Random Shut Down

Android412

OSNN Addict
Joined
Jan 5, 2004
Messages
199
#1
A friend of mine was complaining that her desktop would randomly shut down, she thought it was a virus, I said I'd take a look at it for her.

Did the usual scans, there were some viruses, and a lot of adware. Cleaned it all up with spybot, ad aware, malwarebytes, nod32 and ran ccleaner and jkdefrag just for good measure.

As I was doing the scans, it would as she said randomly reboot. Even after it was cleaned up, still random reboots. Not always under heavy load either. So I ran chkdsk, same thing.

It's obviously been awhile since her last format, so I backed up everything she needed, formated, fully updated to xp sp3, still randomly reboots, although it seems to be less often, could just be me.

Next step I unhooked EVERYTHING from the MB, reseated the CPU, swapped the RAM for an extra stick I had laying around, still random reboots.

The last time it rebooted windows came up with an error saying that I should test the RAM, and ran it through a memory diagnostic for about 2 1/2 hours without problem.

I figure its down to the MB itself, although in theory it should have restarted during the diagnostic I would think. I would think PS next but same thing it should have shown up during diag.

Any ideas?
 

12PC-Hack

NTFS Freak
Joined
Jan 12, 2004
Messages
6
#2
I assume she is running xp, I had same problem and worked for months trying to discover problem. I removed SP3 and have not had any reboots since. Worked for me, good luck
 

Android412

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#4
no not yet, like I said I assumed that would show up during the memory diagnostic.

The one thing I did notice was that it seems to happen more often while using the internet connection.
 

ShepsCrook

Red Sox Fan!
Joined
Sep 15, 2003
Messages
1,489
#5
Trying running scans in Safemode. That way it's running the bare minimum.

Then from there you should be able to determine some more. Honestly a good reinstall of windows wouldn't hurt it. And if it reboots during that install, you also know it's a hardware issue. More then likely Ram or PSU

Of course, it could be a driver issue for the network port causing a fatal error and crashing the system.
 

Android412

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199
#6
Trying running scans in Safemode. That way it's running the bare minimum.

Then from there you should be able to determine some more. Honestly a good reinstall of windows wouldn't hurt it. And if it reboots during that install, you also know it's a hardware issue. More then likely Ram or PSU

Of course, it could be a driver issue for the network port causing a fatal error and crashing the system.

I ran a couple scans in safe mode, same thing, reboots. I already did a format/reinstall, but it was from the recovery partition. Which made me want to put in disc of a Ubuntu I had so I could narrow it down to hardware. Put it in, downloaded a few movie trailers, and after about a half an hour it rebooted.

So would swapping out the PS be the next logical step (one I don't wanna do cause I'd have to rip apart my desktop to get it.) Or try taking out the video card and using the onboard video. I don't think I have an extra network card around, but I'll take a look.
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
Joined
Feb 19, 2003
Messages
3,123
#8
Have you tried resetting the BIOS to defaults?

I would also try the PSU swap as well. This is probably the culprit, as the issue is still present after a format/reinstall.
 

ming

OSNN Advanced
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4,252
#9
If you're sure the PC is clean of infection, then it's most likely to be a failing psu, or overheating.
 

Johnny

.. Commodore ..
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#10
That can be a couple of things; main things being the Power supply or heat ...
 

Android412

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199
#12
so I found an extra NIC card I had lying around, put that in, and it hasn't restarted since, but the internet randomly stops working during heavy downloads (was testing the NIC)

I'm going to mess around with a few settings for the NIC, but I think I found the problem.

Thanks for the help everyone.
 

Android412

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#13
ok, so maybe its not fixed, about 20 mins. after my last post it rebooted. Took out the NIC, and swapped the PS, made it worse.

It seems to be narrowed down to the MB. Unless anyone has any other ideas.
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
Joined
Feb 19, 2003
Messages
3,123
#15
That means Windows isn't crashing to a BSOD.

When the PC reboots go into the BIOS and look at the temps. Altho usually with a overtemp trigger the computer would shutdown instead of reboot.

I still say try a new power supply.
 

lancer

There is no answer!
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#16
its clearly not a software issue at all, as you formatted the drive.

I would suspect the memory is faulty of the psu. If she has multiple sticks of memory, take one out and leave it on until it reboots or not, depending on how long you usually have until it auto-reboots, next try the next stick, you'll figure it out which stick is faulty, if neither make a difference, its more than likely the psu.

ifs its an emachine its the psu for sure.
 

LeeJend

OSNN Veteran Addict
Joined
Jan 25, 2003
Messages
5,291
#17
Since there is no BSOD it is NOT:
RAM, HD, video, sound, NIC, mouse, keyboard, etc. These all cause software exceptions that windows can handle.

That leaves CPU, MB (voltage regulator or the chipset), PSU.
To rule out overheat set the BIOS alarm to trgigger at 60 deg C or run a burn in with Sandra and the temperature monitor up.
After ruling out heat there is really no way to tell without swapping each part out, one at a time.
 

Android412

OSNN Addict
Joined
Jan 5, 2004
Messages
199
#18
twice after a reboot and submitting the error log in windows it came back saying it was a problem with the RAM. I already swapped the 1 stick out (no change) and ran memtest on it, it was fine.

I swapped the PS, seemed to make it worse, might have been my imagination.

After the last reboot and submitting the error log windows said it was something to do with the BIOS and CPU not agreeing on the clock speed or something. I checked all the settings in the BIOS, even tried pulling the battery. No luck.

Think It could only be the MB, so I'm going to talk to her tomorrow to see if she wants to start buying parts, or scrap it, being that it's starting to show its age.
 

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