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PC switching itself off

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Grant, Sep 1, 2008.

  1. Grant

    Grant Bit Poster

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    I'm trying to fix my father in laws PC. He always leaves it switched on at the wall and a few days ago the noise from the fan woke him up. Since then it has developed a problem where it switches itself on and off for no reason. It appears to be going into Standby mode and nothing happens when you touch the keyboard. I'm busy running an anti virus scan and there doesn't appear to be any problems so far. I'm wondering if maybe the processor has just been over heating and it has shut itself down? Can anyone suggest anything that might cause this problem? It seems ok now.
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: Microsoft MCDST, MCTS, MCITP
  2. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    A problem like this could potentially be a hardware issue and not software. You mentioned that the fan started getting loud. Was it the cpu fan? power supply fan? chassis fan? It could very well point to an overheat of the pc.

    When the fan starts to get loud are you able to check the temps of the cpu in the BIOS? is there a lot if dust or cables in the case that could cause bad airflow?

    When the PC overheats it will usually shut it self down to prevent damage to the components, it could very well be doing that to you. The first step would be to make sure that it's not overheating and once you've established that you could start looking into other things.
     
    Certifications: A+ | CCA | CCAA | Network+ | MCDST | MCSA | MCP (270, 271, 272, 290, 291) | MCTS (70-662, 70-663) | MCITP:EMA | VCA-DCV/Cloud/WM | VTSP | VCP5-DT | VCP5-DCV
    WIP: VCAP5-DCA/DCD | EMCCA
  3. Grant

    Grant Bit Poster

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    Not sure which fan it was but as the PC has been plugged into the mains for ages I would suspect it was the Power supply fan although I'm guessing. How would I check the fan in the BIOS? I know how to get into BIOS but I'm not sure what to look for after that. What temperature should they run at?
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: Microsoft MCDST, MCTS, MCITP
  4. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    In the bios you should have an option or a tab called hardware monitor or monitor, something in that area that will display things like temps of the cpu, chipset, fan rpm, etc. You can also just open the case cover when the computer is turned on and see if the cpu fan or psu fan are spinning or not.
     
    Certifications: A+ | CCA | CCAA | Network+ | MCDST | MCSA | MCP (270, 271, 272, 290, 291) | MCTS (70-662, 70-663) | MCITP:EMA | VCA-DCV/Cloud/WM | VTSP | VCP5-DT | VCP5-DCV
    WIP: VCAP5-DCA/DCD | EMCCA
  5. zxspectrum

    zxspectrum Gigabyte Poster Premium Member

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    Well are you getting a BSOD as i had this problem, and the way i susses it out to be the fan is that the computer would switch to the blue screen after about 15 mins, dont ask me how i came to th conclusion of it being the fan on the processor, i just knew.

    As for finding it out, process of elimanation will help you out, like how long doe s it take for it to switch off, is it at the same time, or is it intermittant. Are you getting noises or unexpected programs. See what it does in safe mode and then try and online scan from www.trendmicro.com its just worked for me in getting rid of a virus that was a right pain in the arse.

    Keep us posted on this as well

    Ed
     
    Certifications: BSc computing and information systems
    WIP: 70-680
  6. TimoftheC

    TimoftheC Kilobyte Poster

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    Yeah, check the fans, heatsink and intake holes for dust - if theyre clogged up, especially, the heatsink, heat will not be dissipated as it should.

    There are a number of things to suspect on this and a heat build up is one of them. You could check out the motherboard manucaturers website to see if they have monitoring software for the board (or you may already own it if you have a disk that came with the board). There should be software that can monitor the heat and once its installed I would try a program like prime95 http://www.mersenne.org/ which includes a "touture test" that can really push the heat up. Run prime95 with the heat monitoring software on and watch what the heat does. Most software will also check the fan speeds as well so you can see if a fan is under performing.

    You should also turn the automatic restart option off in windows. You may be getting a stop error code which can be useful in tracking the problem (My Computer, Properties, Advanced Tab, startup and recovery settings and unchek the Automatically Restart option).
     
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