My computer makes a siren noise and I don't know why

By Envergure
Jun 26, 2007
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  1. Hey guys.


    Sometimes when I'm using my computer the internal speaker starts going "EEEE-RRRR-EEEE-RRRR-EEEE-RRRR" and I don't know why. It happens mostly when I'm playing Thief 2, but the other day it happened when I was using Microsoft Excel. When I close everything it stops after a while.

    There's nothing in Task Manager or anything like that to indicate a problem. It just makes that noise.

    I think it's because the CPU is overheating, but I can't tell for sure. I have an Intel Pentium 3, and the computer is getting old.


    So three things:
    - What's causing the computer to make the noise?
    - How can I monitor my CPU's temperature?
    - If the CPU is on its way out, can I replace it without getting a new motherboard?


    In the meantime I'll check a few things with Everest.


    Thanks!
  2. raybay

    raybay TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    The problem is likely in your sound driver, your sound card or port, or your speakers.
    All can be fixed or replaced or adjusted... and you should go that way before you start worrying about temperature and CPU
    A CPU failure is extremely rare... Motherboards do not usually have problems that result in strange sounds...
  3. almcneil

    almcneil TechSpot Guru Posts: 1,554

    Likely your sound settings have been messed up by spyware. To revert them back to default, do the following

    Start -> Control Panel -> Sounds and Audio Devices -> Sounds

    Select Windows Default and click apply. It will ask you if you want to save the previous settings under a different name. Just click cancel.

    To check for spyware, use the following 3 utils:

    Ad-Aware 2007
    Spybot Search & Destroy
    AVG Anti-Spyware
  4. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 10,074   +13

  5. Envergure

    Envergure TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 154

    I reset the sound settings and it still makes the noise. Oh, and it turns out the CPU is an AMD Athelon, not a P3 (oops).

    The sound it makes doesn't fit any of the descriptions on the "guide to beep codes" page. It sounds like a siren, and goes continuously until I close everything and wait a while.

    I still think the problem is that it's overheating. Right now I have Thunderbird, Everest and a few Firefoxes open (but none of them are doing anything), and it's running at 81°C (179°F)!
  6. halo71

    halo71 Newcomer, in training Posts: 1,289

    I have never heard a PC make that sound, but I have heard a failing APC battery back up do that.
  7. raybay

    raybay TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    You probably are guessing the correct diagnosis.
    So you have an AMD, but I don't see the model.
    It will be helpful to have the motherboard and other specs, or the computer brand and model. Intentional sounds will be posted on the manufactures website or sys specs.
    Have you done something as simple as removing and reinstalling the audio driver.... just to rule out stuff.
  8. almcneil

    almcneil TechSpot Guru Posts: 1,554

    Did you check for spyware as I mentioned above? Here are the 3 anti-spyware utils I recommend:

    Ad-Aware 2007
    Spybot Search & Destroy
    AVG Anti-Spyware

    All are freeware.
  9. mqwerty19

    mqwerty19 Newcomer, in training

    Hey, i have the same problem but i`ve got an intel processor

    it beeps sometimes when i playing, but it beeped when i worked with the windows movie maker and the firefox
  10. raybay

    raybay TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    Is this a desktop, or a laptop. The use of some power adapters for laptops and other devices will generate emissions that will create this sound in some sound systems. We now see this a lot with power adapters for various devices that have a "brick" transformer between the power cord and the wall, mostly in the very cheapest adapters. They don't have to be in your computer... they can cause this siren noise from as far as 30 feet away in our tests. These are all made in China.
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