My PC is nearly six years old and has been used very heavily. A couple of weeks ago everything nearly ground to a halt. Even opening Internet Explorer took a very long time.
Windows XP had only recently been installed after reformat on a hard drive bought just a year ago, I am as certain as it is possible to be that no spyware or viruses are in the system, no programs that I have are particularly demanding and the minimum possible are loaded on startup.
The processor is AMD Athlon XP 1800+ and I have 1 gigabyte of RAM. If I try to start a program and it is taking a long time I go into Windows Task Manager and it says 100% CPU usage.
After I first noticed the problem I ran the CPU test on S&M v 1.7.6 but it halted after a few minutes with a warning that the thermal protection was working. I could not complete a full test.
The problem went away for a few weeks but returned today. My feeling is that the CPU has reached the end of its life. Any suggestions or advice from readers would be appreciated.
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Take off your Processor's HSF and look carefully on the CPU head for any erosion, if you see erosion, you're probably ready for an update, if not, then I would suggest getting a better HSF and Arctic Silver paste for the Processor
Try to reformat the hard drive and reinstall the OS just once more.
It is about 18 months since I last looked inside the case when I installed a card to give me extra USB ports. Althought it looked clean I used the air duster. I will look again. I have some arctic silver paste and will remove the CPU, remove the old paste and apply some new.
The PC has given good service but I am about ready for a new one. I shall get a better case next time as I usually come close chopping my fingers of getting into the poorly-designed one I have.
CPU temperature never drops below 62 degrees centigrade.
Is that under a full load, Stephen, or at idle? If it's under a full load, it's a bit high, but not exactly going to be the entire problem and is entirely fixable, however, if that's your idle temp, you may be in trouble, and it IS part, if not all of the problem.
If the latter is the case, I'd be concerned that the heat exchanger isn't actually making contact with all the parts of the CPU that it needs to, and as a result, your reapplication of thermal compound is going to yield results; I'd advise you to pay particular attention to the seating of the unit when you secure it back in place - it may even be worth considering removing your motherboard whilst you complete this operation, in order to allow you to be able to see quite clearly how it's seating.
~ The manual said "Requires Windows '95 or better" ...so I installed Linux!
That is the temperature at idle. Nothing much loads on startup but within minutes the temperature is 62. I do not run programs that are very demanding but the temperature goes up to near 70 when I run applications such as Tune Up Utilities. On bad days the computer grinds to a halt with the message 100 % cpu usage in Task Manager.
CPU's like yours should be more in the 50 degree range (if not lower). Try reseating your cpu with a little thermal compound and see if your temperatures differ. If not, salvage the parts you can and upgrade!!