View Full Version : Weird random shutdowns

29-09-2006, 01:10 PM

PC, celeron 1.8ghz, 512 ram, fx5600, gigabyte mb, award bios 6.00

Anyways, it shuts off at strange times. I'm trying to think how to tell this in a systematic way :)

What happans is, pc gives the appearance of hibernating - PSU is on, Vid card fan on, hds spinning, but moniter blank but with power (ie moniter light blinks same as it would if the pc was sutdown or standing by.)

When this happens: A small knock on the case put in in this mode. Also (and stranger IMO) running certain programs. eg I was just running everest to get proper system info for this post, and it shut off again. Google earth did it last week.

It's not a software prob IMO, but I'll include my messing about just to be complete :)

The machine WILL boot up, then hangs before loading any software. ie, the bios setting , ram check, ide scan etc proceeds as normal, but when moving to load windows the error msg is " Win could not start bec. following file missing or corrupt system32\drivers\pci.sys You can attempt to repair using original disk .."

Which I did attempt (boot from install cd) and the next error during win setup "an unexpected error (536832512) occurred at line 1768 in d:\xpclient\base\boot\setup\arcisp.c"

Which is odd because win is on c: drive

So I moved to a knoppix cd, get the startup knop screen, but it hangs with the error msg "kernal panic - not sysnching: attempt to kill the idle process"

Restarting: I have no idea how it gets fixed. After the first incident I tried the following
cold boot
repeat several times

eventually I hit it. Next cold boot everything worked.

I had checked the connections of everything before, but did it again after the most recent incident, took cards out, hds, ram, re-popped the heatsink on the cpu, put it back together, and it rebooted and here I am.

So what's going on? Temperature? The case is open, plenty of air, fans appear ok, been vacuumed

Capacitors? I don't know much about this, but a quick search says bung caps in the PSU might cause this. Is this likely? Or is it a motherboard prob?

something loose? but what? and why would starting everest or google earth cause a shutdown and why is it so hard to get the thing restarted in windows after the shutdown?

Pls help :)

29-09-2006, 01:29 PM
I had this problem a while ago, it turned out to be ram.

Using the different OS you have diagnosed it enough to say that it is hardware, and not just the OS. And running takes the Hdd out of the question.

Personally I'd put my money on either PSU or memory.

If you have a spare PSU, try it, see if it still does it. If you have multiple sticks of memory in your machine, you could try taking them all out, and putting them back in one at a time(as in one in, test, remove, next one in, test, remove).

Another way to test memory is memtest86, which is a free download from somewhere.

cheers, Dave.

29-09-2006, 01:48 PM
As for why would starting everest or google earth cause it... memory usage(assuming memory problem).

29-09-2006, 02:39 PM
Thanks, I'll try that when I get the chance.

29-09-2006, 07:31 PM
Whenever I hear this sort of stuff I think bad caps:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bad_capacitors (Bad Caps)
I've had two machines fail with different strange symptoms, but the same disease.
Open the case and look for caps oozing fluid.
If it's so, a brain transplant (MB + CPU) is the only solution.