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  1. #1
    Gold Lounger
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    Whining sibling, ooops, I mean system

    My sister sent me the following email:

    "While compiling an Excel file, my computer suddenly froze
    and started emitting a high pitched sound. The only way
    that I could get out of this was to manually shut it off
    at switch. I kept my fingers crossed when I rebooted.
    Things seem ok. Scandisk was done"

    Does this sound like a hard drive problem?

    I don't see any hard drive diagnostics at Micron's web site.
    AFAIK, she has the 14.4GB IBM Titan from Micron.

    I told her to backup and do a FULL scan disk and run diagnostics, but I'm
    not sure she has any diagnostics.

    What could be whining, other than the hard drive or a fan?

  2. #2
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: Whining sibling, ooops, I mean system

    Could it possibly be speaker related? If the speaker cable were to come loose and touch the metal of the case, the speakers could possibly make a high-pitched noise... (or any number of other similar scenarios...)

    I've also had fans make noise like that when they get a big piece of dust through them - almost like a loose fan belt on a car.

    Hope this helps...

  3. #3
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    Re: Whining sibling, ooops, I mean system

    Thanx, I'll tell her to check.

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Whining sibling, ooops, I mean system

    I don't know what she meant by "compiling" an Excel file, but I've heard a stuck keyboard make what SOME might describe as a high pitched sound when the keyboard buffer gets full. Of course, the stuck keyboard sound has a very rapid rat-a-tat-tat sound but I guess someone who had never heard it before might consider it whining.

    And, I almost forgot, similar to Mark's example, we had a DESKTOP computer suddenly start a loud whining and it turned out that an audio cable (wire) from the motherboard to the CD drive had gotten itself close enough to the processor fan to be getting hit. But it was kinda low pitched.

  5. #5
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    Re: Whining sibling, ooops, I mean system

    Hi Howard,

    My money's on the HDD. I had a Western Digital 4.3GB that used to make a horrible noise, sorta like metal scraping against metal, just after power up whilst being recognised by the BIOS. It's 10kHz whistle and wasn't the sound of happy hardware. Get your sister to back it up now, while she still can. Is it still covered under warranty? I know some manufacturer's are giving 3 years or more.

    I could be wrong but like I said, I had something similar happen to me. My problem was that I thought that all the time I could exchange data, all was well despite the noise. It wasn't. I think the drive is somewhere at the bottom of the garden now...

  6. #6
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    Re: Whining sibling, ooops, I mean system

    My experience with a whining (although more like "groaning") sound which occurred on first bootup led to the replacement, under warranty, of the cpu fan and the power supply. The noise continued--turns out it was the video card fan. Dust bunnies. Cat hair. Lesson learned: blow out the case more often with compressed air, vacuum the grills on the back of the case--with power off, though. Short suggestion: check the fans. I doubt if Excel had anything to do with it.

  7. #7
    Gold Lounger
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    Re: Whining sibling, ooops, I mean system

    I told her what to do, the rest is up to her.

    I also found the Drive Fitness Test software at http://www.storage.ibm.com, might work for her drive.

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