I have an older machine that I'm using for a HTPC, but the cpu fan was running at full all the time and it was way too loud. It's an old Pentium D 830 3.00ghz, in an alien ware desktop. at a full load the temps were around 60 degrees C and at min load about 46 or 47 degrees. I went into the bios and enabled fan control and it's much quieter now, but the temps at a min load are around 60 degrees and at a max load top out at around 70 Degrees. I found something on Intel's site that says the tcase temp for the Pentium D is 69.8 C But I don;t really know what that means. Is this a safe temp to run at?
I haven't yet. Is it just blowing off the fins of the heat sink, or is it more involved than that?
Yes blowing of the fins of the cooler and cleaning the fan blades is what I do on regular intervals. I usually remove the fan, if possible, and use compressed air to blow out the fins. If the fan is not easily removable don't let it spin around, hold it with a finger while blowing, since it can damage the bearing.