Alright, so I'm having quite a peculiar problem. About a week ago, my computer shut off out of the blue as if someone pulled the chord. I went to start it back up, and it shut down during start up. It pretty much wouldn't start up. After leaving it for a few hours, it came up to windows recovery and in red font said "Overclocking failed, etc..." This only appeared once and was very odd. It proceeded to shut down during or after POSTing. What I did was I took out the watch battery from the motherboard for about 5 minutes, put it back in, plugged everything in and started the PC back up. It worked great for a couple days. Now it seems to shut off only while under load by a game, etc... A friend of mine told me it might be bad RAM, but I'm not sure.
My specs are:
I don't really think it's a heat problem, as my temps seem to be normal. CPU idles at around 40C and caps at around 65C. I might be able to play a game from 1 - 4+ hours until it shuts off. It seems to be very random. I'm completely puzzled. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
Your mobo is the easiest, check for discoloration, or bulges.
Tops of caps are flat, sides like barrels and smooth.
Your psu, if you do take it apart, be aware that theres power in there and could zap you, and you gpu, whatever is exposed, unless you take it apart too.
Listen for any whining/high pitched noise, as that also accompanies a failing cap
There's definitely no whining/high pitched noises, and I didn't notice anything wrong physically with the mobo. Although, there is a red and white light on the mobo that I've never seen before until recently. Any Ideas as to what that is?
Before being sure it's an hardware problem do this:
1) Download the latest BIOS drivers from the manufacturer website and install them. If you don't know how to do it check the MoBo manual. Many MoBos give the possibility of doing it inside the BIOS, this is the better option.
2) After having upgraded the BIOS enter it and load the setup defaults (should already be at default since you updated it, but just to be sure). Use these settings for now.
3) Try playing a game this way. If the PC doesn't shut up then you can enter BIOS and change the settings as they were before. If it doesn't shut-up at first but after you power the PC off for a bit of time and then turn it on and then it does shut up is the battery in the MoBo that is almost finished and doesn't remember the settings. In this case you have to chang it.
4) If the above doesn't work then you can try using only one stick of RAM, cycling them. If with one of them the PC doesn't hang then it's a RAM problem. Cycling you will find what RAM is faulted.
5) If it's not the RAM you will have to check other components and also monitor temps while under load. Use Prime95 and RealTemp for about 2-3 hours to see if the PC shouts. If it does then it is a overheating problem. In the case you have to known what hardware is overheating. You can see it under RealTemp. When you have acknowledged the hardware that is overheating you can see if it is not correctly installed or if the fan doesn't work.
6) If all of these fail then it can be an hardware problem or maybe a faulty installation of Vista.
I Had the same problem it turns out i was running 3x hd4850's on a generic 450w psu and whenever i started a game that put the graphics cards under load the pc would shutdown unexpectedly obviously it was the psu which couldent take the power couldent handle it which is strange becuse your psu should run yor gpu fine.