
  12. Chandos the Red

    Chandos the Red This Wheel's on Fire

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    I would also add to Darkwolf's comments that if there are too many upgrades running on an older PS, and as a result the system is randomly rebooting, consider a new PS with the future in mind. A 400 watt PS is great but if you plan on upgrading, or are currently running a P4 or Barton class Athlon, check the amps on the PS. Sometimes PS can be great with older platforms, and may really pump out 400 watts on a P3 or a Athlon T-Bird, but on the newer platforms, they might really dog-out at the newer voltage requiements. On the side of each PS there should be the Amp rating at the voltage that is required for the platform you plan on running. If it is a cheaper PS you may be surprised at what you find.

    [ April 17, 2003, 06:32: Message edited by: Chandos the Red ]
     
  13. Hephaestus Gems: 5/31
    Latest gem: Andar


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    My computer was bugging out yesterday. The characters e, r, d, s, o, k, and u did not work. And every time I hit the m key, it would minimize the window that was active. It works fine today, however.
     
  14. ejsmith Gems: 25/31
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    Yeah. The random restart can be a whole slew of things.

    Like I was using the detonator 43.30's until just the other day. And I'd get blue screens when I had AA turned on. With it giving a nvidia driver .dll filename.

    But it could have been my system memory just as well, if I was overclocking it or it was running too hot, or it was just plain shoddy.

    The PSU thing is usually characterized by a restart when you do something. Like, start up a game at high resolution (where the graphics card and cpu both maxx out on power, very quickly). Or when you try to do a disc-to-disc cdr copy.

    Anymore, you can skimp on the processor and video card. But psu's, memory, mainboards, and (god forbid) hard disks are the real problem areas.
     
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