spontaneous PC power losses - HELP!

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by radiant_x@outgun.com, Apr 18, 2008.

  1. Guest

    I recently installed a DVD drive into my PC. (2 days ago.) Since then,
    I get spontaneous power loss periodically - sometimes seconds after
    booting, other times after hours of operation. I've tried replacing
    the power supply, and I've tried removing all my hardware (other than
    RAM), so I'm thinking it must be motherboard related.

    Interestingly, trying to turn the machine back on does nothing.
    HOWEVER...if I physically unplug the PC, and leave it off for a few
    seconds, I then *can* reboot it. Looking inside the case, I notice a
    green LED. When this goes out (after unplugging) it signals that I can
    now successfully reboot. If I try to reboot before the light goes out
    (about a 2 second wait) the reboot fails. I'm assuming the LED is
    showing power remaining on the motherboard due to capacitors. I don't
    know if that's a hint towards a solution?

    Also, when I reboot, most (but not all) of the time the bios has been
    reset as well.

    Now the questions I've got are:
    1) Why? I've installed drives dozens of times, and never had anything
    like this.
    2) How do I fix it? Presumably a new motherboard will do the trick,
    though I'd like to a) confirm that's the cause and b) fix the existing
    MB, if at all possible. (Historically, every time I've tried to
    replace a MB I've ended up having to replace the entire PC. Apparently
    my skills don't lie in that direction!)

    Is there any chance I can salvage this board? I have no idea if
    replacing the onboard battery, flashing the bios, or any of these
    arcane things will do anything to help, or if it's physically broken
    and needs a part replaced? A electrician friend tells me he thinks a
    capacitor may have gone, but looking at the MB, none of them appear to
    be swollen or leaking.

    thanks a lot! any advice is appreciated!
     
    , Apr 18, 2008
    #1
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  2. Guest

    > > thanks a lot! any advice is appreciated!
    >
    > After all that waffle and piffle, you never even once conidered removing the
    > fucking DVD drive. Right?


    Wow, you're quick to jump to conclusions. If you read the post, you'll
    notice that:

    "...I've tried replacing the power supply, and I've tried removing all
    my hardware (other than
    RAM), so I'm thinking it must be motherboard related."

    So yes, of course I removed the DVD drive. Logically, the first thing
    to try...
     
    , Apr 19, 2008
    #2
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  3. Guest

    On Apr 18, 12:46 pm, "Butch Haynes" <butch@huntsville> wrote:
    > <> wrote in message
    >
    > news:...
    > \>I recently installed a DVD drive into my PC. (2 days ago.) Since then,
    >
    > > I get spontaneous power loss periodically - sometimes seconds after
    > > booting, other times after hours of operation. I've tried replacing
    > > the power supply, and I've tried removing all my hardware (other than
    > > RAM), so I'm thinking it must be motherboard related.

    >
    > Unplug/replug all power and data connections. That way, the errant loose one
    > will be fixed and your problem will be resolved.


    Thank you for the tip. I did this, but no luck.

    A couple interesting new developments: one one occasion when it
    wouldn't start, holding down the power button kept the PC on, for as
    long as I held it. That made me wonder if it was the switch, but the
    effect was never repeated. Another time it wouldn't start, and I
    disconnected all the devices but the hard drive, and then it started.
    Yet other times I have disconnected every single device, and the fan
    won't even spin and try to start.

    Strange...

    Thank you! I appreciate the helpers among the trolls. :)
     
    , Apr 19, 2008
    #3
  4. Ian Jackson Guest

    In message <>, "Dave Plowman (News)"
    <> writes
    >In article
    ><>,
    > <> wrote:
    >> I recently installed a DVD drive into my PC. (2 days ago.) Since then,
    >> I get spontaneous power loss periodically - sometimes seconds after
    >> booting, other times after hours of operation. I've tried replacing
    >> the power supply, and I've tried removing all my hardware (other than
    >> RAM), so I'm thinking it must be motherboard related.

    >
    >I had a similar thing which drove me crazy. Happened just after fitting a
    >new graphics card. Which was just coincidence.
    > Turned out to be the main processor overheating and shutting down. Its
    >fan was working normally and no error messages generated. Removing the
    >heatsink, cleaning and applying new thermo conductive paste sorted it. Now
    >have a spare power supply...
    >


    I had the same problem with the PC shutting down when the processor was
    working hard. Its heatsink was full of dust. Soon afterwards, I again
    had shutdowns. This time it was because the PSU fan had seized solid
    (probably dry bearings). Freeing-off and re-lubrication with WD40 has
    worked for the last 6 months (but I will fit a new fan one day).

    In the front of the case, I have since fitted an additional fan which
    sucks the air in, and also blocked off some unused holes (to ensure that
    most of the air entering passes through the fan). In front of the fan is
    a crude filter made out of thin scouring pads. Every couple of weeks, I
    wrench off the plastic front panel of the computer, and clean a VERY
    dirty filter.

    Finally, as this is an Asus motherboard, I have installed 'Asus PC
    Probe' - a monitoring program which tells you things like the
    temperature of the processor and hard drives, the voltage rails, the fan
    speeds etc. As all is now working OK, I don't use it much, but it is
    interesting to watch the processor rise from 28C to 45C during a
    prolonged spell of 100% activity!
    --
    Ian
     
    Ian Jackson, Apr 19, 2008
    #4
  5. Baron Guest

    wrote:

    > On Apr 18, 12:46 pm, "Butch Haynes" <butch@huntsville> wrote:
    >> <> wrote in message
    >>
    >>

    news:...
    >> \>I recently installed a DVD drive into my PC. (2 days ago.) Since
    >> then,
    >>
    >> > I get spontaneous power loss periodically - sometimes seconds after
    >> > booting, other times after hours of operation. I've tried replacing
    >> > the power supply, and I've tried removing all my hardware (other
    >> > than RAM), so I'm thinking it must be motherboard related.

    >>
    >> Unplug/replug all power and data connections. That way, the errant
    >> loose one will be fixed and your problem will be resolved.

    >
    > Thank you for the tip. I did this, but no luck.
    >
    > A couple interesting new developments: one one occasion when it
    > wouldn't start, holding down the power button kept the PC on, for as
    > long as I held it. That made me wonder if it was the switch, but the
    > effect was never repeated. Another time it wouldn't start, and I
    > disconnected all the devices but the hard drive, and then it started.
    > Yet other times I have disconnected every single device, and the fan
    > won't even spin and try to start.
    >
    > Strange...
    >
    > Thank you! I appreciate the helpers among the trolls. :)


    Clear the BIOS and then re-input the parameters.
    --
    Best Regards:
    Baron.
     
    Baron, Apr 19, 2008
    #5
  6. Ian Jackson Guest

    In message <>, "Dave Plowman (News)"
    <> writes
    >In article <>,
    > Ian Jackson <> wrote:
    >> >I had a similar thing which drove me crazy. Happened just after fitting
    >> >a new graphics card. Which was just coincidence. Turned out to be the
    >> >main processor overheating and shutting down. Its fan was working
    >> >normally and no error messages generated. Removing the heatsink,
    >> >cleaning and applying new thermo conductive paste sorted it. Now have a
    >> >spare power supply...
    >> >

    >
    >> I had the same problem with the PC shutting down when the processor was
    >> working hard. Its heatsink was full of dust. Soon afterwards, I again
    >> had shutdowns. This time it was because the PSU fan had seized solid
    >> (probably dry bearings). Freeing-off and re-lubrication with WD40 has
    >> worked for the last 6 months (but I will fit a new fan one day).

    >
    >Mine was relatively new and the heatsink clean. Plenty of fans, too, all
    >working. It's a home assembled one which worked fine for a year or so
    >before developing the symptoms. I used the paste which came with the
    >heatsink originally and that had gone hard - dunno why.
    >

    Unfortunately, in this house, there seems to be an inexhaustible supply
    dirt and dust. God know where it comes from. You really would NOT
    believe how filthy my home-made filter gets.

    Actually, I forgot to mention also that the clamping of the heat
    dissipater/ fan assembly to the processor was rather loose. This would
    definitely have made things worse. I disassembled everything, cleaned
    off the dust and thermal paste (which was still soft), did a bit of
    judicious bending so the clamp was firm, put on new thermal paste, etc.
    It was like a new machine when I had finished.
    --
    Ian
     
    Ian Jackson, Apr 19, 2008
    #6
  7. Baron Guest

    Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

    > In article <>,
    > Ian Jackson <> wrote:
    >> >I had a similar thing which drove me crazy. Happened just after
    >> >fitting a new graphics card. Which was just coincidence. Turned out
    >> >to be the main processor overheating and shutting down. Its fan was
    >> >working normally and no error messages generated. Removing the
    >> >heatsink, cleaning and applying new thermo conductive paste sorted
    >> >it. Now have a spare power supply...
    >> >

    >
    >> I had the same problem with the PC shutting down when the processor
    >> was working hard. Its heatsink was full of dust. Soon afterwards, I
    >> again had shutdowns. This time it was because the PSU fan had seized
    >> solid (probably dry bearings). Freeing-off and re-lubrication with
    >> WD40 has worked for the last 6 months (but I will fit a new fan one
    >> day).

    >
    > Mine was relatively new and the heatsink clean. Plenty of fans, too,
    > all working. It's a home assembled one which worked fine for a year or
    > so before developing the symptoms. I used the paste which came with
    > the heatsink originally and that had gone hard - dunno why.


    The heat dries out most pastes ! That is why the move to phase change
    materials was made. Also the phase change material allows for a much
    thinner interface improving thermal conductivity and thus a more
    effective heat transfer.

    --
    Best Regards:
    Baron.
     
    Baron, Apr 19, 2008
    #7
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