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?

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

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.

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.

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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Power Supply or Memory Problem

by dugup46 In reply to Computer turning off and ...

Since you said tower, these problems are typically caused by one of two things. #1 the power supply is beginning to fail. It happens on new or old towers alike. When a computers power supply (400WT) begins to provide less power than the tower needs to, the computer will shut off and restart. That is one cause. The second cause could be faulty memory. The same will happen with memory when it starts to go bad, the PC will shut off and restart. Typically a power supply will not allow the user to restart the computer after it gets shut down for a short while; however, the power supply is typically always my first guess. Hope this helps.

Cords touching one another, not being plugged in all the way, stuff like that is typically first response because it's free; however, it very rarely will ever fix the problem. Keep us updated.

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to Power Supply or Memory Pr ...

Interesting, it DID once not let me restart it till I unplugged it for a bit.

Could a shortchange of power also cause the video card to turn black and white for a bit?

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Reponse To Answer

by CG IT In reply to Power Supply or Memory Pr ...

probably a power supply getting ready to fail if you have to unplug the power cord, plug it back in to get the thing to boot.

If it boots, and your BIOS has a PC Health check, take a look at your voltages that the BIOS sees.

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to Power Supply or Memory Pr ...

I did check the voltages and they seemed good. I suppose our bodies natural RF interference could cause it? And those other times when it just randomly shut down.

Though oddly enough, the random shut downs during a movies would be when its barely working, I have never had it shutdown while gaming, even when on marathons, even last night I left Atlantica running on it for about 30 hours now, its still running.

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to Power Supply or Memory Pr ...

I was looking at an earthwatts 750 Antec anyways, maybe I will just go and buy it. Was like 150 bucks last I saw.

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ESD and electrical.

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

Check the ground on the outlet, the ground from the power supply to the motherboard (check from the solder pads on the back of the mobo) and check the power for dips and spikes. Repair as needed. Before you put the machine back in service, remove the cmos battery and short the cmos clear jumpers for a while. Set up the machine's BIOS from scratch. If it persists, call a priest.

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Reponse To Answer

by Slayer_ In reply to ESD and electrical.

Dips and spikes in what exactly, I am not very electrical engineering inclined.
And you show me in a picture what to look for on the mother board?

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Reponse To Answer

by Alpha_Dog In reply to ESD and electrical.

Dips and spikes in your AC voltage, and the possibility of an intermittent open or short. Your best bet, given a limited knowledge base, is to replace the power supply and reset the BIOS, sometimes called CMOS, as specified in your motherboard or computer manufacturer's documentation.

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processors, motherboards and memory are very particular about power

by CG IT In reply to Computer turning off and ...

while the voltages might look fine to you, they don't to the CPU or motherboard or memory,...

a +5 voltage that actuals are +4. 999 to +5.005 when it's supposed to be +5.148 is enough.. or the +12 that comes in on +11.814

if you overclock, you could be at the edge of what's stable... but my experience is, if the damn thing keeps randomly rebooting, a new power supply usually stops the problem.

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Power Supply

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

I'd almost bet money it's the power supply. Don't make it more complicated than it is.

1. Reseat all boards and components, ie memory, cards, power connectors internally.
2. Verify all cables are tight, no breaks, grounded, no frays, kinks
3. Check for leaking capacitors on mainboard. If any replace mobo
4. If new cards have been added make sure power supply is sufficient (+400W min)
5. Replace power supply, my money's here :)

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