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I've just built a new computer, and it restarts randomly!

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January 17, 2014 5:39:24 PM

First of all, I would like to adress that im a first time builder. I have built a system last week, with all new components bought recently (except for the ram, but more of that later). The issue is that it boots well and everything, but it restarts randomly (almost never lasts more than 20 mints since it booted). I've tried a lot to repair it, in vain, and as you could imagine, im quite desperate at this point.

These are my specs:
Motherboard: Asus M5A78L-M USB3
CPU: AMD FX 8350 Black Edition
Graphics Card: R9 290 Sapphire (the first version that came out)
Power Supply: Sentey SCP 850w 80 plus
Optical drive: LG dvd reader and burner.
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 7200 rpm 6gb/s 1TB
Case: NZXT Phantom 630 White
Ram: I really don't know, but its 6 gb in modules of 2. A pair of these modules are meant to work together (for a total of 4gb) and i installed them in the right dual channel slots. The other one is an individual module. Don't know the speends of these modules.

How i installed the components (hardware):
First of all i took the motherboard out of the box, and then out of the plastic anti-static bag. Then i took the cpu out of the box, and installed it carefully, applying no force, allingning the triangles. Then i installed the cpu fan. For this i took my time, as i found it very hard to install (because i had to apply much more force than i wanted) but I applied that force to secure it and got it over with (one of my theories is that in this step i broke some pin in the back of the motherboard, but i did not see/hear anything broke at the time). Then i installed the motherboard with the cpu in the case, grabbing the motherboard from the cpu fan, therefore not touching any vulnerable electronics. I inserted the screws and realized that the case came with 6 screw holders, and more in a bag, that i was suppoused to put in there. So uninstalled the motherboard, very carefully, and reinstalled it after i placed the screw holders that i needed (2 more in the bottom of the motherboard). Then i installed the graphics card, first it didn't fit well, but i realized i had to apply more force, and so i did, and it fitted perfectly. Then i installed the psu, and connected all of the cables, reading the manual for the not obvius ones.

Things i tried:
First of all i thought it could be a software issue. So i formatted the computer with the help of a friend who knows a ton about software and installing windows and we installed all the drivers carefully: first the motherboard driver, using the cd that came with it (otherwise you don't get access to the internet), and then the GPU from the AMD website. The computer rebooted randomly so we knew it wasn't the software. We thought of the ram, so even if it worked well in the last computer it had been in (my old machine) we replaced it with 4gb of ram in one module of his currently working computer. It still rebooted, so we thought it could not be the ram. Then he had to leave so i had to keep fixing the problem on my own :'(  . I tried rewiring the GPU, i thought it might not be getting enough power (the power supply comes with 2 PCIE cables, each with one 6+2 pin and one 6 pin, and the GPU needs one 8 pin and one 6 pin, so i had only used one of the cables. Then i used the two cables, one 6+2 pin from one cable, and the other 6+2 from the other cable, but without the +2. Still didn't work. Started thinking it could be a GPU or a PSU problem, so i took the GPU off. Still rebooted within the minute it booted (like most times), so i reinstalled it. This made me think that it could be a motherboard/cpu problem, which really scared me cause that would mean that i have to use the warranty, which implies a lot of trouble, but if its that, i will. Something else i noticed is that this motherboard only offers 3gb/s SATA connectors, and the Seagate barracuda is made for 6gb/s, but belive this could only bottleneck the system, not cause any stability problem.

THANKS IN ADVANCE FOR ALL YOUR HELP. You have no idea how much time it took for me to save enough money for this machine, I was so excited, and noticing it doesn't work broke my heart. Did i do something wrong? Any suggestions will help.

More about : built computer restarts randomly

January 17, 2014 5:45:22 PM

You should have bought a 970 chipset motherboard. It's better for the FX-8350
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January 17, 2014 5:45:51 PM

Did you hear any beeps ?
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January 17, 2014 5:52:45 PM

IRONBATMAN said:
Did you hear any beeps ?


No beeps can be heard, as the NZXT Phantom 630 case does not come with speakers included (to my surprise too).
And maybe i should have bought that motherboard, but how could i have known... Also, the friend i mentioned has the exact same CPU and Motherboard and it works great for him, we just bought it in different places, but he had no issues with it.
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January 17, 2014 6:00:36 PM

vVonder said:


No beeps can be heard, as the NZXT Phantom 630 case does not come with speakers included (to my surprise too).


If you're lucky some motherboards have built-in speakers now since some case don't have that anymore.

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January 17, 2014 6:09:56 PM

Even if you tried with different RAM, the problem could be the slot. Try with one stick at a time, but test every slot individually.

Even if it's a new computer, did you check if a new BIOS version was available? I would also try to reset the BIOS to default settings.

For now, I would also suggest you use only basic components, no need for a DVD drive, unplug every unnecessary internal components and external peripherals too, use only integrated graphics, as I said just use 1 stick of RAM at a time and use a different slot, try to connect the HDD into another sata port, etc... Keep everything to a minimal and disconnect every components and cables you don't need until the system becomes stable, then start adding back components one by one until you find what is faulty.

By the way, I'm surprised your motherboard doesn't have any SATA3 (6Gb/s) ports, this must be an old model because SATA3 has been the standard for a while now. SATA2 (3Gb/s) shouldn't bottleneck a mechanical drive like the one you got though, only if you decide to upgrade to a SSD later on you could feel a bottleneck.

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January 17, 2014 6:19:21 PM

MC_K7 said:
Even if you tried with different RAM, the problem could be the slot. Try with one stick at a time, but test every slot individually.

Even if it's a new computer, did you check if a new BIOS version was available? I would also try to reset the BIOS to default settings.

For now, I would also suggest you use only basic components, no need for a DVD drive, unplug every unnecessary internal components and external peripherals too, use only integrated graphics, as I said just use 1 stick of RAM at a time and use a different slot, try to connect the HDD into another sata port, etc... Keep everything to a minimal and disconnect every components and cables you don't need until the system becomes stable, then start adding back components one by one until you find what is faulty.

By the way, I'm surprised your motherboard doesn't have any SATA3 (6Gb/s) ports, this must be an old model because SATA3 has been the standard for a while now. SATA2 (3Gb/s) shouldn't bottleneck a mechanical drive like the one you got though, only if you decide to upgrade to a SSD later on you could feel a bottleneck.



Alright, i will try with the rams in different slots, one by one, should take me less than an hour. Also i will disconnect the other components (GPU, Optical drive and maybe the fans included with the case if you think that could help (if it is for example a power issue). Forgot to mention that i also tried to change the place where the PSU cable was connected, and it didn't help. I will get back to you.
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January 17, 2014 6:29:11 PM

Don't forget to check if there's a new BIOS version available and to reset it to default settings too.

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January 17, 2014 8:00:01 PM

MC_K7 said:
Don't forget to check if there's a new BIOS version available and to reset it to default settings too.



I will search an internet guide and reset and update the bios...
You have no idea how much i appreciate the continuous support :D 
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January 18, 2014 3:25:30 PM

MC_K7 said:
Even if you tried with different RAM, the problem could be the slot. Try with one stick at a time, but test every slot individually.

Even if it's a new computer, did you check if a new BIOS version was available? I would also try to reset the BIOS to default settings.

For now, I would also suggest you use only basic components, no need for a DVD drive, unplug every unnecessary internal components and external peripherals too, use only integrated graphics, as I said just use 1 stick of RAM at a time and use a different slot, try to connect the HDD into another sata port, etc... Keep everything to a minimal and disconnect every components and cables you don't need until the system becomes stable, then start adding back components one by one until you find what is faulty.

By the way, I'm surprised your motherboard doesn't have any SATA3 (6Gb/s) ports, this must be an old model because SATA3 has been the standard for a while now. SATA2 (3Gb/s) shouldn't bottleneck a mechanical drive like the one you got though, only if you decide to upgrade to a SSD later on you could feel a bottleneck.



So i was doing what you said about the ram, and when i turned it on i realized that taking the graphics card out and then putting it back in rendered the amd catalyst (driver) useless or unactivated... I also and had no issue while they were unactivated, but the resolution was bugging me and i uninstalled all the graphics drivers and installed them again... Guess what, the computer restarted not much after that. So i read a lot about what a bios is, and its the most basic software that your computer needs to be able to use your hardware, so the fact that the bios that my system had (from the cd that came with the motherboard) was much older than the graphics card i was using (several months) made me think that it could be it... Im going to try and update it now, thank you for all your suggestions. I hope it solves things. I already downloaded it, and it is a compressed folder and within a .rom file... Do you know the procedure to update it with that file? Thanks in advance!
Bios downloaded: https://www.asus.com/Motherboards/M5A78LMUSB3/#support
( Its the 1801 version, and i had the 1503... )
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January 18, 2014 5:16:50 PM

MC_K7 said:
Don't forget to check if there's a new BIOS version available and to reset it to default settings too.



So i updated the BIOS and it lasted a LOT longer before restarting... I even thought it was fixed, but then boom, restart... What do you think it could be? Hardware? Software? Im getting more scared by the minute, please help :(  !
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January 18, 2014 5:16:51 PM

MC_K7 said:
Don't forget to check if there's a new BIOS version available and to reset it to default settings too.



So i updated the BIOS and it lasted a LOT longer before restarting... I even thought it was fixed, but then boom, restart... What do you think it could be? Hardware? Software? Im getting more scared by the minute, please help :(  !
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January 18, 2014 5:16:51 PM

MC_K7 said:
Don't forget to check if there's a new BIOS version available and to reset it to default settings too.



So i updated the BIOS and it lasted a LOT longer before restarting... I even thought it was fixed, but then boom, restart... What do you think it could be? Hardware? Software? Im getting more scared by the minute, please help :(  !
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January 19, 2014 2:08:46 PM

This really seems like something in the hardware, low level probably, like bad memory, bad slot for memory, could be a bad CPU, bad mobo, etc... It can be a pain but you need to test each component individually and process by elimination to find out which is faulty.

But if you've been able to install Windows the first time without crashing it could be a bad driver installed afterwards that causes your problems. Maybe try to install a different Windows version and see if it's more stable, just to rule out software problem and be 100% sure it's a hardware problem. Or you also boot from a USB key or a DVD to a temporary OS (like Bart-PE or Hiren's Boot CD, etc...) and see if you are able to let it run for a long time without restart.

Worst case scenario, if it's a hardware problem and you don't have spare parts to test (or can't borrow from a friend) you could always bring it to a computer shop, they usually have test benches and can quickly test your components. Usually they don't charge too much for a quick test, you can even do it with the guys there.

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January 19, 2014 4:04:42 PM

MC_K7 said:
This really seems like something in the hardware, low level probably, like bad memory, bad slot for memory, could be a bad CPU, bad mobo, etc... It can be a pain but you need to test each component individually and process by elimination to find out which is faulty.

But if you've been able to install Windows the first time without crashing it could be a bad driver installed afterwards that causes your problems. Maybe try to install a different Windows version and see if it's more stable, just to rule out software problem and be 100% sure it's a hardware problem. Or you also boot from a USB key or a DVD to a temporary OS (like Bart-PE or Hiren's Boot CD, etc...) and see if you are able to let it run for a long time without restart.

Worst case scenario, if it's a hardware problem and you don't have spare parts to test (or can't borrow from a friend) you could always bring it to a computer shop, they usually have test benches and can quickly test your components. Usually they don't charge too much for a quick test, you can even do it with the guys there.



Update: I think i have temporary fixed the problem... I removed the 2x2gb ram sticks that worked together and moved the other one to the first slot this morning, i was beggining to perform the test that you mentioned (with no hopes at all) and seems to have stopped the restarts... I have used the computer for more than 8 hours and no random reboots... Now i will see which slot/ram stick is, or maybe is the psu that was in the limit of power and removing those sticks made the difference... don't know, will test it out (hoping that is a stick, which can be easily replaced, even though i strongly suspect it is a slot...). I will get back to you when i finish the test, probably tomorrow, with the final results. Thank you so much for your support and advise.

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January 20, 2014 7:41:52 AM

It's either one (or two?) defective RAM stick, or some defective memory slot on the mobo.

Or maybe nothing is defective at all. I've seen some systems behaving like that and just reseating the RAM fixes the issue because it was simply a bad contact.

Your theory about the PSU being pushed to the limit by adding more RAM doesn't make much sense to me. RAM draws so little power that the difference between using 2 or 4 sticks is negligible.

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January 22, 2014 1:45:28 PM

MC_K7 said:
It's either one (or two?) defective RAM stick, or some defective memory slot on the mobo.

Or maybe nothing is defective at all. I've seen some systems behaving like that and just reseating the RAM fixes the issue because it was simply a bad contact.

Your theory about the PSU being pushed to the limit by adding more RAM doesn't make much sense to me. RAM draws so little power that the difference between using 2 or 4 sticks is negligible.



So, i kept the 1 ram used before that worked, and it was turned on without ANY issue at all for about three entire days. In that time i watched online episodes of Attack on Titan, and nothing happend, i also played OutLast and nothing happend as well, and also, all this time, i downloaded 4 torrents at the same time. I thought it was something related to ram, but then i turned it off so it could rest (after 3 days of full time work) and the next day, when i turned it on, was good for about 5 minutes and when i tried downloading memtest (to start checking the slots/ram sticks) it restarted. So this is what i did:
-Keep searching for online solutions to random reboots in different forums/webs.
-Found some possibilities, one being turning OFF LLC (Load Line Calibration) also known as vDroop. Found that it worked to some guy with the exact same problems, here link: www.tomshardware.com/forum/314336-28-newly-built-gaming...
-Turned it on 0% (there was no option called ''Disable'' or ''Turn off'', so i thought that was the same thing.

Please tell me what you think about this: should i turn it back on; is it dangerous to any component? Give me your insight. For now it did not happen, about 10 minutes of reboot free working, I even have OCCT doing a CPU test as i write this. I also readded the stick i had removed in different slots.

Thanks for staying through the process. If this works for about 2 more days (i will be restarting and stress testing the computer) I will close the thread.
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January 22, 2014 4:09:35 PM

Nope, it restarted again. OCCT CPU test passed all good, no restarts. Also I browsed internet and videos for a while, no issue, but as soon as i got to my only game, OutLast, boom, restart within the first 2 minutes. I will run memtest and move my computer to another wall electricity output of the house, i dont know if it could be that. If not, im going to run memtest even though it might be the slot and not the actual ram.
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January 24, 2014 5:42:54 PM

MC_K7 said:
It's either one (or two?) defective RAM stick, or some defective memory slot on the mobo.

Or maybe nothing is defective at all. I've seen some systems behaving like that and just reseating the RAM fixes the issue because it was simply a bad contact.

Your theory about the PSU being pushed to the limit by adding more RAM doesn't make much sense to me. RAM draws so little power that the difference between using 2 or 4 sticks is negligible.



-Not the ram: Tried what you said, every stick individually in each motherboard slot, for a total of 12 tries, and every single one restarted fairly quickly.
-Not the house power output: Tried connecting my computer in another room of the house. A whole wall socket only for the PSU, still restarted.

I'm lost, I don't know what to try next. Should I RMA the PSU or the Motherboard? Im pretty sure its not either of other components (GPU, CPU or RAM) based on software and hardware tests that i did. Which one do you think i should return?
Is there something else i can try to avoid having to use the warranty? Any suggestions will help.
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