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Computer problem ... notebook "overheating"

Discussion in 'Technology' started by Z0RR0, Aug 31, 2004.

  1. Z0RR0

    Z0RR0 F1 Rookie

    Apr 11, 2004
    3,445
    Montreal, Canada
    Full Name:
    Julien
    Hi all,

    I've had this Compaq Presario laptop (POS, I know, I know) for 2 years now. When I got it, the cooling fans would go on 10 seconds at a time, now and then. Nothing wrong.

    But now, it's the contrary, they are off 10 seconds now and then. Always blowing (even reasonably cool air). I wouldn't mind if they weren't so noisy.

    Anyone have a clue to help me out?
     
  2. andrewg

    andrewg F1 Rookie
    BANNED

    Sep 10, 2002
    4,667
    Chester, England
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    AndrewG
    You could try blowing the cooling ducts out with compressed air, or as the machine seems to be running constantly at high levels you could try removing any programmes you don't need and doing some system maintences (cleanmgr and disk defrags etc) there's usually some logical reason its running too hot, normally if the hard drive is constantly swapping data so a clean up and more memory should help
     
  3. EK3R

    EK3R Formula Junior

    Mar 26, 2004
    807
    CT
    Full Name:
    Eric K
    If its Win2k / XP check in Task Manager (right click the task bar at the bottom of the screen and choose task manager). Check the CPU utilisation - my guess is its running very high constantly. You might have an app (adware / spyware) running in the background that is eating all the CPU time.

    High CPU utilisation = lots of heat.
     
  4. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Apr 3, 2001
    11,237
    Austin, TX
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    Randy
    even if the CPU usage is up there, it shouldn't be the cause of excessive heat like that. most likely, the fan is going out, or you are placing it on your lap for too long and that generates even more heat.
     
  5. tjacoby

    tjacoby F1 Rookie

    Nov 1, 2003
    2,856
    Vancouver Canada
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    tj
    not sure if Compaq has this, but most of my old Toshibas did, a Utility to select Maximum Performance vs Battery vs Quiet operation for the cpu?
     
  6. Ike

    Ike F1 Rookie

    Nov 4, 2003
    3,488
    I'm on a old gateway notebook, this is the first one i've seen that has the fan intake on the bottom instead of the side or back. I can't put it on anything except a hard surface or it will over heat.
     
  7. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Apr 3, 2001
    11,237
    Austin, TX
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    Randy
    This is what some of the Dell notebooks are like. The fan will be on the bottom, and positioned so that it will vent out at an angle instead of straight down. These fans are typically the ones that I replace often on the Latitudes I work with.
     
  8. Z0RR0

    Z0RR0 F1 Rookie

    Apr 11, 2004
    3,445
    Montreal, Canada
    Full Name:
    Julien
    I'll try blowing it with compressed air ... good idea. Perhaps I could port the openings to let more air in ...

    I do have a couple background programs running. Norton Internet Security, SpySweeper being the main ones. I usually only have MSN, an Internet or 2, perhaps add a Word/Powerpoint to the mix, and that's about it. Within 30 minutes, it will start and barely stop. I did remove a lot of crap, ran Scandisk, Defrag, Disk Cleanup and it did help a lot (more with speed than heat, though). Right now, I have 2 IEs, and CPU use is around 2% as I type, goes up to 25-30% when I move the IE window, and jumped to 99% for a split second as I hit "reply". I have no idea how normal (or not) this is. When I have Winamp, Photoshop, 4 IEs and Kazaa running, I fully understand it will work hard and blow full bore!
    Do AMD Athlon XP run very hot? I thought the HD was producing the most heat.

    The Toshiba has a fan manager, haven't been able to find it on the Compaq ... shame!

    It has lateral fans, but the air comes in from the underside ... I try to make sure they are not obstructed. Regarding putting it in the air or on my lap or on hard surface ... I tried a bit of all, and did not notice a big difference ... but I could try, a lil more scientifically.
    Now what is everyone's opinion ... put on desk, or hold in the air? Am I better with heat transfering to the desk, or should I let the big rubber thing under it get some air? What do you guys think?

    On another note, the laptop, did overheat a while back. I left it in my pack on standby mode ... and guess what? it turned on and stayed on for probably 30mins in a closed tight bag! Doh. Can this have affected its heat dissipation performance? If so, what can I do?


    Thanks a lot for all the advice ... never thought I'd get so much help on such a weird subject!! Awesome!
     
  9. f355spider

    f355spider F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    May 29, 2001
    17,058
    USA
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    Hugh G. Rection
    I used to have a Dell Latitude...the fan started getting noisy, so I opened the bottom of the case and removed the keyboard to get inside and there were some nasty dust bunnies in there...blew them all out, and all was well.

    Dave
     
  10. Ike

    Ike F1 Rookie

    Nov 4, 2003
    3,488
    I put mine up on some blocks one time when it seemed to be running hot. The bottom side of the glass table it was on was really hot. I don't know if it helped but it kept the glass cooler.
     
  11. tjacoby

    tjacoby F1 Rookie

    Nov 1, 2003
    2,856
    Vancouver Canada
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    tj
    every laptop goes through this, mine often live this way - they get over it (but Toshiba's). Kind of like the cell-phone conversations when it's misbehaving. Tech: Did you Drop it? Me: No more than normal.
     
  12. maranelloman

    maranelloman Guest

    Reduce the overload of porn downloads...
     
  13. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Apr 3, 2001
    11,237
    Austin, TX
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    Randy
    you'd be surprised. I used to ask those questions quite often. one individual inquired, "what is the maximum hight that it can be dropped and still be covered under warranty?" I responded, "maybe two feet, depending on damage." He laughs and says, "so... two stories is no good, right?"
     
  14. ryalex

    ryalex Two Time F1 World Champ
    Consultant Owner

    Aug 6, 2003
    22,205
    Las Vegas, NV
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    Ryan Alexander
    I was at Staples yesterday, and they have on sale these little metal racks to stand your laptop on.
     
  15. tjacoby

    tjacoby F1 Rookie

    Nov 1, 2003
    2,856
    Vancouver Canada
    Full Name:
    tj
    perfect! my kids still won't let me forget the time my cellphone went diving in 40' of salt water. lesson: never blame the wife after acts of stupidity.
     
  16. Z0RR0

    Z0RR0 F1 Rookie

    Apr 11, 2004
    3,445
    Montreal, Canada
    Full Name:
    Julien
    Thanks for the tips. I tried the compressed air thing, and quite a bit of dust came out, and today, it looks like the fan works much more efficiently. They turn on for 5-10 seconds at a time (and not 5-10 minutes!). Not perfect, but much better than before.
    ryan, thx for the heads-up, I'll be sure to check that out!!!
    maranelloman, no fokkin way!! I just can't do that! :)
     

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