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Computer Crashes


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#1
jalway

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I have a Dell Dimension 4500 DeskTop Computer. It's running WindowsXP Pro, Service Pack 3.

A couple of months ago my hard drive crashed and I replaced it with a new one. I formatted the drive and placed WinXP on it. It worked fine, except that the Bios kept beeping. It would beep once sometimes and twice other times.

I checked the bios codes here:
http://support.dell....00/advanced.htm

Those are memory seating problems. I reseated the memory. I bought new memory and put it in. But, the beeping persisted.

Unable to diagnose the problem, I just left it and ignored the beeps. Now the computer crashes on occassion. I then have to wait an hour or more to get it to start up again. It's hard to believe it's over heating, but who knows. The computer will run days at a time, even for over a week, and then crash.

If I reboot the computer right after the crash, it will only get as far as the accounts screen and then the mouse freezes and the screen goes black, but if I wait an hour or longer, it may reboot.

The computer had no such beeps and prior to replacing the hard drive.

I dunno, this is very odd. Any help would be appreciated!

Thanks!
...John
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#2
jalway

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It just crashed again. What happens is that the screen goes black. I looked inside the case, and the mother board is lit up, the fan is going, and the hard drive is spinning. Graphics card?
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#3
jalway

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Whoa! Hold back on the responses! One at a time guys, one at a time.
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#4
The Admiral

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Jalway, when I'm looking through the forums, I look for posts with no responses. If I see one with responses, I assume that the original poster is already being helped by somebody. So I apologize for the delay, but you may want to be more prudent with your bumping/sarcasm.

Download the Dell Diagnostics and use the utility to put the diagnostics onto a blank CD or flash drive. Then, boot to that CD or flash drive, and click the "Test System" then "Extended Test". This will test all of the hardware in your computer, making sure it isn't a hardware problem.

If it freezes if you reboot it immediately after it freezes, it absolutely could be overheating. Try running the computer with a fan pointing at it, and see if it keeps happening.
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#5
jalway

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Thanks for the advice. :)

The prior post was just in good fun. No offense intended. :)


I'll give your idea a try.

Regards,
...John
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#6
jalway

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Download the Dell Diagnostics and use the utility to put the diagnostics onto a blank CD or flash drive. Then, boot to that CD or flash drive, and click the "Test System" then "Extended Test". This will test all of the hardware in your computer, making sure it isn't a hardware problem.

If it freezes if you reboot it immediately after it freezes, it absolutely could be overheating. Try running the computer with a fan pointing at it, and see if it keeps happening.


Okay, I created a bootable CD and burned the ISO image into it that was recommended (diags.iso). I used NTI CD&DVD Maker. I then booted from the CD. A Dos prompt pops up, but I see no "Test System" nor "Extended Test" options to click on. In fact, the mouse isn't running, since it's in Dos mode.

There are 18 files on it, but I don't see any file with the word "Test" in it.

Thanks for any feedback,

...John
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#7
jalway

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No, when I burn the iso image into the CD and try to boot from it it says "Invalid PBR". I'm using the "Create Disc From ISO Disc Image File" option.
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#8
Troy

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Hi jalway,

I can't stand NTI - I've uninstalled it from my Acer computer (it came preinstalled).

Read this link to burn using burncdcc (2nd option).

Cheers

Troy
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#9
jalway

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Hey, thanks Troy. I lucked out and found my Dell Diagnostics disk. I ran the extended test and it turns out that my hard drive is the problem. It failed several tests.

It failed the following tests: Confidence Test, Read Test, Seek Test, S.M.A.R.T. Test, and Verify Test.

This is a newly bought HD. Just bought it four months ago. Would it cause the BIOS to beep?

Anyway, it's a Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 160 Gbytes, ATA.

I thought Seagate was a good name. Anyone have any recommendations for a good, solid drive to purchase?

Thanks,
...John
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#10
Troy

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Seagate make excellent hard drives. I have three of them and love them. I especially love their 5-year warranty :) (Which I've never used myself, but looks like it's going to come in handy for you right about now).

It's possible that this one is faulty, or it was caused to be faulty because of something else in your system (e.g. low-quality PSU).

If you really don't want to purchase another Seagate, Western Digital, Samsung, and Hitachi come to mind as good hard drive manufacturers.

Cheers

Troy
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