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How often should the fan on your laptop turn on and off?


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21-Feb-2007, 04:34 PM #1
How often should the fan on your laptop turn on and off? Hard drive?
Not sure if this is the right board, but...

I have a Compaq v5310us laptop, and the fan turns on and off very often. Like every 30 seconds to a minute or so, stays on for about 20-30 seconds, then turns off. I was told that the fan can run often because stuff is so close together inside, but this seems like a lot. Is this normal?

Thanks!

Last edited by bloomcounty; 21-Feb-2007 at 05:01 PM..
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21-Feb-2007, 04:38 PM #2
How old is it and has it done this since you have had it?
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21-Feb-2007, 04:41 PM #3
It depends on each and every laptop and it depends on what the laptop is doing. Under heavy load the fan may even stay on, under idle it may rarely come on.

But it seems odd if it happens every 30 seconds and only stays on every 30 seconds. If its a new laptop I'd contact Compaq and see what they say.

But you may also want to bring up Task Manager and check out the CPU usage, if its high then there's something working the processor hard and causing the fan to operate this way.

Its also been awhile since I've worked on a Compaq laptop but there may be some power management option in the Control Panel to control fan behavior or it may be in the BIOS.
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21-Feb-2007, 04:57 PM #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by bonk
How old is it and has it done this since you have had it?
I believe it has done this since I got it new two weeks ago. I noticed it before, but it seems like it happens a lot more now... it's constant on and off about every 30 seconds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple6
It depends on each and every laptop and it depends on what the laptop is doing. Under heavy load the fan may even stay on, under idle it may rarely come on.

But it seems odd if it happens every 30 seconds and only stays on every 30 seconds. If its a new laptop I'd contact Compaq and see what they say.

But you may also want to bring up Task Manager and check out the CPU usage, if its high then there's something working the processor hard and causing the fan to operate this way.

Its also been awhile since I've worked on a Compaq laptop but there may be some power management option in the Control Panel to control fan behavior or it may be in the BIOS.
It's happening under idle. I checked the CPU usage, and nothing but system idle is using the CPU and it is happening. I only have Firefox and Outlook Express open.

Also, how often should the hard drive be running? Mine seems to go on and off constantly. I can also feel a slight vibration all the time under my left hand where it rests when typing. Normal?
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21-Feb-2007, 05:26 PM #5
You can configure the time before the hard drive powers down, its under Power Options in the Control Panel. But it sounds like there may be something running in the background; possibly a virus or spyware scan.

The vibration would be from either the hard drive or fan spinning. If you don't like the way its operating you should contact Compaq or the place of purchase while the warranty and return policy is still in effect, repairs to laptops are very costly. If the fan is faulty and not cooling the components properly and/or vibrating then nows the time to find that out and have it fixed.
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21-Feb-2007, 05:32 PM #6
Yes all good points....also if the Intake is at the bottom of the laptop try raising it up so it gets better airflow...

But your the customer and I would have a word about it from where you bought it.
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21-Feb-2007, 06:48 PM #7
I called and they said to go update the BIOS and that would take care of it. Here's the link for that:

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/s...3330047&dlc=en

...based on the description, I don't see how this would help. It says it's for Quick Launch Buttons updates, which I'm guessing has to do with this:

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/s...3330047&dlc=en

...which I did not do.

Thoughts? I'm unsure if I should try updating the bios here...
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21-Feb-2007, 08:45 PM #8
Well its a BIOS update, that one only happens to list the last reason for an update which is not relevant but a previous release(which are included with the latest) may have addressed a known issue with the cooling.

If Compaq suggested to do it then I would. If it doesn't help or goes terribly wrong then just return it. They told you to do it so they can't blame you.
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21-Feb-2007, 08:49 PM #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple6
Well its a BIOS update, that one only happens to list the last reason for an update which is not relevant but a previous release(which are included with the latest) may have addressed a known issue with the cooling.

If Compaq suggested to do it then I would. If it doesn't help or goes terribly wrong then just return it. They told you to do it so they can't blame you.
So should I do the update to the Quick Launch buttons first, since the BIOS update (at least, the most recent reason, as you said), seems to have something to do with that?
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21-Feb-2007, 08:58 PM #10
Sure, I'd see no harm - it may even help resolve the issue.
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22-Feb-2007, 12:34 AM #11
Okay, so I'm not going to do this yet... Scroll down to BIOS update and look at the link to the past versions and look at each of those:
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/s...roduct=3330047

...none of them say anything about the fan turning on and off. The most current version references "Updates the BIOS to support the new Quick Launch Button (QLB) Application (Version 6.10.D1)" -- yet on the update page linked above, the the quick launch buttons update is version 5.20 H. Maybe they're two different things, but I don'tk now... One of the bios updates was also for Windows Media Center... which my laptop doesn't even have, so why would a past version of the bios be an update for that?

And why would HP tell me updating the BIOS is going to take care of the problem? I wonder if they're just giving me a blanket text book answer that actually makes no sense. Thoughts?

I've also turned some things off in msconfig (like auto HP updates and crap that I checked and made sure didn't need to run on startup), so I don't see how that could have an effect either...

Is there any kind of setting that I could have changed that would be causing the fan issue? It's off for 42 seconds then on for 23 seconds, again, and again, etc. My guess is that the laptop is reaching a certain temperature (?) and then it's kicking on and going off, on and off -- off for about 42 seconds, on for about 23, over and over and over again. It happens even under idle when the CPU is like at 96 for system idle. I am getting REALLY worried about this...

I have done some XviD converstions with AutoGK, and that runs the processor fairly hard (I think?), so the fan ended up running on high for a few hours or more while that's going on. I did that a few times. I assumed the computer is supposed to be able to handle that, as people do it all the time. But could that be the cause of my fan problem now? I wouldn't think so...

Thanks!

Last edited by bloomcounty; 22-Feb-2007 at 11:09 AM..
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22-Feb-2007, 01:19 PM #12
Major Update
MAJOR UPDATE:

I have two logons on my computer, one for me and one for my wife. The fan thing is ONLY happening on MINE! What the heck? When I log in under her, it doesn't happen AT ALL. The fan will turn on if I open, say, Word on her logon, but only for a couple seconds, then turns off. As soon I logon under MY ACCOUNT, the fan starts up and does it as described above. If I'm logged in as me, then SWITCH to her account (without logging out of mine), when I'm on her account it STILL DOESN'T do it. Some more info:

1. I have my Windows XP "look" set up differently than hers.

1a. I also have my own personal start-up, shut-down, and error sounds that I use. Hers are the standard. I don’t think that would matter?

1b. I “tweaked” my settings on my XP look by using this guide:
http://www.tweakguides.com/TGTC.html
...but I don't think any of the settings I changed would cause the fan thing (I only changed things that you can do by selecting or unselecting something in a menu, I did not manually change any registry keys or anything). However, I'm going to go through the entire list and make a list of the things I did change and post that here once I have it.

1c. I have a password for my logon. She does not. But both accounts are Administrator (because certain older programs won't work right if they're not, like Photoshop version I have).

2. I have installed a number of free programs having to do with dvd burning, ripping, shrinking, and XviD conversion. I researched to make sure all programs were spyware free. These programs are: AutoGK, DVD Decrypter, DVD Shrink, ImgBurn, pgcedit, RipIt4Me, and VobBlanker. Some of these show up in the "Show All Programs" menu on her logon, and some don't (see #3 below for more details). I also downloaded MPEG4Modifer and DVDFabDecripter, but never installed them.

2a. I also downloaded and installed Firefox, AVG Free, and ZoneAlarm Free.

2b. I have FireFTP on my Firefox, but not on hers.

3. Our "Show All Programs" menu has slightly different stuff on it. But I think that's because I probably deleted some stuff off of hers and added some stuff to mine. I had some weird issues when trying to delete stuff or add stuff to this menu. Sometimes it would add a folder to the top where Windows Update is at, even though I dropped it down below. And sometimes when I'd delete something from hers, it would say it would affect all users, and sometimes it didn't say that (which may be why I ended up leaving some stuff on hers I'd normally take out, like the DVD ripping stuff). Screen caps below.
"Programs" is hers and "Programs2" is mine. I'm not sure where the Xvid folder came from on mine, but I'm guessing it was part of AutoGK.

4. Early on, I had an issue where I had my logon on and switched to hers and had hers on, with a program open on each, and when I tried to switch back to mine, it kind of froze. It went extremely slow, was hanging on a black screen, and I waited like 5 minutes and nothing was happening. But the hard drive light was going on and off during that time. I eventually just held down the power button long enough to shut the whole thing down. Now, if the hard drive light happened to have been on when it actually shut down, I'm not sure. And I'm not sure if this could have caused some kind of problem...

5. Something else weird, on my logon, when I right-click and get properties, and go to the settings tab and then choose advance, when I click either okay or cancel, and also when I click okay or cancel to close the main properties window, I can HEAR a little "sfftt" noise coming from the computer if I put my ear close. When I do this on her logon, I do not hear this noise. (???)

So any thoughts so far as to why this would only be doing this on my logon? Could I have some kind of spyware or infection only on my logon? I'm not sure how I would have gotten that, as I don't think I went to any site that would download that, nor have I got any emails from people I don't know that I opened (and emails from someone with a virus, etc.).
Attached Thumbnails
How often should the fan on your laptop turn on and off?-programs.jpg   How often should the fan on your laptop turn on and off?-programs2.jpg  
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22-Feb-2007, 01:58 PM #13
Login as You and check in Task Manager and count how many you havr under your name

Then completely restart the PC and sign in as your wife and do the same.
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22-Feb-2007, 03:57 PM #14
When I startup fresh and log in as me, I had 32 process running in Task Manager at first, then it goes down to 31. The one that goes away is userinit.exe -- and that's after a few seconds or so. With my wife's logon, she had 33 process at first, the two that went away were userinit.exe and imapi.exe, and that was after a few seconds, to go down to 31. And I believe each of our 31 processes are the same. I am attaching images of the Task Manager for each (the 32 and the 31 processes for mine and the 33 and the 31 process for hers). I've blacked out the usernames (not sure if that's sensitive info, probably not), so the ones with the black boxes are the process that have our user names next to them.

Also, when I go to Control Panel > System > System Properties > Advanced > User Profiles - Settings -- Both our profiles show up. Mine says it's 3.02GB, her's says 400MB. Could this be something telling?

I am in the process of compiling the list of tweaks I did in XP and I will post those soon. But, again, I don't think I really changed anything major...

Any other thoughts? I think there has to be something running I can't see or something on my logon only?

I also did this, as suggested elsewhere:

I searched for sptd*.sys and secdrv*.sys -- Here's the results:
sptd*.sys -- nothing found
secdrv*.sys -- It found a file called "secdrv.sys" in C:/WINDOWS/system32/drivers

I do not have nor have I ever used DAEMONS Tools -- I don't even know what that is (someone had asked me that).

What now, do you think?

Thanks!
Attached Thumbnails
How often should the fan on your laptop turn on and off?-task-me-31-.jpg   How often should the fan on your laptop turn on and off?-task-me-32-.jpg   How often should the fan on your laptop turn on and off?-task-wife-31-.jpg   How often should the fan on your laptop turn on and off?-task-wife-33-.jpg  
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22-Feb-2007, 04:08 PM #15
See if you can look on both desktops and see how many more Short cuts are on yours and the
Quote:
Mine says it's 3.02GB, her's says 400MB
should mean something as mine is 320mb
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