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Diagnosing orientation disorder


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#1
Basty

Basty

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The desktop (tower) PC has been suddenly 'dying' without notice, after varying numbers of minutes. The CPU heatsink fan stops turning, but a LED on the motherboard stays lit. I experimented with the RAM sims and slots, but got very inconsistent results. I tried to run MEMTEST to get a 'sophisticated' evaluation of the RAM, but the PC kept dying before the test ended. I thought I had heard some 'arcing' noise, so my next suspect was power supply. A replacement 'fixed the problem' ONLY while the PC was left on its side; when it was turned upright - as a tower is supposed to be - the problem returned. Any suggestions what loose connection to look for ?
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#2
phillpower2

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Hello Basty

This unfortunately could be caused by a cable that is somewhere out of site such as beneath the MB :(

For an initial check I would disconnect all power and peripheral cables from the computer and remove the opposing side panel of the case, the space below the MB there is often used to conceal unused cables that are intended for items such as additional front USB ports and card readers etc, these can sometimes cause system shorts if the protective insulation has been damaged/melted by heat or nicked by a sharp edge.

Apart from the above I would check that the MBs backplate is snugly fitted (it earths the MB and USB ports etc) that all cooling fans are mounted securely, that they are securely connected to the headers on the MB or PSU, the front case switch connections are securely attached to the front panel header on the MB and the same with all drive, USB, add on cards and audio port connections.

If you cannot resolve the issue by way of the above you may need to do a bare bones set-up outside of the case.

You checked the Ram but if you have an add on video card was that also removed and reseated securely.
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#3
Basty

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'Fitting Snugly' is I think the answer to my problems. This 'dying midstream' has only happened since I replaced the heatsinkfan on the CPU after trying to clean the accumulated dirt from it. Since there was no easy access to the back of the motherboard where that item was secured, the lugs on the original had been damaged; and I replaced it with another, but could still not SEE whether the connection was proper. Since I started this thread I have found that it was in fact loose, and so causing the failure. I have tried to retighten the connection, and have now had the tower upright and working without failure for half an hour or more, so I am satisfied the problem is fixed. Thanks for your advice.
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#4
phillpower2

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You are welcome and thanks for the follow up Basty :thumbsup:

Hopefully you will have no further problems with it.
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