Computer Issues

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Computer Issues

Postby Horcrux » Sat Sep 05, 2009 2:02 am

Hey guys, long time no talk! I come seeking some computer advice. I fear that my desktop has suffered an overheating. I have recently swapped out my old desk for a new one, and in my haste to get myself set back up, I failed to notice that the Tower compartment had a back wall on it, and only a hole for cords. I think I pushed the tower back too far, and that the Power Supply fan may have been covered. Within two days of setting up my new desk, my computer suffered a sudden complete meltdown, and it took a full Windows reinstall to bring it up to being stable again (as in I can log into Windows). Once I was able to bring it up and have it remain stable, I figured I may as well do a full wipe and reformat while I was at it. But, I also now have fatal errors on my HD preventing me from doing a full wipe and reformatting to start fresh. I'm afraid that if the meltdown was caused by overheating that more than the HD was harmed, but I don't want to just do a total gutting of components. Anyone have an idea of how I can systematically determine which components may have been compromised if it was a heating issue, so that I can replace only what is necessary?
Lord Horcrux Soulshard - 80th Deathcaller - Retired

Nathan: "Brother versus brother. It's almost biblical."
Peter: "My brother can't walk through walls! Who are you?"

HEROES comes back September 15th with a 3 hour premier!
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Re: Computer Issues

Postby Jibvalde » Sat Sep 05, 2009 2:28 pm

proccessor and ram and on low voltage side so should be Ok hard drive should be the only thing gone you might be able to save it but if your tips drug on the discs what ever problem you have will grow. try running an error check should tell you if you have lost any sectors, might be better to just pick up a new hard drive shouldnt cost to much.
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Re: Computer Issues

Postby cydian1 » Sun Sep 06, 2009 12:07 am

Hi
It is likely that it is only the HD that is having a problem and it (the HD) could even be bad and not repairable, in which case it's time to buy a new HD.

But it could also be that the PARTITION on the drive has a problem and that problem can be made to go away by deleting the partition and making a new one. And windows can do that for you.
Not knowing how computer literate you are, I would try it like this:

When you reboot the PC with the Windows CD in the drive (boot to the CD) and go about reinstalling windows, you will get to a point where it asks if you want to delete the partition.. I don't remember exactly, but it talks about using the existing file system, you do not want to do that.
When you get to the right point, delete the partition. (of course, you have your data backed up somewhere, your license available, your software ready to reinstall, etc)
In fact, if there is more than one partition,delete them ALL. Even the ones called utility partitions.
After the partition(s) is deleted, you will be offered the option of creating a NEW partition (or just installing on the unpartitioned space, which means installing windows using the entire drive as a single drive letter (think C drive here), and that is what you likely want to do.
After that, it will want to format the new partition, which you will let it do (as an NTFS partition).
If the format then fails, you need to replace the drive, it is shot.
REMEMBER- Deleting the partition will permanently remove EVERYTHING on the drive. Be sure you have it backed up or you WILL lose it.

Also remember that if the drive is physically damaged inside then even thou repartitioning then reformatting may fix the problem, it could reappear at a latter date.
Often, you can hear a drive problem. Open the case and listen to it close. Do you hear any ticking or high pitched sounds... does it seem really hot to the touch (a drive will be a little bit hot). Drives are pretty cheap. If you're not confident, my advice it to err on the conservative side.
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Re: Computer Issues

Postby Stonecrush » Wed Sep 09, 2009 6:15 am

Horcrux

Going to give you a couple of links to down load some diag tools..
Two tools I use the most to test drives at work are DFT Drive Fitness Test by hitatchi and Seatools (sea gates version).
The one you want to download for Sea tools is the DOS version run the long test. DFT you want the "CD IMAGE" and once created just fly through the options or let it auto run the diag until it prompts you to do something. Sometimes it might not work as DFT can be a bit finicky.
These are their Websites
http://www.hitachigst.com/hdd/support/download.htm
http://www.seagate.com/www/en-us/suppor ... s/seatools

Now just incase you will want to run Memtest
This is going to make sure your ram is going swell!
I don't like the newest version myself and know that version 2.11 works great if it can be found.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memtest86
http://www.memtest.org/ Found here.. yay

If you want to know how to test your power supply (this option is cautionary). Unplug all of your connections inside the computer and then unplug it from the wall (anyway you want really) then take a paperclip (all metal NOT insulated with rubber crap) and carefully bend the clip into a U shape. Now take the power connection that connects to the mother bored and (making sure again its not plugged in VERY IMPORTANT) carefully place the paper clip in the Green (GND) and the Black (common). (Note: these are usually next to one another on the MoBo power connection.) Once its in, plug in the power supply and turn on the switch (if there is a switch some PS's sometimes don't have one) if the fan spins then it may not be your power supply.

BIG NOTE: Sometimes this is not a definitive way to tell due to just having enough power to spin the fan or it could have spiking issues, another way to tell is to just go buy one and test it without installing it into the computer, if it POSTs you know your issue is the PS. I do know that most computer places do NOT charge a restocking fee if it turns out to not be a power supply issue. Best Buy definitely doesn't, since they are moving away from restocking fees (yes even on Laptops) :chair

If you have further problems let me know I'll do my best.
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Re: Computer Issues

Postby Horcrux » Wed Sep 09, 2009 10:14 pm

I already know the Harddrive has physical damage, and so that is shot. Thanks for the info on the other things though Stone, should be helpful as those are components I was more worried about. What about processor/motherboard? Any way of running a full diagnostic on them to make sure there was no shorting or other heat damage there? Both are new as of the last year or two so hoping I don't have to replace them :(.

Ideally I would like to hang onto my motherboard/processor and memory specifically. Harddrive too, as it is only 8 months old and a 1TB drive, but I know it is shot. Other components are cheap enough, and haven't been replaced in long enough time to warrant new parts anyways.
Lord Horcrux Soulshard - 80th Deathcaller - Retired

Nathan: "Brother versus brother. It's almost biblical."
Peter: "My brother can't walk through walls! Who are you?"

HEROES comes back September 15th with a 3 hour premier!
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Re: Computer Issues

Postby Stonecrush » Thu Sep 10, 2009 4:40 am

HDDs have limited warranties check yours if its bad.

Mobo and processor eh, I use stuff thats licenced at work.. can try and get a cracked Geeksquad MRI disc ISO and use the utility Pc Check. /shrug otherwise recommend wikki search
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Re: Computer Issues

Postby Ayragon » Thu Sep 10, 2009 5:15 am

only thing you can do for a failing HDD is scan it, and build a new partition in the space marked as good (of course you're bound to have issues with it in the near future, and is best to replace it all together).

Your MB/proc/dimms etc should be ok as they are built for extreme heat conditions and will usually shut themselves down well before the temp gets to their breaking point (generally either bios settings or their own firmware).

There are lots of free disk utilities that you'll pick up from google....although chkdsk itself is not too bad and worth a run.
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