[mythtv-users] Hardware death - CPU vs motherboard?

Andy Colson andy at squeakycode.net
Sat Oct 24 15:44:05 UTC 2009

George Mari wrote:
> On 10/24/2009 07:35 AM, Kawayanan wrote:
>  >
> [deleted]
>> My question is whether there is a way to determine if this is a CPU or
>> motherboard problem?  I don't have access to a different CPU to test, 
>> and I
>> don't want to buy a CPU and have it turn out to be a motherboard problem.
>> If its a motherboard problem, I guess that means starting over with a
>> effectively new system (the Asus is a barebones with most everything
>> onboard).
>> Any suggestions?  My wife and kids are missing DVR. :(
>> Thank for any help!
> It may be a power supply problem.  If you have another system you can 
> temporarily spare, swap PSUs, or move the suspect motherboard into an 
> empty case, if you have one.
> Power spikes, in my experience, tend to kill PSUs first, then 
> motherboards, then CPUs, in that order.
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Agreed.  I'v had more power supply's die than anything else. (but moving power supply is lots easer that moving motherboard)

One way I have tested the power supply is by watching the bios screen that shows you the cpu fan speed and power line readings.  (Where it shows you 3.5V and 6V, and the fans at 1500 rpm or whatever... not sure what the screen is called)

The voltage should remain steady.  If it jumps (it'll be very quick and hardly ever happen, so you have to stare at it for a while) then its a bad power supply.

To test the cpu vs memory, take all but one of the memory chips out, and run memtest86 on it.  (I use UBCD)  If the pc crashes and dies its probably cpu/motherboard.  If the scan runs ok its probably memory.  Test each memory chip, one at a time by itself.

Also if it smells hot, its probably overheating.  If its overheating you can smell it, and feel it... its really hot.


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