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Cooling Glitch with IBM 8183-GNU Thinkcentre

By toocan
Aug 8, 2006
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  1. I have an IBM Thinkcentre 8183-GNU which, according to IBM, is running the infamous Prescott P4 SL7E5 (3.2 GHz), at least one of them anyway. I say this because Speed Fan seems to indicate two processors, system information shows two processor entries and the heat sink certainly looks wide enough for two. I haven't pulled it apart far enough to see for sure. Is this SL7E5 some kind of dual core or something?

    Anyway, here's the problem: On 100% CPU usage, the temperatures just keep climbing past 84 C on one of the Speed Fan readouts and then the thing shuts down, probably on some kind of thermal trip. The fans ramp up in speed which is normal I guess but they just can't keep it cool. Everything is clean in there, no dust build up on the sinks, ambient was about 25 C. On idle, Speed Fan shows a max of 60 C on one readout and about 53 C on the other readout. One guy I know says that's too hot for idle.

    The OEM heatsink kind of looks like a cheap afterthought. I have looked into new copper passive finned sinks (the two fans mount in the case adjacent to the sink). NexusTek in Holland has a nice looking passive copper sink that might fit (it's a small form factor case, tighter'n a drum in there) but I guess you have to pull the mainboard to mount these things and I don't really feel like doing that. And what if it does have two CPUs?

    It turns out the thing is still under warranty. I got it off Ebay as a liquidated comp from a business that probably went toes up, there was no hard drive (probably pulled and drilled for security reasons). I installed a Seagate SATA 400 gig drive, some more memory to raise the as-bought 512 to 1512 MB, a BenQ DW-1640 to replace the OEM DVD-ROM and a retail copy of XP Pro. I contacted IBM and they say I can get fixed under warranty so I'll do that. The reason I bought the thing in the first place was the small form factor, it's semi portable and with a 15" LCD screen, I can carry the thing in a handbag. Keyboards and mice are a dime a dozen and I'll get new ones when I travel.

    I'd be interested to hear from anyone running similar IBM comps as test stands, hack platforms or whatever. They're kinda cool (no joke intended there).
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