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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    Computer shuts down

    I am running Windows 98, Intel P4 processor. My computer started just shutting itself off. At first I thought it was an over-heated processor, so I opened up the case and vacuumed it out, and, yes, there was a lot of dust plugging the power supply fan, but not the processor fan, and both fans were working. But it kept shutting itself down, even after the fluff was cleared away. I took it into a shop, and they recommended replacing the power supply, since it was not the recommended size for the processor. Did that, but it still shut itself down.

    Sometimes it would do it as soon as it booted up completely, other times it would wait 15 to 45 minutes before it shut itself off. But I discovered it does not shut off if I boot it into "safe mode." Aha! must be a software problem.

    But I could not find it, even using the feature to verify each driver before it loaded. So, I took it back to the shop, and because of finances, asked them simply to back up my data, outlook, favorites, etc., then wipe the hard drive and reinstall Windows 98 (I really can't afford, even at their prices, a new operating system right now). So they are doing that now.

    I am writing here to see if anyone has any other ideas about what might be causing this problem. I am afraid that I am going to get it back, and the same thing will happen. Could the processor itself be damaged? Any thoughts will, as always be appreciated.

    Tia

  2. #2
    5 Star Lounger
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    Re: Computer shuts down

    I have a computer here in the office with a similar problem. It will shut itself off at various times. Sometimes I would be able to restart immediately and continue, other times the computer would continue shutting down shortly after I restarted it. If I left it off for a night, I could often start it up again and it would function fine for a while.

    I switched the power supply, but the problem continued unchanged. I ran Memtest and Sisoft Sandra's burn in test continuancely. No errors found. I reinstalled all the software and tried a second PS, a UPS and a full reinstall and upgrade to XP.

    It was OK for weeks, but coincidentally, it's just started in again, with a spontaneous reboot as it tries to load Windows XP. I let it go several times and then shut it off. I'll turn it on again tomorrow (Actually, it's really annoying, becuase that's the machine I put all my network montioring and managing utilites on, and I'm trying to test some new ones).

    My current theory is that I have a faulty cpu/ram/motherboard, but the problem only shows sometimes. Probably heat-related.

    So, I guess what I'm saying here is that I have no idea how to help you with your problem. But I feel your pain.

    I'd try keeping the machine cool, maybe leave the case cover off, get extra fans, shut it down when not in use.

  3. #3
    2 Star Lounger
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    Re: Computer shuts down

    Just last weekend I discovered a new setting on Windows XP that hides error messages. You might check on yours-I know that Windows error messages are rarely informative, but just in case...

    Under System Properties, Advanced, Startup & Recovery Settings, if Automatic Restart is checked then when WinXP encounters a fatal error it will 'spontaneously' reboot rather than display an error message. In my case it was occuring on shutdown which made it even more mysterious. The first 2 times I thought I'd hit Restart by mistake. By the 3rd time I'd spotted a pattern but was wondering if it was a virus or a bad driver (I had just reformatted this machine & was reloading everything from scratch). Once I started looking for possible causes I discovered this setting. Turned it off & bingo-there was the error causing the problem.

  4. #4
    3 Star Lounger
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    Re: Computer shuts down

    I found this happening very recently in an office I have been volunteering at. Eventually, I found that it didn't like the scanner that was attached -- I said "no" to some question upon bootup (can't remember what question!) and either the software for that scanner did not load, or it was happy just ignoring the scanner -- and never had the problem again. I don't know if they ever used the scanner -- who knows. All I know is that was the resolution, and you might find that there is some incompatible piece of software or hardware that is trying to load.
    thx
    Pat

  5. #5
    Star Lounger
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    Re: Computer shuts down

    Thanks, always glad to know I'm not alone out here in the cyberland. I'm a little worried that it did overheat to begin with and it may have affected the motherboard, or the processor. I am planning on treating it gently, that's for sure!

  6. #6
    Star Lounger
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    Re: Computer shuts down

    The shop suggested I might disconnect any peripherals, and I did, but no luck!

  7. #7
    Star Lounger
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    Re: Computer shuts down

    I'm still runiing Windows 98, so I don' t think there are any hidden messages. But I may try the Ouija board next, to see if that helps! (I swear I'm not moving it!)

  8. #8
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    Re: Computer shuts down

    Check to see if the hibernation is turned on, as the system will appear to be OFF but asleep and the movement of the mouse is to wake it up. But some times it may take up to 10 minutes to wake up an d copy all the open files back into memory.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

  9. #9
    2 Star Lounger
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    Re: Computer shuts down

    Sorry, got confused by Jim's comment about upgrading to XP.

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