My computer keeps crashing

cali calculus at
Fri Jan 21 00:33:13 PST 2005

> This sure smells like a hardware problem.
>>I think the problem might be due to my bios settings running the CPU to 
>>fast although I do not think I am overclocking it. This might explain the 
>>strange timing of the problem, maybe the motherboard is unstable.
> If you are not explicitly overclocking, the BIOS should be smart enough to 
> run the cpu at or below its rated speed.
> Time to start checking the hardware. Here is what I would do. Check for 
> stability after each step.
> 1. Wiggle & Giggle: Reseat all cables, cards and RAM. Inspect CPU cooling.

My Zalman cooler has an adjustable speed, at the moment it is on low, so I 
can turn this up to test it, I can also take off the side panel and so on. 
If I can get the CPU temperature monitor working then I can find out 
whereabouts it becomes unstable.

> 2. Turn off ACPI in BIOS. (someone correct me if I am crazy, I recall ACPI 
> being problematic) Look for other weirdo BIOS settings.

I don't think it is ACPI, I've had ACPI problems before but they always 
occurred only when booting from a freebsd installation. But I don't know 
enough about ACPI in FreeBSD to rule it out however.

> 3. Underclock CPU. (I did once get a bum CPU that was not stable at its 
> rated speed and produced similar problems. Unlikely, but possible.)

As mentioned in another reply, I ran the program on underclocked CPU last 
night and it is still running whereas with the CPU on its rated speed 
crashing was happening quite fast. I think the temperature hypothesis seems 
intuitively most reasonable and is the one I will test first. Of course, 
running the CPU at it's rated speed will presumably draw more voltage, this 
could then have compilated affects on other components, or could cause a PSU 
problem to manifest, I don't know but it seems like a reasonable hypothesis.

> 4. Swap in new RAM or run memtest86
> 5. Get rid of all peripherals, re-attach one at a time if this clears it 
> up
> 6. Swap in new power supply (with that nice Antec this is unlikely... but 
> not impossible... and a bad PSU can cause all KINDS of weirdness.)

I'm going to try temperature first, but if that doesn't work, I'll try as 
many of these other things as I can.



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