self-rebooting pc

Atma

Member
Alrighty, here's my problem as of late. My computer has been rebooting itself at varying intervals, that dont really seem to have any set pattern (potentially the only part that has any sort of pattern is it seems to reboot during the morning system scan, although it doesn't always do so, so eh).

So far, i've gotten it down to the following parts left:
2x ide hard drive
motherboard
agp video card
sound card

now, realistically, the psu/cpu etc. could be listed there, however i figure it wouldn't be the cpu as it does cpu intensive tasks, and wouldn't be the psu, since i'm sure it'd do more than just self reboot if it was going. I tested the ram the other day, it was clean, so that isn't the problem either.

Now, as I said earlier, there isn't any set pattern to the rebooting, as it happens while watching video, listening to music, when rebooting (and even during post once or twice). I'm not getting any visual errors or such while watching video or anything, and sound plays fine, so I'm stumped on what this could be.

Anyone got any ideas, or possible things i can use to test hardware to find the source?
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Cornellius

Active member
I love Everest when it comes to computer troubleshooting.
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Autumn Able

Active member
Some systems WILL restart or shut down if the CPU gets too hot in order to keep it from getting damaged from overheating. Check to see if your CPU, GPU, and Power Supply fans are working properly. There's also apps you can download in order to check system temperature, so you should give 'em a try as well.
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CEpeep

New member
How do you know it's hardware? Have you tried running a different or freshly installed OS on it?
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pipes

New member
Really sounds like some overheating problem. Check the dust in the PSU and or did it blow up. I have had a few that do this. Thermal paste on good enough if any or dried up? Dust all over the mobo? In your list you haven't checked the mobo and if you have done all this suff, then that has to be it, and its fucked.
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Goku

New member
I would check out your pc for dust related issues. Are the intake and exhaust fans for the system and PSU blocked by a book or somthing? I see that one at work all the time. If the vents are obstructed, remove the obstruction. Give the system a good 3" (preferably more) of breathing room.

Next, Look inside your PC`s PSU fan. Is it very dusty than than you are going to need to clean it out (as well as your system). Get a source of compressed air. Remove the covers of your PC and blow away the dust. Pay special attention to the heat sinks of your video card and CPU. Though the breathing vents, blow out your PSU also. If you do not care about voiding the warranty, open up the cover of the PSU and blow it out. Make sure it is unplugged.

Next, I would check out the Windows event log to see if there are any errors in it that might cause the issue.


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Atma

Member
> How do you know it's hardware? Have you tried running a different or freshly
> installed OS on it?

I believe it to be hardware on the basis that it's rebooted during POST.

> Really sounds like some overheating problem. Check the dust in the PSU and or
> did it blow up. I have had a few that do this. Thermal paste on good enough if any
> or dried up? Dust all over the mobo? In your list you haven't checked the mobo
> and if you have done all this suff, then that has to be it, and its fucked.

Actually, there wasn't much dust on my mobo when I checked, there was a bit on the video card and sound card, but not so much that you couldn't see the solder points. Thermal paste, no idea, I haven't replaced that ever since i put the heatsink on, which was roughly and a bit years ago. Also, middle of winter at the moment, and I have no heating. If it were going to overheat it should at least choose to do so in summer :p

> I would check out your pc for dust related issues. Are the intake and exhaust fans
> for the system and PSU blocked by a book or somthing? I see that one at work
> all the time. If the vents are obstructed, remove the obstruction. Give the system
> a good 3" (preferably more) of breathing room.

My computer is basically in the middle of my room :p it has 4 intake fans, although 2 are unplugged, and 3 out, excluding the psu.

> Next, I would check out the Windows event log to see if there are any errors in
> it that might cause the issue.

Not a thing outside the usual "x drive is low on space" for me.

As it stands, earlier i tried running the latest desmume, it caused a reboot after like 5 minutes. i tried it again just to be sure, the same. I then did some encoding, although i left the room. it got to roughly 35% I'd say, before not actually rebooting, but just basically crashing. My hard drive light was consistantly flashing without a break, and i could hear some fairly distinct yet consistent clicking sounds. I'd wager that my 80GB is on its way out, which is a pain in the ass since its the primary ide drive yet doesn't have the os on it (secondary ide drive does). Makes me wish i had a livecd to use :(
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Cornellius

Active member
> How do you know it's hardware? Have you tried running a
> different or freshly installed OS on it?

I'm with peep on that one. How do you know it's hardware ?
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Essee

New member
> My computer is basically in the middle of my room :p it has
> 4 intake fans, although 2 are unplugged, and 3 out,
> excluding the psu.

Did you try cleaning dust out of your fans, as suggested? That could help, if it IS overheating.

> Not a thing outside the usual "x drive is low on space" for
> me.
>I'd wager that my 80GB is on its way out, which is a pain in the
>ass since its the primary ide drive yet doesn't have the os on it
>(secondary ide drive does). Makes me wish i had a livecd to use

This could be an issue... Actually, to me it sounds more like that's probably the problem. I know that my mom's laptop has a hard drive that's almost full, and while I don't think it has randomly RESET, I know it randomly freezes at least once most days, likely depends on how long she uses it-- probably, the system runs out of resources to keep things running. You may want to try clearing stuff off your hard drive... especially if, as you say, it COULD be your hard drive dying, as well. Wouldn't want to lose a bunch of data all of a sudden, after all!
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pipes

New member
right click my computer and click the advanced tab.
Look for a button for startup and recovery.
Click that and then it pops up a new window and
look for Automatically restart checkmark and uncheck it.
Press okay, okay.
Then go in to explorer and right click your hard drive and
then the tools tab.
Goto the check disk button and
click both checkmarks where they are selected.
It will ask for you to reboot your pc. Do it.
Let it set there for a long time doing its thing
then when you get back into windows
go to the control panel and
to the admin tools and
look for event viewer.
Click the application thing and
scroll down till you see in the source column
Winlogon and click that and that should have the results to the scan disk. This should tell you if you have bad sectors or not. If you just get the blue screen of death report what you see here and keep trying to get that scan disk in till you get the results
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Atma

Member
> copius amounts of text

Actually, Audigy suggested that on irc. I did so, and it didn't do jack shit (it still rebooted directly, no bsod involved). It actually has nothing to do with the OS since it still was doing it with a single blank hard drive connected.

The sound it makes when it reboots now is a slight clicking kind of sound, but isn't a hard drive due to the fact none are plugged in. and it's also crashed while sitting in the cmos doing jack shit. It sounds more like the kind of sound i hear just after pressing the reset button.

The way things are going, I'd probably just replace all three fuckers, but I wanted to wait until around the end of july for a cheaper quadcore system :\
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pipes

New member
copy and paste that check disk scan

>>The sound it makes when it reboots now is a slight clicking kind of sound, but isn't a hard drive due to the fact none are plugged in. and it's also crashed while sitting in the cmos doing jack shit. It sounds more like the kind of sound i hear just after pressing the reset button.

For some reason I didn't read all of this.
retard.gif

The only thing that would make that noise is a broken fan.

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Atma

Member
> copy and paste that check disk scan
Not possible, short of getting into windows, it wont even post more than 50% of the time now (lower chance of it achieving post the more times I try). Also, the two times I did manage to get past post yesterday, the first time I got into windows and couldn't log on with any account, the second time I got a bsod telling me some file couldn't be loaded/found (cant recall which one though (edit: portcls.sys)).

> For some reason I didn't read all of this.
> The only thing that would make that noise is a broken fan.
Nono, not a constant clicking noise, more like an intermediary click that happens around every 3/4th of a second. If i tried to describe it better than that, I'd say maybe its having initialisation problems or something? because it'll click and click and click, and then maybe it'll post, and then reboot back to the same problem.

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Goku

New member
Try disconnecting both hard drives and see if your computer POSTs routinely.
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Goku

New member
> Try disconnecting both hard drives and see if your computer
> POSTs routinely.

Basically, I think you should remove all the extra components that you can (ie. Sound Cards, LAN cards, CD roms, and such) to see if you can isolate the clicking sound and POST problems to a specific component.
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Atma

Member
> Basically, I think you should remove all the extra
> components that you can (ie. Sound Cards, LAN cards, CD
> roms, and such) to see if you can isolate the clicking sound
> and POST problems to a specific component.

I tried that today (although I tried it on other days too, but a bit more in depth today), with no pci cards, a single stick of ram, no ide/sata drives connected. Still did it.

I was able to boot into safe mode once or twice today, but it was kind of pointless since I couldn't get on the net, even with safe mode+networking (while having this laptop connected and working fine).

Perhaps the only thing I noticed that was slightly different when I turned it on this morning with hard drives (though no sound card) still connected, was that it didn't reboot for quite a while (comparitively, it only lasted 5-10 minutes before rebooting, but that's far longer than the other times).

I went looking just for a cheapass motherboard+cpu with an agp slot that I could use in the meantime until end of july, today, but nothing around here stocks anything of the kind still. Guess I'll just buy like, a sempron in a store and a cheapass mobo to go with it online, which in theory should only cost me around $150.

Hooray for having no spare parts for hardware testing -_-
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Fla Flash

Staff (News -- Rom Hacking)
The one thing I did do right when I installed XP Pro was shut off that "restart on error" crap.
It sure sounds like there's something running in the background that's ticking off the computer.<img src=smilies/magbiggrin.gif>
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Atma

Member
So I went out and bought a new cheapass mini-itx board and cpu to go with it, ~$160 aud.

I pulled out the old board+cpu from my case just earlier, and it was only when I turned the case on its side to check the screw locations that I noticed the main power connector looked something (although not as far gone) like http://www.sharkinetics.com/docs/fried_psu.jpgthis</a>.

I'm currently pondering whether or not I should actually even try using it still, or just go out and get a new psu aswell to go with it. I dont think I'd like the results if i tried using it and it bit me in the ass for doing so.
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pipes

New member
I wouldn't hook up your new shit to that PSU if it did that.
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