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  Computer restarts for no apparent reason 
 
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Tien Hua Jan 13, 2005, 11:31am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Running

AMD Barton 2.8
512mb RAM dual kingston with heat plates DDR (i think pc 2700?)
Western Digital HD 80gb
Abit KV7 Mobo

problem - the computer seems to restart randomly, i can find no link to over heating issues as sometimes it does it after an hour of being idle, etc. it seems very random. it restarts when its idle, when im word processing, surfing the net, and playing online games. i havent been able to come to any conclusion abt what it could be.

sometimes it could be on all day with me playing online games then ill leave it and it'll restart, or ill do some work for like 3 hours then it restart. i dont think timing of the restarts shows any link either.

i prefer not to jump to conclusions abt bad memory, cpu damage, mobo damage, or HD sectors, but can anyone offer me some opinions or even advice? the machine is well maintained.

oh i shud list my software.

Windows XP Co Edition (no SP1 or SP2 - i prefer to install the updates seperately myeslf)
MS office XP co Edition
Ragnarok Online
MSN 6.2
AIM
Yahoo msg
Internet explorer (as standard)
Windows Media player 10? (lastest one to dl)
i use those Dvix codecs also

thank you for ur time and help


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varun rao Jan 14, 2005, 12:53pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
is there any error display (BSOD) (even for a fraction of a second) with the words page_fault or driver_orql_less_then_or_equal ?

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Tien Hua Jan 14, 2005, 03:59pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
im not sure, but isnt there a way for me to tell it to not restart so that those BSOD can display? if u know can u please list out the procedure to do it as ive forgotten.

TODD PICKIN Jan 14, 2005, 04:21pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
Suggestion: Start the computer in safe mode and let sit.. If it does not reset it may point to software issues. If it does reset then it may be a problem with hardware or windows.
Also do you have external devices attached? Printers, Digital Cameras, Scanners, etc.

Safe mode : Usually f8 durring boot or similar key listed during startup.
Todd

Wizard Prang Jan 14, 2005, 04:46pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> How many times...

Who is... oh, never mind :)
Tien Hua Jan 14, 2005, 07:44pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
Thanks alot guys, well its weird i dont see how, but usually when it restarts its in the afternoon, around 12pm - 2pm, and i REALLY cant see how what time of the day would effect it.

Chris McNally Jan 14, 2005, 10:13pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
Something in your local area draining power at that time? Pretty much a long shot, but if it does tend to reboot at the same time every day, you never know. Does mum put the kettle on about then?

Regards,

Chris McNally

Moderator - Hardware Analysis
E-mail: chris@hardwareanalysis.com
Greg M Jan 14, 2005, 10:54pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
Could be your PSU is failing or doesnt quite have the power, and in slight sags, it drops just enough to make it re-boot.

----
FX-55, 2x 1GB GSkill, X1800XT (512MB), 2x250GB RAID-0, DFI SLI-D
http://www.gandmpc.com <-My 'project'
http://www.knownpsycho.com <-Web games!
Sean M Jan 14, 2005, 11:26pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
hehe, quickly somebody start a thread about ppl blaming PSUs...

Have you thought that it could be a virus? Not my area of expertise (what is? lol) but you didnt list any firewall or antivirus software as far as i know.

^Sean

*************************
Got a hardware problem? - check your PSU... If it isn't that, then I don't know.
TODD PICKIN Jan 15, 2005, 06:01pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
if you do see a pattern in the time of day of the crash,
Do you have anything scheduled to run regularly? Disk Check, Defragmentation, Backup, etc? Sometimes programs like norton systemworks set up schedules for you. If the software causes the error and it is run around that time, then you have a timed crash. And Yes.. Do turn off that "auto reboot after error".. The BSOD should help narrow it down.
Todd

Tien Hua Jan 16, 2005, 09:19am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
thanks guys for all the opinions.

ok lets start off with viruses, ive eliminated the chance of virus as i do have anti-virus software, constantly running, and i do have firewalls set up (but then again im no expert with firewalls). but then again viruses are designed to go undetected i guess in some ways.

as for poewr shortage in my local area, yes ive thought of that but man!!! what can i do about that?! lol (just gotta pray it doesnt happen)

hm...ok as for the PSU i would love to think its that, cos id just buy a new one easier then changnig a MOBO.

well i just got back from a short weekend away so im looking for my BSOD (damn thing never does what i want it to) will keep this posted.

once again thanks to the community of HA forums

Tien Hua Jan 24, 2005, 10:30am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Jan 24, 2005, 11:39am EST

 
>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
UPDATE on situation:

Ok today is a very very cold freezing day (not sure if it has any relevence but im grasping at straws now because im desperate).

the computer has switched off 5 times within an hour around noon time.

this is what ive done since ive last posted, ive turned off the system restart when windows encounters an error. so basically no BSOD is coming up its just switching off now so i dont think its an error, any ideas?

also i thought this might work, i plugged in the other power cable into the mother board im not sure what its called but its a 2x2 cube yellow and black wire into the motherboard as well (never found any use for this before) this didnt solve anything.

any help to isolate problems? lets start with elimintaing possibles please im hoping your alot better at it then me.

here are my deductions:
RAM - if it was a RAm problem wouldnt the BSOD come up then??? seeing as i turned off auto restart when encouter an error

CPU - does a damage CPU behave like this? are there any known problems with AMD Barton 2.8?

Motherboard - ok this is way out my knowledge.

PSU (Q-Tec 400W Dual Fan Gold PSU) - faulty PSU??? in what way? any known cases similar to this?

House - ok im living in a newly built house, but yet when my computer swtiches off nohing else does, not even a flicker. i have one of thoe plug in alarm clocks without the backup battery to test it and thats fine.

NOTE: restarts in safe mode too, so cant be drivers right?

Andrew Hogg Feb 01, 2005, 11:44am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
I've just started to have this problem on my PC... it's happened a dozen times... usually when I'm playing Anarchy Online - http://www.anarchy-online.com , or when I'm backing up a DVD.

I'm gonna try figure out what it is now... thanks to this thread so far, I've turned off the automatic restart, so I'll hopefully find out what the problem is soon.

Andrew Hogg Feb 01, 2005, 12:02pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
I got a BSOD that means nothing to me... I'll type out what it says and see if any of you guy's know what it might mean...

Machine_Check_Exception

*** Stop: 0x0000009c (0x00000000, 0x8054da70, 0xc4024000, 0x00000136)

What does it mean then? lol I'm confused.

Alan Potter Feb 01, 2005, 01:19pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
Hi guys. I'm having a similar restarting problem. My computer sort of restarts when the windows (XP) logo is supposed to appear, but actually there, in that moment, it's like the display lose signal, and the HDD led goes constantly red. The computer is still ON.
I need to turn the pc off and then back on, but not always i receive a signal to the monitor. All that repeats everytime windows tries to start. When I manage to log into windows, it takes time till it restarts again. It could be a day, an hour, or a minute. That is not overheating problem - I've checked it. Every hardware seems to be working fine..seriously, the computer is acting strange and annoying. Btw, I reformatted many times every hard drive, exchanged IDE channels, removed devices..etc...but that didnt fix it.
Note: Any "Safe Mode" or 'Last good configuration that worked" startup options also is not working. No BSOD... I've thought about the power in the building could cause this, but there's nothing i can do too. I know im not helping much with all that...I'm out of options. thanks.

jimmy lee Feb 13, 2005, 02:18pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
^^^

i'm having the same problem..
i used to get BSoD so i went to the computer shop and got that fixed
but now my computer just restarts
it restarts most often when the computer is loading the welcome screen (log in screen)
reformatting doesnt work so that doesnt mean its a program problem..
i think it might be a hardware problem but im not 100% sure...
the guy at the computer store told me that my hard drive or RAM might be corrupt.. but he wasnt sure if it was..
im thinking of taking back the computer there, so if i find any luck i'll be sure to post

Nicholas Croglio Mar 01, 2005, 07:55pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
Computer randomly shuts down but flashes the BSOD just before restarting. The computer will then do one of a few different things.

*Sometimes, it will just get stuck when the little symbol is scrolling across the screen before you get the windows login. It will actually flicker after a few minutes, and then a few minutes later the BSOD and a restart.
*Sometimes, it will mention that there was a severe error and offer "last good configuration", "safe", ... They all end up doing the same as above.
*If I let it run like a hundred times, sometimes it just eventually starts up with our without a checkdisk that it runs on its own.

If I start the same computer using the same OS on a different drive, the OS will reguarly perform a chkdisk, and then start up. The other OS on a different drive does not have the same problem; however, I have only windows and IE on that drive so it is almost useless. It does seem to point to either hard-drive or software though. The reason the other drive is a backup is that it was flakey when it had my word processor stuff on it. I have reformatted the drive and tried again, but it repeated.


Windows XP
Athlon 2600+
FIC Motherboard
512 RAM

Peter Hutchings Apr 01, 2005, 05:57pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
I had the same problem as Andrew Hogg.

I pulled my PC base from it's dark and dingy hole and opened the case. As long as my baby has some fresh air, I'm no longer getting random reboots :-)

My CPU was obviously overheating, or the hot air in the case wasn't being extracted properly.

I normally get reboots when using Nero Vision Express to convert AVI to DVD (it's a 3 hour process, at least). When my case was open to fresh air, I converted 3 AVIs in one day with NO REBOOT. I then closed the case and put the base back in it's corner (no much air circulation). I then tried an AVI conversion... 20 minutes later... reboot!

Next stop... Digital Zone to get a chasis fan!!! Cool the bugger down a little :-)

Try it... get the base out in the open and take the case's side panel off. See if it makes a difference... it did with me...

... HAPPY DAYS ARE HERE AGAIN :-)

Nicholas Croglio Apr 07, 2005, 01:48pm EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
I think it might have been overheating due to dirt on the CPU between the fan. It seems that under the CPU fan there is like a metal filter that was quite dirty even though the fan itself was relatively clean. I have had no hard crashes in the week since this cleaning, but my DSL has dropped off randomly which is less severe and probably unrelated.

tristan hendrix Apr 18, 2005, 10:39pm EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
I had the random restart problem for several months. Its the most terrible problem ive ever encountered!!!! It got progressively worse until yesterday it would resart moments after windows was loaded. I thought it may have been an overheating issue so i cleaned out the heat grid that sits over the cpu and the fan. This did nothing but get dust in my nose. I even used a household vacuum cleaner in place of the fan and since that didnt work i completely ruled out overheating. Anyway, I figured out why the critical stop that caused the restarts is so random. Its a problem with RAM. The RAM stick has corruption somewhere and when windows comes across it (which is random, hence RAM) it causes a fatal error. In my case, the RAM stick was dusty and so was the slot it was in. This obstruction was the problem and the solution was taking out the RAM stick, blowing on it and the slot as if it were a NES cartridge.

Andrew Hogg May 12, 2005, 03:24am EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Computer Restarts for no apparent reason
To check if your memory is bad, download memtest86 from http://www.memtest86.com I find the bootable CD is the best way to download and run it. I haven't fixed my problem, it's not overheating as I've always been keeping a good check on my CPU temp and system temp... I think it might actually be down to damage on the mobo. I'm not sure tho.

When I was moving this mobo to another case, I slipped with the screwdriver. This was about 18 months ago tho, and everything worked fine until recently, I've flashed the bios to the latest version but that doesn't help. I might buy a new mobo to test it, since socket A mobos are only about 40 now.


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