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Power Supply problem? Or what? -solved-

BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAARTRegistered User regular
So I've got this weird series of problems I can't figure out. First my computer was randomly shutting itself down in the middle of use, which the windows event log claimed was because it was receiving a signal from the power button. Ok, fine, maybe the button is faulty, it's a pretty old case. I tried disconnecting the power button lead from the motherboard's pins and moving the reset button's lead onto the power switch pins instead, which should have totally worked, but then the computer started shutting off every time during windows' loading screen before the login screen. I switched the front panel button wires back to their previous pins on the mobo and the new shut down during windows boot problem remained so I was kind of at a loss. Then I tried disassembling the front panel and cleaning the switch guts out of dust, and also I disconnected the power supply from the new hard drive I had added a week ago and had seemed to work fine up to this point. Then for some reason the system booted fine after I did that! And the system event log shows no record of (or I don't know the right place to look for) the power losses during windows loading or the interrupted windows boots, so I have no idea what was causing that. Also the random shutdowns are still happening, like before I messed with anything.

My best guess at this point is that the power supply might be dying, as it is pretty old, and putting another hard drive on the same cord as my SSD was making it start to get erratic for some reason, even though it was fine before this random shutdown behavior started 2 days ago. Does that sound possible? Any other ideas? How should I test my PSU to see if I need to replace it?

I figure I should at least get new switches for the power and reset buttons, I think I see how to replace them if they're a standardized shape.

BahamutZERO on

Posts

  • wunderbarwunderbar What Have I Done? Registered User regular
    sounds like the power supply to me.

    there's a very outside chance it's thermals on the processor getting to the shutdown point, which would mean bad thermal paste, but 99% that's the power supply.

    I wouldn't bother replacing the physical switches on the case. It isn't worth it. And those things never* break.



    *yes, of course everything "can" break, but being realistic, no, they don't break.

    XBL: thewunderbar PSN: thewunderbar NNID: thewunderbar Steam: wunderbar87 Twitter: wunderbar
  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    edited January 31
    could the power supply failing cause the thing that the windows event viewer sees as a power switch signal event and is causing the intermittent random shut downs?

    BahamutZERO on
  • LD50LD50 Registered User regular
    could the power supply failing cause the thing that the windows event viewer sees as a power switch signal event and is causing the intermittent random shut downs?

    I think so, yes. IIRC the pins on the MB are directly wired to specific pins on the 24 pin power connector for the MB. If there were some sort of intermittent short in the power supply on those lines it would be the same as if you had pushed the button yourself.

    Shadowfire
  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    well shit I'm glad I asked for advice in here before it failed more catastrophically

  • wunderbarwunderbar What Have I Done? Registered User regular
    Yea, generally the answer to any random "I can't figure this out" issue with a computer is the power supply. I've lost more time than I'd like to admit on it.

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  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    wunderbar wrote: »
    Yea, generally the answer to any random "I can't figure this out" issue with a computer is the power supply. I've lost more time than I'd like to admit on it.

    usually my "I can't figure this out" problems are like, windows system file corruption necessitating a hard drive format and clean reinstallation. It's nice it's something more simple this time.

  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    edited February 2
    SHIT

    the new power supply is in but the random shut down is still happening

    does that mean there might be a short on the motherboard itself... god damn it I just got this motherboard last summer

    BahamutZERO on
  • RoeRoe Registered User regular
    Sounds like a faulty HD, or maybe you need to clean the computer with canned air.

    Could be what was happening to my computer and you're just having a problem with not enough air flow from your fans, which also is caused by dust buildup.

    Try putting in your old HD and see what happens from there. You could have something faulty with the mobo, which if it is the problem, can be usually found by searching googling the problems other people are having with your specific motherboard.

  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    the new HD was in addition to the old one, this time I had them both hooked up and I got into windows for a few minutes before it shut down, the same hardware configuration and problem I was having originally other than the new PSU. I don't know what the problem in the middle with it shutting down during windows boot was, that has not come back.

    Although the fans and heat sinks all look clean, I should check for cobwebby buildup on the back of the motherboard I guess.

  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    ha ha
    so I disconnected the new hard drive just to see if it made any difference, and it stayed stable for quite a long time. I was making a post along the lines of "I don't want to jinx it but it's been stable for quite a while now, but I bet it will shut down as I type this just to spite me" and of course it shut down as I was typing that last bit

  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    So, update:

    I completely took out the motherboard to make sure it was clean and take what little dust there was off it, and then put everything back in. Didn't help, unfortunately, but I did also figure out there's a control panel setting to control Windows' action when a power button signal is detected. One of the options is "do nothing," so that has solved the intermittent shutdown symptom I was having. But it doesn't solve the underlying problem of something probably shorting out on the motherboard, which I don't want to just sweep under the rug for fear of it getting worse and damaging the rest of the system. Case in point, soon after I changed that setting my keyboard went a little nuts and then died, no matter which USB port I switched it to. I switched to a spare keyboard which is working for the moment but the timing of the keyboard going nuts and dying in the middle of this other shit seems too suspicious to be coincidental.

    So I'm left wondering what to do next. I feel like it's probably a fault developing in the motherboard but I have no idea how to make certain of it. Is this enough evidence to just throw it out right now and order a new board? I would really like to be as sure as I can be that changing the motherboard will fix it before I spend more money.

  • twmjrtwmjr Registered User regular
    Did you say the mobo was less than a year old (basing off the "last summer" comment)? It wouldn't hurt to reach out to the manufacturer...see if they'll do anything for you.

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  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    edited February 3
    I misremembered, I actually built most of this system in the summer of 2015, not 2016, so it's out of the 1 year warrantee at this point. It's an ASRock H97 Anniversary board.

    BahamutZERO on
  • MugsleyMugsley Registered User regular
    I'd still at least write the email. Assuming you want to stick with an ASRock board, they may give you a discount on a replacement.

    Everything you're saying (after new PSU) is pointing to the Mobo (or, more likely, the southbridge). Does the southbridge have a heatsink or fan?

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  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    So I happened to try using the keyboard that more or less stopped working from my computer on a different computer to see if it was totally busted or just doing that on my system, and sure enough it was still working badly. But... that other computer also then exhibited the random shutdown behavior. And I've been running the original computer with a different keyboard all day and not had the problem show up again. I'm not totally certain yet but I think the fault may not be in the motherboard after all but in that dead keyboard. The dead keyboard doesn't have a power button on it but I know some keyboards do, so my theory is there is some specific button code the system looks for from USB keyboards that is supposed to come from a keyboard power button being pressed, which gets translated by the system into a standard power switch signal, and the faulty keyboard was just happening to send these out the right code for that kind of keyboard power button that it doesn't actually have at random as it died. Seems kind of far-fetched, and I had windows set to just turn the screen off if it got a power switch signal instead of shut down so maybe that is masking the problem still being around, but I'm going to run it tomorrow with the shut down on power switch signal setting again and see if it's really stable. How lucky/stupid it will be if it turns out it was the keyboard sending a phantom power switch signal somehow.

  • MugsleyMugsley Registered User regular
    If that's it, you did some pretty solid detective work

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  • BahamutZEROBahamutZERO ROLLING STAAAAAAAAAAAAART Registered User regular
    yeah it's not shutting down at all today, I think this mystery is solved, the murderer was the keyboard in the library with the candlestick.

    ShadowfireSynthesisLD50
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