I moved my computer (just built it 2 1/2 weeks ago and it works great) over to my TV (short distance) from my desk. I couldn't get something with HDMI scaling to work so I left it there for a few hours. Later I come back and find the computer off and the power cord unplugged (not sure how that happened). For some reason when I plugged it back in, flipped the power switch back and forth and turned it on, it was like it was never off. Everything was still open and I don't think Windows needed to reboot. Anyway, a while later I noticed a fan was rattling. It went away after a minute so I decided I'd check it out later.
A friend informed me it wasn't running a certain emulator well (very CPU intensive) so I looked at it and after checking the settings, started it up again and the screen just stayed black after initial launch. I shut it off (was busy) and later when I started it up again and I heard the same rattle, quickly killed the power and opened the case up. The top two plastic screw things on my CPU HSF were disconnected! No clue whatsoever how they popped out. I clicked them back in (hoping the CPU wasn't damaged from overheating) and after letting windows run through its unnecessary start up recovery thing (I forgot that's not just the check disc scan) and went into Windows (win 7 btw) and opened up Real Temp, I noticed the idle temp after sitting a number of minutes is averaging about 35-36C instead of my usual 31-32C.
I'm in a bit of a hurry and can't provide any more details this minute and I've left it turned off for now, but I'm worried about this whole event. Help please?
Stock heatsinks generally aren't very good... The mounting systems are especially bad. That being said, the temperatures that you listed are NOT bad. 35 - 36C is not even lcose to being dangerous. I have a core i7 at 4.0 and it usually idles at 40C... which is actually considered quite good. If your cpu was idling at 50C or higher, I would start to get worried. Obviously, I would try to make sure that you can keep the heatsink from coming off.
If you're worried about temperatures, you should install Realtemp. You could set it with an alarm to go off if the temp goes above a set level (which you can customize). That could give you some peace of mind about your temps going too high, after you fix the problem with the heatsink coming off. Those push-pin mounting systems can be a major pain in the rear...
Just make sure the heatsink is secured properly.
Obviously it wasn't before or you have a really cheap case that flexed when you moved it.
Worse case scenario is you'll have to remove the heatsink and clean it and the cpu and reapply thermal paste.
This morning I checked the temps while running the emulator I mentioned and whereas before it would hover around 57-60C, it now goes up into mid to high 80s and even breaks 90C at some points without playing for more than a few minutes. The ambient temps in my house are lower than yesterday and it is a little chilly, so I can see it hitting mid to high 90C in the summer.
I'll try taking the whole cooler off and then putting it back on. Maybe it didn't get seated correctly? That or the thermal paste that came on it is ruined now I guess...
1) I think the thermal paste looks ruined. 2) Even if I wanted to, I can't get all the push pins to click. If I do one on one corner, the opposite corner won't go in. I heard it is better to push the pins in with the motherboard out of the case. Would that solve it? (after I buy new TIM...)
Also, I'm assembling another computer identical to mine for a friend (funny timing, huh?). I already applied the HSF, but I remember that one of the pins wouldn't make a click. How can I be sure all of the pins are in without removing the whole thing and possibly ruining the TIM?
Sorry for triple posting, but I have another update to the situation. I wanted to make sure I could actually get the push pins on the HSF in correctly before trying it with new thermal paste. After a bunch of tries trying to get it seated correctly (I officially despise push pins!) and checking the CPU cutout of my case (CM690 II) to make sure they looked correct (because the last pin didn't click, but looked in all the way).
After doing this, guess what? My idle temp is 25-27C and under load (that emulator is the best test I have) the cores are all under 50C and only the first two cores even break ~45C! This is after the thermal paste being exposed and the HSF being reseated (or me trying to reseat it) multiple times. Unless the temp sensors were all damaged in the exact same way, this is amazing!