View Full Version : PC time/date chip gone to sleep?
Susma Rio Sep
07-17-2003, 06:12 PM
This is rather embarrassing, but you can have a big laugh at my expense.
Everytime I boot up my computer, the date and time are much behind by many hours; so I have to put in the right date and time again. But when I am using the computer, the timekeeping is working properly or faithfully -- as I keep monitoring that timepiece at the lower right hand corner while I work.
Someone told me to change the rechargeable battery in the innards of the computer.
But why should I? when the CMOS chip is kept alive by this battery; otherwise, I would have to redo its 'library' of specs everytime I boot up.
Do you any good people here, good in Samaritanism and good in computer science, engineering, software, use, etc., have any suggestions; or do I really have to open up my computer innards and locate the rechargeable battery to change it, and then to discover that the trouble is still there?
Susma Rio Sep
07-17-2003, 06:23 PM
Yes, replace the battery. Most newer mainboards have CMOS RAM chips that can retain the memory for a few seconds to a few minutes after removing the battery, and even if not, it's generally pretty easy to redo your CMOS settings. Most systems have default settings that will get you back up. And there are utilitites that can back up and restore CMOS settings for you. I'll Google around and find one for you.
07-17-2003, 06:25 PM
Here. (http://www.users.zetnet.co.uk/the_farmyard/zips/autocmos.zip) Try that one.
07-17-2003, 09:12 PM
When the computer is "sleeping" the time is kept by a clock chip on the computer. When the computer is running, there are lots of timers on the motherboard that are running. One of these timers is called the "timer tick." Most operating systems run the kernal of the operating system off of the timer tick so that the core of the operating system always runs. The reason it's called the timer tick however is that one of its main responsibilities is keeping time for the operating system. When you shut down the computer, most operating systems will write the time that they have kept calculating off of this timer tick back into the real time clock chip.
Because the two times are generated differently, it's entirely possible for one to work but not the other.
07-17-2003, 09:22 PM
Try this program. It sets your clock to the Naval Observatory atomic clock or any other you choose.
It was the third progam I reinstalled today after my computer crashed and I had to a hard drive reformat and install of Windows from scratch.
07-18-2003, 02:17 AM
I'd give the battery a try, but computer clocks are notoriously inaccurate, and they're usually only used when the machine is off. You could just have a very bad clock.
07-18-2003, 02:51 AM
How old is your computer anyway ?
Usually it is very old computers's batteries that start failing like this.
I had an issue with a brand new comp some months ago: the windows clock was running faster than realtime, while the comp clock was right when you did a reboot. Tried to fix it, couldn't do anything (after all, this is windows we're talking about), but it repaired itself after some time.
07-18-2003, 10:47 AM
Susma Rio Sep, what kind of computer is this?
Susma Rio Sep
07-18-2003, 05:41 PM
I said, you could have a big laugh at my expense; well, have another laugh.
My computer is a clone i.e., brandless PC with an Intel MMX 166. Yes, it's that old; and I am writing this post with it. The guy who cobbled it together for me had left town.
Believe it or not, I have been using it since 1997. Yes, that's how old in computer time this gadget has been serving me. I am one son of my mother who believes in squeezing the last drop of blood out of everything I am using. I love the challenge of fixing things and putting them back to work -- a very stubborn guy in this respect.
Remember the pesky mouse I talked about in another thread some weeks back? Yes, I fixed that with the advice I got from a lot of you good guys here. I replaced the cord which had disrupted spots. With what? Why, but with a discarded pliable telephone cord waiting for me in my collection of decommissioned contrivances.
Ha ha ha.
Thanks to all you guys for your help, and God bless you.
Susma Rio Sep
07-18-2003, 09:38 PM
Now that I think about it, you can get software to sync your clock up with an atomic clock. This would eliminate your need to buy a battery, since the software would correct the time for you whenever you started the computer up.
Here's a link to the software. I've never tried it so I don't know how well it works.
Actually, now that I look over the thread, someone else suggested pretty much the same thing. Oh well, at least there's a list of software for you to choose from on the above link.
07-18-2003, 11:05 PM
However, if it is your battery going bad, eventually I'd expect it to fail completely, and then you'll probably have to start dealing with a reset CMOS every time you boot the computer up. The batteries are only a few bucks, go splurge with the money you saved from buying a new mouse. ;)
07-19-2003, 10:44 AM
Yeah, open it up, clear out all the dust bunnies & check the battery, its probably the usual 2032 button type. Hopefully it wont be soldered to the board. I found the battery at our supermarket for like $2.50
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