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Power supply problem or hard drive problem???



 
 
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  #1  
Old April 27th 05, 06:27 AM
chairchair
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Default Power supply problem or hard drive problem???

How can I tell the difference between a power supply problem and a hard
drive problem? Sometimes the computer freezes up and it has to be
rebooted. Sometimes when the computer is started, it freezes when it's
booted up. After trying to boot it up for 4 or 5 times, it freezes
every time. Then if the computer is unplugged, left alone for an hour,
it will boot up and work ok for 4 or 5 hours. I think the power supply
is 300W. It's an old computer. It's a Micron. It's a Pentium 3, 733
MHz, 768 RAM, 2 hard drives - one 30G, other 20G. There's a CDrom, zip
drive, floppy drive. I'm running Win 98 SE.

When it has problems booting up, it seems like it lacks the energy to
start. I'm guessing it's a power supply problem.

  #2  
Old April 27th 05, 07:44 AM
kony
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On 26 Apr 2005 22:27:01 -0700, "chairchair"
wrote:

How can I tell the difference between a power supply problem and a hard
drive problem?


Isolate each, and test each.

If you have another system or drive, power supply, etc, swap
them around temporarily.

Run the HDD manufacturer's utilities to check the drive.
Take voltage readings with a multimeter.


Sometimes the computer freezes up and it has to be
rebooted.


That's not necessarily evidence of a hard drive or power
problem. Drivers, viri, or a failing motherboard could
cause it. Overheating could too, but I'd tend to think that
type of problem would immediately persist, until system
cooled down.

It hurts nothing to check fans though?
Check motherboard capacitors for
vented/swollen/leaky-residue/etc.

Any reliable way to recreate these freezes or pattern to it?


Sometimes when the computer is started, it freezes when it's
booted up. After trying to boot it up for 4 or 5 times, it freezes
every time. Then if the computer is unplugged, left alone for an hour,
it will boot up and work ok for 4 or 5 hours.


That is more common with overheating, check fans. Could
be power or motherboard though, maybe video but you didn't
mention the video, nor the brand (make/model) of
motherboard.


I think the power supply
is 300W. It's an old computer. It's a Micron. It's a Pentium 3, 733
MHz, 768 RAM, 2 hard drives - one 30G, other 20G. There's a CDrom, zip
drive, floppy drive. I'm running Win 98 SE.

When it has problems booting up, it seems like it lacks the energy to
start. I'm guessing it's a power supply problem.


I'm curious how you conclude "lacks energy to start"?
Could be power supply though. That's not a very power
hungry system, it might be worth a try to buy a power supply
for it, as even if it isn't the current problem your power
supply IS getting a bit older at this point. A good 250W
should run that, something like a Sparkle. Most name-brand
300W would too, but all bets are off with generics unless
you overspec and know what you're getting.

  #3  
Old April 27th 05, 07:50 AM
Jerry G.
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

I have had power supplies cause the fault you are describing. However, there
is nothing to say that there are no components in the system that have
become thermo sensitive. This is what is making the time factor that you are
seeing.

The best test is to see if you can get a power supply to try, and then work
from there.

--

Jerry G.
======


"chairchair" wrote in message
ups.com...
How can I tell the difference between a power supply problem and a hard
drive problem? Sometimes the computer freezes up and it has to be
rebooted. Sometimes when the computer is started, it freezes when it's
booted up. After trying to boot it up for 4 or 5 times, it freezes
every time. Then if the computer is unplugged, left alone for an hour,
it will boot up and work ok for 4 or 5 hours. I think the power supply
is 300W. It's an old computer. It's a Micron. It's a Pentium 3, 733
MHz, 768 RAM, 2 hard drives - one 30G, other 20G. There's a CDrom, zip
drive, floppy drive. I'm running Win 98 SE.

When it has problems booting up, it seems like it lacks the energy to
start. I'm guessing it's a power supply problem.



  #4  
Old April 27th 05, 11:49 PM
DaveW
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

It certainly sounds like a power supply problem to me too. The easiest
thing to do is replace the power supply unit with a known working one of
adequate power output, and see if that fixes it.

--
DaveW



"chairchair" wrote in message
ups.com...
How can I tell the difference between a power supply problem and a hard
drive problem? Sometimes the computer freezes up and it has to be
rebooted. Sometimes when the computer is started, it freezes when it's
booted up. After trying to boot it up for 4 or 5 times, it freezes
every time. Then if the computer is unplugged, left alone for an hour,
it will boot up and work ok for 4 or 5 hours. I think the power supply
is 300W. It's an old computer. It's a Micron. It's a Pentium 3, 733
MHz, 768 RAM, 2 hard drives - one 30G, other 20G. There's a CDrom, zip
drive, floppy drive. I'm running Win 98 SE.

When it has problems booting up, it seems like it lacks the energy to
start. I'm guessing it's a power supply problem.



  #5  
Old April 28th 05, 02:16 AM
Ben Myers
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

If this is a mid-tower chassis, the power supply is a standard garden-variety
vanilla ATX... Ben Myers

On Wed, 27 Apr 2005 15:49:47 -0700, "DaveW" wrote:

It certainly sounds like a power supply problem to me too. The easiest
thing to do is replace the power supply unit with a known working one of
adequate power output, and see if that fixes it.

--
DaveW



"chairchair" wrote in message
oups.com...
How can I tell the difference between a power supply problem and a hard
drive problem? Sometimes the computer freezes up and it has to be
rebooted. Sometimes when the computer is started, it freezes when it's
booted up. After trying to boot it up for 4 or 5 times, it freezes
every time. Then if the computer is unplugged, left alone for an hour,
it will boot up and work ok for 4 or 5 hours. I think the power supply
is 300W. It's an old computer. It's a Micron. It's a Pentium 3, 733
MHz, 768 RAM, 2 hard drives - one 30G, other 20G. There's a CDrom, zip
drive, floppy drive. I'm running Win 98 SE.

When it has problems booting up, it seems like it lacks the energy to
start. I'm guessing it's a power supply problem.




 




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