Help with the pc

OK, I built a new pc in late spring and have recently started running into some trouble. There are two seperate problems that are probably related.

    • My pc has started lately to shut off and go into some kind of an alarm mode. The only thing I can do is to turn off the switch on the power supply to get it to stop. It done it a few times when playing games and a couple of times I’ve just walked into the room and found the alarm going off. This is usually been in ther afternoon on hot days.
    • The second problem is that the pc will reboot for no apparent reason. This usually happens when I’m playing a game. as a matter of fact I think it’s only ahppened so far when playing games.

I suspected maybe it’s a heat problem because I know this pc runs hotter than my old one. Seems to stay aorund 52-55C. This is hotter than I’d like but I didn’t think it would be hot enough to cause any problems. I also thought I had maybe put to much Arctic Silver 3 on the core so I took off the F/H, cleaned it up and put a new extremely thin layer on.

I’m using a Thermal Take Smart Fan and a Thermal Right SK-8 heatsink.

Should I have the fan blowing onto the heatsink or away from it?

My system,

AMD Barton 2500
Abit NF7-S
512 Kingston HyperX pc2500 ram
Geforce 4 4200
Abit 480watt power supply

Nothing is overclocked. I should have pretty good airflow. My case is a full tower with an intake fan in front, two outake fans in back and one on top. I have rounded cables and everything is sleeved. It’s very tidy inside. :)

I’ve posted asking for help in a few other places and one of the replies I recieved said my Gainward 4200 card could be the cause of the rebooting when playing games. Something about some of the earlier models having some problems. Anyone heard anything about this?

Thanks.

It sounds a lot like a heat problem.

The case fan should be sucking air away from the CPU. The CPU fan should, of course, exhaust air away from the CPU. You should check for dust clogging up the heatsink and fans, and clean that out with some canned air.

The case fan should be sucking air away from the CPU. The CPU fan should, of course, exhaust air away from the CPU. You should check for dust clogging up the heatsink and fans, and clean that out with some canned air.

That’s how I’ve had it set up, sucking air away from the cpu, but like I said I’ve posted in a couple of other places, and they ae saying I should have the air blowingonto the cpu? :?

I also tried to dig up the alarm code for what I’m getting , which is a high/ low beep thats repeating, and what I’ve found suggest’s problem with the cpu or cpu seating or excess heat. So it sounding like heat could be the problem.

Thanks again for any thoughts.

52-55 and you have a heat problem?

My CPU is currently at 66, and thats idle. Check your BIOS – maybe there’s some sort of heat thing in there that’s set low, but thats not a bad temp in my book. It might also be motherboard monitor/pc alert or something.

As for that “Alarm code” there’s no standard code for overheating. Its not one of the bios beep codes that you hear at POST.

Also, run memtest86. Bad memory can cause stuff like this.

The BIOS temp indicator (which is what he seems to be using) isn’t necessarily an indicator of heat under load. If dust is clogging the CPU heatsink, for example, it could run fine at idle load, but not cool adequately at high load.

Also, overtemp warning signals often sound like klaxons, or sirens going off – it’s louder than the normal BIOS beeps, then the system often shuts down.

Still, you’re right – it could be bad memory. But from his description, it may be a heat-related issue.

The system shut’s itself down and then the alarm immediatley start’s going off. I can’t restart until I flip the switch off on my power supply.

I also checked out my heatsink and fan and sucked what little dust there was out when I took them off to reapply the thermal paste. Both seemed to be in pretty good shape.

I’m guessing heat is the problem too just because of some of the circumstances. Aside from the instances when I get down shut when playing a game, the only other times it’s happened is on hot afternoons. I walked into the room in the late afternoon and the computer was off and the alarm was going off, so I assumed it was the temp in the room?

How warm was it in the room? Is your room air conditioned? How is the PC case itself set up – under a desk, next to a desk?

I had the same problem too. It finally got out of control, so I just unplugged the PC speaker cable from the motherboard… that shut up that klaxon of an alarm. I had tried tinkering with the alarm settings in the BIOS, but it was no good.

But then my next problem was that the system would automatically shut down if it overheated. So if I was playing a really 3D intensive game that’s stressing the CPU and GPU, it would suddenly just shut down.

I fixed that by getting some compressed air and just blasting the hell out of the case, especially the CPU fan and heatsink. Blew all the dust out, and the problem went away.

How warm was it in the room? Is your room air conditioned? How is the PC case itself set up – under a desk, next to a desk?

I would guess the room was in the low 80’s. It was a pretty hot day and I don’t have air conditioning. The pc itself is on a small wooden platform I built for it, about 4" off the floor next to the desk.

I had the same problem too. It finally got out of control, so I just unplugged the PC speaker cable from the motherboard… that shut up that klaxon of an alarm. I had tried tinkering with the alarm settings in the BIOS, but it was no good.

When the pc shuts down and the alarm goes off I can’t even restart until I’ve cut off the power supply. And as I said my fan and heatsink are only a couple of months old and still very clean. I just checked them out this morning.

Thanks for all the suggestions though everybody.

OK, I just got home and turned the pc on for the first time since I cleaned up the cpu earlier and re-applied the thermal paste and that seems to have made a big difference. I’m now running at about 42C at idle. I haven’t had a chance to run any games or try anything else yet, so I don’t know if this has taken care of the problem or not but I’m happy for the drop in temp.

Edit - Grrr, looks like I spoke to soon. Now that I’ve warmed up, the temp has jumped back up to about 48C idle. Better than before but still not great. I still need to see how it goes when playing games though.

Have you dug further into the video card-related posts at other sites, too? If you clean all the fans out and it’s still happening under load, do you have another video card you could swap out to see if that’s the problem? The card may be running so hot that it’s pushing the heat issue over the edge and causing the machine to reboot… Do you also have access to different RAM to test that, too? Unfortunately, sometimes swapping out parts is the only way to finally track down what is going on…

48 Idle is good. Low even! That’s not your problem (like I said, my CPU is is 63 idle, and it doesn’t alarm and die).

Run a 3d benchmark of some sort and find out what it is under load. Use motherboard monitor or something.

Now, if its not the CPU, it is the video card? One of the other chips on the board?

I know this is a stupid question, but:

Have you checked the alarm settings in the bios? They’re often listed under “PC Health” or something similar. Set the alarm to somthing up above 60 degrees and the shutdown to around 70 degrees (assuming you’re using an Athlon).

(I only ask because I have a computer whose default BIOS settings for a Athlon Palomino were to have the alarm go at 48 degrees and shutdown at 52 degrees – I thought I’d completely screwed up the assembly or something, but no, it was just that the bios settings were totally nuts)

aleck

I get about 35-43 C idle (depends on the room temp), and never more than a five degree increase at load. Most motherboards won’t initiate a shutdown unless you are in the 80s unless you manually change the settings, I believe. I’d be concerned if my PC idled in the 60s, though.

Have you checked the alarm settings in the bios? They’re often listed under “PC Health” or something similar. Set the alarm to somthing up above 60 degrees and the shutdown to around 70 degrees (assuming you’re using an Athlon).

Yeah I checked that out too. I have it set at 70C.

It seems like it’s the temp has leveled out at 46C when totally idle. It jumps up to around 48C when browsing the internet for awhile, and about 50-51C when playing a game for awhile. Of course it’s quite a bit cooler in the room this early in the day, so I’ll have to check things out again this evening.

That’s fine temps.

Do you have PCAlert or Motherboard monitor running? I know PC Alert has auto-shut-down-the-PC-and-beep at your settings.