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Dell Inspiron Sporatic Shutdown

By Casemaker ·
I have a Dell Inspiron 8100 from 2001, PIIIm 1129GHZ and XP that keeps on shutting down at various intervals. It came in with a noisy heat sink cooling fan and I replaced it. The noise stopped, but it still shuts down. It shuts down in normal mode, safe mode and diagnostic mode (clean boot). The span can be instant or overnight. I have the machine set to clean boot and that is when it ran the overnight at first. When I clicked start/run to change to normal mode after it ran all night it shut down. I don?t have pc 133 sodimm to swap. I changed the RAM locations and tried 1 at a time, still shut down. I removed HDD same results. I am assuming that while the fan was dying it caused failure in the CPU or MB. The thermal is on the heat sink. The computer will now run for a while but as soon as I start to click around it shuts down. It ran overnight yesterday and as soon as I started clicking it shut down. I am unable to run Memory Test because it shuts down. At one point I was able to see an error that said something related to ISASS.exe right before it shut down What do other people do to test CPU or MB?
Thank You

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by saihib In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...

Your computer is infected. Run a virus scan.

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by Casemaker In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...

Thank You for your post. The machine shuts down with the HDD out. Can you explain why you feel it is a virus. Is it a memory resident virus. If I take out the RAM will it drain and remove the virus or will I need to remove the CMOS battery?

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by lhatcher In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...

Sounds like a heat issue to me. Open up the case, and if possible get a fan and run it in front of the system. Run it for a while and see if this helps.

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by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...

Actually it sounds far more like a Power Supply problem to me. The unit will work fine while it is idling away but shuts down when you start to use it and up the power consumption.

When it shuts down does it restart immediately?

If so try another Power Supply and see if that cures the problem.

As for testing M'Boards. CPU & Ram it very much depends on the thing not actually starting or reaching the POST stage where you'll get a series of Beeps from the On-board Speaker which will tell you where to start looking for problems.

If you have 2 or more sticks of RAM remove all but one and try it that way you could have a weird Memory Issue but I would expect the BSOD to appear and a memory dump to occur.

There is a PCI card that plugs into a spare PCI Slot on the M'Board available which is supposed to diagnose problems but I've never actually had the need for one so I don't know how well if at all they work.

As for the CPU Fan provided you didn't remove the Heat sink there should be no problems there but if you did those socket 370 Sockets did have a ridge on one side that allowed the heat sink not to make positive contact with the CPU and if that is what is happening the Overheat control on the M'Board will be shutting down the hot CPU.

But I would honestly be looking at the Power Supply before I touch anything else as the Dell PS where way underrated for the actual needs of the computers.


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by Breydel In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...

I must agree on the heat issue.

This has happened to me before.
When you replaced the fan, did you also replace the heatsink ? If so, it is likely you have a bad contact.
If not, you may still have a bad contact but less likely.
Also, if the fan has been an issue in the past and left too long before replacing (you where having problems like this before you replaced the fan?), then I would start thinking in the direction that the CPU was overheated at some time to the point of causing damage.

Virusses are a possibility but I would expect less or no issue when safe/diagnostic booting.

The problem you are experiencing in my view is that your CPU is overheating, booting in safe mode is putting less strain on the CPU and hence it may take longer to reach critical temperature.
Once you start to run any app or commands through the CPU, it will get hotter and reach critical point more quickly - hence it will reboot as a safety failover.

These issues can be difficult to trap.
Your best hope is if your dell has hardware monitoring tools in the BIOS showing temeprature and fan speed...?

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by Casemaker In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...

Right now the system shuts down almost as soon as it boots. I notice a ISASS.EXE application failed to load message just before it shuits down. If I wait it will boot for a while and then shut down. I have had the notebook running with the KB removed and free air flow and it still shut down.

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by LCM Man In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...

You have the Sasser virus (or a variation thereof). Go to the following site, download the sasser removal tool, and all will be fine.


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by puleplayer2 In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...
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by willcomp In reply to Dell Inspiron Sporatic Sh ...

Too bad that notebooks can't be stripped down and parts swapped as easily as on desktops.

Since behavior continues with hard disk removed, can pretty much eliminate software issues including virii. Lsass is a legitimate part of XP and error message is not likely virus related.

Is behavior consisten running off battery and AC power with battery removed?

I would consider motherboard most likely culprit at this point unless proven otherwise.


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by willcomp In reply to

Re: Testing motherboard and CPU

On a desktop, POST Card is a viable option. I am not aware of anything similar for notebooks.

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