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Old 05-10-2006, 08:41 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Computer shuts itself down

My PC is a Hi-Grade Xperian all-in-one home entertainment system. It's really compact and there isn't a separate computer tower (like most other PCs), so stuff like hard drive and speakers are all built in. Here's a pic and product description:

http://www.higrade.com/nqcontent.cfm?a_id=2036

And here's some info about my system:

Windows XP Home Edition Service Pack 1
Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 2.80GHz @ 2790MHz
Available/total RAM: 186/511MB
Available/total HDD space: 26/111GB (C drive)

My computer was bought in January 2004, so I've had it for more than 2 years now. It's always been working nicely until March this year, when my PC started shutting itself down at random. At first, it only happened sporadically, but now it shuts down whenever I use certain programs, like the following:
  • Albatross18 - Online mmorpg golf game, probably graphic-intense and takes up a lot of RAM.
  • iTunes - PC is fine if I just listen to music on it. If I use iTunes to rip a CD, it tends to shut down halfway through.
  • Photoshop - Shuts down most often when it's actively used, like when I'm zooming in on a picture or using any of the tools, like the Polygon Lasso tool.
  • Corel Painter 9 - PC will shut down anytime while I'm in this program, as often as it does when I use Photoshop.
  • Ahead Nero/Windows Burning Wizard - PC shuts down every now and then when I'm burning things onto CDs.
The frequency of these shut-downs varies, but from observation:
  • Albatross18 will almost always cause my PC to shut down, usually about 1-2 minutes after the program has started.
  • iTunes can rip about 4-5 tracks off a CD smoothly before PC shuts itself down.
  • I can run Photoshop and Corel Painter and zoom in on things for around 15-20 minutes before a shut-down. The interval
  • Out of 4 burning sessions, I can expect my PC to shut down during 2 of them (I've wasted quite a few blank CDs because

I use Photoshop and Painter the most, so on a daily basis, I can expect my PC to turn itself off 5-10 times.

If my PC shuts down, I usually wait about 30 seconds to 1 minute before restarting it, then Windows will start up fine. Sometimes if I go for the power-on button too quickly, the machine will run until it gets to the Windows XP welcome screen then turn itself off again, so I have to wait a big longer before I restart. Other times, I get a WinXP error screen that tells me Windows has shut down unexpectedly, and I have options like going into Safe Mode, which I tend to ignore, and Windows will start as normal after the 30 second timeout.

I'm not really sure what causes it to keep shutting itself down like that, but I've asked around and I've been told an all-in-one PC like mine is prone to overheating, which I'm skeptical about because the cooling fan is working fine as far as I know and I can feel a breeze at the back of my PC, not to mention the fact that it'd be slightly odd for it to suddenly overheat when it's been problem-free for 2 years!

A friend told me that I might be low on RAM or virtual memory, but I still have 26gb free on my C drive, and my Physical Memory is decently high according to the Performance tab on Windows Task Manager. At first I thought it might be due to my low HDD capacity, but I've since freed up about 20gb and the computer still shuts itself down as always.

Another person said that it might be that I have some dust inside my machine, so I did some hoovering at the back today (outwardly, my PC is quite clean compared to some people's), and it's a weird all-in-one system so some external clean-up is all I can do as I don't know how to take it apart and clean inside. I doubt it's dust, though I'm not sure, but after cleaning it up a little, it's still been shutting itself down.

On top of that, Corel Painter keeps exiting itself whenever I save changes made to a PSD file (this has been happening since 2 days ago), not sure if this is related to the bigger problem of my PC's shut-downs.

Anyway, this is quite a nice and expensive PC, so I don't want to replace it yet as I don't think it's beyond rescue. I don't want to restore Windows to default or do any of that stuff until I've exhausted all my other options.

So.. anyone has any idea why all this is happening? Even some insight would be helpful. Thanks!
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Old 05-10-2006, 02:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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sounds like a weak psu , download everest
http://majorgeeks.com/download.php?det=4181
get into computer-->sensor and take a screenshot
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Old 05-10-2006, 03:35 PM   #3 (permalink)
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thanks..

why would the psu weaken after 2 years, and only when certain programs are running?
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Old 05-10-2006, 03:47 PM   #4 (permalink)
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A virus maybe?
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Old 05-10-2006, 04:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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look at the temps for pete's sake that's 100c on the board just running everest, the cpu is 57c, OMG run anything 3d at it will reach 70c and shut down in no time!!! you need to take that apart and clean it, I bet the cpu hsf is plugged solid with dirt.
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Old 05-10-2006, 04:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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those temps are very unlikely+it doesnt show the cpu temp,everest is probably misreading the sensor, the voltages looks good but if it misreads the temps then maybe those too , download sandra http://www.benchmarkhq.ru/fclick/fclick.php?fid=49
get into hardware-->mainboard , scroll down til youll see *temperature sensors/voltage sensors* and take a screenshot


Quote:
Originally posted by FlashDude
the cpu is 57c
have another look , its the hd not the cpu

Quote:
Originally posted by loveariddle
why would the psu weaken after 2 years, and only when certain programs are running?
it depends on its quality , the graphic card can take more power depending on the load and when you rip/burn the drive takes bit more power too
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Old 05-10-2006, 05:19 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I highly doubt its psu, Its heat! Boot into the bios and read the temps after it has run for a while
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Old 05-10-2006, 05:22 PM   #8 (permalink)
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i didnt say its impossible , it can be overheating but can also be the psu , IMO its more likely the psu cuz it happens when burning/ripping
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Old 05-10-2006, 07:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by jeremy
those temps are very unlikely+it doesnt show the cpu temp,everest is probably misreading the sensor, the voltages looks good but if it misreads the temps then maybe those too , download sandra http://www.benchmarkhq.ru/fclick/fclick.php?fid=49
get into hardware-->mainboard , scroll down til youll see *temperature sensors/voltage sensors* and take a screenshot
i installed sandra, there was some kinda server error..



Quote:
Originally posted by ulater6000
A virus maybe?
i doubt it, though i checked and there was some adware on my PC earlier today but i've fixed it and it's sorted now
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Old 05-10-2006, 07:28 PM   #10 (permalink)
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a temperature of 100+C sounds abnormal, but then thinking about it.. i should remind everyone my computer isn't like any NORMAL PC (check the pic), it's basically built like a laptop and is very compact, i don't even know if there's enough space for air to circulate properly...

there is no PC tower, i have NO idea how a computer like this works, it's one of a kind and it's probably built differently to most computers..
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