1. Welcome to TechPowerUp Forums, Guest! Please check out our forum guidelines for info related to our community.

my computer is driving me crazy! pls help

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by alienrobotboy, Jan 29, 2006.

  1. alienrobotboy New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2005
    Messages:
    3 (0.00/day)
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Windows XP Home
    Foxxconn SIS661-FX MB
    P4 Prescott 3ghz
    450w Sparkle PSU
    512 DDR400 (2-256 sticks)
    80GB WD Caviar 7200RPM HD
    128mb built by ATI Radeon 9600
    SB Live 5.1 PCI
    SMC NIC (brand new)
    Sony DVD
    Sony DVDRW
    Motorola Cable Modem w/SMC router (other computers connected are ok)

    The above system has been running like a champ for a year and half. Suddenly two days ago it just hard locked while downloading Netscape 8.1 (lol, garbage i know) - no mouse, no keyboard response, nothing - had to power down. After restarting it seemed to be ok while just farting around in Windows but after a few seconds of either browsing or downloading on the internet it would either: hard lock (no blue screen) or just restart. NIC, i thought so new drivers (was a 3Com card, also tried the onboard SIS900) - same problem on both - except now it would either hard lock, restart, or display and irql_not_less than... blue screen. Blue screens were far less common though and the event viewer showed nothing out of the ordinary except for terminating running programs at the time of restart. While in safe mode my system is stable as can be - surfing, downloading all ok.

    Things I have tried:

    -tried BIOS w/ fail-safe settings - same issues as above
    -disabled onboard devices - same issues as above
    -took out 3Com nic just used integrated SIS900 nic - same issues
    -installed brand new SMC nic, disabled integrated SISnic - same issues
    -tried reseating all devices - memory, ide connections, pci cards, checked for bulging or -leaking capacitators, all fans are spinning normally, temps are consistently good, voltage -reported by bios looks good. BAHHH!!

    ran chkdsk /r in rocovery mode - no issues
    ran Memtest86 for 8 hours - no issues
    ran Spinrite overnight - no issues
    ran MS memory crash anaylizer for 6 hours - no issues
    ran WD Data Lifeguard tools full test - no issues

    (system had no power issues running the above and is stable as can be in safe mode or any diagnostic I ran for a continuous hours long loop - so I don't think its the PSU?)

    I wiped the drive using the WD tools (all zeros full wipe) reinstalled XP - same hard lock issues. Note: install and format are flawless no issues, picks up all drivers like a champ.

    frustrated i actually did the same with Windows 98SE - format flawless (converted to fat32), 98 install flawless, picked up most drivers and no issues in Windows. Now, oddly win98 has not blue screened once on me. It will just hard lock or restart! sometimes after about 10min or within seconds.

    Another odd thing is that Knoppix Live CD 3.8 will kernel panic before booting into the os. Doesn't give me any specifics though.

    Guys, sorry for this long boring post but i'm about ready to throw this machine out the window - any help or guidance is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. noneed4me2 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2005
    Messages:
    620 (0.18/day)
    Thanks Received:
    9
    Location:
    San Bernardino CA
    This kinda sounds like PSU problem, even if the voltages seem to read stable the PSU could still be having problems, but being that it hardlocks sometimes instead of just restarts is kinda odd. Try disconnecting your cd/dvd drives and any other add in stuff and see if that helps. If the computer stabilizes i would lean towards your PSU as the issue, if not i hope you can resolve your issue as you have done just about everything else reasonable to fix this issue. The fact that you reinstalled OS's and the problem still happens and in safe mode it works find seems weird.
     
  3. trog100 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2005
    Messages:
    4,420 (1.29/day)
    Thanks Received:
    237
    hardware problem.. pull everything out and reseat it.. jiggle it about a bit as u do it.. apart from bad socket contacts something is dying on u.. try slowing different pieces of hardware down.. memory.. cpu.. mainly.. do it one at time to try and find your iffy piece of hardware.. if u have multiple memory sticks try running with less for example..

    it could be power supply problems but that should show up in voltage monitors..

    trog
     
  4. Solaris17

    Solaris17 Creator Solaris Utility DVD

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Messages:
    17,570 (4.95/day)
    Thanks Received:
    3,853
    Location:
    Florida
    Thats what im thinking that its a hardware prob id do just that pull it put it back in after that RIGHT AFTER clear the CMOS and start fresh.
     
  5. alienrobotboy New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2005
    Messages:
    3 (0.00/day)
    Thanks Received:
    0
    well.. i think i may have found the problem.

    after trying new ram, new ide cables, removing expansion cards, unplugging all devices but the HD and still the problem continued - I took a closer look at the board. The capacitors beside the cpu (black & gold HN(M) Nichicon caps) are slightly bulging at the tops - every single one.

    not my picture but they look identical to this.
    My warranty expired so I guess i'll have to get a new board :(

    [​IMG]

    What still bothers me though is that the computer is stable in safemode and running extended diagnostics for hours? Anyone know why?
     
  6. trog100 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2005
    Messages:
    4,420 (1.29/day)
    Thanks Received:
    237
    yes in safe mode lots of drivers arnt loaded and everything is running easy so speak.. and it aint that uncommon for instability problems to happen when u least expect em to..

    the duff cheapo capacitor thing was was just being discovered back when u bought your mobo.. i think u have the answer..

    trog
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2006

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guest)

Share This Page