Win XP question

Discussion in 'Operating Systems' started by jpk, Feb 18, 2013.

  1. jpk

    jpk Senior member

    Mar 30, 2001
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    I have a friend who's wife's computer is having a curious issue. It's an old Dell Optiplex GX270. She uses it mainly for surfing and emails. The CPU cooler fan died and the computer shut itself down with a thermal warning notice. I replaced the fan and when the XP load page comes up the computer shuts down, again showing a thermal alert. The fan is actually bigger than the original so it is providing sufficient cooling. However, when I boot to safe mode, the computer runs fine. It doesn't shut down. Any thoughts as to what might be going on with it? Thanks for any help.
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  3. Bubbaleone

    Bubbaleone Golden Member

    Nov 20, 2011
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    If I'm reading correctly; you only replaced the heatsink fan. On a PC that age I'd suggest removing the heatsink ( after it's heated up), thoroughly cleaning off the old thermal paste, and then replacing it with new. I'm sure the TIM is original, completely brittle, and no longer transfering heat effectively.

    When you boot into safe mode there is virtually no load on the CPU since only the bare minimum of drivers and services are loaded, and the CPU is generating less heat than a normal boot generates. If you checked the temp of the CPU in safe mode, I'm pretty sure you'd see it just below the shut-down limit.
  4. atguy10

    atguy10 Junior Member

    Apr 5, 2010
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    That Dell might be using a propriety fan connector so you must replace it with a Dell fan or else it won't work.
  5. JackMDS

    JackMDS Super Moderator<BR>Elite Member
    Super Moderator

    Oct 25, 1999
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    Try to plug the fan to a regular PSU connector instead of the Mobo's dedicated CPU connector.

  6. dave_the_nerd

    Feb 25, 2011
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    Yeah, I'll second what's already been said. Check the TIM, check the HSF mounting bracket (I've had those break off) and make sure the fan you installed is actually spinning.

    I had a GX280 whose fan failed - the computer chugged along for I-don't-know-how-long before anybody did anything intensive enough to cause a thermal event failure. (It took a couple weeks to get the replacement part in, folks were still using the machine, and it didn't happen a second time. The PSU must have provided "enough" airflow.)

    Dell really kinda over-engineered those for cool'n'quiet running.
  7. Gunbuster

    Gunbuster Diamond Member

    Oct 9, 1999
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    Check the motherboard capacitors. A large majority of GX270 were victims of capacitor plague.
  8. sm625

    sm625 Diamond Member

    May 6, 2011
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    This wont work if the bios is reading the fan speed and is reporting the invalid reading as a thermal error. If it is merely reading the cpu temperature then yes all you need is any source of power for the fan.
  9. darkewaffle

    darkewaffle Diamond Member

    Oct 7, 2005
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    Ugh, we have some 270s at work still lol. I do not like them.

    Wiki on "Computer fan" indicates Dell uses a proprietary connector. If it's looking for some sort of reading from it before boot, that may be the reason for it. I looked at one of our 270s in the back and it's using a three pin connector at least.

    Also you might be able to simply go into the BIOS and disable those protections.
    #8 darkewaffle, Feb 19, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013
  10. cheez

    cheez Golden Member

    Nov 19, 2010
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    The PC won't let the user get past the boot screen due to fan failure error. :D

    yes we can disable chassis intrusion in BIOS. That'll shut the stupid low battery and fan alert up ha ha lmao

    Good smart man! That is one of the things that can easily be overlooked especially on old Dell systems such as GX270, 280, and the 620's.... The 745 and 755 are less ghey... meaning they use more Japanese nichicon caps.

    Asus P5B Deluxe mommyboard has even better components! Running like a tank, stellar condition. It's almost 7 years old!

    Thermal error isn't directly related to the capacitor problems but you might have both issues!

    i say hell with it do the following:

    - Leave that old cpu fan connected hanging dangling loose... disable chassis intrusion alert in bios.
    - Remove the old heatsink and watercool that biotch (CPU)! Wattachillin'

    Or just throw out the PC and get a custom build PC. You don't want Dell proprietary ghey stuff.

    #9 cheez, Feb 20, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2013