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Odd crash.....to me anyway

Jekyll
Grafter
Posts: 117
Registered: 19-03-2008

Odd crash.....to me anyway

Earlier today my PC was sitting idle on the desktop and I left the room, while I was away I suddenly heard a searing high pitched noise almost like a whistle and when I got back the monitor was on standby and the PC was still motoring, the only way I could stop it was to switch off at the mains, something I never feel comfortable in doing.
So I just wondered if anyone else ever had this and what did it turn out to be, or better still anyone know what this was........knowing me it was'nt just a glitch, but I hope it was, and that its nothing to worry about........its been fine since then though, but I have and am using it right now, so I won't be able to tell if it does it again unless I go away for a long time and not use it.........its worrying me a great deal as my PC means more to me than anything else.....plus money does'nt grow on trees in my back garden.
If anyone knows what this was or can reassure that it was just a glitch of some kind I'd appreciate it, but of course don't just say its nothing to please me  Grin
I wondered whether it might be my HD as I have a Barracuda 500 Gig and it does tend to work alot in the background for some reason wheras my 250 gig Barracuda with XP on is dead quiet........I'm guessing though and hope I am wrong!!
Jekyll  Smiley
26 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

Have a look at the motherboard manual as it may be the audible alarm
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 10,826
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Registered: 01-09-2007

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

Could it be something like a bad sector/head positioning error?
Multiple re-positioning on high speed disks can sound quite loud.
I assume you have something like M$ bloatware installed which needs to use temporary storage on disk in place of main memory?
That would account for the high background disk activity.
Sounds like it's time to make sure you have good backups of all important files.

Jekyll
Grafter
Posts: 117
Registered: 19-03-2008

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

Jim,
With the greatest respect, having looked at the manual I have no idea what it meant, being a manual its not very clear, nothing new there with manuals then  Roll eyes thing is the fact that it booted ok and has been fine ever since, I am or would rather believe that it is nothing serious......but then what the hell do I know  Grin
axisofevil,
Bloatware? never heard of it and nothing on my system about it either, I just realised to go and look at problems thingy in Vista to see if anything is listed there, hopefully it will say something, if not I am stuck well and truly
Thanks though guys, appreciate the opinions and advice
Jekyll  Wink
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,027
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

Neither have I - it was only a thought as some motherboards have an audible warning built in and judging by the manuals I have seen it is usually very well hidden.
On my latest Gigabyte it is hidden under PC Health status but it doesn't say what sort of sound. Really helpful isn't it.
Jekyll
Grafter
Posts: 117
Registered: 19-03-2008

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

Yes it is helpful  Grin not!!
I appreciate the thought though Jim, thank you
I since checked the Problems icon in Vistas Control panel, but it had nothing there about it (typical)
I also have a Uguru Utility which lists all the stats for the system ie fans, voltage and status for the PC......here is a screenshot, all but one of the fans are disabled but thats because I suppose I don't have them, not sure on that.......hope the screenshot is allowed, courtesy of the Vista snipping tool (good tool that, probably the only good thing about Vista!!  Grin
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

I wasn't aware of that tool - must try it instead of using the Alt PrintScrn keys to only copy the active window.
Nothing obvious in the Uguru although the temperature seem a bit high generally but that is probably down to case ventilation
Jekyll
Grafter
Posts: 117
Registered: 19-03-2008

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

Funny that you mention the possibility of case ventilation as according to the chap that built it I have one of the best cases for keeping cool a "Cooler Master" case.
I know that my graphics card gets seriously hot, but this all happened and I wasn't even playing anything, it was idle!!!  Grin heaven only knows what would happen in the middle of a graphics/system intensive game.......explosion perhaps? not sure I want to find out!! you got me worried now Jim  Grin
That snipping tool is indeed very handy, I just keep forgetting to use it!!
Jekyll
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

It depend on the CPU etc. but with Intel Core duo and a passively cooled motherboard these are my idle temperatures.
Note that I probably have one of the best ventilated cases available ,the Akaska Eclipse 62, with two 120mm fans. It isn't fair to compare graphics cards as I have the Palit 8800GT sonic which has far better cooling than the standard version.
One thing worth looking at is the case fans - the rear one is extracting and the front one pushing in I hope
Jekyll
Grafter
Posts: 117
Registered: 19-03-2008

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

Hmmm, methinks I have found the problem, but I hope I am not being premature here, I'll attempt to explain:
When I had this PC built I was all excited as you get with something new and wanted to test everything I could, one of those things was the "sleep" feature and so I clicked it and as it went to go to sleep I heard this screeching noise and it would'nt stop unless I turned off at the mains (can you spot the resemblance here?  Roll eyes and come to think of it the screech earlier today was very similar, I just went and looked into the Power Options and edit plan settings and what do I see? "Turn off the display - never "Put the Computer to sleep - 1 hour"!!! and it was quite along time I had done nothing on it so this might explain the problem!! only thing I question is the display off bit as it went to standby, is this how it should be? sorry if I am being utterly stupid  Embarrassed
Community Veteran
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Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

When the computer goes to sleep just about everything shuts down and it is quite possible the CPU fan speed drops below 300rpm which is the point at which the motherboard alarm would go off.
Might be worth checking what happens if you switch of the low speed alarm in the bios
Just to add - there are known problems with Vista waking from sleep mode on some motherboards. This was fixed with a bios update but I always try to avoid flashing the bios if I can help it due the problems if it goes wrong.
Jekyll
Grafter
Posts: 117
Registered: 19-03-2008

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

What should it do Jim? if I go into the Bios, (not really comfortable doing that though) it scares me  Grin
I have since been into those power options and set both to never, as I don't want to hear that again
If I remember rightly, forgive me if I am wrong but both our system temps are at 30 but my CPU temp is higher than yours.......my front sucking in fan is working I usually test it every now and then with a small piece of paper to check if its doing its job, and alls well there so far and the back one blows air out fine, albeit warm air, then again before this happened this morning it had been on for a fair while to have warmed up........but I had'nt played anything to have made the system that warm......so not sure why its so warm when idle..........
I also have a huge fan that sits on the Motherboard, I believe its called a Zalman? huge copper thing, I think thats ok too, infact when the computer guy had it on he said for me to put my finger on a specific point to feel how cool it was and this was after he had had it on for several hours..........I was quite impressed with it  Smiley
Flashing my Bios is something I don't do either for the same reason........and as my knowledge of techy things is practically non-existant, I'd prefer to leave well alone.
I beg your pardon, your system temp is 34 and mine was at that time 30  Smiley
Jekyll 
Jekyll
Grafter
Posts: 117
Registered: 19-03-2008

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

On a sidenote, I have not as yet updated Vista in quite awhile due to worrying that the service pack available might not help my gaming, anyone know if its safe to update? I really don't want to update and then find that its screwed with my system and the only option left is a format.........perish the thought  Smiley
Plusnet Alumni (retired) orbrey
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 10,540
Registered: 18-07-2007

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

You can set the fan alarms in the uGuru utility (good choice of boards btw, I'm a big fan of abit).
I was gonna go on my machine at home and have a look but I reinstalled recently and haven't put it back on yet... I'm fairly sure it's in the settings though. I think if you hit the setup button on the top section you can set the fan alarms in one of the sections there.
Let me know if you don't find it and I'll reinstall and post when I've had a play. I know you can set it from there though, the uguru utility lets you do all the same things you would in the bios but from within windows.
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Odd crash.....to me anyway

The system temperature as reported by your board is probably the temperature inside the case (it was on my Epox board) whereas mine is one of the chips on the motherboard - I was more concerned about the PWM temperatures but that is probably down to the board design - my Gigabyte board runs much cooler than most.
With respect to the CPU temperatures - you haven't said which CPU you are using but I have an early Zalman 7000 on my XP machine (sitting on the shelf waiting to be stripped down as one of the fans is making a terrible noise - either motherboard or graphics card) but it didn't run anywhere as hot as that on idle (that was with an AMD 64 bit processor)
It would be worth checking the CPU temperature after intensive use.
Going back to the original problem - with a big Zalman the fan doesn't like slowing down too far. Note the fan normally doesn't include a speed control feedback feature so dropping the voltage as sleep mode does is quite likely to stop it. On my Epox board that was a feature of the AMD Cool'nQuiet system and the fan used to stop instead of just slowing which was a total pain.