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Please Help Me Resolve An Argument With My Father

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
My Microsoft Certified Computer Technician of a father and I, a 15 year old self-trained Computer Gamer/System Builder had an argument today about one of our family friend's computer issues... While my father seems like he would obviously be correct due to his qualifications, he has been out of the loop for around 5 years and has no interest in the subject of computers, while myself, only being 15 has still built a few rigs for both my friends and I, and have definitely had my share of computer problems, in which I have eventually solved...

Anyway... the problem its self was to do with a fairly outdated computer, still using a Pentium 4 @ a stock clock of 3GHz, DDR RAM and a basic, and ancient ATI Radeon videocard... the computer had been running for many years, however just recently it seemed to boot up normally, going through the gigabyte memory check with success, but when it got up to the selection for "startup windows normally", "safe mode" etc... the keyboard wouldn't work, and then the computer would restart after 5 seconds on the Windows XP startup screen... the power supply also seemed to be making a weird noise and the hard drive would randomly be unrecognisable under BIOS...

I diagnosed it as an issue caused by the power supply, possibly sue to ageing capacitors, therefore resulting in an insufficient amount of watts when the computer went to up to a higher percentage of load...

However, my father diagnosed it to be any number of problems, any other than the power supply... he listed a few consisting of the frying of USB ports, RAM or the CPU... I found all of these problems to be extremely illogical considering the symptoms, but he persisted in saying that it would be 99.9% impossible for it to be the PSU...

What do you think the problem is??? Please help me resolve this argument with my father...
post #2 of 34
can you boot into a linux distro either on a flash drive or a live CD disk? Also, download and burn seatools to a CD, as with computers that old there is a very good chance the hard drive is failing.
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Blue Giant
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post #3 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by metroidfreak View Post
can you boot into a linux distro either on a flash drive or a live CD disk? Also, download and burn seatools to a CD, as with computers that old there is a very good chance the hard drive is failing.
I do not have access to the computer at the moment, considering that I am at home now... however that would not explain the loss of USB ports at a certain point...
post #4 of 34
just a little note, i had a similar problem w/ a friends computer, which turned out to be a failing hdd. his keyboard never stopped working though.
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post #5 of 34
Your most likely right.

Not op, dude above me, ol.
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post #6 of 34
Well it may not be the usb ports exactly, but the computer actually locking up. Im going to assume you have keyboard usage in the BIOS? If you are able to use a linux distro with no problem, it'd be linked to your HDD or installation.
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Blue Giant
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post #7 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by metroidfreak View Post
Well it may not be the usb ports exactly, but the computer actually locking up. Im going to assume you have keyboard usage in the BIOS? If you are able to use a linux distro with no problem, it'd be linked to your HDD or installation.
Yes... the keyboard was only not functioning after that screen came up which occurs after you shutdown windows, using something other than the OS itself...
post #8 of 34
Thread Starter 
So everyone agrees that it is the Hard Drive?

This will be good to know for the next time that I encounter this issue
Edited by stinky - 1/1/11 at 12:28am
post #9 of 34
yea HDD is the best bet
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post #10 of 34
Yeah if you have usage in the BIOS then Im about 90% certain its the HDD without doing a HDD test or trying another OS source.
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Blue Giant
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