My System locked up!
For the first time in six months, my system crashed. I'm pretty sure it was due to heat. I was in the middle of playing Alice, and it just froze. Nothing. So I hit my trusty reset button and on the way to rebooting, i checked my cpu temp in the bios. I've set my shutdown temp for 140 and at that time my cpu was 150. This is not good! I currently have a heatsink/fan that came with my mobo. It turns about 6000 RPM and I thought it did a pretty good job, but obvously not. I'm thinking about replacing the hsf. Does anyone have any good suggestions? I think another problem may be that my desk that my computer is in has a little hole that you can put your cpu in, and the heat blowing out of the back has nowhere to go. I'm going to fix that tommorrow, though. Anyway, any suggestions/links would be appriciated.
AMD 1.2 gig T-Bird
256 MB SDRAM PC100
Nvidia Geforce 2 GTS 64MB
Wow, wow, wow. First, remove the box from the desk. No matter how good your cooling is (unless it's a water cooler), the temperature in the desk will be slowly rising. So no matter what you cooler is, it won't help much. I suggest you take the box out first, and see how it goes. If it is still bad, then you probably need a new heatsink. If everything is fine, forget the desk, and keep the box outside. I had the same trouble, and my non-overclocked Duron 800 was always in mid 50s (Celsium, ~135-145F). So be careful with that. Also if you are not lazy to clean up the dust from the inside a little more frequently then once a year, remove the side panels. Helps for up to 10C sometimes.
If nothing of this helps, simply decide what budget you want to spend on the HSF. Thermaltake is my favorite as too air cooling. Dragon Orb 3 (A1135) is a fancy looking HSF and cools really nice. And is under $20 in the USA, on www.pricewatch.com. Also, I recommend that you get some nice thermal grease. Like Arctic Silver II, Arctic Alumina or OCZ Quiksilver. And to protect the CPU from accidental damages that are possible while replacing the HSF, get a shim. It also increases the contact surface, so the cooling effect will be even better.
Cut a large hole in the desk behind the computer. I had a similar set-up and removed the whole backing for the cubby. It is much easier to run cables and such.
The other thing you likely need to do is clean out the dust. That includes inside of the power supply and all the heatsinks and fans. Make sure all you fans are running good (oil them if needed by pealing back the sticker to see the bearing). Do you have any case fans or are you cooling the case with just the fan in the PS. Are you using the any thermal grease or are you using a thermal pad. Some Arctic Silver II will help a little bit, but case cooling is likely more important, but if you take the heatsink off, I'd clean of the thermal material and add some AS2 or at least some thermal grease from Radio Shack.
This place has case fans for $3 and Arctic Silver II for $6:
You might need a better heatsink. Watch the noise of the fans on these things. Something like the Volcano 6Cu (not the Cu+ as it uses a screamer fan) or an old GlobalWin FOP32-1 would work pretty good, not be too loud, and run under $20. I have the FOP32-1 on a Duron 600@900Mhz (1.7v) with some AS2 and 2 low RPM 80mm case fans and it runs at 36'C full load (about 105'F). I use some cooling software (CPUCool) and my idle temps are room temp (20'C or 72'F).
I also have a FOP32-1 on an AthlonXP 1600+. I modded the heatsink by bending the fins to fan out enough to mount an low RPM and quiet 80mm fan on top. The stock 60mm fan on the FOP32-1 is a YS-Tech that runs 4800 RPM, 35db, and generates 26CFM. I replaced it with a $3 Top Motor 2500RPM, 30db (about 1/3 the noise), and 34CPM. That is about a 30% increase in airflow, but most of that is wasted probably. I mostly wanted it to be quiet as the computer sits on my desk about 18" from my head. I run 42'C under full load and with CPUCool, I idle at about 28-30'C. With it overclocked to 1.5Ghz it runs about 30-45'C (about 90-125'F). I have 3 low RPM case fan in this case.
AthlonXP 1600+ @1.5Ghz
FOP32-1 Mod w/80mm (30db)
Epox 8KHA+ KT266A
256MB Crucial DDR266
GeForce2 GTS (210/410)
Sound Blaster Audigy
Antec SX-630 Case (mod'd)
TTGI TT-350-SS 370w PS
I pulled out the system from the desk and took of the side, and it's running about 96 degrees. I'm using a thermal compound both on the heatsink and on the processor. I am going to cut a hole in the back of the computer desk, all of the heat from the psu is just blowing right back on the unit. The back of the computer gets so hot sometimes. So that should fix most of the problem. I'm still going to go with a new heatsink/fan. Just in case. I'll also blow the dust out of it, it is quite dusty in there(cough!). I'll problably go with the Volcano 6Cu or Dragon Orb 3. Thanks for all your help. Also, where can I get this software to tell what the heat of the processor is? I think you called it CPUcool, Todd a? Thanks!
CPUCool is a software that lowers the temperature of the CPU down, when it's not working. Also the one to try are CPUIdle. They pretty much do their job.
A CPU temperature detection software should have come with your motherboard. If you have a VIA based board, it is called VIA Hardware Monitor. However, it's not the best monitoring program. though it does its job. I would recommend Motherboard Monitor, it has much more features and is free
I would suggest something like an Alpha PAL6035 heatsink. If you want serious cooling get a 60mm Delta 40cfm or 60mm YS Tech 40cfm fan, but both are very loud. However, a 60mm 26cfm Sunon works great without the excessive noise, if you are willing to sacrifice 2-3C that is. I currently have an Alpha PAL6035 with the YS Tech fan. The CPU overclocked to 1.53Ghz and I'm running VCool. (Another cooling software that lowers idle temperature like the one that Todd uses) The CPU idles at about 25C (with IE, WinAmp, AIM running), and maxes out at about 34C under load. Better temperature than Todd's system, but also much louder than his.
Athlon XP 1600+ @ 1800+
Alpha PAL6035 w/ 40cfm YS Tech
Shuttle AK31 v3.1
256MB OCZ DDR300 CL2
VisionTek GF 256 SDR
40GB WD 7200RPM ATA100
8.4GB Maxtor 5400RPM ATA33