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Intel CPU overheating

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April 14, 2003 2:35:02 AM

I have a Intel MoBo (D845PEBT2)with an Intel 3.06Ghz CPU. I am using the Intel heatsink/fan that was included with the CPU. I applied a small amount of Artic Silver thermal compound between the two. At room temperature, my CPU runs roughly at 37C/100F with the upper threshold set for 68C/154F. My system has always run fine until the other day when I started playing "Freelancer". I now find my CPU hitting these upper thresholds and rudely shutting off my computer. What can I do to prevent this from happening in the future? Is my system running high to begin with at 37C? Is there a better heatsink/fan I should look into buying? I would certainly appreciate some advice and/or suggestions.

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April 14, 2003 3:41:36 AM

Intel's heatsinks are usually good enough. 37c is a good temperature, in a normally warm room (20-22c)

If you haven't already...You should probably install a software to monitor the temperature... I like MBPROBE because it puts a very inobtrusive icon in the task tray with the temp in it.

Now about the Arctic Silver...

When you put it on did you remove all of the heat transfer material from the heatsink and clean it up real good? (hospital clean, with alcohol)

Similarly did you clean the CPU as well? (again hospital clean)

Did you apply the AS per the instructions on their website?
<A HREF="http://www.arcticsilver.com/arctic_silver_instructions...." target="_new">http://www.arcticsilver.com/arctic_silver_instructions....;/A>

Did you check the fan?
I had a bad fan on one heatsink, it spun but didn't get up to full speed, very low torque. Replacing it helped a lot.

And finally.. are you shure the heatsink is seated correctly with all 4 mounting clips properly engaged?
One trick I found helps with Intel is to do all the above and then give it a very gentle little twist in both clock and counter directions from center. A couple of times I've felt the heatsink settle into place a little better than it was without this. (Don't be rough, you aren't moving a train... just a little nudge.)


If you do all this, and still get heating problems... you might consider an aftermarket cooler... hybrids (copper bottom aluminum fins) or all coper sinks seem to work best on Intel. Thermal resistence should be under .5 (the smaller the number the better).

--->It ain't better if it don't work<---
April 14, 2003 6:18:04 AM

well just like Teq said, Intel's heatsink is supposed to be good enough for the CPU and enable it to stay at satisfactory temps (such as you idle temp), though I see no reason other than improper heatsink installation which could account for the jump in heat under load... and you say the system shuts down? well, you can disable that function through the BIOS, since the Intel CPUs simply slow themselves down when too hot in order to cool themselves off, so technically if it got too hot, the CPU would simply underclock itself till it hit a proper temperature rating.

<b>When someone sells you a computer with an ECS mobo, they're ripping you off - when someone sells you a system with no case fan, they're just an idiot</b>
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April 14, 2003 9:37:23 AM

Quote:
When you put it on did you remove all of the heat transfer material from the heatsink and clean it up real good? (hospital clean, with alcohol)
Similarly did you clean the CPU as well? (again hospital clean)

What transfer material are you mentioning here? Is it that black layer that comes already on Intel HSFs? If so then if my memory serves me right the 3.06 HS comes without any



<b><font color=blue>Go "love" yourself :wink: </b></font color=blue>
April 14, 2003 5:57:51 PM

Some do, some don't... Intel has also started including a syringe of Zinc Oxide based thermal grease with some of their heatsinks.

My point was mostly about cleanliness.

I only mentioned the pre-applied stuff to point out the need to get the old stuff off before putting in AS. It was just a precautionary comment to point out that you really can't use 2 different thermal interfaces in tandem.



--->It ain't better if it don't work<---
April 15, 2003 2:32:17 AM

I appreciate all of the advice. The only thing I didn't do that you mentioned, Teq, is cleaning the CPU and heatsink with alcohol. However, my problem is now far worse. I was just running the machine in question here, and it cut out on me again. I rebooted it after letting it cool. I pulled up the Intel Monitoring tool and observed the temperature. It was running at or around 37c and then just cut out...again! What the "F"? How can the sensor report this temp and the CPU still cut off due to thermal overheating? It was running fine while I had it located on the first floor of my townhouse which is a bit on the cool side. I moved it up to the second floor into the living room. It's warmer, but only typical room temperature. I don't see why this would have any effect, but I'm feeling a bit distressed as I don't know what to do now.

It's a dog-eat-dog world and I'm wearing milkbone underwear.
April 15, 2003 5:14:02 AM

Ok, there are lots of things that can lock up/shut down a computer, heat is only one of them.

You may have a bad power supply, bad ram, a bad video card, motherboard problems, even a bad power cord.

As a first step, I would shut the thing down, disassemble it and start cleaning things... Go to Radio Shack or an electronics supply outlet and get a can of contact cleaner (<i>cleaner</i> not lube... and don't even think about using anything but the right stuff).

Take out your AGP card and each of the PCI cards... spray the motherboard side of the connectors with cleaner --and use the stuff liberally, you want everything wet-- then sweep them inside, end to end with a fairly stiff brush several times (I have a paint brush I use for this purpose). Then clean the edge connectors on the cards themselves by sweeping along them with a soft pencil eraser (the pink ones) until the contacts are nice and shiny.

Next repeate the cleaning process with the Memory strips and sockets.

Now take off the Heatsink, take out the CPU and spray the socket down real good with contact cleaner... get it very wet and swing the locking arm back and forth several times while it is wet. Now spray the CPU pins and sweep them several times with the brush... But in this case be gentle, those pins bend real easy.

Finally, reinstall the CPU, and heatsink the way I described.

Next... fire it back up in minimum configuration... Keyboard, memory, cpu, heatsink, video... Do a BIOS Clear (see the motherboard manual for instructions.) Get into the BIOS and put everything on auto that will go on auto... Once that is done, get into the BIOS hardware monitor and watch the system for a couple of hours... Does the temp stay stable, do the fan speeds stay more or less stable, are the voltages all within 5% of ideal... does it lock up or shut down?

If you run into trouble with the minimum configuration, you have it narrowed down to a relatively small number of replaceable modules... Try subbing in different parts, one at a time and see if it stabilizes... try the video card first, then memory, then cpu... if none of them stabilizes it, it's likely the motherboard.

If you get it this far without a hitch... begin rebuilding the system one bit at a time and testing it after each new piece... hook up the hard disk, monitor it from the BIOS, then the CD-rom, then the PCI cards one at a time, checking and watching for a few minutes with each new piece, until you get it all back together and working.

If you run into trouble after adding a part back in, you got your bad part and from there it's just a matter of getting it replaced.

If you get this far with no problems, you should have very high confidence in your hardware. Most anything that goes wrong from here will almost certainly be software. Drivers are a common cause of shutdowns and lockups, so be sure you have all the most recent (or most reliable) drivers for your devices. On the outside, you may have to reload your operating system and software from scratch but, of course that is a last resort.

Once you think you've got it beat, run it for a few days, maybe a week, before you start tweaking and tuning in the BIOS... just to make sure.

Finally... there is a possibility there is a virus in your system causing this... get a good anti-virus scanner and use it if the problem persists.


--->It ain't better if it don't work<---
April 15, 2003 4:16:01 PM

Thanks for all the advice Teq. I don't think I have an issue with any of the cards or RAM, but I'll follow you're advice and see what happens. I'm fairly certain now though that I don't need a better heatsink. Anyway, as it stands now, I can no longer even get my computer to boot all the way to Windows anymore without it cutting out on me now. I'll check back in with an update once I complete some of the steps you've provided me with. Thanks again.


It's a dog-eat-dog world and I'm wearing milkbone underwear.
April 15, 2003 4:25:54 PM

I forgot to add that everytime my computer shuts down and I turn it back on, I am given an error message something like "The system was previously shutdown due to the CPU overheating (thermal)." Perhaps I should focus on cleaning the CPU and heatsink and reapplying the thermal compound after getting them "hospital clean".

It's a dog-eat-dog world and I'm wearing milkbone underwear.
April 15, 2003 6:28:10 PM

Well, that might be a good first step... If you do it now and it works, you save yourself a lot of extra work. If it doesn't get it, then you've got confidence in your cooling setup.

Remember... clean everything down to bare metal, shiny clean, before applying your thermal compound.

While you're at it, you might like to change your monitoring strategies somewhat...

I don't generally use the BIOS or manufacturer's monitors. I turn them off and put in a piece of software called MBPROBE. It puts a little icon in the system tray with the CPU temp always visible and has other smarts for voltages and fans too. The big advantage is that it can be set so it won't shut off the computer, costing you your settings or any work you are doing, but will simply put the computer in Standby mode so you can let it cool and then save whatever you were working on before shutting down. It takes a little setting up to get it right, but once you have MBPROBE working it's really pretty good stuff.

<A HREF="http://mbprobe.livewiredev.com/" target="_new">http://mbprobe.livewiredev.com/&lt;/A>



--->It ain't better if it don't work<---
April 16, 2003 1:38:13 AM

Well I come to you this evening with measured optimism. I cleaned the CPU and heatsink as you instructed. I put it all back together and it was booting up and staying up. However, the idle temp was higher at 44c. I then also noticed the fan I had installed in addition to the factory installed ones was running at 2k rpms instead of 3k which was typical before. But this time it was spiking up to 11k for a second every 10 to 15 seconds. I shut my system and took the fan out completely. Upon starting back up again, it's idling at 34c. This is lower than it's ever been! So it looks like it may have been the fan that was acting up. Thanks so much for taking the time and effort to assist me with my problem. I think it's fixed now.


Rob

It's a dog-eat-dog world and I'm wearing milkbone underwear.
April 16, 2003 4:46:57 AM

No problem.

Lets hope the problem doesn't come back.


--->It ain't better if it don't work<---
April 19, 2003 3:15:27 PM

Are you even using MBPROBE to measure those temps? it sounds like a dodgy piece of measuring doftware (asus probe comes to mind) that keeps shutting down your comp because it thinks your comp is overheating.

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