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Computer randomly shutting down!

By MrRawr
Oct 28, 2011
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  1. Right, i wasn't sure if i should reply to another persons post as it seems a few people are having this issue with their system so i just thought i would post my own.

    My Computer has been running fine since it was put together by a friend of mine around 6 months ago. For the last month or so it has been randomly shutting down, it looses all power and just goes off. I can still see the lights on the motherboard indicating that it has power going to it but i cant switch it on for a while unless i unplug the power so it looses all power going to the system, then i plug it all back in. This first happened when playing Warcraft 3 with nothing else running. I then found out that it was impossible to run Warcraft 3 and doing anything else at the same time like listening to music, watching a movie, browsing the net or running a scan. The system wouldn't have any of it and would shut down. I then decide to stop playing this game and for some reason the issue went away. One day whilst playing World of warcraft it started happening again. I'm sure it was the only thing running but as I'm a bit of a gamer i do intend to play a lot so its ironic.

    This fault could happen once an hour, it could happen once a day, it could even happen once a week...it's completely random! But for the last week or so its happens on a regular basis to the point that i can only play my games (World of Warcraft) from 5 minutes to an hour or so.

    I have tested my system in many ways to try and work this out but i don't really have the knowledge that some others do so i thought i would post here and pick someone else's brain!

    First of all my spec:

    Case - CM 690 II
    OS - Windows 7 64-bit
    Processor - AMD phenom II x6 1055T (Overclocked at 3.8GHz)
    Motherboard - M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3
    RAM - 2x 4GB Kingston Hyper DDR3 - 1600
    GPU - ATI Radeon HD 5700 series (5770 double slot)
    PSU - Powercool 850W Quad Rail
    CPU Cooling - Antec kuhler h2o 620
    SSD 1 - OCZ Vertex series 60GB Sata II 2.5
    HDD 2 & 3 - Barracuda 7200.11 SATA 3Gb/s 1-TB Hard Drive (RAID 0)


    Things i have tried:
    (In the last 7 days of using my system)
    First of all i tried to work out if it was software so i loaded up World of Warcraft and started playing. It was playing fine for 20 minutes or so so i decided to run Itunes and play some music whilst playing. Apparently that was a bad idea and the PC shut down. I then decided to Load my game back up and continue playing whilst browsing the net using Opera. It didn't do anything after an hour or so so i decided to watch a TV program using VLC. After watching 4-5 episodes it then shuts down. I then turn it all back on and decide to watch some episodes again and run a scan on my system, all goes well with both running at the same time and randomly later that night it turns off again whilst only watching something on VLC. I have updated everything I'm using, i have even UN-installed my programs and re-installed them one by one but it still happens. Ive even updated my drivers. This fault strikes me at complete random, doesn't seem to matter what I'm running, it just turns off when it wants to. It has also shut down while using all of my programs listed above one at a time although to my knowledge i don't think it has shut down just browsing the net..

    I have cleaned my case and components (Can of air is always good) and there is nothing wrong inside the system, no dust at all. All fans are working and the temperature looks fine. CPU is sitting at around 40-50 (I get these readings either from the BIOS or when using SpeedFan) depending on what I'm doing at the time.

    Things i haven't tried yet that I'm thinking of doing:

    Re-installing Windows (Lost my CD)

    Changing components (I don't have spare components or the money to buy them)

    BIOS Tweaking (I don't have the knowledge to start poking around in there tbh)


    I have asked a few friends of mine what they think it might be and they tell me it could be absolutely anything...the joys of computers, eh? I have been a huge fan of Forums like Techspot but never had the issues of actually needing to post on one so here is my first ever post, please help me! I may of missed some bits out but i included all that i remembered and that i thought was relevant.

    Does this make any sense to anyone? Had this problem before? Able to help?

    Appreciate all the help i get back and thank you very much for taking the time reading my post! <3
  2. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,271

    The first thing I would try is the overclocking on your CPU, this could be causing some instability so reset it to default and see how it goes.
  3. MrRawr

    MrRawr TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for your reply. I have turned it back to default on the day you posted your comment. On the same day it still had some issues turning off randomly, sometimes with just one application open like world of warcraft but always when running another program with it such as itunes or VLC. Today however has been a little of an improvement, my system has been on all day since i got up around 7:00 and its now around 17:40 with no shut downs what so ever (touch wood). I have been gaming most of the day with some music now and then to test things and see how it goes.

    I will carry on and see how it all goes and reply once again with an update on the situation.

    Thank you again for your reply, most appreciated!
  4. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,271

    Ok, the overclocking was not the cause as the error has repeated, but leave it set at default until we can find the cause.

    Please follow this link to find your way around the Event Viewer Windows 7 Event Viewer Use the guide to find Critical, Warning and Error messages in the "System Log".

    This may shine some light on the cause but at the moment I am thinking it may be your PSU. There is not much in the PC that can cause a complete shut down, usually system errors, if severe enough, will cause a BSOD so it is more than likely to be an item of hardware.

    If you can borrow a PSU with adequate output this would be a good way to check your system to see if the shutdowns still continue.
  5. MrRawr

    MrRawr TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for your most recent reply, i too have thought about the PSU being faulty. This PSU was brought around 2 months before my PC was put together so i used it in my old system. I had to send it back as it caused my old PC to turn off, but it allowed me to turn it back on so i didn't think that was the problem this time.

    I can play my games and use the Internet to listen to music via youtube but it can only handle Itunes for around 5-10 minutes before shutting down (if I'm playing my games with it or not).

    I will try and get hold of another PSU and test it out hopefully some time over the weekend. I will get back to you about it ASAP! Also, i went through the Event Viewer and done some reading on it but i don't really know what I'm looking for to be honest. It says that my system has lost power and shut down but doesn't give me a cause, maybe I'm missing something.

    It says "The system has rebooted without cleanly shutting down first. This error could be caused if the system stopped responding, crashed, or lost power unexpectedly" I'm guessing that was what you was referring to? I have some other errors too but it doesn't look like it has anything to do with the problem.

    If there is anything else you can think of let me know!

    Thanks again for your posts :)
  6. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,271

    Your welcome, look forward to hearing from you.
  7. MrRawr

    MrRawr TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Sorry its been a while, not long got the PSU due to money. Been testing all from Sunday just gone until now using it quite often and all looks good. Once again overclocked at 3.8 which is a bonus and no overheating what so ever. I wouldn't of thought about the PSU being faulty once again but hey, damn components. Seems that pacific make are really crap.

    I'm a happy bunny, thank you very much for your replies! Much appreciated Mark56! <3
  8. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,271

    Some PSU's really do not do what they say on the box.

    Glad to hear it's going ok now, and your welcome.


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