Posted earlier question about the Atom, I can see now that it's mainly for home theater. The reason that I'm shopping for a new system is that my main one did a bunch of weird shutdowns earlier.
Long post, so sorry, but here are the high points. Wife admitted to opening a suspicious email. Right after, she started getting errors from AVG Free. She rebooted and errors returned. I removed the AVG but then IE started throwing errors and wouldn't launch. Then I removed the NetNanny software and installed the latest version. IE returned and I immediately loaded the lastest AVG. I began a scan and let it run over night.
In the morning I found the system off. No one turned it off, it went off by itself and the setting to power down the system after the scan was not on. However, the system wouldn't even POST. I removed the cover and blew out the dust. All the fans spun up. I reseated the DIMMs. Nothing helped. Tried another HD (not sure if it is a good one). No luck.
The next day the system started but only stayed on for a few seconds. Over time it got better and better and seems fine now. What happened?
"Fresh install wouldn't explain the POST issues and would it really help if there's something wrong with the hardware. A virus or rootkit in the BIOS maybe?"
it is possible, but if that is the case then there is no reason it should start working again ( a virus that corrupted your bios won't correct itself). whatever the actual startup issue was, it had nothing to do with your hard drive or anything on it, including your OS. this is because the POST doesn't test the HDD. the hard drive only comes into play after words when the computer moves into boot sequence. what ever it was, it has to do with BIOS and possibly hardware. it could have very well been an issue with your power supply not turning on correctly.
right now i would recommend backing up all important data and hoping your system doesn't have and more problems. if it does have more problems, please describe them with as much detail as possible.
System shut off again this morning. The system was on for about 5 minutes when all of sudden it just went off completely. Just like the earlier times. No warnings, just as if the power cord was suddenly removed. It was a little colder this morning just as in previous mornings when the problem first started.
The system needs awhile usually before it will power on again correctly. If I don't wait and try to power back on right after the shutdown, the power light comes on, the hard disk light comes on and stays solid. The CD will spin up too I think. The HDD light never blinks, it just stays solid and yet there is no POST at all. No beeps, but then my system doesn't beep either way.
Gigabyte GF6100 MoBo and AMD A64 3200 2.0 GHz. The PSU is a XClio 450BL 450 watt. No video card or other components. A single HDD and single DVD burner.
Outstanding! Thank you!!! It was the power supply after all. I ordered a new set of components to build a new PC and borrowed the power supply from it and the shutdowns haven't happened yet. Tomorrow morning will be the true test. And now to start a new thread for another question ...