Advice on what is salvagable

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Mugsy
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Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 22 May 2018, 19:18

So my desktop PC has been occasionally rebooting itself not long after loading up Windows. I'm taking it to the PC shop to get it diagnosed in the next week and a half (giving myself some time to back up everything).

I'm not at all up to speed with current PC standards and what parts current mobos still support and looking at Umart's website of parts, I'm confused even more. Assuming it's the mobo that's got issues, can anyone advise what can/can't be salvaged and what has to be replaced? PC Specs below. Cheers!
CPU Intel Core i5 4570 LGA1150 CPU 3.2Ghz 6Mb Cache Haswell
Motherboard ASRock B85M PRO4, Socket 1150, 4x DDR 3 Slots,1x PCIE x16, 1x PCIE x4, 4x SATA3, 4x USB3, HDMI
RAM G Skill 8G(2x4G)DDR3 1600Mhz PC3-12800 CL8(F3-12800CL8D-8GB
Video Card Gigabyte GTX760 OC 2G GDDR5, PCIE3.0, DVI, HDMI, DISPLAY PORT, WINDF X3 FAN
SSD for Main Drive Samsung 120GB SSD 840 EVO SATA III 6Gbs 7mm 2.5inch 540MB/410MB
Hard Drive Seagate SATA3 3TB 7200RPM Barracuda 64mb Cache
BR Drive Pioneer BDR-208EBK 12X Blu-Ray Writer Drive SATA Black Retail
DVD Drive LiteON SATA DVD-RW 24X Black
OS Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit OEM(Microsoft OEM Terms&condition apply)
Case CoolerMaster RC-692A-KWN5 Advanced Bay Tower Gaming USB3.0
Accessories Silverstone FP37 Black 3.5 Card Reader, USB3.0 Inte
PSU SeaSonic G-550W 80Plus Gold Modular PSU
Extra Warranty Three Year RTB warranty(for $0-$3000)Umart System Build Only
Fingers crossed I don't have to get a new rig. The current one seems to do the job just OK even though the SSD is getting a bit low on space (nothing a reformat won't fix though).
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n1cholas
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by n1cholas » 22 May 2018, 20:12

Mugsy wrote:
22 May 2018, 19:18
So my desktop PC has been occasionally rebooting itself not long after loading up Windows. I'm taking it to the PC shop to get it diagnosed in the next week and a half (giving myself some time to back up everything).

I'm not at all up to speed with current PC standards and what parts current mobos still support and looking at Umart's website of parts, I'm confused even more. Assuming it's the mobo that's got issues, can anyone advise what can/can't be salvaged and what has to be replaced? PC Specs below. Cheers!
CPU Intel Core i5 4570 LGA1150 CPU 3.2Ghz 6Mb Cache Haswell
Motherboard ASRock B85M PRO4, Socket 1150, 4x DDR 3 Slots,1x PCIE x16, 1x PCIE x4, 4x SATA3, 4x USB3, HDMI
RAM G Skill 8G(2x4G)DDR3 1600Mhz PC3-12800 CL8(F3-12800CL8D-8GB
Video Card Gigabyte GTX760 OC 2G GDDR5, PCIE3.0, DVI, HDMI, DISPLAY PORT, WINDF X3 FAN
SSD for Main Drive Samsung 120GB SSD 840 EVO SATA III 6Gbs 7mm 2.5inch 540MB/410MB
Hard Drive Seagate SATA3 3TB 7200RPM Barracuda 64mb Cache
BR Drive Pioneer BDR-208EBK 12X Blu-Ray Writer Drive SATA Black Retail
DVD Drive LiteON SATA DVD-RW 24X Black
OS Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit OEM(Microsoft OEM Terms&condition apply)
Case CoolerMaster RC-692A-KWN5 Advanced Bay Tower Gaming USB3.0
Accessories Silverstone FP37 Black 3.5 Card Reader, USB3.0 Inte
PSU SeaSonic G-550W 80Plus Gold Modular PSU
Extra Warranty Three Year RTB warranty(for $0-$3000)Umart System Build Only
Fingers crossed I don't have to get a new rig. The current one seems to do the job just OK even though the SSD is getting a bit low on space (nothing a reformat won't fix though).
Do you have a spare power supply you can troubleshoot with?

I recently troubleshooted a 4670/GTX980 build and it had a failing PSU which died during troubleshooting.

The build had an top tier ASUS MB with very high load on the power rails which was enough to cause issues with some functional PSUs, I don't think you'd have that problem since you have a lower end MB.

The Seasonic PSUs are generally very good quality even at the low end and manufacture their own PSUs as well as selling to many other companies.

Assuming it is a PSU issue you'd be better off placing the HDD in another PC and then backing it up as a precautionary measure to prevent possible damage.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 22 May 2018, 21:43

Don't have a spare PSU I'm afraid. I'm just gonna quickly move my stuff to my portable HDD and switch to using my laptop methinks.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by n1cholas » 23 May 2018, 10:45

I would be careful with taking Umart (assuming that's where you take it) at face value if they say the build is a goner, I've seen other PC stores claim a PC is dead and try to strongarm customers into a new PC.

I've seen enough shifty stuff from MSY and the like that I prefer to build and test all the PCs I deal with if possible.

The CPU, MB and RAM are all legacy parts. You could get a compatible secondhand CPU off eBay if need be, RAM in particular is pricey atm. MBs are relatively cheap so if it is the MB you may be able to get a new one under $100.

You can disable hibernation and free up ~8GB on the SSD.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by storm84 » 23 May 2018, 11:02

Replacing a PSU has saved me from random rebooting issues in the past (every time without fail ours been a power supply issue) - if you've got a friend with a bigger PSU than yours, try borrowing that to see if it works.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 23 May 2018, 12:43

In the past, Umart have been pretty honest. My last out of warranty diagnosis from them was a RAM issue and that's all they suggested to replace.

Just hoping they are still this honest.

As for PSU from a friend, no one I know who lives close by keeps spares. Most have migrated to laptops. I'm short on time too with dad going into surgery in the next few weeks.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by storm84 » 23 May 2018, 13:23

One final piece of unsolicited advice:
Buying a new PSU as a way of testing the problem may be the rational decision as a diagnosis tool. If it turns out that the PSU is the problem, then you're down at most $150 to solve the problem. But if it's not the PSU then you have a spare for after the upgrade since PSUs are more likely to die than other components.
---
And if it is the PSU, depending on which components are on which circuit, you may be able to balance out the load by switching which cables power each internal components. Or do a quick PSU check by unplugging all non-essential power options and seeing if the restarts persist. And if you haven't done so, give the case a thorough dusting. Fans don't need to work as hard so less electricity is consumed. Any of these could be done before buying a new PSU.

Oh, and one other possible problem could be a RAM issue - though that should show a BSOD before the restart. Using memtest86 on start-up might be able to pinpoint a RAM issue.
Last edited by storm84 on 23 May 2018, 14:22, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Otto-matic Reiffel » 23 May 2018, 14:11

Reseating the RAM and all PCI devices is generally a good idea too. Have to rotate and reseat the RAM in my partner's PC around once every 6 months.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 23 May 2018, 17:57

Otto-matic Reiffel wrote:
23 May 2018, 14:11
Reseating the RAM and all PCI devices is generally a good idea too. Have to rotate and reseat the RAM in my partner's PC around once every 6 months.
I'm going to have to get one of those anti-static wrist straps first. That RAM issue above which I got Umart to fix... pretty sure it was when I last tried reseating RAM without the wrist strap.

As for getting a spare PSU... I probably should.

I've just never had a PSU issue from memory... always been RAM, mobo, or HDD. And in the case of the former two parts, it's either within the 3yr warranty or at the 5-6yr mark where I'm better off just getting a new PC with new video card etc so I can play modern games and I know I'm not bringing any old issues along with me.

Either way, my desktop had serious trouble starting up earlier after another reboot. Currently backing everything I can up and might try to get the rig off to Umart before the end of the week is up. Not sure how I'm gonna do this with having to take mum to medical appointments too.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by n1cholas » 23 May 2018, 23:55

Mugsy wrote:
23 May 2018, 12:43
I'm short on time too with dad going into surgery in the next few weeks.
I hope he has a successful surgery and speedy recovery.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 24 May 2018, 07:18

n1cholas wrote:
23 May 2018, 23:55
I hope he has a successful surgery and speedy recovery.
Cheers mate.

The joys of aging parents.

Will let you guys know what the issue is with the PC. Should be able to squeeze in the drop off to the PC shop on Sat arvo. Not looking forward to doing everything off my laptop next week.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by n1cholas » 24 May 2018, 10:54

Mugsy wrote:
24 May 2018, 07:18
The joys of aging parents.
We should count ourself lucky to still have the folks around.

When my old man injured his back and was forced to bed rest for over a month a few years ago he was miserable and it was hard for that not to bring you down to some extent.

He made a full recovery and despite my protestations to "take it easy" never does.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 24 May 2018, 17:52

n1cholas wrote:
24 May 2018, 10:54
We should count ourself lucky to still have the folks around.
Absolutely!

1.5yrs ago it looked like mum was a goner given her breast cancer had metastasized quite severely. She's lucky the chemo worked as well as it did and that she's recovering the whole ordeal quite well.

On the topic of the PC, it's no longer booting. I'm lucky I backed up EVERYTHING last night! (and into the morning too... dozed off at 11pm only to wake up at 2:30am to finish off copying the final few 100Gbs)

I've pulled it out a bit and shone a light through the case window to see if I can identify any ruptured capacitors on the mobo... none that I can see. All except one you can still read the words on the top quite clearly and the one I can't read is close to the dusty HSF... looks like some dust on top of it. Fingers crossed it's just the PSU.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 25 May 2018, 08:24

Had a massive freak out this morning.

Went to access the 17 screen shots of login details I took from the old pcs browser only to find out that I didn't hit 'show password '!

Luckily I had looked up the files that contains all the stored logins and copied them too... And they worked on the laptop!
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Treloar » 27 May 2018, 04:13

Apparently, alot of the newer CPU's on the market of late are not supported natively by the motherboards you can buy, unless you flash the BIOS.

AMD at least offers a Short Term Processor Loan "Boot Kit" if you get caught out, but with Intel boards I think you need to buy CPU/RAM/Motherboard from a business at the same time to have them do the BIOS flash for you... so you cannot shop around for parts it seems.

As for your old system if I was you I'd keep it all except for the motherboard and perhaps the PSU (depending on the age of the PSU). You may be able to activate the OEM Windows with the same system and a new motherboard, but you'll probably have to ring Microsoft and say to them the board died and has been discontinued.

Perhaps a ASUS Q87M-E/CSM LGA 1150 Intel Q87 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard for $173, it seems hard to find a really good 1150 motherboard, seems most are going for 1151's that have full speed support for M.2 drives, the 1150 boards seem to only support M.2 at half the speed.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 27 May 2018, 18:53

Cheers for the advice Treloar. Yeah, I'm not really thinking of shopping around for parts. Will likely just let the PC shop supply and install it all. I bought the rig from them in the first place so I'd imagine that they shouldn't have a hard time getting Microsoft to allow Windows to be reinstalled if I need a new mobo.

This seems to be the only socket 1150 mobo they have left:

https://www.umart.com.au/ASUS-P9D-E-4L- ... 8581G.html

There's a much cheaper MSI one listed on the website but it's out of stock.

https://www.umart.com.au/MSI-B85M-E45-B ... 7463G.html

It's doubtful that I'll be able to get a CPU, RAM and mobo for $355 so this would be the cheapest way forward if it's the mobo that's the problem.

If it's the PSU, I'd be looking at up to $139 at most from Umart for another 550W one.

Guess I'll find out in a few days.

My garage door opener has got issues too so it seems to be the season for repairs for me.

EDIT: Just realised that the mobo above is a server one and doesn't have DVI or HDMI support... looks like I might have to source my own mobo (or hopefully the PC shop can find one)... it better be the PSU that's got issues.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Treloar » 28 May 2018, 06:00

Yeah you gotta be sure you get one that has solid caps and pcie 3.0, some of the boards use electrolytic caps and have only pcie 2.0, I looked up some reviews on your current motherboard which is why I am suggesting to replace it, that and the fact I've grown to loathe Asrock...

Now is not a really good time to buy a PC cause the prices are ridiculous due to the crypto currency craze... amusingly enough you could probably buy a biostar crypto board to suit you for $93 from newegg

I bought myself a new little integrated CPU Biostar motherboard that has a quad core 2.0 ghz (2.8Ghz turbo) CPU on it with integrated video, it won't set the world alight but it'll do me to browse the web and play some lesser games.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 28 May 2018, 07:06

Treloar wrote:
28 May 2018, 06:00
grown to loathe Asrock...
Curious to know what issues with Asrock you've experienced?

When I bought that last rig, reviews for Asrock were that they couldn't do any bad and stability with this PC has been by far the best I've ever had. My previous two rigs had Gigabyte mobos and before that ASUS mobos.

The Gigabyte started off ok for a few months and then some fault arose. Luckily warranty covered it and as the model I had gotten was discontinued, I got a mobo upgrade. It still had the odd issue over the 5yrs I had it. The ASUS mobo I had two of around the house as I bought both my bro and myself similar specced rigs at the same time. It had the odd compatibility issue from memory (can't remember exactly what it was as we're going back to the early 2000s now when I got that rig).

As such, I've been reluctant to touch ASUS and, especially Gigabyte again whilst I haven't had issues with the Asrock rig till now. Of course, that's not to say that their quality doesn't change with time and that my experience is the standard for all their parts out there.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by n1cholas » 28 May 2018, 12:00

Treloar wrote:
27 May 2018, 04:13
Apparently, alot of the newer CPU's on the market of late are not supported natively by the motherboards you can buy, unless you flash the BIOS.
That's the price you pay for forwards compatibility, much better than the Intel approach of offering very short lifecycles for motherboards by releasing incompatible CPUs in quick succession.

If Mugsy is only going to have the PC another year or two I doubt aluminum electrolytic caps will be a factor.

https://www.allaboutcircuits.com/news/c ... de-rating/

I still see business PC's from the 2000's with perfectly working aluminum electrolytic caps, most of these motherboards used aluminum electrolytic caps from reputable sources so don't suffer from the issues consumer boards did with fake poor quality aluminum electrolytic caps and bad layout where caps were close to sources of heat like the CPU HSF.

Pentium IV motherboards had a deservedly bad reputation but since the end of the Pentium IV and the capacitor plague the situation has been overblown.

The reality is that in most applications aluminum electrolytic caps will outlast the effective useful life of whatever device they are utilised in.

I have used ASRock motherboards and I would say they're no better but certainly no worse than other consumer entry level motherboards, from a hardware standpoint they normally follow very safe, generic layouts and will likely last 5 years of frequent use assuming there isn't another issue at play like a faulty PSU and/or brownouts.

ASRock often don't release BIOS updates with any frequency and BIOS update support is often quickly dropped but it's not as if the renders the motherboards useless.

The big criticism I have of ASRock and this also extends to ASUS is that they use ASMedia SATA controllers that have a variety of issues including poor interoperability with devices and compatibility issues with Linux. Even when using Windows with the latest drivers turning on devices connected to the ASMedia SATA controller has caused numerous PCs to hang and/or hang in the process of copying data to an attached USB drive.

if I'm setting up a motherboard with an ASMedia SATA controller I make sure all SATA devices are connected to the Intel SATA controller and disable the ASMedia SATA controller.

Gigabyte generally make solid boards but every so often they release a lemon normally when they've tried a more exotic board layout.

Motherboards RAM compatibility issues weren't uncommon in the 2000's, my ASUS P5B-E didn't like my high frequency RAM so every time I had to reset BIOS I'd have to install lower frequency generic RAM then change BIOS settings before re-installing original RAM. I only bought said high frequency RAM because this was during 2006 during the peak of the RAM price fixing scandal when it was impossible to find generic RAM, after that I said to myself "I'm never spending ~$385 on RAM again".

ASUS are increasingly placing pointless chips on their high end motherboards in a likely attempt to justify their price premium.

Recently I looked at an ASUS Z97-A motherboard, the original PSU had died and with replacement PSUs was displaying "Power Supply surges detected during the previous power on, ASUS Anti-Surge was triggered to protect system from unstable power supply unit, Press F1 to Run Setup.". There was nothing wrong with said PSUs and the ASUS Anti-Surge was failing PSUs within ATX standard power spec.

In such a case you're not only paying a premium for these rubbish add-on chips but they're a potential source of issues.

Eventually I found a PSU the Z97-A liked, ironically a mid-range 550W PSU when previously I'd been trying higher-end and higher wattage PSUs.

More expensive doesn't necessarily = better.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Mugsy » 29 May 2018, 15:53

Technician was off sick on Monday so is still working through his backlog of pcs to fix.

Suppose we should start taking friendly bets.... Problem is with the PSU or mobo?
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by Treloar » 29 May 2018, 19:46

Well the system I am currently on is an ASUS 9 years old with solid caps, it has outlasted 8 Asrock motherboards, 1 MSI and 1 Gigabyte board thus far... you ask what problem I had with the Asrock boards is that they all cooked themselves specifically around the north/south bridges, no idea why.

Seven of the eight were cheap $80 boards and upon someone' suggestion that you only get what you pay for the last Asrock motherboard I bought cost approx. $380 and it died in exactly the same way as the cheap boards approx. 1 month out of its warranty, when I pulled the heatsink off the north/south bridge it was burnt/melted black...

I presume, at the time, whatever paste Asrock was using was drying out and the boards were just cooking themselves due to overheating. The really funny thing is all I had to do was buy another motherboard to put the components in and one of those systems still runs to this day... currently rocking it in an MSI board.

Suffice to say by the time I'd gone through 8 Asrock motherboard I was jacked off of that particular brand, they may improved since then, but I have sworn off them for life.

EDIT: Guess I should also mention I ran those systems rather hard for extensive periods of time but that sort of stuff shouldn't happen with good motherboards regardless (and before anyone asks what I mean by hard, I mean running the systems 15 - 16 hours at max doing rendering with 3ds max or adobe premiere pro)
Last edited by Treloar on 30 May 2018, 08:13, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by linxus » 29 May 2018, 22:12

Bad luck maybe? Have a 4.5 yo ASRock B85 board. Only issue Ive had was that one of the RAM slots died about 7/8 months ago - which brought the other annoying thing in - slot placement means I have to rip out the gfx card if I want to slip the RAM in properly.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by n1cholas » 30 May 2018, 00:29

Mugsy wrote:
29 May 2018, 15:53
Suppose we should start taking friendly bets.... Problem is with the PSU or mobo?
1. PSU
2. Voltage regulation on the motherboard maybe faulty/dead caps.
linxus wrote:
29 May 2018, 22:12
Only issue Ive had was that one of the RAM slots died about 7/8 months ago - which brought the other annoying thing in - slot placement means I have to rip out the gfx card if I want to slip the RAM in properly.
Sometimes this can be as simple as a bit of dust on a contact. Try a vacuum cleaner at low suction.

I feel your pain as I hate working on mATX and smaller form factor motherboards as you often have to remove the CPU HSF to remove RAM from the RAM slot closest to the CPU. It can also be a pain to reach the latch on the GPU.
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by linxus » 30 May 2018, 00:47

n1cholas wrote:
30 May 2018, 00:29
I feel your pain as I hate working on mATX and smaller form factor motherboards as you often have to remove the CPU HSF to remove RAM from the RAM slot closest to the CPU. It can also be a pain to reach the latch on the GPU.
Yeah - learnt my lesson there - full sized ATX next time :P
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Re: Advice on what is salvagable

Post by n1cholas » 30 May 2018, 01:36

linxus wrote:
30 May 2018, 00:47
Yeah - learnt my lesson there - full sized ATX next time :P
The ASRock Z77 Extreme4 was advertised as ATX but is actually cut down and misses the front-most lugs so you have to be careful to support the board and not apply too much force when inserting and removing the 24 pin motherboard power connector.

Now I specifically check the actual measurements of motherboard to prevent running into that PITA again.
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