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  1. #1
    Joined
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hamilton, New Zealand
    Posts
    434

    Increasingly frequent system hangs

    Hi team,
    I have a PC from my parents, it wont start up properly anymore.

    System Information: (Built by me March 2007)
    Mobo: MSI K9N Neo
    CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 EE 4200+ (2.2GHz)
    RAM: 4x1GB Transcend JetRAM DDR2800
    HDD: 250GB Seagate
    VGA: Sapphire ATI X1650XT
    PSU: Generic 400W
    OS: Windows Vista

    1. When I arrive to check on it, I start it up, POST, login screen, desktop, loading tray applications, then freeze. PC is non responsive.
    2. I hard reboot it and then I get as far as the login, freeze.
    3. I hard reboot again but this time it only gets as far as half way through POST before freezing.

    Now to me this looks like an overheating problem, I open the case, and yes there is an infestation of dust bunnies. I mean there is a whole colony in there, friends, family, extended family, you name it they were there for the party.

    Anyway, I took the PC back to my place and gave it a good blast with the air compressor and all dust bunnies were thoroughly evicted.

    So now I disassemble the PC and replace the thermal pads under the Northbridge and massive amount of stock AMD thermal paste with a thin layer of Arctic Silver 5.

    The system boots up again, but the same issue arises, increasingly frequent freezes.

    So on closer inspection there is a bulging capacitor just under the CPU. Could this be the problem? Is increasingly frequent system hangs a symptom of capacitor failure?

    Now are there any more suggestions for testing if the mobo is on it's way out/dead?

    Do I just call it a day and celebrate the fact that this PC was even able to see it's 5th birthday?

    Thanks for your responses.

  2. #2
    Joined
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Havelock,N.C. U.S.A.
    Age
    55
    Posts
    390

    Re: Increasingly frequent system hangs

    At all them points 1 2 and 3 it freeze, could be hard drive reads. Remove the power plug into the hard drive and plug it back in, could be tarnish that cause lower volts under load of high read.

    I had one system do that and it was sometime to do with the IDE cable and or IDE channel.
    After I unplug hard-drive ide cable on both ends and reconnect it, it work find for a few weeks, then started to do same thing, so i replace cable with another one i had and it was find for about 8 months, then the ide channel it was on die. I just plug onto the other channel and it was ok again, was green tarnish powder looking stuff on the 1st IDE cable around a few of the tiny holes.

    Could be caps, but I took a quick look on http://www.badcaps.net/ to see if it was on the list of board that have a higher fail rate and I didn't see it. Take a look at some of the bad cap pictures they have and see if your looks like it and read the info.

    I would unplug all cables and replug, in case of tarnish pins and maybe remove all cards (like video card and memory sticks) in slots and look at edge connector for tarnish, clean with pencil eraser and reinstall.

    Maybe do one thing at a time and see if it will post just so you know the area the problem maybe is in.

    Good luck finding the problem and fixing it.

    Super PI 1.5 8mil 0h 3m 28.815s checksum 8DEFE50D

  3. #3
    Joined
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    1,174

    Re: Increasingly frequent system hangs

    I'm going to go with the power supply.

    As the weather gets warmer and ambient temperatures rise. Generic power supplies are going to show their true colors and begin to fizz out. I'd get an inexpensive name brand ...Heres a nice one form FSP

    Code:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817104097
    Thats what I am betting on anyway

    Yeah

  4. #4
    Joined
    Mar 2001
    Location
    black market
    Posts
    1,781

    Re: Increasingly frequent system hangs

    Quote Originally Posted by Yeah View Post
    I'm going to go with the power supply.

    As the weather gets warmer and ambient temperatures rise. Generic power supplies are going to show their true colors and begin to fizz out. I'd get an inexpensive name brand ...Heres a nice one form FSP

    Code:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817104097
    Thats what I am betting on anyway

    Yeah

    psst... the guy lives in new zealand. they are going into winter right now so ambient temperature is not the reason for failure of power supply.

  5. #5
    Joined
    Mar 2001
    Location
    black market
    Posts
    1,781

    Re: Increasingly frequent system hangs

    Quote Originally Posted by djotter View Post
    So on closer inspection there is a bulging capacitor just under the CPU. Could this be the problem? Is increasingly frequent system hangs a symptom of capacitor failure?

    Now are there any more suggestions for testing if the mobo is on it's way out/dead?
    if its a bad capacitor do you smell ammonia in the room while powered up? i also had bad capacitor in my last computer but the tell tale sign was intermittent chirping sounds. you could try stress testing the mobo using ubcd. its a bootable cd with diagnostic tools for different components.

    http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/

  6. #6
    Joined
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    1,174

    Re: Increasingly frequent system hangs

    Quote Originally Posted by zirik View Post
    psst... the guy lives in new zealand. they are going into winter right now so ambient temperature is not the reason for failure of power supply.


    So.... your saying the world isn't flat????

  7. #7
    Joined
    May 2001
    Posts
    11,522

    Re: Increasingly frequent system hangs

    Don't even think of using that 400w PSU for anything. Dispose of it along with the rest of the system.
    ...Does anybody else feel like Congress simply bailed themselves out? Isn't that what they really mean by a bailout?

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