Temperature range question . . .

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Thread Starter
Jan 10, 2005
I have a question about temperature thresholds for processors and HDD's.

According to the temperature analysis done by PC Wizard 2007, my processor at this instant is at 118.4 degrees F, and my HDD is at 111.2 degrees F. This is only after about 15 minutes of use, and not very intensive use at that. It of course fluctuates by several degrees minute to minute.

I have no idea if this is in a normal range or not. I don't know if the thing is running hot or just normal.

My processor is an AMD XP-M 1866MHz (the frequency is according to PC Wizard). My HDD is a Western Digital 120GB.

The reason I'm concerned about this is because my machine is a laptop, HP ze4700. I purchased it in May 2004. It has given me good service so far, but the fan seems to be coming on more often now. And I know that laptops are harder to cool than Desktops because laptops don't have as much air circulation space.

After about three years (and this thing is almost 3 and a half years old), these laptops begin to loose a lot of cooling efficiency, for a number of reasons, not the least of which is accumulated dust inside.

I'm thinking about shooting a few bursts of compressed air in the vents to try to dislodge and get a little bit of the dust out of the fan assembly. I'm reluctant to crack the case on this thing, though the warranty has long since expired so that wouldn't be an issue. But I'm not very mechanically inclined, and I know these laptops are difficult to open up (not like a desktop where you can just remove the tower and expose the innards for cleaning).

So, the compressed air is about my only physical option.

However, I remember I used to have software, for another laptop I had, that was . . . "Waterfall" something??. . . or "Rain" something??? . . . that cooled the processor some.

I'm worried that this thing, which I like and would prefer to keep for another coupla' years, will suffer a heat related failure if I don't take some action soon. Right now I just shut it down if I think the thing "feels" too hot on my lap. That's usually about 5 or 6 hours of continuous use. However, if I run some sort of scan (like anti-virus or anti-spyware) or a defrag, for example, then the fan comes on more than it does if I'm just casually surfing or wordprocessing or something less intense, and it seems to heat up the whole case faster. Now when I say "heat up the whole case" I certainly don't mean too hot to touch (I would never let it get that hot intentionally), but it definitely is very warm.

Anyway, my question is: What would be an acceptable upper range of temperature for this processor (in F)???

I'd like to have a more tangible guideline for temperature other than "It feels warm and the fan comes on a lot".


Jan 2, 2001
That is about 48C; not all that bad for an xp type cpu. They did run warm at best. Your hd is also is at about 44C; again not too bad. When temp of the hd gets >50C, then you may have a problem.

You can clean the vents with air. Just pickup a can of air; available at any computer shop. I go to costco and buy it in packs of 6 and it costs about what many places charge for 1 can.
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