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Tones from the motherboard.

By jim ·
I set up this computer for my wife. Some of the parts are 3-4 years old, but have worked fine up until now.

Sometimes while she is online playing DDO her computer will just freeze up, at times wierd graphics. This is happening more often now and she is annoyed.

The last time it froze, I was home to see it and the computer made short low tones, about 30 seconds apart, for about 5-7 tones.

Usually re-boots are fine, sometimes she has to reboot twice because she can't get online.

I guess before I go out and buy a new graphics card I wanted to make sure it isn't something else.

What I have done so far:

Turned off computer, sprayed off the motherboard, made sure the tines of the CPU cooling system were dust free, sprayed off the fan and other cooling parts of the computer.

Checked for new nvidia driver updates, none for this card: geforce fx 5500.

Any ideas what can be done?

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All Answers

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Three things come to mind. :)

1). Power supply. (I doubt it though).
2). Memory. (This i would check out).
3). Processor. (Might be going, abit slowly).
So first things in line are numbers two and three to check out. If possible get some new memory and another processor and see if it makes any difference. The beeps to me indicate either the memory or the power supply. But it is hard to say without hearing them. If you could be more precise i will be able to narrow the field to the item that is giving you this problem.

Please post back if you have any more problems or questions.
If this information is useful, please mark as helpful. Thanks.

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the type of tones? more precise?

by jim In reply to Three things come to mind ...

They are low tones, of about 1 second duration, they were about 30 seconds apart, and went for about 5 tones. It doesn't always happen though.

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A couple of thing to try

by Jacky Howe In reply to Tones from the motherboar ...

Faulty Fans, Dust and Grime build up on the Heatsink restricting air flow. I would give the inside of the case a blowout with compressed air. When blowing air through the fans make sure that you physically stop them from spinning, as they may generate power and **** something up. Remembering to ground yourself by placing the back of your hand on the Power Supply Unit and not moving your feet. By not taking this precaution it is possible that you could inadvertantly cause damage to the PC from an electrostatic discharge. Then remove the Heatsink, giving it a thorough clean and reseat the CPU applying new CPU grease. If the Fans spin freely when you give them a spin they are probably OK. If there is resistance replace them.
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Clean the golden edge of each memory stick with a soft rubber/eraser, remembering not to touch the golden edge of the memory stick. Check with one stick at a time, remembering to disconnect the power from the PC.
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Test the memory.
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You can test the memory by running Windows Memory Diagnostic that can be downloaded from http://oca.microsoft.com/en/windiag.asp. If problems are found check the steps below.
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Also check Capacitors around the CPU for swelling or bulging.
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Test the Power Supply Unit and the CPU.
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Download Prime95.
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http://www.mersenne.org/freesoft.htm
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Prime95 is used to put your system at full load. Prime95 - When run for the first time, it is necessary to click on Advanced, then click on Round off checking so that errors caused by instabilities will be flagged as they occur. Also go to Options and run the Torture Test. Run the Inplace FFTs (Max Power, Heat and some Ram). Prime95 will automatically thread all Cores, and will expose insufficient CPU cooling and computer case cooling, or excessive Vcore and overclock. At no other time will a CPU be as heavily loaded, or display higher temperatures, even when OC'd during worst-case loads such as gaming or video editing. Prime95 can be used with SpeedFan to observe CPU temps, while stress testing for system stability. During single threaded gaming and applications, Core 0 typically carries heavier loads and higher temps than other Cores.
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You want your system at full load when checking your voltages to ensure your PSU is up to spec.
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If your PC restarts during this test you have a faulty Power Supply (PSU) and it will need replacing.
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Download SpeedFan and check the Voltages and Temps while Prime95 is running.
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http://www.almico.com/sfdownload.php
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You will want your 12-volt rail to be within 11.52 to 12.48 during load. This means when you are running your cpu at 100% you do not want to drop below 11.52 or you may experience stability problems including but not limited to system restarts and Windows crashes. For the 5-volt rail, you want it to be within 4.8 to 5.2 to be within the 4% range. As for the 3.3 volt rail, you want it to be within 3.17 to 3.43
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Video Memory Stress Test 1.4
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http://www.majorgeeks.com/Video_Memory_Stress_Test__d5896.html
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Note: A damaged or insufficiently charged internal battery can corrupt CMOS or BIOS settings. It can also cause all sorts of wierd things to happen.
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<i>Keep us informed as to your progress if you require further assistance.</i>
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tyvm for the suggestions.

by jim In reply to A couple of thing to try

I will work on these things over the next few days. Wow, thanks for the suggestions.

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It sounds like a few things to do

by Jacky Howe In reply to tyvm for the suggestions.

but it should give you an indication as to where the problem is.

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