Question

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Computer turning off and on, on its own....

By Slayer_ ·
Ok, so this is strange.

It started off two days ago, I closed a cabinet in my room, and when I stood up, my computer turned off and restarted (my computer is set to stay off in a power outage). I figured, maybe it vibrated the video card, its happened before. Ok.
So I wiggle the tower a little, no issues. Stand up, walk passed it from right to left across the front of it, and it restarts again, wtf?

It didn't occur to me yet, but ok, so I just turned it back off (held power button) and walk away. I came back to put the item back in the cabinet, walked passed the machine from right to left again and the computer started itself!
So I waited for it, got to the login screen and it froze at the login....
So I hard restarted it, froze immediately after login, hard restarted again and it was running, but suddenly now, it didn't like resolutions under 1280 x 1024, anything less and it left about 50% black space on the screen on either side (25% on the left, 25% on the right). So I rebooted, I could see the windows logo and post was getting squished. Then it booted up again and 3 seconds after logging in, the screen turned black and white!
I thought maybe my old monitor dying, so I turned on the second monitor and turned on duel view, black and white on both!

So reboot again, same problem. So I go update the video drivers. Problem solved, but it still hates the resolutions. Ok, screw it, moving on.
Last night, it shut down again while watching a movie, it would not beep at the post for the first few tries, then it fired up after I unplugged it for a bit.

Now brings me to today, when I made the real connection.
I fired it up, and walked out to change the TV channel, I came back to grab the stereo remote out of the cabinet, and when I walked passed the computer, from right to left, I heard it restart. So I stepped back, and repeated my walk, and sure enough, it restarted again the very moment I stepped on the carpet.

So I tried standing there, lifting my foot up and down, etc, nothing. Only when I walked passed it. I made sure I did not rub the case, I even tried walking passed it naked, it still restarted! Then I closed the front door on my case (One of those cases that can cover the CD drives) and walked by it, it restarted one more time, so I tried again, on my last walk through, my monitor made a click sound and the video re snapped to the edges properly again. And it has stopped restarting when I walk passed it (for now anyways). I now take the long way around my computer to avoid walking in front of it.


WTF????? Any thoughts?

Edit-
I double checked, all my games that suddenly had problems with the resolution are fine again.


Edit-
Here is a folder of images.
The silver computer is the one with the problem. Its ventilation is on the front, left and rear, the right side is where the board is mounted, so no fans. So I can't see there being any ventilation issues.
http://trevorsarchives.homenet.org/temp/PC%20Pics/


Edit-
It has started doing it again. I have removed the filter on the power, its still doing it. But the monitor and display seem fine so far.

Edit-
Confirmed that the monitor is causing some problems, I can smack it and have the edges of the screen wiggle or even snap to the sides, to the top, etc.
By keeping the door closed the restarting has stopped. I'm starting to wonder if static is affecting the reset button, the next time I am in the case I am going to unplug the reset button and see if that solves the problem.

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All Answers

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to Oh Smeg's Gremlins idea s ...

Bahahaha, I like it.

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Sounds like ESD

by oldbaritone In reply to Computer turning off and ...

Check the grounding on the cabinet, and make sure the electrical plug has a good ground. (PLEASE say they aren't using a "cheater plug" adapter, or just snapped the 3rd prong off because it wouldn't go into the 2-prong outlet in the old building...)

Get some anti-static spray and spray the carpet around the cabinet.

Get anti-static mats and put them around the cabinet. Be sure they are properly grounded. See #1 above...

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to Sounds like ESD

I would assume the wood stand with the rubber legs would protect it from ESD should it not?
It is not touching the cabinet, the cabinet is just my only reason to walk through that spot.
It is grounded nicely using one of those dirty electricity filters. There are a lot of cables touching each other behind the machines, but all are in good condition, no exposed wiring.
When I can get a picture and post it, I will, maybe that will explain the situation better.

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to Sounds like ESD

Wait, do those filters maybe wear out? It has a lot of use on it, it used to be used in our body shop to keep our computers from blowing up, worked great too, before it, we were popping motherboards every 2 months. After we added it, the machines had no issues.

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Depends on the filter

by OH Smeg In reply to Computer turning off and ...

Some are single use only and then they need replacing, others can take several hits before expiring and then others are used to just divert Surges through Capacitors to earth.

Here it depends on what the filter gets hit with as to what happens but that may be a starting point to work from.

Col

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to Depends on the filter

I have added pictures

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I have added pictures to the original post

by Slayer_ In reply to Computer turning off and ...

I have added pictures to the original post
http://trevorsarchives.selfip.net/temp/PC%20Pics/

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OK, a couple of points to try

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Computer turning off and ...

1. The picture labelled 'Filter Box' - the white plug at the top doesn't seem to be fully seated. in the image the left hand side looks to be deeper in, as if the plug is on a slight angle. not sure if this will have much of an affect or not.

2. The boxes are too close together, move them as far apart as you can on that stand. There appears to be some space between them and the uprights, well push them apart and right up against the uprights. That will maximise the ventilation around them, thus the cooling effect of the air while reducing the risk of electro magnetic interference between the two systems.

3. The wiring, try to separate the data wires from the power wires, even if it means using some cable ties to run them in channels a few finger widths apart. this will minimise the risk of electromagnetic interference between the two as well. The power cables have a stronger and larger field around them to the rest and if close enough to the data cables, it can cause some troubles.

4. Check the cables for fine breaks in the wire within the cable. This can be done by carefully running the cable through your fingers while looking at it closely. Some breaks can occur in the copper inside without having a break in the covering plastic.

5. Apart from this an what the others have said, watch out for free radical electrons staging a revolution.

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to OK, a couple of points to ...

The cases are about as far apart as possible now, I was only able to add about a 1.5 cm between them.

I checked the plug, its seated against the wall flat.

The power cables are separate from the ethernet lines, the USB and power and VGA cables are intermixed. Could that cause restarts and black and whites?

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Reponse To Answer

by Deadly Ernest In reply to OK, a couple of points to ...

The issue with the cables is that ALL of them have an electromagnetic field around the. If properly shielded and the shielding is working they should be OK. But I've learned from experience that the concept of proper shielding and it working well is rare. The field around the data, usb and vga cables isn't that strong, but the one around the power leads is far stronger than the rest. I generally try to run the power cables well away from all other cables as much as possible. If I can separate the other cables any more, then I split off the video cables as they are the next highest in power levels. You may wish to try moving the power away from the other cables and see if that has any effect.

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