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Show ALL Forums  > Technology/Computers  > My computer keeps switching itself off.      Home login  
 AUTHOR
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 1
My computer keeps switching itself off.Page 1 of 4    (1, 2, 3, 4)
Phew! After trying for hours, my computer actually started up but I don't know how long for.

I'm PC illiterate so you'll have to be patient with me. I have a HP and run IE. My computer had a serious virus some months ago requiring a new Mother Board. At that time I had the same problem as I have now.....

Why does my computer not switch on, or the moment it gets out of DOS and begins to upload Windows does it keep shutting off? I can't believe its lasted this long without suddenly suddenly shutting off.

If you need further info to help me trouble shoot.....ask away. I'm thankful for any input.
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 2
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/5/2011 4:27:30 PM
The shutting itself off was much better after the new MB and new fans. It just suddenly started doing it again 3 days ago.

It was my first thought, also, that it may be overheating so I've removed the side to reveal all the "guts" of the computer and have it lying on its side. (Open side facing upwards, of course). The fans are still clean and working perfectly.

Interesting, now that the side is removed it hasnt turned itself off (yet). Hmmmm I wonder............ and the inside and all the wiring etc is spotless. I'll keep you posted, thanks guys... :)
 xxmistyxx
Joined: 6/18/2009
Msg: 3
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History
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/6/2011 4:35:28 AM
Holly ..How old is the pc ?

Have you tried copying (backing up all your files ) your info and doing a total restore back to manufacturers settings?

Also check your add and remove programms as sometimes viruses can be added to the list disguised as a genuine company /application...

Somtimes incompatible applications can can cause pc to shut down /off
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 5
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/7/2011 5:38:55 AM

I'm a little confused on how a virus would knock out a motherboard though...


Thats what Cowboy implied too. I know very little about computers and it was my ex- husband (who is an IT tech,) who "fixed" my PC 3 months ago. He replaced the MB and re configured the whole computer so I just went along with it without question. I now have all the latest updates (or so I believe).

My PC remains on its side with one side plate removed so all the inner workings of it are visable. For two days I havn't turned it off and obviously it hasnt switched itself off either. Power seems fine and the fans are new and clean and in perfect working order.

Thanks again for help with trouble shooting, guys, and lets see how it behaves. :)
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 6
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/7/2011 9:42:54 AM
I'm too scared to move it. Ya know why? This will make you laugh...............

When I removed the side cover, I focussed on a 5" x 3" x 1 cm thin black box right behind the "on/off" button which had dropped away from the green casing supposedly holding it in place.

I moved it up to where I thought it should be and its been working ever since. (3 days now). I dont know if its locked into place so I'm reluctant to tip the PC up straight.

Is that black thing the MB? The inside of a computer is fascinating. Just wires, soldered bits, square things and that mysterious black box.

(Home temps? My home is neither too cold or too warm. I'm energy efficient.......)

BTW....do you think Markus could include a "face palm" smilie? :)
 chrono1985
Joined: 11/20/2004
Msg: 7
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/8/2011 5:28:03 AM
Definitely sounds like something's overheating due to poor air circulation when the case is closed. Can you put your hand near the fans to confirm the air flow. Ideal air flow is in from the front, out through the back/top/side.

Near the CPU (biggest heatsink you see in there sits on the CPU) is the Northbridge which is the hottest chip in the entire computer. In ideal circumstances it'll hit temperatures on the chip surface that can fry an egg instantly, so it doesn't really take much to push it into the unsafe range.

If you decide to leave the side of the case off and sit a box fan next to it, point the box fan outward away from the computer, that should lift off a lot of excess heat, good idea to set the fan at the lowest speed you can get away with so that the CPU fan is still able to perform it's function (pushing hot air down and out the sides of the heatsink). You also run the risk with a large house fan set next to the computer that it will overpower those fans inside of it (depends how good those fans are), that'll burn up the motors in those fans given enough time.

Air cooling electronic circuits isn't really about bringing cool air onto the chips, it's about venting as much of the hot air as possible off the chips. The heat sinks act as a larger surface area for the chips, properly seated they'll make a good contact and conduct the heat really well, improperly seated there will be air bubbles where heat can build up and wreck havok.
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 8
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/8/2011 11:54:28 PM
Thanks so much guys. My computer remains cool, plenty of ventilation and its spotless inside. I still have it on its side but the side plate is back on and so far so good.

Thanks for not ridiculing me here. I learn alot from such threads. Yes, previous Poster, I now know what the MB is. Its the green plate with the soldering and all wires connected to it. Thanks. I very carefully secured the black box I mentioned into place and cleared some wires oout of the way of the reset button.

My internet shut down yesterday so I was forced to re boot my PC. I was praying it would start up again and it did!! .......so whatever the problem was, it seems okay now.

Thankyou Cowboy for offering to post a photo of my PC but I have no cam nor could I borrow one.. I'm very grateful for everyone's help. xxxx
 chrono1985
Joined: 11/20/2004
Msg: 9
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/9/2011 12:39:36 AM
Glad you got that straightened out. Funny you mention cleaning up the wiring, such a simple fix to restore circulation.
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 10
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/10/2011 3:57:47 AM
Photos emailed..........

Today there was a power cut in my street and when the power finally came back on I went to switch my computer back on and it worked!

My computer remains on its side but I've placed the cover back over it (to protect it from dust and flying insects) but its not screwed into place.

Since I put the black box back into place (measuring 5"x 3" x 1/2") against the green casing behind the on/off button, (see potential photos), my PC has been fine.

What IS that black box thing? Anyway, my PC is behaving itself now and thanks once again everyone. Bless ya. xx
 UnixGrand
Joined: 5/9/2011
Msg: 11
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History
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/14/2011 11:03:33 PM
Anything could of caused it. The memory could have become loose, or the CPU moved in the socket. An add-in card that is not seated properly, power supply, WINDOWS, Virii, or a faulty outlet. I have seen them all. I have seen motherboards, CPUS, memory, add-in cards, BIOS, and power supplies eaten up by a virus. This is what I do for a living. I build computers, maintain all different operating systems, (Windows, Linux, Unix, Solaris, etc. etc..) and do all different kinds of wireless, wired, Wlans, Vlans, UMA's, and VPN's. I am a Network Architect.

If it is working now, I would advise to just leave it be. They do have a mind of there own. Think about having someone look at it though..... It might start again. It's like a Rolex watch. Fine tuned, with many parts and faults. I've seen a cat walk across a keyboard, and blow out the whole motherboard from a static charge. Good Luck.
 _TALL_IQ2_
Joined: 2/10/2010
Msg: 12
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/15/2011 8:25:12 AM

Since I put the black box back into place (measuring 5"x 3" x 1/2") against the green casing behind the on/off button, (see potential photos), my PC has been fine.


Inquiring techs want to know.. Can you put a couple good pics of that "black box" inside your computer on your profile so we can see what you are talking about?

We hope you have made copies of all your important docs/pics/data already to CDs or USB thumbdrives, since a transient problem can return and possibly disable your computer.
It's not magic, there usually are parts that can be replaced/cleaned to solve puzzling old computer issues..
 UnixGrand
Joined: 5/9/2011
Msg: 13
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History
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/15/2011 6:26:15 PM
I say it's Gremlins.
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 14
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/16/2011 2:46:00 AM
Gremlins? lol.... My PC switched itself off again a few times today. I found the "black box" had moved again..........see my profile for pix.

Thanks everyone xxxxx
 UnixGrand
Joined: 5/9/2011
Msg: 15
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My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/16/2011 11:15:03 AM

Gremlins? lol.... My PC switched itself off again a few times today. I found the "black box" had moved again..........see my profile for pix.


I told you it would start again. The pictures you are showing on your profile.... They look like a Dell, HP, or some other branded computer. It this correct? Also.... I see your harddrive in one, and the motherboard in the other. Please state where you see this black box.
 OTTO BONN
Joined: 4/20/2006
Msg: 16
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/16/2011 1:00:34 PM
Please state where you see this black box. ~Msg: 24

The black box she's referring to is the hard drive.
 _TALL_IQ2_
Joined: 2/10/2010
Msg: 17
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/16/2011 7:39:50 PM
I found the "black box" had moved again..........see my profile for pix.


Holly, that "black box" with silver metal in pic #6 is your Hard Drive. It SHOULD be secured by screws or a snap-in bracket so that it doesn't move AT ALL.

Advice if you think you are capable:
1: turn off and unplug your computer.
2: look at the hard drive and see the cables with connectors going into its one end. Push those ribbon connectors IN snugly at the hard drive so that they are NOT loose at all.
3: make sure the other end of that wide ribbon cable is also pushed into its socket on the motherboard securely.
4: look at the plastic bracket and/or screws that are supposed to hold the hard drive in place.. Figure out how it should fit into the plastic bracket, and the bracket fit to the metal of the case, so the hard drive doesn't flop around inside your computer.
If you just can't figure out the bracket or screw holes, get a long nylon cable tie and fasten it around the drive and through a screw hole or two of the case.
5: if you can, check ALL other cable connectors for snugness into their sockets.

Likely there was a loose cable connector, and the drive moving around made it looser until the computer shut off.
 UnixGrand
Joined: 5/9/2011
Msg: 18
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History
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/16/2011 10:44:44 PM
Please make sure you use a static band on your wrist, or de-static yourself before touching anything. You could blow the whole motherboard up.
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 19
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/18/2011 1:19:12 AM
I've fixed the Hard drive (now that I know what it looks like.....:) into place yesterday. Thankyou guys. I made sure the power was off.....even at the wall.

Thankyou, Unix, for the caution. xxxx
 UnixGrand
Joined: 5/9/2011
Msg: 20
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History
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/21/2011 8:20:27 PM

I've fixed the Hard drive (now that I know what it looks like.....:) into place yesterday. Thankyou guys. I made sure the power was off.....even at the wall.

Thankyou, Unix, for the caution. xxxx


Happy to hear it. I knew you could do it.
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 21
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/23/2011 5:38:50 PM
Love my Forum friends here. Thanks heaps for your help. xxxxxxx
 1234deleted1234
Joined: 10/8/2009
Msg: 22
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/24/2011 1:39:36 AM
Open up the case and look at the capacitors...they should be flat on top.
The capacitors are the black barrel looking things sticking up off the motherboard they are about 1/2" tall and 1/4" in diameter.

If they are domed then they will need to be replaced...this will cost about $100.

Most techs will tell you its the power supply then motherboard because they are component levl techs not board level techs.

HP's are notorious for this...it is caused by power spikes... the reason it tends to correspond with a major virus is because a virus uses up the CPU making it get hot...triggering shutdowns...the more capacitors bloated the less resistant the motherboard will be to heating up the CPU...triggering shutdowns more rapidly until finally the computer won't start up at all.
 UnixGrand
Joined: 5/9/2011
Msg: 23
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My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/29/2011 10:45:45 AM

I'm a board level tech. A+ Network + MCSE, But I generally look for the simplest, cheapest fix first.




I agree.
 1234deleted1234
Joined: 10/8/2009
Msg: 24
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/29/2011 12:34:54 PM
^^^^^ It is for an HP computer because with HP, if you replace the motherboard you will have to buy windows as well...Microsoft looks at a new MB as a new computer and will not give a reinstall code for windows to work.
 1234deleted1234
Joined: 10/8/2009
Msg: 25
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/29/2011 1:05:22 PM
^^^ Not what HP and Microsoft told me when I was going to install a new MB


B.S. Done it many times. Works perfect what can I say? replace with the same motherboard and it boots right up. It is licensed for SINGLE USE. You are within your Windows license to replace that motherboard with the same model as many times as you like.

Cowboy
 Holly63
Joined: 2/4/2011
Msg: 26
My computer keeps switching itself off.
Posted: 5/30/2011 12:50:24 AM
What you are all saying is slowly making sence. NOW I know where the MB is and that oblong box affixed to the front of my computer is the hard drive. I'm learning alot.

(Thankfully my profile photos......not to my knowledge.....havn't been reported. I'll remove them now as they are unnecessary.)

Keep posting guys....I'm learning alot from this. My computer still has the cover off and is working perfectly. *kiss*
Show ALL Forums  > Technology/Computers  > My computer keeps switching itself off.