Computer Shutting Off

I’ve only had this happen twice so far, both while playing games from Telltale (Tales of Monkey Island, Sam & Max). My computer runs every other game, video, and application fine.

At some arbitrary point, my computer will just turn off. No, not “shut down,” a complete, instant, power down like I unplugged it, and I manually have to hit the case power button to turn it back on. It’s not “at that point in the game” I can get past it the second time. I have speedfan running, and it’s well within acceptable levels with heat, not to mention the fact that my computer starts right away rules that out. My computer is far above the recommended specs (top of the line graphics, 12GB memory, good CPU, memtest gives me the all clear). The interesting part is that after I hit the power to start it back up, Windows doesn’t ask to do chkdisk, which it normally wants to do if I so much as sneeze while shutting it down. It’s acting like it shut down normally, which is either simply odd or really scary.

My only guess is that my PSU is going, but that’s such a massive PITA to replace I wanted to get a second opinion on what it could be, even if “two time fluke” is the answer.


Did you check the Windows system/application event log for entries at the time of the crashes?

Sight unseen WAG is that it may be your GPU.

Does it actually turn off or just reboot? Either way its usually caused by an actual hardware failure or conflict of some kind. As Sparky812 said, my first guess would be your graphics card might be overheating.

Another vote for something overheating.

Your machine sounds like you tweak it regularly, so it probably has no dust within, and your fan app says the temp is fine.

Still, it’s probably not a bad idea to pop the case and give things a good vacuuming if there is any dust on things.

I had a similar problem (much more often then you however) and thought it was the MB since I had been having so many other (unrelated) problems with that new MB. Finally broke down and bought a new MB - same thing happened.

I then plugged the PC into the “Surge protection Only” side of my UPS (instead of the battery backed side) and never had another problem.

Oddly enough, there’s no log for anything within 10 minutes before the unexpected shutdown. And like I said, the temps are good, within the 70C range at peak, nothing that has ever caused issues before. I’ve had this computer for a long time, and it’s just started now, so I suspect it’s not a power strip issue.

My only guess right now is to reboot in safe mode, do a driver sweeper, and install the newest ATI drivers. We’ll see how that works out.

I had this problem. It was caused by my plugging a microphone into my on-board sound card.

I have no idea why.

Oh yeah… I forgot to mention my other “always check this” thing for weird reboots: bad capacitors.

Take a good look at visible capacitors on your motherboard and assorted cards and make sure none of them are bulging or have specks of brown stuff oozing from the “Y” or “+” slits in the top of the can.

Will do, dear god I hope I don’t have to replace an expensive component.

Anyway, it happened again last night during Starcraft II, so I’m pretty sure it’s either an issue with some processor component, an issue with the PSU, or a graphics card issue. I’m betting on the PSU since: 1. It doesn’t act like an overheat, I’ve had graphics card overheat and it does not act the same at all. Usually when my cards overheat I manually have to power cycle after the computer freezes. 2. I’m not an expert on processer fail, but this doesn’t match any case I’ve heard of. In addition, memtest clears it out.

It could be motherboard fail, but I doubt it since it only happens during games. This doesn’t rule it out completely, to be sure, but it makes me dubious.

I guess PSU because 1. My computer is a few years old, and the PSU is one of the first things to go typically. 2. If there’s one thing that uses more power, it’s running an intensive application like a game. 3. It fits the drop dead, with no BSOD, no error message, no chkdisk or anything, just power off and instantly being able to power on. I’m going to try and get an auto PSU checker, since I’m a little iffy in doing a manual test. I normally wouldn’t consider this, but they’re a lot cheaper than I suspected. I’ll report back if I find anything.

Okay, this is officially scary. It crashed while I was at school one day, it was idling during that time. Again, logs don’t show anything. The board nor cards show any sign of popped capacitors. Since my hard drive is getting low and startup sluggish I’m going to just go reformat and see if that solves everything. If not, I’m going to really, really start checking for issues.

Install something like CPUID HWMonitor to monitor your GPU and CPU temperatures while you’re playing a game. If they spike right before the crash, there’s your solution. If not, go buy a PS and keep the receipt - swap it in for the duration of your return policy and see if it fixes the problem.

I already said, temps are fine.

Anyway, figured out the issue (presumably). The line that supplies the main board power was loose, so any minor jostle (trucks driving past, leg kicking, fan whirring too hard) would disrupt the power flow, but it was still “in” enough that it would immediately plug back in. I reached in an made sure the clip was fastened, so it should be secure. Hopefully that solves the issue.

Sorry, missed that. Glad it turned out to be something simple.