Page 1 of 2 12 Last
  • Jump to page:
    #1
  1. Wiser? Not exactly.
    Devshed God 1st Plane (5500 - 5999 posts)

    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Posts
    5,952
    Rep Power
    4033

    Computer shuts off unexpectedly


    So, this just started happening the other day, for no reason what so ever that I can see my computer just shut off. Not a shutdown sequence or anything like that, just flat out power-off like someone pulled the plug.

    Thought at first maybe a short power outage as we have been having them recently here, and it seems my UPS backup is dead because it's been doing nothing to keep the comps up when the power goes out. I immediatly realized though, that not a single thing in the room other than the computer turned off. The other comp next to me was still on, lamp was still on, monitors were still on (though blank now).

    The problem keeps coming up now too, if I try and do anything with my computer other than just general email/programming/play some mp3s, it's likely to turn off, especially if I fire up any game like World of Warcraft or Black and White 2.

    At this point, I've determined it's likely either 1) The graphics card is over heating and causing the computer to power down or 2) my power supply has somehow become unstable and likes to shutoff if it's getting stressed or something.

    idea #1 I tested by installing a temperature monitor and watching the temp. It's running at around 70C, sometimes getting up to about 76-78C. It's an Nvidia 8800GTX card and from what I've seen searching about it, these temperatures are considered fairly normal, and I shouldn't have a problem unless I start seeing 85C+ which I never have. None the less, I'm still not entirely sure that the card isn't the problem since the power-off only seems to occur when it's being worked by a game, and the temp hits the mid-70s.

    for idea #2 I don't have any idea what I can do to test this. I have no backup power supply I could swap with which will work with this system (sata connectors, the gtx's power connectors, etc) otherwise I'd do that and see if the problem goes away. Is there any way I might be able to some how test this power supply without having to spend a lot of (preferably no, as I'm unemployed atm) money?


    Lastly, any other ideas for things to check? According to the temperature monitor software my CPU is running at a nice cool 45C pretty much all times, and it's "system temperature" is 40C almost consistently. I'm pretty sure it's not the CPU that's overheating or causing a problem.
    Recycle your old CD's, don't just trash them



    If I helped you out, show some love with some reputation, or tip with Bitcoins to 1N645HfYf63UbcvxajLKiSKpYHAq2Zxud
  2. #2
  3. Permanently Banned
    Devshed Specialist (4000 - 4499 posts)

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    In a whale
    Posts
    4,147
    Rep Power
    0
    Is there any way I might be able to some how test this power supply without having to spend a lot of (preferably no, as I'm unemployed atm) money?
    You can try this method to see what's happening.

    Can you get a Linux live CD and test to see if it works from there? Try swapping the slots of your RAM: I've had computers that have messed up and that fixed them. My girlfriend's computer would do this (and really piss me off: reboot) and it is probably a Windows problem. Try booting into safe mode too and wait to see if it shuts off.
    Last edited by ryon420; June 17th, 2008 at 02:18 AM.
  4. #3
  5. Wiser? Not exactly.
    Devshed God 1st Plane (5500 - 5999 posts)

    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Posts
    5,952
    Rep Power
    4033
    Originally Posted by ryon420
    You can try this method to see what's happening.

    Can you get a Linux live CD and test to see if it works from there? Try swapping the slots of your RAM: I've had computers that have messed up and that fixed them. My girlfriend's computer would do this (and really piss me off: reboot) and it is probably a Windows problem. Try booting into safe mode too and wait to see if it shuts off.
    I can try that I suppose. I know the power supply is good in the sense that it provides power, as the computer does turn on, and will run seemingly fine so long as I don't do anything "big" like play a game. I've been considering re-installing windows as I do have some other issues with windows itself that probably need a reinstall to fix, I've just lived with them thus far. That would help to check that it's not some kind of software problem but I kind of doubt it is due to the nature of the computer just turning off, rather than rebooting or something like that.
    Recycle your old CD's, don't just trash them



    If I helped you out, show some love with some reputation, or tip with Bitcoins to 1N645HfYf63UbcvxajLKiSKpYHAq2Zxud
  6. #4
  7. 'fie' on me, allege-dly
    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    in da kitchen ...
    Posts
    12,889
    Rep Power
    6444
    Anything in the system log, or Dr Watson logs, or is it getting a chance to write logs ...
    --Ax
    without exception, there is no rule ...
    Handmade Irish Jewellery
    Targeted Advertising Cookie Optout (TACO) extension for Firefox
    The great thing about Object Oriented code is that it can make small, simple problems look like large, complex ones


    09 F9 11 02
    9D 74 E3 5B
    D8 41 56 C5
    63 56 88 C0
    Some people, when confronted with a problem, think "I know, I'll use regular expressions." Now they have two problems.
    -- Jamie Zawinski
    Detavil - the devil is in the detail, allegedly, and I use the term advisedly, allegedly ... oh, no, wait I did ...
    BIT COINS ANYONE
  8. #5
  9. Prisoner of the Sun

    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    The Mews At Windsor Heights
    Posts
    5,309
    Rep Power
    2351
    In my experience those symptoms suggest broken fans(s), faulty PSU, or faulty RAM.
    .
    :: My blip.fm tunes :: Web Design Feeds :: Web Dev Feeds :: CheatSheets :: PHP :: MySQL :: 13 Moon FB App.

    "All matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration. We are all one consciousness experiencing itself - subjectively. There is no such thing as death, life is only a dream. We are the imaginations of ourselves."
    - Bill Hicks


    "Truth is hidden in the subtle nature of the heart of everything, although it is invisible. One cannot see it from inside and neither from the surface. One can only live and experience it."
    - Heart Sutra
  10. #6
  11. Wiser? Not exactly.
    Devshed God 1st Plane (5500 - 5999 posts)

    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Posts
    5,952
    Rep Power
    4033
    Originally Posted by Axweildr
    Anything in the system log, or Dr Watson logs, or is it getting a chance to write logs ...
    Nothing I've seen other than a

    The previous system shutdown at 2:47:20 AM on 6/17/2008 was unexpected.
    when the computer boots back up after a failure.
    Recycle your old CD's, don't just trash them



    If I helped you out, show some love with some reputation, or tip with Bitcoins to 1N645HfYf63UbcvxajLKiSKpYHAq2Zxud
  12. #7
  13. Providing fuel for space ships
    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    nr Edinburgh, Scotland
    Posts
    14,382
    Rep Power
    3848
    Sounds like a failing PSU to me. If it was faulty RAM, 9/10 the machine would still have power, even when it crashed. Do you have a lot of USB peripherals connected to the machine ?
    The No Ma'am commandments:

    1.) It is O.K. to call hooters 'knockers' and sometimes snack trays
    2.) It is wrong to be French
    3.) It is O.K. to put all bad people in a giant meat grinder
    4.) Lawyers, see rule 3
    5.) It is O.K. to drive a gas guzzler if it helps you get babes
    6.) Everyone should car pool but me
    7.) Bring back the word 'stewardesses'
    8.) Synchronized swimming is not a sport
    9.) Mud wrestling is a sport
  14. #8
  15. Contributing User
    Devshed Newbie (0 - 499 posts)

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    66
    Rep Power
    83
    I too would lean towards PSU or video. Something you can test.....

    1. Disconnect all USB peripherals (except mouse/keyboard)

    2. With the computer powered off, and disconnected from a power source, disconnect your cd/dvd drive from the PSU, temporarily take out all of your extra cards (sound/wireless/etc etc), leaving only the video in. If you have a spare HDD that you use for storage, disconnect it from PSU as well.

    3. fire up WOW or B&W, see if it still crashes

    Assuming it always crashed on WOW or B&W, play these games with everything extra disconnected, if it doesn't crash, then it for sure is the PSU. If it still crashes, that doesn't rule out the PSU, but it does rule out the devices you disconnected

    Now, a motherboard can do this as well, especially if the chipset over-heats.

    This can also happen if your drivers are corrupt.
  16. #9
  17. Wiser? Not exactly.
    Devshed God 1st Plane (5500 - 5999 posts)

    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Posts
    5,952
    Rep Power
    4033
    My mouse is my only USB device. My video card is the only expansion card I have installed. I have two hard drives configured in a Raid 1 setup, and a CD drive.

    I downloaded memtest86 last night and popped it in to run before I went to sleep. When I woke up my computer was off. I'm guessing it powered off again during the test, not sure though as I've never actually seen memtest complete since it takes so long, maybe it turned it off when it finished. Wouldn't expect it too.
    Recycle your old CD's, don't just trash them



    If I helped you out, show some love with some reputation, or tip with Bitcoins to 1N645HfYf63UbcvxajLKiSKpYHAq2Zxud
  18. #10
  19. Contributing User
    Devshed Newbie (0 - 499 posts)

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    66
    Rep Power
    83
    what happens if you use a non graphical program like folding at home? FAH uses up 100% of the idle cpu cycles.

    what happens if you run a video intensive program? Such as a demo for your video card?

    Comments on this post

    • aitken325i agrees : I like your thinking, but memtest86 isn't graphical and kicken used that
    Please do not click on the at the top right corner of this post. Due to my hippie upbringing, this would signify a society with classes, and I look at all beings as equal.

    Madness does not always howl. Sometimes, it is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "Hey, is there room in your head for one more?"
  20. #11
  21. Providing fuel for space ships
    Devshed Supreme Being (6500+ posts)

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    nr Edinburgh, Scotland
    Posts
    14,382
    Rep Power
    3848
    Originally Posted by kicken
    My mouse is my only USB device. My video card is the only expansion card I have installed. I have two hard drives configured in a Raid 1 setup, and a CD drive.

    I downloaded memtest86 last night and popped it in to run before I went to sleep. When I woke up my computer was off. I'm guessing it powered off again during the test, not sure though as I've never actually seen memtest complete since it takes so long, maybe it turned it off when it finished. Wouldn't expect it too.
    Memtest won't have turned off the machine when it finished, so the problem still exists when Windows isn't running. I'm still leaning towards the PSU - problem with this is, when a PSU starts failing it can take the mobo with it . . . . . .

    Comments on this post

    • sbenj69 agrees : I agree, memtest doesn't turn off, and I forgot that memtest was a self booting utility
    The No Ma'am commandments:

    1.) It is O.K. to call hooters 'knockers' and sometimes snack trays
    2.) It is wrong to be French
    3.) It is O.K. to put all bad people in a giant meat grinder
    4.) Lawyers, see rule 3
    5.) It is O.K. to drive a gas guzzler if it helps you get babes
    6.) Everyone should car pool but me
    7.) Bring back the word 'stewardesses'
    8.) Synchronized swimming is not a sport
    9.) Mud wrestling is a sport
  22. #12
  23. Contributing User
    Devshed Newbie (0 - 499 posts)

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    66
    Rep Power
    83
    I too, think PSU. I think your best bet would be to find someone...... surely you know somebody with a computer..... that you can borrow their PSU just for testing purposes. 4 screws, unplug everything, then hook it up to yours is all it will take.

    You're likely not going to get to the bottom of the problem until you start eliminating hardware. Sure we can continue to guess that the PSU is the culprit, but until you replace it with a different PSU, we'll never know for sure. The fact of the matter is it's most likely the PSU, possibly the motherboard, and a remote chance of the video card being faulty, or a combonation of those.
    Please do not click on the at the top right corner of this post. Due to my hippie upbringing, this would signify a society with classes, and I look at all beings as equal.

    Madness does not always howl. Sometimes, it is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "Hey, is there room in your head for one more?"
  24. #13
  25. Wiser? Not exactly.
    Devshed God 1st Plane (5500 - 5999 posts)

    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Posts
    5,952
    Rep Power
    4033
    I believe it probably is the PSU, so I'm looking on newegg to see if I can replace it for fairly cheap, and also get a new UPS as it is likely the power outages over the last week that caused it to go bad in the first place. The power has shut off a couple times again while I was trying to create a .zip file with my stuff so I can burn it to a dvd as a backup. Happened to go out while I was typing this post too which sucks as I was almost finished and ready to submit. Typing it in notepad this time, and apparently notepad has a weird bug, whenver I ctrl+s to save, it moves the cursor back about three-four places. Hmm, odd.

    I'm not sure what my minimum power requirements are though, so I'm not sure how cheap I can go. When I originally bought all this stuff I had enough money available I could spend a little extra to get more than necessary, but right now that's not the case.

    This is what I currently have for my PSU:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817341002

    This is what I currently have in my system:
    MOBO:http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813188012
    HD (x2):http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822148140
    CPU:http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819115004
    RAM:http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820227184
    Video:http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814125049

    This is the power supply I was looking at.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817121024

    There is also this one, but it's a bit more money.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817152031
    Recycle your old CD's, don't just trash them



    If I helped you out, show some love with some reputation, or tip with Bitcoins to 1N645HfYf63UbcvxajLKiSKpYHAq2Zxud
  26. #14
  27. No Profile Picture
    Contributing User
    Devshed Regular (2000 - 2499 posts)

    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,102
    Rep Power
    1767
    if you live near any local computer shop they most likely have a PSU tester and can possibly save you some troubleshooting time/money...they may even have one that will save you shipping costs should it fail...

    good luck
  28. #15
  29. No Profile Picture
    Contributing User
    Devshed Frequenter (2500 - 2999 posts)

    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    2,996
    Rep Power
    375
    you know when your pc shuts down, are you able to reboot it straight away? i mean can you turn it on straight away or do you have to wait AGES?

    my pc turns off unexpectedly and i "think" it is because the cpu fan speed is lower for some reason (i keep getting this error when i turn on my pc). and when it turns off i cant turn it back on immediately, i have to wait for few hours! (i have a laptop as a backup lol)
Page 1 of 2 12 Last
  • Jump to page:

IMN logo majestic logo threadwatch logo seochat tools logo