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Is my PSU saying goodbye?

Rurouni Strife

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Sup everybody. Here is my problem. My computer likes to completely lock up on the desktop randomly. It's not all the time, but sometimes. And it seems to happen the most when I insert a USB thumb drive. I also had it shut off when i was rendering something for a school project in maya, i know maya can get finiky but this wasnt a complicated scene (batch render animation). So i was wondering if my power supply was failing after about a year. Today, before i jetted to work I downloaded the Crysis patch 1.2 and after that my pc decided to run like...i had a pentium w/ 32 mb of ram in it. It was super sluggish and eventually froze after i got some files to my flash drive.

Temps are around 33-36 c idle 52 load. specs on the left hand side and all that fun.
its a 500W Dynapower PSU w/ 68% efficency.

thanks everbody.
 

Melter

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i highly doubt your psu fails because of a USB thumb drive...

also, i beleive if it was a PSU problem your PC would not freeze but rather reboot itself or shutdown completley.
 

panchoman

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i would replace that psu either way.. dynapower's aren't built by a good oem and a bad psu can take down your system along with itself.. a new pp&c 470 would easily pay for itself with the ~82% power efficency over the 68% efficency.. and you can see the difference on your power bill.
 

Rurouni Strife

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hmm, giving me a reason to spend money panchoman. haha, i've been thinking about this for a little while now. def gonna look in to it. any ideas as to what's causing my random lockups if it isnt a PSU? keep in mind its very random, just seems to happen more w/ usb drives being plugged in.
 

Melter

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most likely processor, or hard drive. Both freeze up similarly to how you explained it. Leaning towards Processor seeing as how "it started to run like...i had a pentium w/ 32 mb of ram in it. It was super sluggish and eventually froze after i got some files to my flash drive." Also, Ive had BAD experiences with AMD processors.
 

panchoman

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hmm, giving me a reason to spend money panchoman. haha, i've been thinking about this for a little while now. def gonna look in to it. any ideas as to what's causing my random lockups if it isnt a PSU? keep in mind its very random, just seems to happen more w/ usb drives being plugged in.
remember, the efficency of a new good psu will pay for itself compared to your old psu and will continue saving you money on your electricity bill as well as let you game in peace knowing that you wont see a fried system thanks to a bad cheapo psu

if its not the psu, it could be attributed to many things.. including an unstable overclock, corrupted windows installation, deffecctive memory, bad motherboard components(possible a bad southbridge or northbridge..), or just a bad cpu

im thinking overclock, corrupted windows, bad mobo or psu as the probable causes, though we'd need to investigate further to pinpoint the problem.
 
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Rurouni Strife

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it has been a while since i've run a mem test, but last i knew my memory was fine. i'll turn down my oc. i tested my oc (my processor is now at 2700 at stock volts) and it passed prime 95 toture. at somepoint, something happend (some crash or something i think) and it decided it couldnt pass prime 95 anymore. i ran scandisk but i havent tested prime since that incident. is there a way to have windows find an replace currupted files? i remember reading something like that on here, using run or something. what would be a good way to test the mobo?

as for the psu, i'm digging this one right now : http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341012

this would be a second choice:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139004

both offer >80% efficency and are under 100 bucks. they look good to you guys?
 

JrRacinFan

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Looks good to me. Don't laugh but you want to see a reliable and cheap psu:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817255010

Too bad they are OoS. I have owned one for well over a year now and its still going strong in rig #2 in my specs.

I know it does say Dynapower on NewEgg, but ITS NOT! Its a brand called @power.
 

Kreij

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If all the things you mention (USB, Rendering) were working fine before, I would suspect either some kind of corruption or virus before I would start pointing fingers at the PSU.
Did you do a recent BIOS update? Could be a BIOS problem.

Just guessing.
 

Rurouni Strife

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JrRacinFan, that is THE EXACT psu i have. Exact same one. Thats funny.

On the more serious note, i'm going to go with curruption or virus too. My computer decided to sit at the loading windows screen (Win XP w/ the progress bar) for well over 5 mins. i'll try to hit up the chkdsk on the windows install cd, any way I can use the install cd to go through and find and replace currupted files or does it do that automatically...i've always wanted to know.

anyway, looks like thats my task for the night. hopefully i can avoid a fresh reinstall until i get some external drive to back up evrything on.
 

panchoman

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you can always do a repair installation.. would preserve the data and everything.. but you'd want to back up your registry (assuming that you've verfied its clean) and then restore the registry after the repair and it may make the problems go away.. if its more serious and you cant get rid of it.. its time to get that external hdd and back up.. and then nuke the main drive.
 

hat

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Some say using usb devices can cause instability on some configs. This leads me to believe you are on the bleeding edge of stability, be it you don't have voltages high enough or the psu is crap.
 

JrRacinFan

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JrRacinFan, that is THE EXACT psu i have. Exact same one. Thats funny.

On the more serious note, i'm going to go with curruption or virus too. My computer decided to sit at the loading windows screen (Win XP w/ the progress bar) for well over 5 mins. i'll try to hit up the chkdsk on the windows install cd, any way I can use the install cd to go through and find and replace currupted files or does it do that automatically...i've always wanted to know.

anyway, looks like thats my task for the night. hopefully i can avoid a fresh reinstall until i get some external drive to back up evrything on.
That's pretty weird then. I pushed that psu to hell and back and still going strong. Has to be software/virus related.
 

panchoman

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Some say using usb devices can cause instability on some configs. This leads me to believe you are on the bleeding edge of stability, be it you don't have voltages high enough or the psu is crap.
i was thinking the same thing hat.. the usb would add additional strain to the psu which if was under much stress already... would provide insufficent voltage to the system..which could result in an undervolted processor = instability... you can tie almost every computer problem to the psu's fault :p
 
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The cheapest (free) thing that you can do first, is clean it up, format all your drives and do a fresh install of Windows, chipset drivers, and everything else. Make sure you have your USB 2.0 drivers installed because that could deffinitely cause the problem.
 

Namslas90

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SRY, but that PSU is a POS. Only 20 Amps on the 12v rail and 68% efficiency. That means at around 13 amps of pull and your overworking it.
 

panchoman

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exactly my point namslas.. either way he should replace the psu..

what are your 12 v 5v and 3v leads on the psu man
the usb drive would use the 5v right?
 

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JrRacinFan

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panchoman

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the psu can do ~17.5 amps on the 12v rail at PEAK wattage.. at a maximum continous wattage.. expect something more like 14-15 and im betting you that the tempature that the wattages were taken at were probably subambient.. probably meaning that you shouldn't be expecting more then 12a on the 12v rail from this psu after all of these factors are taking into account.. yeah i can see the psu struggling.. and not supplying enough power.

when i meant leads.. i meant like how much the psu is supplying on the line.. not the amerpage sneekypeet... for example, my 12 v lead is 11.96
 

Rurouni Strife

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sneekypeet, i definately do. usually its after it's been on for a little while but it can get really nice and warm out of the back of it. i'm doing the chkdsk from windows right now and it's doing alright, but its not like its really powering a gpu or anything.

nevermind. it just shut off while running chkdsk. it rebooted. i'm pissed.
so yea...looks like i'm buying a new psu rather soon.
 

Rurouni Strife

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chkdsk wont even run now. says there are unrecoverable errors on disk.

trying a repair install before bed...and if it fails i'll come back to it on monday with a new psu and external hdd ready. maybe, depends how fast newegg can ship. i have another hard drive i can try to use, it might still work. that would let me grab whatever data i can off of this thing.
thanks for you help everybody.
 

JrRacinFan

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You have a failing 5v rail, which if you don't replace the psu soon will kill the hdd too. May want to get it sooner than later.
 

Rurouni Strife

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yea i will. im going home for a few days and i'll order a psu and external hdd from the egg and then if all goes well i'll have them by either monday or tuesday.
 
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