Our new Indie Games subforum is now open for business in G&T. Go and check it out, you might land a code for a free game. If you're developing an indie game and want to post about it, follow these directions. If you don't, he'll break your legs! Hahaha! Seriously though.
Our rules have been updated and given their own forum. Go and look at them! They are nice, and there may be new ones that you didn't know about! Hooray for rules! Hooray for The System! Hooray for Conforming!

PC Spontaneously Shutting Down

Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
edited September 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
Alright, I'm at my wit's end with this crap. Whenever playing video games, my PC just shuts down. No errors, no warning. Just off and monitor black. To memory, this happens with Half-Life 2, Champions Online, Portal, and most recently and most often, Aion.

I've ruled out cooling issues. I have two internal fans, not including the processor fan and the power supply fan. Besides that, out of sheer desperation, I've removed the side of the case and pointed two fans directly inside the computer.

I ran MemTest for about an hour and found no issues with RAM.

Silas Brown on
CmgpQ.jpg
«1

Posts

  • IogaIoga Registered User
    edited September 2009
    I had the same problem with mine - it was a fan, except that I had installed it incorrectly.

    Use Coretemp to monitor your heat and see what's up.

  • Andrew RyanAndrew Ryan Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I had an issue like this with an older ATI Radeon card.

    XT2700 I think.

    it never did it when It was just idling on the desktop or browsing the web, but anytime I played a 3d game after around 10 minutes the machine would just turn itself off.

    Replacing the card fixed the problem

    Mbt2W.gifbLHcF.gifMbt2W.gifbLHcF.gif
    naknaknaknaknak
  • ThegreatcowThegreatcow Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    It's definitely sounding like a power/heat issue.

    It could also be the fan/core of your video card, typically since there is so much power being fed through those guys, if that guy starts to overheat, it can trip the safety-shutdown trigger in your power supply. Typically though you'll start to get artifacting real bad in the games before that happens....

    Are you getting any weird graphical glitches in those games before the shutdown hits?

  • wakkawawakkawa Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I use to have this problem with a really old computer of mines. The PSU wasn't powerful enough to run everything in the computer so it would just shutdown while playing games. I got a large PSU and it fixed the problem.

  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Ioga wrote: »
    I had the same problem with mine - it was a fan, except that I had installed it incorrectly.

    Use Coretemp to monitor your heat and see what's up.

    Perhaps it is cooling. Right now Coretemp is showing 90 degrees farenheit, which seems like a lot considering I'm basically violating my PC with fans.
    It's definitely sounding like a power/heat issue.

    It could also be the fan/core of your video card, typically since there is so much power being fed through those guys, if that guy starts to overheat, it can trip the safety-shutdown trigger in your power supply. Typically though you'll start to get artifacting real bad in the games before that happens....

    Are you getting any weird graphical glitches in those games before the shutdown hits?

    Nay on the graphical glitches. Everything runs perfectly... insanely so.. and then... nothing.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • UncleSporkyUncleSporky Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Yeah, I used to have this on an old graphics card too. Echoing the advice to just replace the card. If you are hesitant to throw it out see if you can test drive a different card from another PC first.

    3DS Friend Code: 0989 - 1731 - 9504
    Nintendo Network ID: unclesporky
  • eternalbleternalbl Registered User
    edited September 2009
    Perhaps it is cooling. Right now Coretemp is showing 90 degrees farenheit, which seems like a lot considering I'm basically violating my PC with fans.

    90 degrees farenheit is pretty cool. Thats 32 celsius, which is no worse than a hot summer day up here in canuckistan.

    Edit for clarification - depending on processor, the max temp threshold is up at 70-90 celsius, so more than double what you're getting unless coretemp is reporting in celsius.

    Spoiler:
  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Six pack on a dick Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Yeah, 90 fahrenheit is downright cool at idle. 55-60 celsius (131-140 fahrenheit) is no problem for under load.

    h1DI1.jpg
    All my fuckin life I lived a normal fuckin life
  • Hahnsoo1Hahnsoo1 Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Replace the graphics card. If it only happens on 3D games, the Graphics Card is likely to be the culprit. Alternatively, you can try different drivers for your card, but it's far more likely to be a hardware issue.

    Alternatively, it could be your power supply on the fritz.

    Steam ID: Hahnsoo, Steam Name currently: Hahnsopolis | PSN: Hahnsoo | Monster Hunter Tri: Hahnsoo, E8HJCA
  • MctittlesMctittles Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I'd check the power supply first. I've encountered this in two different computers and both were faulty power supply. When you start the game up, it draws more power to give to your cpu and graphics card and if they don't get enough..poof.

    I see what you did there last summer.
  • SoggychickenSoggychicken Registered User
    edited September 2009
    Perhaps if you post your system specs we can figure out if it's a power issue.

  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
  • MctittlesMctittles Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    If you have a power supply you can borrow to swap out and test it would be the better route, however with a little work you can also test your power supply:
    http://pcsupport.about.com/od/toolsofthetrade/f/powersupplytest.htm
    Takes a multimeter or special power supply tester to do.

    I see what you did there last summer.
  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Six pack on a dick Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    How many HDDs do you have? Sound card or onboard sound? Optical drives? External drives? Number of fans? Case lights?

    h1DI1.jpg
    All my fuckin life I lived a normal fuckin life
  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    How many HDDs do you have? Sound card or onboard sound? Optical drives? External drives? Number of fans? Case lights?

    1 Western Digital SATA Harddrive
    Onboard sound
    1 LG 22X DVD+R
    No external drives
    One fan on top, one fan in the back. One CPU heatsink (I checked, it's functioning), one power supply fan. One or two fans situated around the case, opened, in various attempts to supply more cooling.
    One power light on the front.

    EDIT: I'm preparing to rule out cooling, leaving it between the graphics card and the power supply. Here are some Core Temp logs, listed in Fahrenheit. In both instances, Core Temp is started right before booting Aion, and ends right before my computer shuts down:
    CPUID:,0x100F42
    Processor:,AMD Phenom II X4 940 BE (Deneb)
    Platform:,Socket AM2+ (940 pin)
    Revision:,RB-C2

    Session start:,19:57:03 - September 20 - 2009

    Time,CPU 0 Temp.,,CPU 0,Low temp.,High temp.,Core load,CPU speed,
    19:57:13,90°,,,90°,92°,0%,3013.33 MHz,
    19:57:23,89°,,,89°,92°,0%,3013.33 MHz,
    19:57:33,94°,,,89°,95°,3%,3013.33 MHz,
    19:57:43,91°,,,89°,95°,0%,3013.33 MHz,
    19:57:53,96°,,,89°,96°,2%,3013.33 MHz,
    19:58:03,94°,,,89°,96°,36%,3013.33 MHz, <
    Around this point, I have finished logging in and am loading the area
    19:58:13,96°,,,89°,96°,30%,3013.33 MHz,
    19:58:23,94°,,,89°,96°,0%,3013.33 MHz,
    19:58:33,99°,,,89°,100°,44%,3013.33 MHz,
    19:58:43,100°,,,89°,101°,34%,3013.33 MHz,
    CPUID:,0x100F42
    Processor:,AMD Phenom II X4 940 BE (Deneb)
    Platform:,Socket AM2+ (940 pin)
    Revision:,RB-C2

    Session start:,20:08:53 - September 20 - 2009

    Time,CPU 0 Temp.,,CPU 0,Low temp.,High temp.,Core load,CPU speed,
    20:09:03,96°,,,96°,98°,2%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:09:13,95°,,,95°,98°,0%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:09:23,93°,,,93°,98°,0%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:09:33,98°,,,92°,98°,9%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:09:43,95°,,,92°,98°,25%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:09:53,97°,,,92°,98°,16%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:10:03,95°,,,92°,98°,16%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:10:13,97°,,,92°,99°,13%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:10:23,100°,,,92°,101°,33%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:10:33,102°,,,92°,102°,36%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:10:43,103°,,,92°,104°,6%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:10:53,100°,,,92°,104°,14%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:11:03,100°,,,92°,104°,13%,3013.41 MHz, <
    Around here I begin loading the area of the game
    20:11:13,100°,,,92°,104°,8%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:11:23,99°,,,92°,104°,25%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:11:33,98°,,,92°,104°,19%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:11:43,101°,,,92°,104°,11%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:11:53,99°,,,92°,104°,14%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:12:03,101°,,,92°,104°,23%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:12:13,100°,,,92°,104°,17%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:12:23,98°,,,92°,104°,11%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:12:33,104°,,,92°,105°,22%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:12:43,102°,,,92°,105°,17%,3013.41 MHz,
    20:12:53,100°,,,92°,105°,11%,3013.41 MHz,

    It's happening much faster now. In Portal, I only crashed the one time. Granted, it was a short game.
    In Lord of the Rings Online, I'd crash once every few days.
    In Champions Online, I crashed about once every other day.
    Earlier today with Aion, I woudl usually get at least 15 minutes, sometimes even half an hour. Now it's nearly instantaneous.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • an_altan_alt Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I'd put my money on the power supply. If you have spare parts it would be quicker to swap the video card, but it sounds more PSU related, especially with the temps you've posted.

    Pony wrote:
    I think that the internet has been for years on the path to creating what is essentially an electronic Necronomicon: A collection of blasphemous unrealities so perverse that to even glimpse at its contents, if but for a moment, is to irrevocably forfeit a portion of your sanity.
    Xbox - PearlBlueS0ul, Steam
  • Red RoverRed Rover Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Here... try this

    Power Test

    This message will self-destruct in 5... 4... 3... 2... 1... !
  • ArtereisArtereis Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    When my power supply was on the fritz, it behaved exactly like you're describing.

    steam_sig.png
  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Yeah, I'm really leaning towards the power supply direction. I asked my boss if he has a multimeter I could borrow. He said he had a "volt tester" that i could use on my power supply, I suspect it's the same thing. Hopefully I'll have it in my hands tomorrow.

    I'll check out that link tonight, Red Rover. It's blocked at work for some reason.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I bought an automatic power supply tester on the way home from work today. The power supply passed.

    I guess I need to buy a new graphics card?

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Are you positive that the CPU temp your reading is not in Celsius? Most monitoring programs I have used in the past read in C rather than F. If you are getting up to 90 C that is definitely in the range in which a CPU will shut itself off.

    edit: maybe I'm just not as well versed in the most modern CPUs as I used to be, but under load 105F seems suspiciously low to me. Are the modern quad cores that cool? I only say that because the only issues I've ever encountered with PSU's or sometimes bad memory modules is that they will simply reboot the machine rather than shut off. Then again it's been about 3 years since Ive really been in the game when it comes to troubleshooting hardware. Also with your temp logs, you're playing a game for over 40 minutes and the core temp only increases 1-5 degrees F? That seems even more suspicious to me. What it sounds like to me is you had a core meltdown (happens much more often now than it did in the past.) A quick cursory google search yields that even hardcore overclockers with the Phenom II 940 and the best air and water cooling are idling higher than your under load which leads me to doubt that those temp readings are in F.

  • ThegreatcowThegreatcow Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Simpsonia wrote: »
    Are you positive that the CPU temp your reading is not in Celsius? Most monitoring programs I have used in the past read in C rather than F. If you are getting up to 90 C that is definitely in the range in which a CPU will shut itself off.

    edit: maybe I'm just not as well versed in the most modern CPUs as I used to be, but under load 105F seems suspiciously low to me. Are the modern quad cores that cool? I only say that because the only issues I've ever encountered with PSU's or sometimes bad memory modules is that they will simply reboot the machine rather than shut off. Then again it's been about 3 years since Ive really been in the game when it comes to troubleshooting hardware. Also with your temp logs, you're playing a game for over 40 minutes and the core temp only increases 1-5 degrees F? That seems even more suspicious to me. What it sounds like to me is you had a core meltdown (happens much more often now than it did in the past.) A quick cursory google search yields that even hardcore overclockers with the Phenom II 940 and the best air and water cooling are idling higher than your under load which leads me to doubt that those temp readings are in F.

    Holy crap you're right I just noticed that. My bios also shows in Celsius first and if those temps are in C no wonder it's shutting down faster and faster. The core is still hot from the previous session so it's overheating faster and faster.

    Prof can you see if those temps are being shown in F or in C? If those are in C then you're dealing with a very serious CPU core overheating issue, it could be something as simple as just your CPU cooler not seated properly or it could be something much worse. We'll need to know a bit more to be sure.

  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I manually set it to farenheit.

    That being said, there are certain intricacies concerning reading the temperature of a Phenom quad-core that I may be failing to grasp.

    This may be a red herring, but tonight I experienced no issues after 2 hours of playing Aion. After removing the power supply and testing it, I noticed a switch connected to each fan, that allowed me to dictate the power of the fans. I set them all to high.

    If that's what is making the difference, then it was cooling all along and I've been approaching this the wrong way the whole time.

    But like I said, it may be a red herring.

    EDIT: Bah, Core Temp is still showing around 91 degrees Farhenheit. I don't fucking know.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • ThegreatcowThegreatcow Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I manually set it to farenheit.

    That being said, there are certain intricacies concerning reading the temperature of a Phenom quad-core that I may be failing to grasp.

    This may be a red herring, but tonight I experienced no issues after 2 hours of playing Aion. After removing the power supply and testing it, I noticed a switch connected to each fan, that allowed me to dictate the power of the fans. I set them all to high.

    If that's what is making the difference, then it was cooling all along and I've been approaching this the wrong way the whole time.

    But like I said, it may be a red herring.

    EDIT: Bah, Core Temp is still showing around 91 degrees Farhenheit. I don't fucking know.

    Huh...well that's a stumper then, as others have said, that definitely sounds REALLY really cool for a cpu under load, farenheit wise, most cpus reach 50-70 degrees celsius or 120+ degrees farenheit. I'm really not sure anymore beyond, trying to swap out a PSU or video card and see what happens.

  • MulrineMulrine Registered User
    edited September 2009
    I had a similar issue and it ended up that my fan on my gfx card wasnt spinning. Disconnecting the fan power on the card fixed it. Also did some jerry rigging of fans around the card to push more air..... coulda just been overheating and disconnecting the fan did nothing. /shrug

  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    edited September 2009

    This may be a red herring, but tonight I experienced no issues after 2 hours of playing Aion. After removing the power supply and testing it, I noticed a switch connected to each fan, that allowed me to dictate the power of the fans. I set them all to high.

    If that's what fixed it, and I use that term loosely, you're still in the danger zone. Running the case fans on a higher voltage will typically only lower the temperatures by a couple degrees C.

    Sorry if I stick to my guns that this is a CPU issue, but there are so many red flags here. Try running the most intense 3D game you have (Crysis or etc maybe?) rather than MMOs and post the resulting temp logs. Most MMOs aren't nearly as taxing as stand alone games. Are you using the stock cooling unit on the CPU with the stock heatpad?

    Also try using SpeedFan instead of CoreTemp. Then post the logs with not only temperatures but voltages as well. If voltage spikes are causing this hopefully we can see that.

  • eternalbleternalbl Registered User
    edited September 2009
    You know, I'd like to point out that the cpu never goes above 25% usage while coretemp is running in the previous posts.

    Also, if your cooling is overkill for your system, the difference between idle and load can be quite small. My system idles at 36 and hits 40 maybe at load because of the way I have it set up.

    Spoiler:
  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Simpsonia wrote: »
    Sorry if I stick to my guns that this is a CPU issue, but there are so many red flags here. Try running the most intense 3D game you have (Crysis or etc maybe?) rather than MMOs and post the resulting temp logs. Most MMOs aren't nearly as taxing as stand alone games. Are you using the stock cooling unit on the CPU with the stock heatpad?

    Those MMOs are the most graphically intensive games I own. If you're referring to the heatsink, I am using the one that came with the processor, yes.
    Also try using SpeedFan instead of CoreTemp. Then post the logs with not only temperatures but voltages as well. If voltage spikes are causing this hopefully we can see that

    I'll give this a shot when I get home tonight.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    When doing your stress tests later try downloading the most recent 3DMark. That should be enough to tax your system more than MMOs.

  • ApogeeApogee Lancks In Every Game Ever TorontoRegistered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Sudden shut offs are one of three things:

    1: Really really bad software fuckup. Very very rare. Also possible from RAM/CPU deaths, but usually that bluescreens you instead.
    2: Heat. Fairly common, a fan breaks, etc. Sounds like you've eliminated that options.
    3: Power. Sounds likely given your heat info. What's the specs on your power supply unit?

    8R7BtLw.png
  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    The PSU is an Antec EA650. It's meant to provide 650 watts of continuous power. I'm sure there's other relevant specs, but that's just about the limit of my knowledge.

    You can find the full info in the URL I provided.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Well if your of limited means (hardware wise) and can't just keep swapping in and out things until it works then the best option you have is to just keep stress testing various components. Things like Prime95 for CPU and 3DMark for the video card. SpeedFan for the voltages on your 12v rails.

    We don't have a lot to go by here to help you unless you can start testing and ruling some things out.

  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Simpsonia wrote: »
    Well if your of limited means (hardware wise) and can't just keep swapping in and out things until it works then the best option you have is to just keep stress testing various components. Things like Prime95 for CPU and 3DMark for the video card. SpeedFan for the voltages on your 12v rails.

    We don't have a lot to go by here to help you unless you can start testing and ruling some things out.

    You make it sound like I haven't been testing and have been resistant to advice. I've used two (now three) temperature-monitoring programs. I've used a power supply tester.

    3DMark apparently does not work with sub-Vista operating systems, so I settled for another Aion test, this time while running Speedfan.

    Here's about an hour's worth of SpeedFan log. Temperature values are in Celsius.

    I wouldn't study it too closely. Just about any point in the middle will be an indicator of the whole. The voltage values read like greek to me, but people were saying there may be something to them, so there they are.

    The temperature ranges are pretty consistent with what I was seeing in Core Temp before my dubious "fix."

    I can't justify purchasing a new graphics card if the problem doesn't return. I'm aware this is highly nebulous, but if it's working, I just can't lay out that kind of money. I'll keep on watching and testing in the meantime.

    EDIT: I'll run Prime95 overnight and during work and see if anything comes up.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • eternalbleternalbl Registered User
    edited September 2009
    Is there anything else your computers been doing that's kinda odd lately? Any trouble starting up or anything?

    Spoiler:
  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Sorry I didn't mean to imply that you haven't been working on it. I guess I got a little enthusiastic about this hardware whodunit. Your speedfan logs look good (well during Aion anyways). The 12v rail is within the normal variance for fluctuations that can be read by onboard monitor. The only way to be certain is with a multimeter, but I digress, that is going too far for your needs. Your PSU looks stable enough to me, but the real test is to get the log at the point it crashes.

    Absent actually switching out hardware, there's not a whole lot left to troubleshoot through software means. Though I would still be interested in seeing some logs from Prime95 (which will push your machine to the absolute limits of its capacity which almost no game can do.) Otherwise if you can't recreate the problem, just keep an eye on it and come back here if it starts acting up again. Best of luck.

  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    eternalbl wrote: »
    Is there anything else your computers been doing that's kinda odd lately? Any trouble starting up or anything?

    Nothing of note, I'm afraid. I built it a couple months ago and it's been a great machine, save for the recent hard shutdowns.

    Sorry for getting defensive, Simpsonia.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I ran a Prime95 "torture test" from midnight to 5 PM on the "In-place large FFTs" setting (maximum heat, power consumption, some RAM tested). The computer has not crashed at all.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • eternalbleternalbl Registered User
    edited September 2009
    At this point I'd try replacing the power supply and graphics card, in whichever order.

    You should be able to find a place that'll let you return them if they don't fix your problem, but I'd bet it's one of the 2.

    Spoiler:
  • Silas BrownSilas Brown Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    eternalbl wrote: »
    At this point I'd try replacing the power supply and graphics card, in whichever order.

    You should be able to find a place that'll let you return them if they don't fix your problem, but I'd bet it's one of the 2.

    Since I can't seem to replicate the problem, despite it's relatively long history, I wouldn't be able to confirm if either of those solutions help or not.

    It's been three days where I've had hours of gametime without any crashes. Stress testing isn't producing results and cooling continues to appear fine.

    I hate to leave these things hanging without a clue, but the problem has simply ceased. If it repeats, I'll look into replacing the power supply or graphics card. In the meantime, however, it looks like it's Resolved (?).

    I want to thank you all for your help and patience. Even though the actual solution is mysterious, I learned a lot in the process. You guys were very helpful. Thank you so much.

    CmgpQ.jpg
  • EvylEvyl Registered User
    edited September 2009
    When you say that there are no errors, do you mean that you have checked the windows event logs and they are clean?

«1
Sign In or Register to comment.