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Dell computer randomly turns off

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by newguy1, Aug 15, 2009.

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  1. newguy1

    newguy1 Thread Starter

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    Okay, well my sister has moved out to Colorado and left her computer here. It seems to have several problems. After about 5 minutes of using it, it just shuts off. If it lasts longer then that, it starts to sound like a airplane about to take off. Then when i shut it down (on my own) it sounds like it is trying to start back up but doesn't actually start. It just keeps on making the noise unless i un-plug it. Any help would be great.

    I know it is a Dell Desktop computer using Windows XP. I don't currently have it set up so i cant look at the information but i will do that tomorrow morning once i wake up. How would i find out more information about it though? As i said i'm not sure how long it will stay on for, for me to get alot of information.

    Thanks again :)
     
  2. 1click

    1click

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    Sounds like it might be a hardware issue.
    Is it under warranty?
    You can check by going to http://support.dell.com on the left side, you may have to scroll down, click on warranty enter your service tag#. The service tag# can be found in 2 places (1) on the back of the machine on a white bar coded label (2) a black sticker either on the side or top of the machine. Enter that number and the warranty page will tell you the warranty status of the machine. If it's under warranty give hem a buzz 800-456-3355

    It might just be dusty... pull the side cover off the machine, On some Dimension models there is a black L shaped lever in the back of the machine that you push down and then slide the side cover to the rear of the machine. Some dimensions and optiplexes have a push button on the top and bottom (toward the back of the tower)and when both buttons are pressed the machine will open in a clam type fashion.

    Is there a lot of dust inside? Typically when the machine is not cooling properly the fan will speed up to provide more air. If it's very dusty inside - unplug the machine, vacuum it out being careful not to let the vacuum come in contact with any electronic parts. You can also go to Dell's forums and post specific machine problems there.
    Good Luck
     
  3. HOC1375

    HOC1375

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    I agree, sounds like a heat issue.
     
  4. newguy1

    newguy1 Thread Starter

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    The warranty is up..It ended in September of 08. I have already opened the Cover but it didn't look too dusty. I don't have any compressed air or anything at the moment and i wasn't sure what was safe to vacuum with. Suggestions?
     
  5. 1click

    1click

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    what model and number is it e.g. Dimension 4700?
     
  6. newguy1

    newguy1 Thread Starter

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    OptiPlex GX270

    Thats not it is it?
    Hold on i will plug it in and find out. Its under My Computer > Properties. Right?
     
  7. newguy1

    newguy1 Thread Starter

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    Okay all i could find was Optiplex GX270.
    It is Pentium 4 2.80GHz
    And 1GB of RAM, if any of that helps.
     
  8. 1click

    1click

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    If I remember the 270's were small form factor machines (smaller towers that normal). They didn't cool very well. The power supply was located in the bottom and they were troublesome. Without looking at the machine, my input would be that it's either a power supply issue or a thermal issue with the CPU.
    One last thing you might look in your system event logs if you can keep it running long enough to see if there is an event listed that might give you other clues. To do so:
    Right click My Computer>manage>click the + next to Event Viewer> Then click on System. There may be info inthere relating to the shutdown, but sometimes there is not.

    You can always sign up and try the support forums over at Dell where you'll find some very knowledgable dell folks that are willing to help.

    Don't know how much money or time I would invest in a GX270 as the machine should be somewhere around 4-5 years old and probably have seen it's better days. I have seen them advertized at places like computerGeeks for $100 -$150 before.
    If you curious you could always check ebay to see what they're going for.

    One last piece of info, just buying the cheapest dell tower available today, start at $279 might be the best option. Granted it's Vista and probably a celeron or AMD processor but they are fairly reasonable and would run circles around the 270. Note that my mentioning of Dell, ComputerGeeks and EBay is not an endorsement for any of them, I'm just passing along info that I have seen in the past
    Good Luck
     
  9. newguy1

    newguy1 Thread Starter

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    Okay, Thank you. I will just go on the Dell support forums and see what they have to say. I am hoping for a laptop for my birthday or christmas. I was looking at HP's, any suggestions?
     
  10. 1click

    1click

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    FWIW:
    If you still want XP with an option to go to Windows 7 for Free you can still get it from the the Small Business side of Dell.
    Again this is not an endorsement for Dell, just what I know.
    There are only 3 brands I would even look at Dell, HP, or Gateways
    my 2 cents worth
     
  11. newguy1

    newguy1 Thread Starter

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    Okay Thanks again
     
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