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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 08:57 AM Thread Starter
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My computer (7 years old with Win 7) has now started to just reboot itself. No regular intervals. Just random. It may stay on for 5 min or 5 hours and then reboot itself 2 or 3 times, or not.

I don't want a new one with Win 10 and my computer guy doesn't have any good ideas. I'm going to leave it at the shop while we go to Vegas for the Vectric conference. Any ideas or what I should look for?

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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 09:35 AM
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Buy an old computer with vista, or even earlier. Change the Battery on the board and youre good to go for another 10 years.

My 10 year old HP laptop running vista has been used for untold thousands of hours, and never caused a problem
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 09:35 AM
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I'm not a computer expert but when I had the identical symptoms a few computers ago it was the mother board, all the electrolytic capacitors had dried out, being a multi-layer board repairs were not a proposition, a new mother board fixed the problem.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 10:17 AM
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I hate it when that happens.... It’s most annoying....

Heat

The most common cause of random crashes is an overheating computer.
The most common cause of an overheating computer is blocked airflow through the computer, followed by a failing or failed fan.
the CPU's heat transfer thermal gel isn't doing it's job anymore because it got old...
it just may need a thorough cleaning...

Malware..

maybe...

Hardware..

Bad RAM strip...
The RAM can go bad and cause your computer to reboot itself when you are using a program that causes the computer to need memory from the bad module.
the hard-drive is beginning to give up the ghost... (sure do hope you have everything backed up on at leas and external drive)...
component on the motherboard not in spec anymore...
power supply is..................................
fluctuating line power... (you do have a UPS - don't you???)

Software...

a device driver has gone wonky..
corrupted program... (power fluctuations are notorious for this - back to the UPS question)...

Have your IT guy check the event viewer at the time of the reboot to see if any errors are being tossed?
The event viewer should help you focus on the issue at hand.

Have you have recently added some new hardware or software???
this can cause a conflict that ends up crashing your OS....
perhaps you have a corrupted file in the OS...

Windows recently had an update that was pulled due to constant rebooting that is a good place to start.
have you tried restoring to a date where/when everything was working???

the popularity of W7 reigns... people have found that W10 isn't so good of a place to go especially in the peripheral department...
you can get most any new computer today w/ W7Pro on it from the git go...
it's considered a ''down grade'' (which it isn't)...
don't let anybody tell you different... if they do.. shop some place else...
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 10:31 AM
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Disagree with getting anything older than Windows 7, it and newer versions are more compatible with current hardware and more stable (Vista is considered one of the very worst). As Harry said it could be a hardware problem which would mean either replacing parts, or a new (or newer used) computer. If you remove the copy of Windows 7 from your old computer, you could use it on other hardware, assuming you have the license key, and the disk to reinstall (which you can also download).

Depending on how comfortable you are with these things, you could backup your computer (which you should be doing anyway) then reinstall Windows 7, then your programs and data. A clean install will often remedy problems that have gummed up the OS over time. OTOH, if you’ve just heard bad things about Windows 10, they usually come from people who don’t like to change, even if it’s for the better, I use both Windows 7 and 10 and think they’re the best choices available. If you’re not comfortable with a reinstall, then a new computer or professional help may be the best answer.

Optimistically, again if your comfortable, unplug your PC, open it up, vacuum out the dust, check that all the cards and cables are connected securely, and put it back together ... maybe you’ll get lucky.

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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 10:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioHTIT View Post
Disagree with getting anything older than Windows 7, (Vista is considered one of the very worst).

if you’ve just heard bad things about Windows 10, they usually come from people who don’t like to change, even if it’s for the better,
agreed on the older than and Vista... I believe ME and 95 are worse....
W10...
I have issues w/ the telemetry, lack of drivers, peripheral/software incompatibilities and also W10 deleting/uninstalling older software and declaring it bootlegged......
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Last edited by Stick486; 10-18-2017 at 01:47 PM.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 11:13 AM
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I would check the fans on the power supply. those little muffin fans get fouled with dirt or cat hair and then don't move enough air. This cuts the power supply out on high temp. That would be my first thought.

Since you didn't mention seeing any error messages, I don't think the HDD would be the culprit yet, but I did have one machine fail that way once.

If RAM or RAM sockets start to fail you usually get the Blue Screen of Death, but sometimes it flashes so fast you can't really see it.

I hope your computer guy can test the power supply for you, if you were closer I could give you a loaner to test it with!
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 11:56 AM
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I agree with above that I would suspect the power supply. If it is a desktop it should be easy to replace. Bad RAM will give you the blue screen of death. It could be motherboard but start with power supply. Power supplies wear out. I usually run high watt power supplies to give me that extra power so they last longer.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 12:17 PM
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I agree with the members who mentioned heat issues. My laptop had that problem and it had a dust ball in the fan duct. On desktops I would 'jiggle' - unplug and replug the memory, cards, wires etc. That can often fix intermittent problems. I've also run into the problem that Harry mentioned: bad motherboard caps. Sometimes you can see the caps are swollen, bulging tops of the cans.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 01:23 PM
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When that happens, I usually just replace the power supply. But it is always a good idea to occasionally blow the dust out of the machine, and fan. Replacing a battery for the clock is a good idea too. Get the right type.

I buy only Win 7 machines, which are available from many sources, including local computer builders. I have a Win 10 laptop I use occasionally so I could evaluate it, but I don't like the way you have to surrender your machine and data to Micro$oft. Yes, you can limit that, but it keeps nagging. And sometimes the upgrades can disable functions you've made custom settings on. As usual, Micro$oft has "enhanced" the experience by renaming and moving long standing features by burying them one or two clicks further down the menu tree.

BTW, I prefer Office 2003 (no ribbon), which officially isn't recommended for 10, but installs and works very well. I buy copies online cheap. The ribbon reminds me of the old WordStar menu, which dropped down and covered what you were working on. A LONG time ago, I worked in the newspaper biz, and when we converted to photo type setting, the commands were buried between the strings of copy. That is still essentially how it's done, certainly with html.
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