Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Is my CPU a goner?

Tags:
Last response: in CPUs
Share
June 22, 2007 7:55:37 PM

My screen displayed a strange orange and pink fine checkerboard/herringbone
pattern today. The display then lost it's feed as if the pc had been turned
off but all case fans etc were still running. I pressed the power button and
the pc powered down immediately. I powered up again and the POST started with
a beep as normal, followed by another indicating a RAM issue. I took one 1Mb
RAM stick out and tried again but still with the RAM beep. I swapped the RAM
over for the other stick and nothing, not even a POST. I put the original
RAM in and tried again but still the same, no POST. I've swapped the
graphics card for another but still the same problem. I had what I thought
was a RAM problem (1 beep) around three weeks ago and got the RAM swapped as
it was only 6 months old - the problem seemingly cured but now it's reared
its ugly head again.

All lights on the case etc light up as normal, all fans run too along with
the hard drives. I've also tried taking out each PCI slot card in turn but
still no POST so could the CPU or mobo be the problem and if so, how likely
is it? I must admit, I'm leaning towards the CPU because for a P4 it has
seemed very lethargic for the last six months or so, with many fairly easy
tasks for it taking ages to complete.

CPU - Intel P4 3GHz Northwood Socket 478
Mobo - MSI 848P NEO-V
Graphics -ATI Radeon X1600SE
OS - Vista Home Prem.

More about : cpu goner

June 22, 2007 10:02:28 PM

Most likely the MB - check for bulging or leaking capacitors (I've never encountered damaged capacitors, but give it a shot). IMO, MB's die first, way before the CPU...

See if you can get a hold of another MB to test your build. In the past 5 years of building PCs, I've never had a bad CPU - just bad MBs (not to say that a bad CPU never comes up)

Note: Just because your PC has been taking a long time to complete tasks recently doesn't mean its your CPU - your HDD can be filled with crap (even regular maintenance like disk defrag and cleanup can't fix).
June 22, 2007 10:06:42 PM

Have you tried the MoBo reset jumper (if it has one) to reset the bios, if it doesn't have a reset jumper try pulling the cmos battery for 10-15sec to reset the bios, then try to boot back up with your original config

I've had similar lockups, and usually thats all it takes
Related resources
Can't find your answer ? Ask !
June 22, 2007 10:17:02 PM

Northwoods are almost impossible to kill. I'd lean towards mb also. Default the bios and try again. Check power supply also.
June 23, 2007 2:56:13 PM

Quote:
Most likely the MB - check for bulging or leaking capacitors (I've never encountered damaged capacitors, but give it a shot). IMO, MB's die first, way before the CPU...


I'll take a closer look this afternoon as it all looks normal at first glance.

Quote:
See if you can get a hold of another MB to test your build. In the past 5 years of building PCs, I've never had a bad CPU - just bad MBs (not to say that a bad CPU never comes up)


Not sure where I can get one to try...without buying a replacement.

Quote:
Note: Just because your PC has been taking a long time to complete tasks recently doesn't mean its your CPU - your HDD can be filled with crap (even regular maintenance like disk defrag and cleanup can't fix).


It's been slow, even with a fresh install of both XP and Vista (not together).

Quote:
Have you tried the MoBo reset jumper (if it has one) to reset the bios, if it doesn't have a reset jumper try pulling the cmos battery for 10-15sec to reset the bios, then try to boot back up with your original config

I've had similar lockups, and usually thats all it takes


Tried that already and the only difference is that it now powers on without using power button..just when plug socket is switched on.

I'm reckon I'm gonna have to strip it down and rebuild bit by bit. Hope it's not the motherboard because I'm sure that it's seen as a major hardware change and my HD won't boot Vista afterwards. Is this true because my weekly backups won't save some reasonably important stuff that I was going to backup just as soon as I'd done what I was doing when it failed :x Ho hum!
June 23, 2007 4:22:42 PM

While I agree with the others that you most likely have a motherboard problem, the troubles you are having could also be from the PSU. It might be giving out enough power to run fans and such, but not enough to power the motherboard, thus rendering problems in the ram and graphics cards. A non-functioning graphics card could result in the "strange orange and fine checkerboard/herringbone pattern".

If the problem does end up being the motherboard, it would probably be best to change not only the motherboard, but also get a more modern cpu as well. Of course, that depends on your budget constraints.
June 23, 2007 7:19:56 PM

I like the PS idea. What model number PS are you using? Has this computer been consistently used for the past 5 years?
June 23, 2007 8:32:43 PM

Quote:
I like the PS idea. What model number PS are you using? Has this computer been consistently used for the past 5 years?


Not sure if the question was for me but if so, the PSU is an Eagle DR-A300ATX.

I've stripped the PC down to component level - the motherboard looks ok with no obvious bulging or leaking capacitors. I've taken the CPU fan off and the CPU out and all looks ok. BTW, what's the best thing to use to clean off the old thermal paste from the CPU etc? When I get the paste cleaned off and replaced, I'll re-assemble it, bit by bit and using a different PSU if need be.
June 23, 2007 10:24:26 PM

Quote:

Not sure if the question was for me but if so, the PSU is an Eagle DR-A300ATX.


I'll go along with what tlmck said. Basically, dump that Eagle psu and get a good one in the 550wt-600wt range. That should keep you going for a while and allow some extra hardware down the line.
June 24, 2007 12:54:57 PM

Quote:
I'll go along with what tlmck said. Basically, dump that Eagle psu and get a good one in the 550wt-600wt range. That should keep you going for a while and allow some extra hardware down the line.


Right, I've replaced the Eagle with a Trust 570W Pro PSU Dual Fan, reseated (with thermal compound) the heatsink on the P4, cleaned the residual dust off and put it all back together and........the same, no POST. So now I know it must be the CPU or the MoBo. Do I risk that the board is good and replace the CPU or vice versa? Or, I could always replace both and go for an Intel Dual Core, or are the AMD's better? To do that, I'll have to replace the X1600PRO as it's AGP and PCI-E is the standard now, right?

Advice on what's a good MB/CPU/Graphics set would be very helpful at this stage.

Thanks,

Victor
June 24, 2007 2:04:40 PM

Quote:
now I know it must be the CPU or the MoBo. Do I risk that the board is good and replace the CPU or vice versa? Or, I could always replace both and go for an Intel Dual Core, or are the AMD's better? To do that, I'll have to replace the X1600PRO as it's AGP and PCI-E is the standard now, right?

Advice on what's a good MB/CPU/Graphics set would be very helpful at this stage.

Thanks,

Victor


Whether you go to AMD or Intel if you replace both the cpu and motherboard depends on the performance you want. Right now, you can get a lower end AMD with a mobo for a very good price. If you want to go for higher performance, then a C2D and a mobo makes better sense. Lower to mid range graphics cards for PCI-e are reasonable too, from about $115 for a low end 8600 GT to around $150 for a X1950 Pro. If you're short on money, you might look at an Asrock mobo that will allow you to keep the AGP graphics card while upgrading the cpu/mobo.
June 24, 2007 8:41:58 PM

Quote:
If you're short on money, you might look at an Asrock mobo that will allow you to keep the AGP graphics card while upgrading the cpu/mobo.


Been looking online tonight and found what looks an ideal mobo. The Asrock ConRoe865PE has enough spare PCI slots too and is less than £35 so paired with a C2D 6420, it'd give decent performance, yet enable me to keep my 6 month old X1600SE AGP card.
June 24, 2007 11:50:03 PM

Glad you gound it and that it will suit your needs. Good luck with everything.
!