Hello all, about 2 years ago I built a new computer, it was my first build. After 2 years of great service I have ran into an issue about a week ago that is driving me insane.
Here's the story:
For the past week now, a few times a day, my computer has randomly been black screening. What happens is, first the video shuts off, and I can't see my screen. All my programs are still running because I can still hear and talk with people on skype. After 15 seconds or so, all my programs stop working, and my fans turn on to full power, my GPU, CPU, and case fans. After this occurs I have to pull the plug as there is no other way to restart the machine.
Up until yesterday, my computer would reboot fine. Now however, it takes BIOS about 30 seconds to load. I have also run into strange erros with BIOS such as it reporting an operating system could not be found, but after rebooting again, BIOS finds it just fine. Today however, the same thing occurred, but BIOS just doesn't load at all. I turn on my computer and everything turns on, fans are going, then I get a really length tone and just a black screen.
I have narrowed this down to a hardware problem. I re-formatted my computer, installing windows on different HDD's, but I still get the same error.
I have tested my RAM, so I'm pretty sure it's also not that.
Diagnosing a faulty motherboard is a tricky thing to do, as the problem can be quite sporadic. If you are SURE it is not the RAM, then we have to test components one at a time. Make sure nothing is overclocked. Swap your CPU, PSU, and video card one by one. Run furmark and/or Intel burn test and/or prime95 as you swap hardware. It may take some time, but if all your components check out, then yes: it is your mobo.
Two year old PC.... was one of the steps to narrow it down to a hardware problem the step of blowing out all the cobwebs and dust from the system? Including the heatsinks on the GPU? Sounds like a heat problem with the GPU perhaps.