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Author Topic: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.  (Read 2421 times)

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Offline Celestial GoblinTopic starter

Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« on: February 10, 2008, 09:52:09 AM »
This is a strange problem I have. Since some time now, my computer simply turns itself off during certain moments.

Those moments are, AFAIK, when a lot of data is moved(written to disk?) and that means mostly during playing games.

So far I had it either when playing City of Heroes, at the end of loading a new area, or in a strategy game(Dominions 3) at the end of generating a random map(and those are big), or in Civilization 4(few seconds upon loading a scenario).

Does anyone know what could it be? Damaged processor? Damaged RAM? Hard drive?

Offline Elvi

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2008, 10:03:13 AM »
Have you done a clean up on your PC and/or a defrag lately Green one?

Mine used to do that until I cleared stuff more regularly.

http://www.ccleaner.com/

Is really good at getting rid of all the rubbish that's filled your RAM

Offline Celestial GoblinTopic starter

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2008, 10:12:06 AM »
Well, I defragged some time ago but without much help.
But I didn't try sending my PC a cleaner. I'll try:)

Online Vekseid

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2008, 10:36:23 AM »
Shutdowns are usually safety measures performed when things get too hot.

Try getting some canned air, opening your computer up and blowing it out.

Offline Celestial GoblinTopic starter

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2008, 10:53:02 AM »
I might try it, since the cleaner program didn't seem to solve the problem.
Could it be that my fan is not efficient enough?

Offline Cherri Tart

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2008, 10:56:23 AM »
you need slave girls with fans... oh, that will prolly just get it hotter... nevermind :)

Offline Trieste

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Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2008, 01:37:25 PM »
I might try it, since the cleaner program didn't seem to solve the problem.
Could it be that my fan is not efficient enough?

If you have a relatively run of the mill PC, generally the fans in it are good, from my experience. Premade computers such as Dell or Gateway seldom have cooling issues. Dust, however, is not part of the PC system and will give you cooling issues, which is why Vekseid suggested the canned air. Dust, hair, and other debris get into vents and on fan blades, mucking up their efficiency.

However, if you're a chronic upgrader, you may have outgrown your cooling system. I'm told that your power supply will shut down if it's not up to the task of power demand, as well, but you might want to wait for someone else to check me on that, since I'm not a hardware junkie, just a tinkerer. :P

You can try going on newegg or tigerdirect and looking at additional fans and whatnot if you're worried about it. They have some nifty ones that I've been told work really well. Also, most cases are designed to vent best when they're properly closed and whatnot. For example, if you have a habit of leaving the side panel off of your PC, not only does it let in more dust and crap, but in theory it's less efficient with the fans and whatnot at cooling.

Basically I'm agreeing what Vekseid said, but trying to answer your question of 'why'. ;)

Offline Jefepato

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2008, 01:48:53 PM »
Doesn't overheating a modern PC usually produce some kind of warning beep before shutdown?

What you're describing happened to me when I had an insufficient power supply in my PC.  However, if it only started happening after some time has passed, that'd be kind of weird.

Offline Celestial GoblinTopic starter

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2008, 02:09:53 PM »
It happens precisely during moving large amounts of data... That's all I was able to glean.
And no beeps or warning signals. It just dies like it was turned off.
 ???

Offline Elvi

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2008, 03:14:12 PM »
It's simple, like the brain, if you try to fill it with too much and too quickly, then it's gonna 'faint'.

Offline Hunter

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2008, 03:27:07 PM »
It doesn't strike me as a cooling problem, though blowing the tower out is certainly a good idea.  Also if it's a heat issue, you can usually hear the fan working overtime.

My hunch is that either the processor, one (or more) of the RAM chips, or the harddrive itself is getting ready to go out.  Of course, without more information we can't tell you for sure.   ;)  If I had to bet, I'd be inclined to think it was the hard drive.

Offline HairyHeretic

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Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #11 on: February 10, 2008, 04:20:28 PM »
Same thing has happened to me playing CoH a handfull of times now. I suppose I really ought to crack the case open and see if I need to dust it off.

Online Vekseid

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #12 on: February 10, 2008, 04:27:09 PM »
Doesn't overheating a modern PC usually produce some kind of warning beep before shutdown?

Some, not all, give various warning signs.

Quote
What you're describing happened to me when I had an insufficient power supply in my PC.  However, if it only started happening after some time has passed, that'd be kind of weird.

Good point, something might have degraded inside of the power supply.

Offline strangely made

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #13 on: February 10, 2008, 06:04:56 PM »
CG, go to Belarc (link below) and have a scan done on your PC, it details all the little do dads and what nots inside, tells you how much RAM you have, what  slots are being used and what slots are empty. Your problem might be as simple as not enough RAM. So your PC is using up every last bit of virtual memory and just not coping.


http://www.belarc.com/free_download.html

Offline Celestial GoblinTopic starter

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #14 on: February 11, 2008, 02:11:58 PM »
You know, doing a virus scan it turns out I have(so far) 9 viruses, 7 spy programs and 3 rootkits/hacking tools in my computer.

That might be it... Does anyone know if there's a free program that removes 'spy programs' and 'rootkits/hacking tools'? I'm using Panda online scanner, but it doesn't offer an option to remove stuff, only detects.

Offline MagicalPen

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #15 on: February 11, 2008, 02:20:13 PM »
I'm still going to suggest that you either need more memory (RAM) or better cooling. Virus don't shut computers down. Though yes, you will want to get rid of them too!

Offline Celestial GoblinTopic starter

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #16 on: February 11, 2008, 02:28:27 PM »
I've got quite a lot of RAM and all those games worked fine before, even before I got more RAM.
It must be cooling. Time to look inside.

Offline MagicalPen

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #17 on: February 11, 2008, 02:38:59 PM »
How much RAM do you have? At least 2GB?

Offline strangely made

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #18 on: February 11, 2008, 02:43:57 PM »
Try AGV Celestial , it's free and a pretty good anti virus program.

And you don't really need any more than 2gig of RAM, after that there isn't and discernible speed differance and if your using XP as I assume you are then it won't actually use any more than 2 gig of RAM.

Offline Celestial GoblinTopic starter

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #19 on: February 11, 2008, 02:46:13 PM »
Thanks, I'm downloading it right now.
I've got 1 gig of RAM and it was to play on large maps in Civilization 4:)

Offline MagicalPen

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #20 on: February 11, 2008, 02:52:10 PM »
Hmm...1GB could be the problem. I have 3GB myself and two hard-drves (80GB original and newer 500GB HD) and games run with no issue for me. Also using XP. COD4, Oblivion, etc - highest graphics settings, no glitches, no CTD etc. It really is about the RAM.

Offline Stevej101

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #21 on: February 11, 2008, 02:54:47 PM »
The machines I work on here have that problem a lot recently, a lot of construction going on in the building.

Listen to the machine and generally you will hear the fan sounding like a 747 taking off.  Also event logs will often have a thermal warning in them.

Get a can of compressed air and carefully blow out all the fans, generally one on the PS one on the CPU and likely one one the video card if its one of the better ones.

When you take care of the cpu make sure to get the heat exchanger under it, generally coper and looks like a car radiator.  Blow alond the slats and see how much dust you clear.

Offline Elvi

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #22 on: February 11, 2008, 02:57:28 PM »
Try AGV Celestial , it's free and a pretty good anti virus program.

And you don't really need any more than 2gig of RAM, after that there isn't and discernible speed differance and if your using XP as I assume you are then it won't actually use any more than 2 gig of RAM.

AVG celestial, not AGV or you'll be downloading huge trucks.....*laughs*

Online Vekseid

Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #23 on: February 11, 2008, 05:41:04 PM »
AVG is rather poor, I would get AntiVir (should be linked in the resources section).

Offline HairyHeretic

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Re: Help needed - PC shuts down during intense work.
« Reply #24 on: February 11, 2008, 05:43:42 PM »
If you haven't got them on already, add in Spybot S&D and AdAware. They're free, and will help neutralise some of the nasties. Can't help you with a free AV program as I have Pandas full one on.