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Computer restarting randomly


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#1
MommyWilliams

MommyWilliams

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Hi, I posted here about my computer not too long ago, and now my husband is having computer problems. He has an HP pavillion, he "custom built" it through HP- where it offered him choices on some items. It is about 3 years old now. He hasn't had any problems until recently. A few months ago it blue screened a few times and he blew it out with compressed air and it worked fine until these last couple weeks. Now his computer just randomly restarts. The blue screen doesn't show, but it restarts when my son is playing on his websites (like lego.com or pbskids.org, etc) and when my husband is playing his games (starcraft, rift, etc.) but it also restarts and before he can even sign in to his computer it will restart again, as many as several times. It just seems really random- some mornings he can play for hours and it will not restart and then give it a break and my son will try to get on, and before he is even on for 5 minutes, it will restart. He tried blowing it out again, but this morning he had to reinstall windows. He has windows vista if that is important. But if it continues to have problems, are there any suggestions? I read on some forums to deselect "automatic restart" from his win+pause/break window and then BSOS or whatever would diagnose what was wrong, but it didn't seem to change anything when I did that.

Please help!

Thanks,
Laura

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#2
hendaz

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Hi,

Random restarts can be caused by several factors but the most common is a failing power supply. The restart occurs as the computer receives information that there is not enough power and so switches itself off. The power is then sufficient and the computer restarts.

If this is the problem then the only solution would be to replace the power supply.

Hope this helps..
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#3
MommyWilliams

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I was wondering if it was the power supply as well. I did some research into it, but his friend who is really good with computers thinks it's the graphic card overheating. It's nVidia GeForce 8800 gt. He told us to remove it and see if it shuts down and if it didn't then it was the card. It didn't, but it doesn't make sense to me because it plugs directly into the power supply which means it uses a significant amount of power- not to mention we were not able to run any intensive games without it to stress the system. Also, I put the card back in today and i've been running Rift in the background, I have 3 windows running with about 5 tabs open on each, and wordpad going for the last nearly 4 hours without a restart. But it did continue happening after reinstalling windows which means it isn't a software problem, right? The restarts happen so randomly that it really confuses me- our son will get on his computer to play games after it's been shut off for hours, and as soon as he opens a webpage, it will restart, and then restart repeatedly when it's trying to boot up. His friend said it still could be the graphics card being hot from when my husband was on the computer, but I don't think he realized it was after the computer being turned off for hours. I haven't tried a new PSU yet, but how do I test what it is when sometimes it restarts with barely anything running and then sometimes it goes for hours on end with a lot of things running?
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#4
hendaz

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Hi,

There are a lot of different factors that could lead to random restarts which is why its hard to diagnose over the internet. It is possible it is your power supply but not necessarily. You can test your power supply using a voltmeter or even a specialist power supplier tester but this might not be an option.

With regards to overheating this could certainly be an issue but if you say the pc restarts even when it has only been on for a few minutes then it does seem unlikely. I would make sure you have adequate ventilation (fans) in order to prevent this.

Another issue that does cause random restarts is faulty device drivers. I would make sure all your device drivers are up to date and the correct driver for your hardware and OS. Possibly take a close look at the graphics card driver to make sure that is correct.

I would also suggest looking at the event viewer to see if any event is logged at the time just before the computer randomly restarts. A good guide can be found at: http://www.bleepingc...topic40108.html

Any questions feel free to ask.
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#5
MommyWilliams

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Just in case anyone reads this and they are adverse to buying anything like I was, I went into the Device Manager and had to delete the ones with the exclamation marks next to it. I tried to update drivers, but it kept telling me that the drivers were up to date. So I had to delete them and let the computer find them again and download all the drivers. His computer has been running for 3 days now without any restarts so far, so we will see! Thank you for all your suggestions.
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