System continually reboots, need urgent help.


I am new to this forum and thought I would give it a go since I have heard great things about it. Anyway I am not new to computers and have been building for a while now.

I recently built a system for a friend of mine with the following specs:
MOBO - Gigabyte EP35-DS3
CPU - e8400 @ Stock (3 Ghz)
RAM - 2 x 1 Gig Corsair XMS2 800
GPU - Gigabyte 9800 GT FOC
PSU - Corsair HX520 520 W
HDD - Seagate 160 GB HDD (Sata)
CASE - Gigabye Sett0

Anyway the problem I am having is that the computer will randomly not boot up properly, where it will just continually reboot every three to five seconds. This is a problem as I have now handed it over to my friend and the problem is occuring again after dissappearing. In addition, while I was configuring it the orientation seemed to affect this problem. Whenever the case was sitting upright this problem would persist, however when I turned the case on its side the problem dissappeared. This is getting really frustrating and I am not sure what that problem is because it was working fine for a while, as in I had time to install XP and a range of software applications, including some games, which also worked fine when tested.

Secondly, I am slightly worried about the idle and load temps of the CPU. I know the e8400 have problems with getting accurate temperature readings, however when I used prime95 to do some stress testing, one of the cores went up to 75 C in speedfan, at that point I stopped the test to prevent hardware damage.

Additional Information:
- GPU had to be send away because off foreign substance causing a short on the PCB
- CPU's heatsink has been pulled off and reseated, however no new thermal paste was applied (maybe that is the temp problem)
- Temperature monitoring and stress testing was done in A/C environment with approximately 24 C

Any help would be greatly appreciated. I suggest we tackle this problem one step at a time and I would prefer to have the rebooting problem fixed first as it is really becoming a frustration.

Kind Regards
10 answers Last reply
More about system continually reboots urgent help
  1. 1. You need to apply a very thin layer of thermal paste when mounting the HSF. Fix this obvious one first.

    2. One ATX connector probably isn't fully inserted, otherwise the position of the PC wouldn't make a difference (unless you have a cracked motherboard, but that's rare).
  2. Also check that the motherboard is not shorting anywhere on the case,make sure that all the stand-offs on the case are in the correct position.
  3. Check the seating of the RAM and video card. They could be shifting slightly out of place when placed upright.
  4. Thank you guys very much for your wisdom.

    I doubt it is a cracked motherboard as well since the system has had any rough handling exposures.
    In terms of the mounting of HS/F, I will reseat and reapply a thin layer as soon as I can get hold of the system. However, I am almost certain that I have already checked to see that the ATX PSU cable is properly inserted into the socket, but in this case I think after all these replies it may be a good idea to do a complete isolation test to remedie any other complications as well. I have the following in mind and any input on this would be greatly appreciated:

    1. Deconstruct the whole system
    2. Put motherboard on cardboard and add a peripheral at a time and see if the system functions
    3. If no problems occur then deconstruct system again
    4. Repeat step two, however inside the case

    I am also slightly concerned that this problem may be related to the Front Panel Headers that control the power switch etc, as the previous isolation tests required the same procedure to be performed as I just described and I personally did not redo the case cabling, which bring up my next question:
    - Does the orientation in which the case cables have been inserted into the Front Panel Header matter?

    I would also greatly welcome any advice on the temperature issues I have spoken about earlier.
    Temperature Information:
    Idle Core 1 = 39 C
    Idle Core 2 = 42 C
    Load Core 1 (Prime95 FFT Test) = 68 C
    Load Core 2 (Prime95 FFT Test) = 75 C

    *NOTE: 75 C was the point where I stopped the tests in order to prevent damage to the CPU*
    *REMEMBER: CPU is an e8400 at stock speeds*

    Thank you very much for the kind help and advice so far.

    Kind Regards
  5. According to this site :

    Your max cover temp is 72.4C

    I don't know that this is your problem with the reboot loop, but it might be useful info.
  6. I think you may have more than one problem. First off, your temps are too high. Did you ensure that all four pins fully "clicked" into place? Were all the push-pins rotated the OPPOSITE direction as the arrows as the manual states? Your CPU temps indicate an improperly installed heat sink. The problem getting worse when the case is standing up just strengthens this argument.

    You could also have RAM issues. What is the exact model of your RAM? Did you manually set the RAM timings and voltage to the manufacturers specs in the BIOS? Did you run memtest86+ overnight to test for RAM errors? RAM problems are very often the cause of the infinite boot loop issue.
  7. Thank you guys very much for your replies,

    I think you may be onto something here in terms of in-proper seating of the HS.
    In regards to the RAm the exact model is as follows:
    - Corsair 2GB (2x 1GB) DDR2 800 CL4 XMS (PC6400 - TWIN2X2048-6400C4)

    It sounds like I may have to aquire the system back soon as I suspect that if it is any of the above issues related to the CPU, leaving the problem too long may cause serious damage to hardware.

    Kind Regards
  8. Your RAM timings and voltages also need manually set in the BIOS.

    It looks like the RAM should be set at 4-4-4-12 timings at 2.1v. The standard for DDR2 RAM is 1.8v, so the RAM is likely not getting enough voltage to work correctly.
  9. Thank you for your reply,

    I will change the ram timings and voltages as soon as I can get hold of the system. I am wondering whether this would explain the continual reboots thou? In case this does not fix the reboot issue, I am assuming it should, however, provide a moderate performance boost for the system.

    Anyway, it looks like I am going to have to do quite a bit of diagnostics once I get the system back in my hands.

    Thank you all very much for your help and any other suggestions are welcome, since I might as well just do everything that is possible to have the system running smoothly when I get it back.

    Kind Regards
  10. ZeGerman said:
    Thank you guys very much for your wisdom.

    1. Deconstruct the whole system
    2. Put motherboard on cardboard and add a peripheral at a time and see if the system functions
    3. If no problems occur then deconstruct system again
    4. Repeat step two, however inside the case

    I cut the following out of a previous post:

    Start cut

    Take the motherboard out of the case and place it on an insulating surface. Make sure that both PSU power connectors (main 24 pin and 4/8 pin CPU power) are installed.

    Pull everything except the CPU and HSF. Boot. You should hear a series of long single beeps indicating memory problems. Silence here indicates, in probable order, a bad PSU, motherboard, or CPU - or a bad installation where something is shorting and shutting down the PSU.

    If you get the long beeps, add a stick of RAM. Boot. The beep pattern should change to one long and two or three short beeps. Silence indicates that the RAM is shorting out the PSU. Long single beeps indicates that the BIOS does not recognize the presence of the RAM.

    If you get the one long and two or three short beeps, install the video card and any needed power cables. If the video card is good, the system should successfully POST (one short beep, usually).

    Note - a PSU with inadequate 12 volt output will also cause this step to fail.

    Another note that you do not need drives or a keyboard to get this far.

    If you successfully POST, start plugging in the rest of the components, one at a time.

    Building the computer outside the case is called "breadboarding" (from the 1920's days of homebuilt radios). I use an insulated cutting board. I always breadboard a new build. It lets me test the components before I go through all the work of installing them in a case.

    End cut

    The best way to check the HSF pushpins is to install the HSF before you install the motherboard in the case. Then turn the board over to see if all four pins are properly set.

    Front panel header - polarity of the case power and reset switches does not matter. Polarity of the drive and power LED's does matter. If either does not come on, reverse its connections.
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