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Old 10-07-2011, 12:34 PM   #1
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Default Computer Crash Issues...can't seem to find an answer

Not sure if I'm posting this under the correct topic or not, but I'm hoping someone might help me on a prolonged issue I've been having with my desktop at home:

It's a prebuilt Gateway that I bought from BB a couple years ago (specs include 8GB RAM, 750W power supply, ATI Radeon HD57-- series graphics card...all I can remember from the top of my head). The power supply and graphics card were personally installed after purchase.

The problem I've been having is that I will start my computer, sign in to the user, and I'll either start a game or be browsing the internet and the computer will just crash (it's like the tower shuts itself off instantly...it's happened even when the computer is idling). This problem happens just minutes after startup. I'm wondering if this sounds like a bad power supply unit or if anyone thinks it could be something else?

Had it into Geek Squad, they knew nothing and couldn't figure it out....brought it into local community college class that works on computers and they removed two viruses that they found on it, but that still hasn't fixed the issue. If anyone has any suggestions, please include details on how I may go about resolving the issue.

Thanks,

MNgamer
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Old 10-07-2011, 05:38 PM   #2
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Default Re: Computer Crash Issues...can't seem to find an answer

Power supply is suspect, but you also need to test the RAM. You could even have an overheating processor, so be sure to check the temps in the BIOS (if they're listed) or do a good 'ol manual feel of the heatsink. If you can't leave your fingers touching it for more than a minute or two, it's too hot. If the CPU is fine, grab a copy of Memtest x86 or even a copy of Hirens Boot CD (It includes MemTest and many other tools we'll suggest in the future for any other issues)

Run a full memtest on the system, I'd recommend doing it for a full run while you sit there and watch it (or at least have something to do - 8GB of RAM can take a bit) and if the system can run one pass, let it run overnight.

if the system can't run for a full pass, swap out the power supply and test again. Memtest is a minimum tool, if the system can't run a full test run of memtest, there's other problems going on.

If the PSU swap doesn't help, I'd suggest possibilities such as the motherboard, etc.
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Old 10-07-2011, 05:46 PM   #3
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Default Re: Computer Crash Issues...can't seem to find an answer

Sounds very familiar; Classic overheating behaviour. In the case I had of it, it was a blocked PSU fan.
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Old 10-08-2011, 12:43 PM   #4
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Default Re: Computer Crash Issues...can't seem to find an answer

Quote:
Originally Posted by og View Post
You could even have an overheating processor, so be sure to check the temps in the BIOS (if they're listed) or do a good 'ol manual feel of the heatsink. If you can't leave your fingers touching it for more than a minute or two, it's too hot.
I should mention that the computer typically crashes around 10 minutes after starting, I'm not sure if this makes a difference in the overheating suggestion or not, but I have written down your suggestions and will run through them to see what I can find out. My main concern is that my comp won't stay on long enough to run the mem test...if that is the case (even when I swap PSU's), your concern would be the motherboard then?
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Old 10-08-2011, 03:50 PM   #5
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Default Re: Computer Crash Issues...can't seem to find an answer

Probably your power supply it's a fairly common problem.
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Old 10-11-2011, 09:10 AM   #6
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Default Re: Computer Crash Issues...can't seem to find an answer

Thanks for all the suggestions guys...turns out the problem was due to an over-accumulation of dust *slaps forehead*. I appreciate the assistance, I'll leave rep for ya.
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