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Spontaneous Reboots


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Blue Screens sounds like a driver issue. Can you boot into Safe Mode with Networking or just plain Safe Mode?

 

I worked for a paper converter in there IT department and they had Dell computers. About 6 - 8 years ago there was a Chinese company producing Capacitors that said they rated higher then they really where. The capacitors would fail, pop the covers and leak. I never seen so many weird blue screens in my life. They would send a replacement and the computer would be fine. What still bothers me about Dell is according to the ticket tracking system some of the computers were fixed 4 or more times for this problem.

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My son once brought a friend's computer to me, saying it would boot for a few minutes then shut down; it was driving the guy crazy. I gave it the once-over, saw nothing out of line, so I pulled the CPU cooler. There was zero thermal paste! I had a Mythbusters moment; "Well there's your problem right there!" :D

 

I put in some paste, ran memtest86 on the PC overnight, and my son gave it back to his friend the next morning. It was hilarious.

 

I have not heard that one before, but that is a good computer support story. When I fixed PCs at a computer store in 96 - 98 we would see tons of strange stuff. A couple of my Favorites are, a guy told me he stepped on a CD ROM tray that was mounted at the top of a full height tower case, a lady asked about the foot pedal on her computer, and a guy with a broken CD ROM tray wanted the cup holder replaced.

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I worked for a paper converter in there IT department and they had Dell computers. About 6 - 8 years ago there was a Chinese company producing Capacitors that said they rated higher then they really where. The capacitors would fail, pop the covers and leak. I never seen so many weird blue screens in my life. They would send a replacement and the computer would be fine. What still bothers me about Dell is according to the ticket tracking system some of the computers were fixed 4 or more times for this problem.

 

Those would have been the Optiplex 270's. What a mess that was.

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I worked for a paper converter in there IT department and they had Dell computers. About 6 - 8 years ago there was a Chinese company producing Capacitors that said they rated higher then they really where. The capacitors would fail, pop the covers and leak. I never seen so many weird blue screens in my life. They would send a replacement and the computer would be fine. What still bothers me about Dell is according to the ticket tracking system some of the computers were fixed 4 or more times for this problem.

 

My workplace went through the Dell capacitor horror event too, calling Dell almost every day for new failed mobos. Many of the capacitors on ours didn't actually leak, but they definitely got the Michelin Man look. They would have to send out a tech to do the mobo swaps. Later on, Dell would just send us replacement mobos because they started to trust us to be able replace them properly. :)

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Those would have been the Optiplex 270's. What a mess that was.

 

You had the fun with the Optiplex 270s too. Maybe it wasn't fun.

 

My workplace went through the Dell capacitor horror event too, calling Dell almost every day for new failed mobos. Many of the capacitors on ours didn't actually leak, but they definitely got the Michelin Man look. They would have to send out a tech to do the mobo swaps. Later on, Dell would just send us replacement mobos because they started to trust us to be able replace them properly. :)

 

The local guy they hired to replaced the motherboards didn't think the board had failed unless the capacitors had leaked. If I had one of them he would complain to my boss saying they were fine and then use a linux boot disk and say see it works fine. He didn't like me after the 3rd time and I complained to dell about it.

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You had the fun with the Optiplex 270s too. Maybe it wasn't fun.

 

The local guy they hired to replaced the motherboards didn't think the board had failed unless the capacitors had leaked. If I had one of them he would complain to my boss saying they were fine and then use a linux boot disk and say see it

works fine. He didn't like me after the 3rd time and I complained to dell about it.

 

We had a bunch of 270's; over 100 I'm sure.

 

Why should he care. He was getting paid to replace the board..............so shut up and do your job! :wacko:

 

Maybe he owned stock in the company that made the capacitors. :D

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As above, I'm leaning toward memory. Spontaneous reboots are usually either bad power supply. bad memory or overheating. Overheating should be easy enough to detect either from the fan(s) continuously spinning up faster or via a temperature monitoring program. PSU and memory are harder. One warning: Memtest86 is great but from experience I can tell you it can go through many iterations and show no errors and still cause a reboot.

 

Might want to ensure you have the latest BIOS for your motherboard and try going to just one stick of RAM and see if it runs. You definitely want at least two sticks for dual channel but start that way.

I have personal experience in this department--with the PSU, that is. I had a desktop a few years back that would reboot from time to time. Event Log showed nothing, other than the "The previous system shutdown at <date/time here> was unexpected. No blue screens, no memory dump files. I ran memtest86, a very handy utility. Sometimes I'd get a reboot during that, however, even though the tool never reported an error.

 

Interestingly, on one of the reboots, I thought I heard something. A day later, I heard it again, just as the machine rebooted. It sounded like a little zap, or buzz, and it came from the PSU. Replaced the PSU, and the problem was history.

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Why should he care. He was getting paid to replace the board..............so shut up and do your job! :wacko:

 

Well that is what I would have done. Dell told me there paid to do the work and all of the trouble shooting is handled by dell tech support. So he was literally paid just to replace the board, not to rediagnose the problem. Proof that he was wrong is that the computers worked after that.

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We had a bunch of 270's; over 100 I'm sure.

 

 

 

Maybe he owned stock in the company that made the capacitors. :D

 

I am sure I seen at least that many GX 270s. A hit to anyone buying refurbished or off lease computers, if it is a GX 270 it's not worth it.

 

A Dell rep told me the reason we didn't hear about recalls on products that used the capacitors is the company went out of business and Dell would have to foot all of the loss. He said that if the computer goes out of warranty it's not there problem anymore.

 

As above, I'm leaning toward memory. Spontaneous reboots are usually either bad power supply. bad memory or overheating. Overheating should be easy enough to detect either from the fan(s) continuously spinning up faster or via a temperature monitoring program. PSU and memory are harder. One warning: Memtest86 is great but from experience I can tell you it can go through many iterations and show no errors and still cause a reboot.

 

Might want to ensure you have the latest BIOS for your motherboard and try going to just one stick of RAM and see if it runs. You definitely want at least two sticks for dual channel but start that way.

 

You know there is a memory test tool that comes with windows 7. If you search for Windows Memory Diagnostic you can reboot into the test. Press F1 to get the advanced options.

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