Computer keeps shutting off -- can hear fan

By MqCorey
Mar 8, 2012
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  1. I was trying to type a lengthier version of this that referenced a similar years-old thread and provided feedback to some of their discussion to save time, but the computer did exactly what I wish to discuss - shut off - while typing that out! So this will be the "slimline version".

    My computer shuts off randomly - sometimes when idle, sometimes when doing something. I would suspect video, since the Radeon 9550 AGP I installed around '08 has always been a bit buggy, but there are two reasons why I'm leaning against that being the problem now: (1) Keyboard lights also go out, not just video, (2) I've changed video drivers and (2b) I've ran Driver Cleaner to get rid of remnants of the drivers for the onboard video.

    The Hard Drive is a recertified Hitachi I just got last month, to replace a hard drive that had 20+ bad LBAs. The computer was running gruelingly slow and horribly, so I got this one and since I've reinstalled the system onto it, it boots up quick and without incident every time. I've let SpeedFan check the hard drive - no problems. Oh, and when I installed this drive I thoroughly air-blew the case, and sent those dust bunnies packing!

    The other thread suggested power supply, and since I have 7 USB devices, I may be stretching it too thin. (I did add that video card years ago, but it don't think it's a power hog. It's got 256 MB VRAM and is either 4X or 8X AGP, but I don't remember it having its own dedicated power supply port like many newer ones). The power supply may just flat be dying of old age, too. I don't want to buy a new power supply only to find it is the motherboard. Is there a way to rule that out?

    After that recent restart, I went into the BIOS and told the computer not to do a quickboot. This time, it ran through a RAM Test multiple times, but apparently it passed because it then proceeded and I saw no error message.

    Before the recent shutdown, I was running HWMonitor, and I saved its report. Below, I will post everything except the ACPI Scroll at the bottom.

    Please advise what to try next. Thank you.

    CPUID HWMonitor Report
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Binaries
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    HWMonitor version 1.1.9.0

    Monitoring
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Mainboard Model MS-6577 (0x000001A6 - 0x005F1117)

    LPCIO
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    LPCIO Vendor Winbond
    LPCIO Model W83627HF
    LPCIO Vendor ID 0x5CA3
    LPCIO Chip ID 0x52
    LPCIO Revision ID 0x3A
    Config Mode I/O address 0x2E
    Config Mode LDN 0xB
    Config Mode registers
    00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 0A 0B 0C 0D 0E 0F
    00 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF 0B FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    10 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    20 52 3A FF FE 84 00 00 FF 00 00 7C C8 FF 30 00 FF
    30 01 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    40 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    50 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    60 02 90 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    70 00 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    Register space LPC, base address = 0x0290


    Hardware Monitors
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Hardware monitor Winbond W83627HF
    Voltage 0 1.46 Volts [0x5B] (CPU VCore)
    Voltage 1 1.49 Volts [0x5D] (AUX)
    Voltage 2 3.31 Volts [0xCF] (+3.3V)
    Voltage 3 5.05 Volts [0xBC] (+5V)
    Voltage 4 11.49 Volts [0xBD] (+12V)
    Voltage 5 -12.45 Volts [0x1E] (-12V)
    Voltage 6 3.45 Volts [0xDE] (-5V)
    Temperature 0 38°C (100°F) [0x26] (TMPIN0)
    Temperature 1 42°C (106°F) [0x53] (TMPIN1)
    Temperature 2 34°C (93°F) [0x44] (TMPIN2)
    Fan 0 1795 RPM [0x5E] (FANIN0)
    Fan 1 1308 RPM [0x81] (FANIN1)
    Fan PWM 0 4 pc [0x9] (PWM1)
    Fan PWM 1 4 pc [0xA] (PWM2)
    Hardware registers
    Register space LPC, base address = 0x0290
    bank 0
    00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 0A 0B 0C 0D 0E 0F
    00 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    10 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    20 5D 5D CF BC BD 1E DE 26 60 82 FF 64 4B 64 4B ED
    30 B0 22 D0 25 14 A4 F3 CD 40 00 22 80 20 60 00 00
    40 01 01 00 FF FF 00 00 FD 2D 02 01 C4 10 95 00 A3
    50 FF FF 00 FF FF FF 00 80 21 30 09 0A 11 05 FF 05
    60 5D 5D CF BC BD 1E DE 26 60 82 FF 64 4B 64 4B ED
    70 B0 22 D0 25 14 A4 F3 CD 40 00 22 80 20 60 00 00
    80 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    90 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    A0 5D 5D CF BC BD 1E DE 26 60 82 FF 64 4B 64 4B ED
    B0 B0 22 D0 25 14 A4 F3 CD 40 00 22 80 20 60 00 00
    C0 01 00 00 FF FF 00 00 FD 2D 02 01 C4 10 95 00 A3
    D0 FF FF 00 FF FF FF 00 80 21 30 09 0A 11 05 FF 05
    E0 5D 5D CF BC BD 1E DE 26 60 82 FF 64 4B 64 4B ED
    F0 B0 22 D0 25 14 A4 F3 CD 40 00 22 80 20 60 00 00
    bank 1
    50 26 00 02 32 00 3C 00 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    bank 2
    50 22 00 00 73 00 78 00 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    bank 3
    50 FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF FF
    bank 4
    50 00 0F 00 00 00 17 00 00 23 98 0F 03 11 00 FF FF


    Processors
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Number of processors 1
    Number of threads 1

    APICs
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Processor 0
    -- Core 0
    -- Thread 0 0

    Processors Information
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Processor 1 ID = 0
    Number of cores 1 (max 1)
    Number of threads 1 (max 1)
    Name Intel Pentium 4
    Codename Northwood
    Specification Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 2.40GHz
    Package (platform ID) Socket 478 mPGA (0x2)
    CPUID F.2.7
    Extended CPUID F.2
    Brand ID 9
    Core Stepping C1
    Technology 0.13 um
    Core Speed 2399.8 MHz
    Multiplier x FSB 18.0 x 133.3 MHz
    Rated Bus speed 533.3 MHz
    Stock frequency 2400 MHz
    Instructions sets MMX, SSE, SSE2
    L1 Data cache 8 KBytes, 4-way set associative, 64-byte line size
    Trace cache 12 Kuops, 8-way set associative
    L2 cache 512 KBytes, 8-way set associative, 64-byte line size
    FID/VID Control no



    Thread dumps
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    CPU Thread 0
    APIC ID 0
    Topology Processor ID 0, Core ID 0, Thread ID 0
    Type 01001001h
    Max CPUID level 00000002h
    Max CPUID ext. level 80000004h
    Cache descriptor Level 2, U, 512 KB, 1 thread(s)
    Cache descriptor Level 1, T, 12 KB, 1 thread(s)
    Cache descriptor Level 1, D, 8 KB, 1 thread(s)

    CPUID
    0x00000000 0x00000002 0x756E6547 0x6C65746E 0x49656E69
    0x00000001 0x00000F27 0x00010809 0x00004400 0xBFEBFBFF
    0x00000002 0x665B5101 0x00000000 0x00000000 0x007B7040
    0x80000000 0x80000004 0x00000000 0x00000000 0x00000000
    0x80000001 0x00000000 0x00000000 0x00000000 0x00000000
    0x80000002 0x20202020 0x20202020 0x20202020 0x6E492020
    0x80000003 0x286C6574 0x50202952 0x69746E65 0x52286D75
    0x80000004 0x20342029 0x20555043 0x30342E32 0x007A4847

    MSR 0x0000001B 0x00000000 0xFEE00900
    MSR 0x00000017 0x000A0000 0x00000000
    MSR 0x0000002C 0x00000000 0x12110012
    MSR 0x000001A0 0x00000000 0x00000089



    Storage
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    USB Device USB Composite Device, class=0x00, subclass=0x00, vendor=0x045E, product=0x00DB
    USB Device ZyXEL G-220 v2 Wireless USB Adapter, class=0xFF, subclass=0xFF, vendor=0x0586, product=0x340F
    USB Device Generic USB Hub, class=0x09, subclass=0x00, vendor=0x0409, product=0x005A
    USB Device USB Composite Device, class=0x00, subclass=0x00, vendor=0x0471, product=0x1144
    USB Device Logitech USB Camera (QuickCam E2500), class=0x00, subclass=0x00, vendor=0x046D, product=0x089D
    USB Device USB Composite Device, class=0x00, subclass=0x00, vendor=0x046D, product=0xC518

    Graphic APIs
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    API ATI I/O

    Display Adapters
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Display adapter 0
    Name Radeon X1050 Series (Omega 3.8.442)
    GPU ref clock 27000
    PCI device bus 1 (0x1), device 0 (0x0), function 0 (0x0)
    Vendor ID 0x1002 (0x1002)
    Model ID 0x4153 (0x0402)

    Display adapter 1
    Name Radeon X1050 Series Secondary (Omega 3.8.442)
    PCI device bus 1 (0x1), device 0 (0x0), function 1 (0x1)
    Vendor ID 0x1002 (0x1002)
    Model ID 0x4173 (0x0403)


    ACPI
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
  2. dmill89

    dmill89 TechSpot Guru Posts: 737

    Is it a custom built PC or a major brand pre-built PC? If it is a pre-built major brand PC what brand and model is it? I'm definitely leaning toward a power supply issue. What is the brand and model of the PSU and how many amps are on each rail? this info should be on the label on the PSU.
  3. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,689   +153

    I would suspect the power supply too
  4. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Computer Description

    It's Pre-Built - an HP Pavilion 746c with an Intel 2.4Ghz Pentium 4.

    I've upgraded the RAM from 512 MB to 1GB, and put the Radeon 256MB AGP card in so the onboard video wouldn't share 64MB of my limited memory. None of the external peripherals are original (keyboard, mouse, monitor, wifi stick), and it just got its third hard drive (the 2nd one lasted at least 7 years, so I'm not complaining). Motherboard, CPU, one memory stick, and the removable media drives, are all that remain of the original (and I think the power supply).

    ...and the case, of course, though it's one of HP's better cases. Has the drive train that pulls out separately so you can access the board without dismantling your drives.

    I'll get back to you on the PSU description. The desk is blocking that, but I'll likely pull it tonight. I tried to look in the manual and it wasn't listed.
  5. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,689   +153

    Sounds good, how old is this PC?
  6. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Getting Up There

    It's getting up there. I think the BIOS says 2003, so I figure it's an '04. If memory serves, the BIOS date will be a bit before it actually hits the shelf or a person's desk. So, no SATA, PCI-e, and though some websites say it can handle 2GB RAM, the HP manual tops it out at 1GB.

    I sure enjoy the processor, though. I hope that's not what is going out. The hard drive I found is 7200 RPM for only ~$50.
  7. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,689   +153

    Yeah it is most likely the power supply ;)
  8. dmill89

    dmill89 TechSpot Guru Posts: 737

    Agreed, an HP of that era likely came with a 250w HiPro or Bestec PSU. The HiPro PSUs are decent but 250w is just enough to run that system in the stock config. and even a low end video card would stress it. Not to mention even a good 7+ year old PSU is near the end of its useful life (even good capacitors don't last forever and HiPro generally uses Teapo caps which while good enough for a PSU are not the best out there). If you have a Bestec you are very lucky that it hasn't fried your system and you should replace it ASAP before it does, Bestecs are absolute garbage.

    I'd probably go with one of these for that system:
    COOLER MASTER Elite 460 RS-460-PSAR-J3 460W = $30 ($20 after rebate) This is an FSP built unit, it is an old design but for a 7+ year old system that's not an issue (note this is really a 400w PSU, Cooler Master overrated it but it still should be more than enough for that HP)

    CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W $45 ($25 after rebate) This is a decent PSU but is known to have "coil whine" issues which may make a buzzing noise, so I wouldn't recommend it if noise is an issue.

    Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W = $45 Built by Delta, one of the best PSU OEMs out there, 80%+ efficiency

    Antec NEO ECO 400C 400W = $45 Built by SeaSonic, also one of the best PSU OEMs out there, 80%+ efficiency
  9. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Thanks ...but that's not it :p.

    TMagic650: Thanks for your help. I would suspect the video card, but since I wasn't getting BSOD and the keyboard was also going off, that had me leaning toward the power supply. When you thought so also, I decided to go over to TigerDirect and try that.

    Dmill89: You knew your HP stock - I had a Bestec - Model No: ATX1956D
    OUTPUT RATING 200W (MAX) ...so it was, if anything, even slightly weaker than you suspected!!

    I replaced it with an ULTRA LS 500. I brought my WPSU (Weenie Power Supply Unit) with me to TigerDirect - to make sure the new unit would fit - and asked the store associate who took me to the appropriate section if the sizes were on the box. He said they were all standard size. After 5-10 minutes in the 400-600 section (an ASUS website recommended 400 watts for my system with the number of USB peripherals I was running), I picked one. Problem: This one juts out further, and its power cables come out the back instead of the end of the side. The only way I could get it in was to pull the entire motherboard out, seat it, reinstall the motherboard and peripherals, and leave the case open because the CDRW doesn't have room to shove in and get power (molex cable takes up too much room). So, if that had worked, I would need a cable extension that's flush for the CDRW.

    But that didn't work :p While typing this message to you, it did the EXACT same thing it's been doing. (Thankfully, Chrome saved my message in cache so I didn't have to start over.)

    Seems that was all for nothing. ...well, as discussed, the power supply could probably use a replacing, anyway. Pulling the motherboard was for nothing.

    Could it be the motherboard and/or processor? Or, are we back to thinking it's the video card? I can revert to "OnBoard" video, I suppose.
  10. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    I reverted to OnBoard - No Change

    I reverted to OnBoard Video - it randomly shut down; therefore, it's not the AGP Card.

    It seems to be happening more frequently, but that may just be my frayed nerves. Many expletives have been yelled many times.

    If I have to get a new motherboard, finding one with AGP and UATA is going to be fun :p
  11. dmill89

    dmill89 TechSpot Guru Posts: 737

    I doubt it is the CPU, they rarely fail unless overvolted or overheated, I might try some fresh thermal compound and make sure all fans and heat sinks are clean and functioning properly. The motherboard on the other hand is certainly a possibility, of course do a visual inspection for and damage and also look for failed capacitors. Given the age of this board failed caps are a strong possibility. Here are some pictures to give you an idea of what failed capacitors (bad caps) look like.http://www.badcaps.net/forum/showthread.php?t=424 Also check any expansion cards.
     
  12. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Remaining Culprits: HDD, MBoard, CPU

    Am I correct in thinking the HDD, MBoard, & CPU are the remaining culprits?

    The HDD is fairly new (as in, within 2 months I installed it to replace one with 20+ bad LBAs). It was, though, a recertified one. It seems to run fine (no corrupted data encountered so far, no grinding sounds).

    Motherboard & CPU are original, as is one of the RAM DIMMs I think.
  13. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Thermal Compounding...

    ...is beyond me. Sounds like glue, and I was never good with glue.

    Back when I did custom-builds, you could just attach the little fan to the top. It clicked into place and you were good-to-go.

    I'll take a look at that link.
  14. dmill89

    dmill89 TechSpot Guru Posts: 737

    I would say most likely yes, with the motherboard being the most probable culprit.

    If you need a new motherboard Newegg does have some refurbished Intel boards that are virtually identical to yours: Intel D865GLCL 478 Intel 865G Micro ATX Intel Motherboard = $51

    Of course you might be able to get one cheaper on EBay, but there is definitely some risk when buying a used (especially older) motherboard on EBay.
  15. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Price Sounds Good, but...

    ...I don't want to have to thermal-set the CPU, and with that, I would. I'm hoping one of the stores will sell a motherboard-CPU combo.
  16. dmill89

    dmill89 TechSpot Guru Posts: 737

    It is a paste-like substance that conducts heat from the CPU to the heatsink. I generally clean the old off with Acetone or High grade 91%+ Isopropyl alcohol and then apply a pea sized drop of new thermal compound, the re-install the Heatsink.

    This stuff is pretty good and you can get it at nearly and PC shop: Arctic Silver CMQ2-2.7G Céramique 2 Tri-Linear Ceramic Thermal Compound - OEM
  17. dmill89

    dmill89 TechSpot Guru Posts: 737

    For the most part the only way you will find that is if you go used or you also replace your ram and either replace your video card or use onboard video. Any current combo is going have DDR2 or DDR3 and a PCI-Express slot. You have DDR and an AGP slot. Thermal-setting a CPU is not that difficult, the hardest part is removing it from the old board, the thermal compound does become tacky and you have to be careful not to pull the CPU out of the socket when removing the heat sink. If applying thermal compound to an old heat sink you just have to thoroughly clean it, apply a pea sized drop of thermal compound to the top of the CPU, put the heat sink on and let the pressure of the clips do the rest, the pressure will spread the compound out. Most new heat sinks come with the thermal compound pre-applied so if you get a new CPU (retail box) or heat sink it will likely just be a matter of putting it on the CPU and securing the clips.
  18. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    That last is what I want...

    Yeah, I can see myself ruining a motherboard as the stuff runs out.

    That sounds more my speed. Buy a new heat sink with the thermal stuff on the bottom and snap-and-go. I've installed CPUs before, but back in the slower-processor / AT-Motherboard days, there was more snap-and-go.

    --- Also: New (Recertified, but new to me) Hard Drive, now a new power supply. There's a point at which spending more $$ on this old of a computer doesn't make sense. I'm not an intense gamer. I game on Pogo, and I need something to run ArcGIS and MS Office 2000, plus Web-browsing. I'd prefer not to downgrade to anything with the word "Celeron" in it *cringes*, and I need to accommodate my existing peripherals (DVD, CDRW, FDD, HDD, & the 7 USB Devices).

    I'd be more willing to box up the AGP Graphics card than to sacrifice UATA.

    I'm running this system now, and it is staying on longer than the other 2-3 times tonight when it shut down. I'm running FireFox. There's no way that Google Chrome could totally "off" (no blue screen, just everything off but the fan) a system, is there? Probably a coincidence, but I may leave FireFox going and let it idle and see if it offs itself. Sometimes I would use the computer, sometimes I would idle, but Chrome may be a common denominator.
  19. dmill89

    dmill89 TechSpot Guru Posts: 737

    It is possible that a software issue is causing the problem, though the symptoms are odd anything's possible.


    It is definately understandable not to want to put much money into an old system. Just as a reference if your "new" HDD is SATA and will work with a modern motherboard a Sandy-Bridge Intel Pentium dual core system would cost around $175 to build and be much more powerful than your curent setup, the onboard graphics would even be more powerful than your current video card.
    Example:
    CPU:Intel Pentium G620 Sandy Bridge 2.6GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics BX80623G620 = $70
    Motherboard: ASRock H61M-VS LGA 1155 Intel H61 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard = $50
    RAM: CORSAIR 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 = $20
    ODD: LG 22X Super-Multi DVD Burner 22X $16 (I'm guessing your ODD is IDE given the age of your system but if it SATA you could reuse it)
    Case: APEX SK-393-C Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case = $20
    HDD: Your current HDD if it is SATA
    PSU: The PSU you just bought
    Total= $176

    or if you want to go pre-built:
    Refurbished first-gen Core2Duo systems are avalible for around $240:
    Lenovo ThinkCentre M57P Desktop PC - Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 2.66GHz, 2GB DDR2, 160GB HDD, DVDRW, Windows XP Professional 32-bit, (Off-Lease)


    A new Sandy-Bridge Pentium Dual Core pre-built system will run around $400
    lenovo IdeaCentre H420 (77525GU) Desktop PC Pentium dual-core G630(2.70GHz) 4GB DDR3 500GB HDD Capacity Intel HD Graphics 2000 Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit
  20. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Not Software // Not SATA (UATA)

    It froze without me touching Chrome. I was grasping at a cheap option. It froze while doing a S.M.A.R.T. hard drive extended test with SpeedFan 4.5. This concerned me, but when I restarted I was luckily able to get 100% through the exam and it returned "no errors". Recertified or not, with no instances of corruption and passing the exam, I don't think it's the hard drive. Seems like a good drive to me.

    It's not SATA. I purposefully bought PATA (Ultra100) so that I could run it on this system without a card. It is 7200 RPM, though, and you never hear it.

    This means, though, that I need PATA (or a cheap controller card to go in the PCI).
  21. MqCorey

    MqCorey Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    The Conclusion

    I went to TigerDirect to get a barebones, and they said you have to order them. One of the techs said that I could find everything for a barebones in the store, I just wouldn't get the bundle discount. I figure express shipping would probably eat most of the savings, and I didn't want to be without a computer long. We went around the store to make sure the parts were compatible.

    I remembered what you said about thermal paste and how they make heatsinks with it already pre-measured. I asked about that, and they had one of those, so I was sure to get it. I have installed a CPU before, but back in the AT days when the processors were lower, you could put a little fan on top, click it in place, and you were good to go.

    Problem was that the only motherboards that had at least one PATA port were Intel, which would push the price up from AMD. We looked, and the tech thought he found one AMD motherboard that had one PATA port (and I'd adapt one of the removeable media drives to SATA so that one port would be enough). I think you beat me a bit on price, but my RAM buy came close (2x2GB for around $26 total). They had a 3-core for only $10 more than the 2-core I was going to get, so I figured going to 3.1 Ghz for only $10 was worth it. I got a PNY PCI-e video card for $35 or $39 so the memory wouldn't be shared - 1GB dedicated. (In '08, I think I spent around $40 for the AGP card off eBay - new - and it just had 256MB.)

    I got a new case because they didn't have a 90-degree turn for a power cord for the CDRW, and the power supply's cables jutted out and caused the drive not to slide in without it. I'd have to get a case fan when I came back.

    Problem: The motherboard only had 4 SATA ports and NOOOOO PATA/UATA!!! (Maybe I should have said "IDE", though on an Intel board I said, "they always look like this, so any board that has one will have this".) I didn't realize this until I got the motherboard screwed in to the new case. So the adapter intended for the CD drive was put on the hard drive long enough to boot. Windows required a re-install (it's my experience it usually does if you change the motherboard), but I could boot in safe mode to take the board/memory/CPU for a test run, and check e-mail.

    Went back to the store, traded the adapter for a PCI card with 2 IDE ports. Got it home - and let the expletives fly when yet again it would not work. Not only could I not boot from a DVD - which I needed to reinstall WinXP - but it wouldn't read from the hard drive, either. The card did recognize my hard drive, and the BIOS accommodated it (though it thought it was SCSI).

    Back to the store :p This time, I looked around, and found these little adapters for half the price that are basically a port, a small circuit board, and a power and SATA port on the other end. For the hard drive, I needed something slimline so the hard drive would fit in the case, so I wasn't just trying to save $10, I thought it might work better. I did agree with the tech, though, that I was better off just getting a DVD Writer with a SATA port. Converting my two drives would cost $20, while a new drive that consolidated their functions would cost the same price!

    He tried to persuade me to just get a SATA HDD, too, but I wasn't going for that. I just spent a little over $50 for this drive (great deal if you ask me - 320GB PATA, 7200RPM) about a month ago when my hard drive crashed, and I had a motherboard that needed PATA. I wasn't about to eat that and shell out $85 for a new drive. I took my little $10 adapter home, and luckily - it worked!

    I had some blue screens after the new WinXP install (I was running SP3 but the disc is SP2), but I haven't had any blue screens so far since I got the drivers installed, so I'm thinking that was probably normal. After I did the last thing - installed the PCIe PNY Video Adapter and changed the drivers - I left it running around 12 hours while I slept (stayed up working on the machine and to catch an 8 am meeting). I woke to find my monitor in standby, and my computer came back when I moved the mouse - as it should.

    So far, I've used it to play Bridge on Pogo, print directions to a networked printer in another room, e-mail, and surf the web. Seems to be running smooth.

    I just thought the two of you that offered help might like to know the conclusion.
  22. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,689   +153

    Thanks for the update MqCorey... Happy computing :)
  23. dmill89

    dmill89 TechSpot Guru Posts: 737

    Glad to see everything worked out, despite some extra hassles getting the right components.


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