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Thread: Computer reboots

  1. #1
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    Default Computer reboots

    My desktop (11.1 x86_64, Phenom II, 6GB, NVidia) has suddenly started rebooting itself - as if I pressed the reset button. Is there a way to have Linux watch itself and note what error(s) precipitated this? There is a strange high frequency buzz that changes pitch all the time - it sometimes tracks video changes, sometime hard drive access - I think I remember that leaky capacitors can do this. It doesn't sound like a hard drive (many have crashed for me over the decades).

    I'm trying to avoid trial-and-error replacing one thing at a time, mobo, memory, power supply, video card, and so on...

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Smile Re: Computer reboots

    My desktop (11.1 x86_64, Phenom II, 6GB, NVidia) has suddenly started rebooting itself - as if I pressed the reset button. Is there a way to have Linux watch itself and note what error(s) precipitated this? There is a strange high frequency buzz that changes pitch all the time - it sometimes tracks video changes, sometime hard drive access - I think I remember that leaky capacitors can do this. It doesn't sound like a hard drive (many have crashed for me over the decades).

    I'm trying to avoid trial-and-error replacing one thing at a time, mobo, memory, power supply, video card, and so on...

    Thanks!
    So tell us what kind of computer like brand or if this is a clone or home made rig. Spontaneous reboots indicate an unstable computer and the number one culprit is memory. However, a bad power supply is also a possibility. If this is a dual boot computer it is useful to know if both Windows and openSUSE do the same things.

    My first step in a such a case is a complete computer cleaning, unless it is brand new or you just cleaned it. I go buy a couple cans of duster spray, disconnect the PC from all cables, take it outside, during the day with lots of light, open up the case and blow out all dust from all devices. Alternate between the two cans of spray as they get cold and the amount of air goes down, even though the cans are not empty. I normally reseat all connectors one at a time and do the same for memory. Make sure you observer all connectors and memory before you take any action with cables or cards to make sure all gets back in the right place.

    Once the computer is clean and all cards, cables, connectors and memory have been reseated, then you test again to see if the computer is still rebooting. Then, it may be time to find and run a memory or other utility on the computer. If the power supply can be replaced and the PC is young and something you plan on keeping, I normally take the opportunity to buy a new one that puts out more power. I normally replace and upgrade memory next, perhaps moving from 4 to 8 GB if possible. Finally I look for a replacement motherboard compatible with my CPU and fan. Hard drives also fail, but most often they just don't boot and have many read errors, but rebooting the PC is not really normal.

    CPU's very seldom fail. I have owned many computers over the years and I blew up one and had one over heat and that is it. All others were sold, gave away or just got too slow to use any more. So, perhaps something here might be useful with the problems that you are seeing with your PC.

    Thank You,
    My Blog: https://forums.opensuse.org/blogs/jdmcdaniel3/

    Software efficiency halves every 18 months, thus compensating for Moore's Law

    Its James again from Austin, Texas

  3. #3

    Default Re: Computer reboots

    An excellent suggestion to start with. Too few people clean their components as frequently as they should.

    Afterwards, I'd suggest you might want to run memtest86+ from a live disk to test your ram.

    Another common culprit can be the power supply. The symptoms of a failing power supply can be pretty varying, and it may be worth investing in a psu tester. They're pretty cheap--especially considering that it could save you hundreds in the long run.

    Good luck!
    I'm confused...No, wait...Maybe I'm not...

  4. #4
    Will Honea NNTP User

    Default Re: Computer reboots

    jdmcdaniel3 wrote:

    > My first step in a such a case is a complete computer cleaning, unless
    > it is brand new or you just cleaned it. I go buy a couple cans of
    > duster spray, disconnect the PC from all cables, take it outside, during
    > the day with lots of light, open up the case and blow out all dust from
    > all devices. Alternate between the two cans of spray as they get cold
    > and the amount of air goes down, even though the cans are not empty. I
    > normally reseat all connectors one at a time and do the same for memory.
    > Make sure you observer all connectors and memory before you take any
    > action with cables or cards to make sure all gets back in the right
    > place.


    Two comments on an excellent process.

    1. BEFORE messing with cables and sockets, blow out the majority of the dust
    so that you minimize the amount that could fall into the wrong place (like a
    DIMM socket). Then reset the cables and cards/modules and blow out once
    more.

    2. I live at 6500' altitude in a dry desert area where static is a major
    hazard to components so I'm a bit paranoid about grounding anyway but be
    aware that the canned air is dry and getting too close so that the airspeed
    over a surface is high can build up a nasty charge. Back off a bit with the
    nozzle rather than holding it right on the board and chips and maintain
    physical contact with the metal computer case.

    --
    Will Honea

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Computer reboots

    Thank you for all the suggestions! I will blow it out carefully. If it weren't for the digital "squeal" it is making, I'm sure that would fix it: for instance, if I grab the slider at the right of FireFox to scroll this window up and down, the squeal changes sound - one sound while moving, another while not. And it will also change if the Hard Drive reads. It's an Asus motherboard that I've had for a couple of years, and in only started this digital noise (and rebooting) after a power outage a month ago. The Diablotech 650 power supply I had to buy for the evga NVidia card (extra power connector). I guess after blowing out and memtest, I could try putting the old power supply and video card back in to see if the digital noise goes away.

    Thanks Again,
    PattiMichelle

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Computer reboots

    On 04/19/2011 04:06 PM, PattiMichelle wrote:
    >
    > digital noise


    i guess the 'digital noise' you are hearing is coming out of the
    speakers? maybe? if you unplug (or just turn them down, a LOT) does that
    make a difference?

    if not, i _guess_ it is mechanical noise and probably means the bearing
    in your CPU cooler fan is telling you it is time to replace that little
    fan...they are not so expensive but, you have to make sure and get one
    that will just drop right in with no fuss....otherwise it is a LOT of fuss..

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  7. #7
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    Smile Re: Computer reboots

    Thank you for all the suggestions! I will blow it out carefully. If it weren't for the digital "squeal" it is making, I'm sure that would fix it: for instance, if I grab the slider at the right of FireFox to scroll this window up and down, the squeal changes sound - one sound while moving, another while not. And it will also change if the Hard Drive reads. It's an Asus motherboard that I've had for a couple of years, and in only started this digital noise (and rebooting) after a power outage a month ago. The Diablotech 650 power supply I had to buy for the evga NVidia card (extra power connector). I guess after blowing out and memtest, I could try putting the old power supply and video card back in to see if the digital noise goes away.

    Thanks Again,
    PattiMichelle
    Let me say that if you hear "scroll" noise when moving an HTML page up and down in Firefox that can be some sort of issue with your sound card or sound chipset. I have had this in openSUSE when using a built-in sound chip and had it go away when changing to a Creative or other add in sound card. It is something to consider though I don't know a no new hardware fix right now.

    Thank You,
    My Blog: https://forums.opensuse.org/blogs/jdmcdaniel3/

    Software efficiency halves every 18 months, thus compensating for Moore's Law

    Its James again from Austin, Texas

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Computer reboots

    No, no... I mean real digital noise. Not coming from the speakers, which are unplugged, and I don't have a little PC speaker. Until this happened, I had not heard noise like this in a long time. In the 80's I had a HP-UX portable (luggable) that ran on a 68000 and when I was doing solution of linear equations, you could "hear" the memory operating and count the number of solutions it was doing. I'm not kidding! (It had to be REALLY quiet, tho. late at night when I was solving matrices, you could hear it.) For instance, a microphone is just a capacitor. And everyone has heard of microphonic noise in circuits - so, I'm guessing some part on my motherboard has gone bad on my computer - probably a capacitor. It "whines" in time with the digital bandwidth passing through it. I should see if I can record it. Folks a lot younger than I may have never experienced this phenomenon.

  9. #9
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    Smile Re: Computer reboots

    No, no... I mean real digital noise. Not coming from the speakers, which are unplugged, and I don't have a little PC speaker. Until this happened, I had not heard noise like this in a long time. In the 80's I had a HP-UX portable (luggable) that ran on a 68000 and when I was doing solution of linear equations, you could "hear" the memory operating and count the number of solutions it was doing. I'm not kidding! (It had to be REALLY quiet, tho. late at night when I was solving matrices, you could hear it.) For instance, a microphone is just a capacitor. And everyone has heard of microphonic noise in circuits - so, I'm guessing some part on my motherboard has gone bad on my computer - probably a capacitor. It "whines" in time with the digital bandwidth passing through it. I should see if I can record it. Folks a lot younger than I may have never experienced this phenomenon.
    Over the years I have found that anything is possible, but your power supply is the most likely culprit for any mechanical noise inspired by digital activity. I would make for the recommended cleaning process and then tell us of your success.

    Thank You,
    My Blog: https://forums.opensuse.org/blogs/jdmcdaniel3/

    Software efficiency halves every 18 months, thus compensating for Moore's Law

    Its James again from Austin, Texas

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Computer reboots

    On Wed, 20 Apr 2011 01:36:01 +0000, jdmcdaniel3 wrote:

    > Over the years I have found that anything is possible, but your power
    > supply is the most likely culprit for any mechanical noise inspired by
    > digital activity. I would make for the recommended cleaning process and
    > then tell us of your success.


    I find that this type of noise is usually due to improper grounding.

    Jim



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