Basic cooling questions..?



Vlad The Impaler
As most of you know I often fix old machines for people, often people with no money and it is often old hardware that is designed badly.

The most recent job is an old socket 478 P4 system I am repairing for a friend and I think the CPU is dying. I have no other explanation for the things it is doing, because a year or two ago I replaced her motherboard with a high quality pull, and everything on it seems to work just fine, and I see no evidence of bad caps or anything...

The thing is, I've never been more than passingly interested in overclocking anything in many years, because with the cost and availability of desktop parts these days I hardly see the point, for what I do, so I have never actually killed a CPU that I know of, so I have no idea what even happens. All I know is that I get Windows installed on the POS and then while I am trying to update it, POOF! BSOD hell!!

In any case I have a collection of 478 CPUs, so that's not a problem to replace...

It has a terrible heatsink and fan setup though and we live in the only "dust bowl" to be found in western Washington State. The thing was just CHOKED with dust and one fin was broken off the fan, and basically the situation will re-occur, no question about it and I just can't find any other heatsink fan that I have on hand to replace it.

So, my questions are:

A. What does a dying CPU do, other than random BSODs, and once it has started doing that is there any hope of fixing it with improved cooling, or is it time to replace it with the cooling?

B. Is there any reason why it would be bad or not work as well to put a new fan on what she has only flip it upside down to suck air off the heatsink until I can get her a better one?

C: what temps should I expect from 2.8GHz 478 P4 and Celeron Processors, and what is too hot?

Thanks, I know you guys will come through for me cuz ya always do!

Have a great day everyone!
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