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computer randomly shuts down


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#1 lostmom

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Posted 25 June 2009 - 11:01 PM

This started a few months ago just shutting down once or twice a week. Not sure if it is was after unsuccessfully downloading a current Adobe Flash Player, IE 8 or contracting a virus. It went on hardly unnoticed until today, when the computer began shutting down every 30 minutes - an hour and a half. We use Windows XP Service Pack 3 and Microsoft Office 07. There is no error message prior to shut down, and after the computer restarts the Microsoft Windows error appears saying the computer has just recovered from a serious error - report/don't report. We have tried reporting a few times but get a corrupted error report message. Not sure where to go from here. Any suggestions?

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#2 possumbarnes

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Posted 26 June 2009 - 12:04 AM

Rebooting computers are a pain to diagnose usually. Anything can cause a computer to reboot: spyware, virus, faulty memory, failing fan causing overheating, bad motherboard or failing hard drive, plus any other component in the case. When it shuts down, does it just power off or does it give you a blue screen of death (blue screen with white text with stop error message on it)?

Just to see if you posted in the correct forum, I suggest you run an MBAM scan.
Please download Malwarebytes' Anti-malware and save it to your desktop.

Double-click on mbam-setup.exe to install the application.
When the installation begins, follow the prompts and do not make any changes to default settings.
When installation has finished, make sure you leave both of these checked:
Update Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware
Launch Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware
Then click Finish.

MBAM will automatically start and you will be asked to update the program before performing a scan.

On the Scanner tab make sure the "Perform Quick Scan" option is selected then click on the Scan button.
If asked to select the drives to scan, leave all the drives selected and click on the Start Scan button.
When the scan is finished, a message box will say "The scan completed successfully. Click 'Show Results' to display all objects found".
Click OK to close the message box and continue with the removal process.

Back at the main Scanner screen click on the Show Results button to see a list of any malware that was found. Make sure that everything is checked, and click Remove Selected. When removal is completed, a log report will open in Notepad. Copy and paste the contents of that report in your next reply. Be sure to post the complete log to include the top portion which shows MBAM's database version and your operating system.

Edited by possumbarnes, 26 June 2009 - 12:04 AM.

What's more irrational--a guy who believes in a God he cannot see or a guy who is offended by a God he doesn't believe in?

#3 lostmom

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Posted 26 June 2009 - 10:57 AM

Well apparently there is no infected files. This will take a while to figure out?!

Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware 1.38
Database version: 2337
Windows 5.1.2600 Service Pack 3

6/26/2009 8:49:47 AM
mbam-log-2009-06-26 (08-49-47).txt

Scan type: Quick Scan
Objects scanned: 113048
Time elapsed: 7 minute(s), 38 second(s)

Memory Processes Infected: 0
Memory Modules Infected: 0
Registry Keys Infected: 0
Registry Values Infected: 0
Registry Data Items Infected: 0
Folders Infected: 0
Files Infected: 0

Memory Processes Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Memory Modules Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Registry Keys Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Registry Values Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Registry Data Items Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

#4 lostmom

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Posted 26 June 2009 - 11:02 AM

When it shuts down, does it just power off or does it give you a blue screen of death (blue screen with white text with stop error message on it)?



No blue screen. The computer just shuts down. No warning, no messages. The screen goes black and the computer reboots.

#5 possumbarnes

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Posted 26 June 2009 - 02:08 PM

Is this a laptop or a desktop?
Can you hear fans running in it? Is it possibly overheating?
How much memory is installed? (Right click on My Computer and select properties. Your memory amount will be in this window if you don't know how much you have).

We may need to have a BC Moderator move this topic to the Windows XP or Internal Hardware forums. Lets get these questions answered first and then we'll try some more troubleshooting.
What's more irrational--a guy who believes in a God he cannot see or a guy who is offended by a God he doesn't believe in?

#6 lostmom

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Posted 26 June 2009 - 07:15 PM

This is a desktop computer.
I don't think it is overheating. The fans are always working though. I vacuum the vents pretty regularly.
It has 1GB of RAM.

I have done a disk clean up on this computer before (not regularly but about once a year), but never a defrag. I just checked it again and this is the first time it has said it could use it.

Today we had a problem with it connecting to the internet and yesterday when it was shutting down we were on the internet every time. Today I had to shut down the computer, modem and the router and restart them in order to connect. But the computer has not shut down once today on its own (knock on wood) and we have been on the internet just about the whole day.

#7 possumbarnes

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Posted 27 June 2009 - 08:15 AM

I told you, the computer that reboots itself is one of the toughest problems to diagnose. Ok, you don't seem to be infected, so I would recommend posting a new topic in the Internal Hardware forum, unless a BC moderator comes along and moves this topic over to the right forum. You'll get better help there.

What type of computer is this? Is it a brand name computer, and if so, what model is it? This could help in determining where to start.

If you want to verify that Windows isn't causing the problem, you could back up all your data (photos, docs, videos, music, financials, etc) and do a full reinstall of Windows. That would prove to most people that your issue is not software related. However, I'd be careful doing that before ruling out a hardware issue because if the computer reboots itself in the middle of Windows installing, you'll have to start all over with the Windows install.

There are a few things you can try before going down that road.
Download Speedfan and install it. Start Speedfan and it will check your system for temperature sensors and display all the temps. That will verify whether or not your computer is running hot.

Download memtest86 and use your CD creating software (hopefully, you have a burner) to burn the .iso image to a CD to create a bootable CD. Once the memtest CD is created, verify your BIOS settings are set so the computer boots from the CD drive before the hard drive. Insert the memtest bootable CD and turn the computer on. It will boot to this CD and the memory tests will begin automatically. You need to let the tests run for 24 hours or more to be sure there is no problem with the memory. 2 or 3 passes is not a good enough test.

Determine what brand of hard drive is installed (either by software that will tell you or by physically removing the drive and seeing what brand it is). Hard drive manufacturers have testing software that you can download to test their hard drives. Simply Google your hard drive brand with "testing software download" behind it. (ie. Maxtor hard drive testing software). Follow the program's instructions to test your hard drive.

Good luck with finding the problem. I'm starting vacation in an hour and won't be able to help you for a few days.
What's more irrational--a guy who believes in a God he cannot see or a guy who is offended by a God he doesn't believe in?




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