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Trying to determine if I have a faulty motherboard

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#1 Peter Potamus

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 05:11 PM

Hi, first time poster here. I am having severe problems with I SUSPECT is my motherboard, which is why I am posting here; if it is later determined that the problem stems elsewhere, I will post another topic in the appropriate section.
The computer in question was custom built, not by me, and is brand new, I bought it less than two months ago. It's a tower, ASUS motherboard, with a Hitachi harddrive, and I am using Windows 7 Ultimate. In addition to the system harddrive, I am using another harddrive, and a third external harddrive, but these have not manifested any problems.
Intel Core2 Duo CPU E4600 @2.40GHz, 2.00GB ram

Last week it suddenly restarted itself while nothing was running, the screen had actually turned off because I hadn't done anything in about half an hour. I was just next to it, watching tv, and this surprised me. What further surprised me was that instead of starting Windows, I got a black screen with "Read disc error" message, and a prompt to reboot. I did, and got the same message. I repeated 4 times, then turned it off and left it alone for an hour. It then started normally, and I was temporarily relieved. The next day I got a blue screen and the memory dump, which is normally almost instant, took almost 3 minutes and then failed and the computer rebooted. It started up fine, but it got another blue screen after less than 2 hours. The blue screen started appearing more and more frequently for the next three days, although I didn't get the read disc error anymore. Then yesterday morning, after rebooting, I got a message stating that a new cpu was installed (?!) and prompting me to either set it up myself or keep the original settings, which is what I picked. The computer ran for 20 minutes and then blue screened, and since then I have been unable to use Windows, as it is so slow upon startup it is nearly non-responsive (takes 5-10 seconds to open folders, but it can't really open any programs, including simple stuff like .txt files); I am not certain it is actually working at all, or freezing promptly after selecting a program to run. In addition to that, every two minutes or so the screen will go black for a second and then flicker back on, and upon reboot the entire desktop area will be an inch to the left, and then align itself properly after about 5 seconds.
I restarted in Safe mode, which works fine except for the screen flicker, and did the following:
-I got rid of all recently installed software. No change.
-Initially I thought it was a sata cable problem, since my system harddrive uses sata, so I moved it to a different port. No change.
-I used the System file checker tool, which found and fixed a problem with system.web.extensions.dll. No change, I suspect this was unrelated.
-I used the Error-checking tool for the system drive, which found and deleted a corrupt file record segment, as well as two index entries. After that I ran a memory scan and found no errors. The flicker is now gone, both in regular and Safe mode, but my computer is still hopelessly inert when not running in safe mode.

I do realize my lay language might make this hard to diagnose, but I will appreciate any input, as I myself have no idea of what's going on and don't want to keep stabbing in the dark. My brother, who is slightly more computer savvy than me, thinks the problem is in the motherboard, and suggests I just get a new computer.
Any thoughts?

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#2 James Litten

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 08:18 PM


It might be the motherboard but there are a few things to check.

Do you know the wattage of the power supply?

What is the video card?

and finally, the first time it restarted, I know you said the monitor was in power save mode but what was running on it at the time? Specifically, something like a game?


#3 Peter Potamus

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 10:31 PM

I don't know the wattage, I'll look into it later today or tomorrow. The video card is Intel GMA X3000. At the time it first restarted, it wasn't running anything. BitTorrent was on, as well as Avast antivirus, and that's all as far as services started by me are concerned.

Edited by hamluis, 02 February 2012 - 10:42 AM.
Removed unnecessary quote.

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