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Old November 2, 2012, 06:52 PM
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mattydies mattydies is offline
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Ottawa Valley, Ontario
Posts: 304

My System Specs

Default Catastrophic Failure. Help with Testing

******WHAT HAPPENED******

I recently picked up 4 used 160GB Raptors to run in Raid 0+1 (to replace my 2 - 74GB Raid 0). I removed the HDD's and the computer sat for two days. It turns out my PSU had died while waiting. I was about to order a replacement when my brother suggested I could use his old one if I wanted for free. It's a 600w "ULTRA". It has enough wattage so I thought why not save a few bucks? I want to buy a couple WD 3TB Reds for storage!

I Installed the drives, PSU, created an array and installed windows. Things are fantastic. I had done more reading about overclocking lately and FINALLY figured out how to run my E8400 3.0Ghz at 4.5Ghz ON AIR. (I had never tried changing my 9.0 FSB Ratio. 8.5 made it a CAKE WALK). I Tested, tested, tested... 100% Stable. My Core voltage was at 1.375V. I was in the process of lowering the voltage and retesting.

I think I had a catastrophic failure unrelated to the OC. A day or two after I rebuilt the computer it started to (instantly) turn off, once or twice a day. It was not crashing and restarting as it did on earlier unstable Over Clocking attempts. I was concerned, but not concerned enough. I have a bad habit of procrastinating. A few nights ago my computer shut down and kicked the circuit breaker it was on. I was worried.

I do not recall why I touched the back of the PSU, but it was HOT. I suspect touching the fan cover on the back of the PSU for 10 seconds (maybe less) would have been long enough to cause a light burn (and I work with engines LOTS, I can take the heat). I ripped the PSU open and the fan blades were DISTURBINGLY CLEAN. The CLEAR fans were SPOTLESS! The guts of the PSU showed some normal dust build up albeit an acceptable amount. Logic tells me the fans were not running, the PSU was over heating and eventually causing my PC to shut down. The fact that it kicked a breaker, there must have been a power spike.

The computer caused it as the rest of the breakers were fine. ALSO my brother had thought his video card was causing his old computer to shut down (The warning was set too low in his BIOS as we later found out). It seems it was actually the PSU causing his shut downs.

******THE HELP I NEED******
My GPU is still under warranty. I tried to install the card in a computer at work (which currently has a 7800GT installed). The computer is a Dell Inspiron 530. The computer would not post. The PSU is 600w of a respectable name (I installed the PSU when I installed the video card a year ago) so it has more than enough power for my 6870 GPU I installed for testing. IS it possible the old Dell has an older spec PCI-E slot and this could prevent the card from working / the computer from booting??? I will file an RMA this Sunday.

I know how to test the HDD's and need to do so this weekend. I will destroy the 'array' and test them individually. I bought the HDD's used.

I know how to test the RAM but the Dell says it has a max speed of 800Mhz and a max stick size of 1GB. I will try and test the ram, but I unless it works, I will not consider the test to confirm the condition of the ram. I bought the ram used.

MOBO. She Finally granted me a stable 50% OC ON AIR (which my gut has told me for a while she could if I became good enough). Do I dare try to test this myself? I guess I will. I have an old Pentium D chip I have been thinking of throwing out but I bet the Mobo is dead.

CPU. 4.5 on air. PLEASE LIVE!!! I had like 3 or 4 days of this OC. LIVE DAMMIT LIVE!
The Dell Inspiron 530 is a socket 775 like my E8400. The Dell is a 2.0 GHz (maybe a touch faster) but its old and slow. Will this mobo support my E8400 for testing? I think I bought the MOBO CPU about 4 years ago and I HIGHLY doubt I still have receipts (thought I doubt they are under warranty anyway).

Is there anything I am overlooking? I am Computer savy but I am not a PRO.
Any thoughts, advice, concerns about damaging parts while testing OR ANYTHING ELSE ARE GREATLY APPRECIATED!

Thank-you very much for your help folks. ANY thoughts or comments are more than welcome!
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