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question about cooling


shadow1100mfp
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just for reference, all degrees here are obviously f, not c*, and im sorry this is another long post but i don't know anyother way to ask the question really.

a couple months ago, the fan on the power supply of one of my computers (windows xp) burned out and now the case has no cooling at all, and has been out of commission ever since, and fixing it hasn't been a big priority on my list since i have a new dell that ran itunes just fine, but that stopped working (itunes not the computer), so now fixing this computer is #1 in my book.

it is usually run on the 3rd level of a 3 story house (3 including the basement), which is about 80 degrees in the summer (on about a 75degree day) and about 70-80 in the winter (here in the winter it can be anywhere from 40degrees to -20 or even lower), so the opperating temp. enviorment for the computer is pretty static.

the basement however is always at 50 degrees, no matter the temp outside (even in the summer, and theres no a/c in it lol). im building a workshop in the basement, which is going to have all 6 of my "sort of outdated but still in good condition" computers set up, for various tasks. would it be ok to run the computer in 50degrees without cooling untill i can get a replacment powesupply? its a very basic computer, older models of everything (m/b from years and years ago, 256 rd ram, one dvd burner, one floppy drive that i don't use which will be taken out eventually, nic card, very low end graphics card, sound card, a card that im not sure what it is but has a bunch of lights on it so i figured id leave it in there just for looks lol)

as i said its a very basic computer, the hard drive is brand new from only a couple years ago, the only reason that everything else is old is because i bought the computer new and i ran it in about 110 degree weather (i needed my hak.5 fix because i couldn't go swimming that day!) and the spacer on the m/b melted and shorted out, and the only things i could save were the hard drive and the dvd burner. if it cannot run in these conditions, the other computer i have (mentioned below) has a slave/master harddrive cable in it (ide), could i safely switch hard drives without screwwing up the settings on the other computer? it has a different o/s (windows me), so if i hooked up both hard drives would i be able to choose which o/s i boot up? that would prolly be the best option if i couldn't run the computer as is.

any other information you would need ask, im not certain on the exact models of everything inside it, but if i can run it safely even for a short time in those conditions i can run cpuz and get you all the specs from it.

also, the power supply is an atx switching powersupply, 450 watts. i have another computerthat i don't use anymore, with an atx powersupply, but its only 145 watts. would this be sufficient to use in this computer? i don't see why not, its not like this computer is used for heavy gaming or anything, the most stress it has is running a combination of limewire itunes and firefox, but usually only one of the three programs at a time.

anyhelp i will love, because i have been unable to update my ipod since this computer "saw the magic smoke"

(just to add to this whole thing, its nice to have a place i can go for support on my computers and stuff for free, instead of paying a guy 50 bucks an hour to tell me what i already knew, i have already taken this computer to the techguy and he told me "yup its the p/s, but i dont have one on me. thatll be 75 dollars" *he also gave me a cat5 cable, which is the extra 25 bucks*

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Would it be ok to run the computer in 50degrees without cooling until i can get a replacement power supply?

Let me start by saying 'No', but that isn't necessarily so. They put a fan in your PS to make sure there's some airflow going through the thing. If you can make some of the existing airflow in the case go through your PS you should still be okay. If you've got a decent quality PS (Antec, Enermax...) it will perform reliably even when hot, and my guess is that if you take the cover off (assuming your case will allow this without zapping you) it will hold on to the existing temperature better.

My personal suggestion would be to attach one of the case fans (you do have one of those, yeah?) to the outside of the PS case until you can get a decent replacement. I'm sure you want to keep your harddisks cool and whatever, but remember that any airflow going through your case will reach the harddisks first. The PSU needs to make due with the air that's already in the case, and thus has already been heated by the stuff that's in there.

[some mighty scary stuff about extreme temperatures in which the machine was expected to operate]

Okay, so I'm guessing that no, you don't even have a case fan lying around.

What I would suggest is that you go out and find a new case. Specifically, the Sharkoon Revenger or alternatively their Rebel 9 Value. These things are DIRT CHEAP (46 and 42 euros respectively) and come with a 25 cm fan on the side and a smaller (12 or 14 cm respectively) fan at the front pre-installed. The main thing about running a computer in a hot environment is to have a lot of airflow to prevent the heated air from actually building up. That's why even in a 50 degree room you *still* need to have at least one fan in there to keep things going (and no, a fanned heatsink doesn't count).

the other computer i have (mentioned below) has a slave/master harddrive cable in it (ide), could i safely switch hard drives without screwwing up the settings on the other computer? it has a different o/s (windows me), so if i hooked up both hard drives would i be able to choose which o/s i boot up?

If at most one of the OSes is Windows then yeah, this is quite trivial to accomplish. If both are Windows it's probably harder since each expected during install to find their stuff in C:. On *NIX you'd just update the /etc/fstab file so that it knows what the new filesystem devices are in the system (hdb instead of hda, etc) and you should be good to go. Added benefit is that you can mount the Windows drive from *NIX (though the other way around will be trickier).

also, the power supply is an atx switching powersupply, 450 watts. i have another computerthat i don't use anymore, with an atx powersupply, but its only 145 watts. would this be sufficient to use in this computer? i don't see why not, its not like this computer is used for heavy gaming or anything, the most stress it has is running a combination of limewire itunes and firefox, but usually only one of the three programs at a time.

The biggest drain on the machine is at bootup as EVERYTHING is pulling at the PS at once. The harddisk needs to spin up, the CPU is blasting full tilt because it hasn't been told yet not to, all devices are initializing... I'd say just try it, but then I do have a friend who had 4 harddisks die on him before they uncovered it was because of an underpowered PS. On the other hand, I did run a Mini-ITX and 2 Western Digital harddisks off of a 90 Watt PicoPSU that fed off of a 60 Watt power brick... Maybe try it first without the harddisk attached (just boot a live-cd or something), and if that works, add the harddisk and see how she fares.

*he also gave me a cat5 cable, which is the extra 25 bucks*

Then that better be a 100 meter cable, otherwise he's been giving you a rectal taste of his OTHER cable in the process.

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Would it be ok to run the computer in 50degrees without cooling until i can get a replacement power supply?

Let me start by saying 'No', but that isn't necessarily so. They put a fan in your PS to make sure there's some airflow going through the thing. If you can make some of the existing airflow in the case go through your PS you should still be okay. If you've got a decent quality PS (Antec, Enermax...) it will perform reliably even when hot, and my guess is that if you take the cover off (assuming your case will allow this without zapping you) it will hold on to the existing temperature better.

My personal suggestion would be to attach one of the case fans (you do have one of those, yeah?) to the outside of the PS case until you can get a decent replacement. I'm sure you want to keep your harddisks cool and whatever, but remember that any airflow going through your case will reach the harddisks first. The PSU needs to make due with the air that's already in the case, and thus has already been heated by the stuff that's in there.

[some mighty scary stuff about extreme temperatures in which the machine was expected to operate]

Okay, so I'm guessing that no, you don't even have a case fan lying around.

What I would suggest is that you go out and find a new case. Specifically, the Sharkoon Revenger or alternatively their Rebel 9 Value. These things are DIRT CHEAP (46 and 42 euros respectively) and come with a 25 cm fan on the side and a smaller (12 or 14 cm respectively) fan at the front pre-installed. The main thing about running a computer in a hot environment is to have a lot of airflow to prevent the heated air from actually building up. That's why even in a 50 degree room you *still* need to have at least one fan in there to keep things going (and no, a fanned heatsink doesn't count).

the other computer i have (mentioned below) has a slave/master harddrive cable in it (ide), could i safely switch hard drives without screwwing up the settings on the other computer? it has a different o/s (windows me), so if i hooked up both hard drives would i be able to choose which o/s i boot up?

If at most one of the OSes is Windows then yeah, this is quite trivial to accomplish. If both are Windows it's probably harder since each expected during install to find their stuff in C:. On *NIX you'd just update the /etc/fstab file so that it knows what the new filesystem devices are in the system (hdb instead of hda, etc) and you should be good to go. Added benefit is that you can mount the Windows drive from *NIX (though the other way around will be trickier).

also, the power supply is an atx switching powersupply, 450 watts. i have another computerthat i don't use anymore, with an atx powersupply, but its only 145 watts. would this be sufficient to use in this computer? i don't see why not, its not like this computer is used for heavy gaming or anything, the most stress it has is running a combination of limewire itunes and firefox, but usually only one of the three programs at a time.

The biggest drain on the machine is at bootup as EVERYTHING is pulling at the PS at once. The harddisk needs to spin up, the CPU is blasting full tilt because it hasn't been told yet not to, all devices are initializing... I'd say just try it, but then I do have a friend who had 4 harddisks die on him before they uncovered it was because of an underpowered PS. On the other hand, I did run a Mini-ITX and 2 Western Digital harddisks off of a 90 Watt PicoPSU that fed off of a 60 Watt power brick... Maybe try it first without the harddisk attached (just boot a live-cd or something), and if that works, add the harddisk and see how she fares.

*he also gave me a cat5 cable, which is the extra 25 bucks*

Then that better be a 100 meter cable, otherwise he's been giving you a rectal taste of his OTHER cable in the process.

i think its a 100 foot cable, and he gave me the nic for free because it was an older model.

running it without the case side on isn't really an option though because i h ave 6 computers sitting side by side with cables running everywhere and im afraid that the cables would get inside the case (and thatd be no good)

i was planning on getting a new case too, as the one i have isn't very customizable, but id still need a fan and a p/s. the current case does have 2 front mounts and one rear mount for 80 mm (i think) case fans, and then it has markins for 2 side fans, one 80 or 90 mm (not sure) and one 250 mm (prettty sure), and ive been meaning to pick up some fans but i havn't had the time

the p/s is a generic p/s, as are all the p/s i have in all my computers. oddly enough, all my computers didnt come with fans in them, the only one that did was my brand new $2000 dell, and i don't want to take that apart and take parts from that lol

oh; and yes, the guy has ripped me off several times, but hes the closest guy to me that can fix it without charging me a $100 base fee. just to prove hes ripping me off, i asked him once to put in 1gb of ram,1 case fan, a 20 gb hard drive and another dvd drive, he said im better off buying a new computer cause he didnt want to waste his parts. i was like "wtf@?!?!"

ill try a live cd, but as i said it is a very basic machine, he only put in a p/s he had laying around. the computers (the one i dont use and the one with the burned out p/s) arent that different, the broken one actually has an older m/b, only twice the ram, one burner instead of 3 and thats about it. everything else is the same. so it actually has less parts then the one i don't use.

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I recently had a power supply fan die on me.

One makeshift solution that I used was duct taping a fan sucking air out of the PSU to the back of the PSU. That worked fine until I got a new PSU. If you are very careful, had life insurance and didn't touch any capacitors in the PSU you may just be able to swap out the broken fan with your working one.

What may also work for you is if you have one PSU attached to just the MoBo and get your other PSU and attach that to your optical drives and your HDDs so that the sort of broken one will be under a very low load and not create much heat.

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I recently had a power supply fan die on me.

One makeshift solution that I used was duct taping a fan sucking air out of the PSU to the back of the PSU. That worked fine until I got a new PSU. If you are very careful, had life insurance and didn't touch any capacitors in the PSU you may just be able to swap out the broken fan with your working one.

What may also work for you is if you have one PSU attached to just the MoBo and get your other PSU and attach that to your optical drives and your HDDs so that the sort of broken one will be under a very low load and not create much heat.

it wouldn't be under much heat anyway though, because it is a very, very basic system (it can just connect to the internet and watch movies and stuff lol). but, all i need to do with it for now is run cpuz to get all the parts from it so i can get replacment parts for it (which will be in about 5 days when i can get the parts)

sadly, i do not have life insurance, and knowing how clumbsy i am i would prolly end up touching every last capaciter in the p/s lol

the computer itself hasn't been plugged in since, god, like jan. or feb.? most if not all power that was residing in it should have dissipated by now, shouldn't it?

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all i need to do with it for now is run cpuz to get all the parts from it so i can get replacment parts for it

Could you perhaps elaborate? Doesn't CPU-Z simply give you a listing of stuff in your machine?

1) don't you know this, or can't you break out a screwdriver and find out by just looking at the stuff?

2) When replacing computer bits, you practically *NEVER* want the same exact stuff anyways (aside from the fact that chances are whatever's in there will no longer be available anyways).

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all i need to do with it for now is run cpuz to get all the parts from it so i can get replacment parts for it

Could you perhaps elaborate? Doesn't CPU-Z simply give you a listing of stuff in your machine?

1) don't you know this, or can't you break out a screwdriver and find out by just looking at the stuff?

2) When replacing computer bits, you practically *NEVER* want the same exact stuff anyways (aside from the fact that chances are whatever's in there will no longer be available anyways).

i would break out the screw driver (as i already have many times), but there are no numbers (from what i remember) on the pieces themselves, or they were hidden (i didn't look very hard for them though), as i said, they guy replaced everything with rather old parts of his old computers, so it went form a somewhat highend machine to a really really lowend machine. i could open the case again and take a closer look around, but id still need to run cpuz to get the speeds of everything to find out what id have to buy to improve it.

on any note, if running the computer in these conditions is not a possibility, is there a site i can go to that will help me identify what type (like pci, pci-e, etc.) all the parts in the computer are? i only have a couple hours or so a week that i can work on my computers, and if i could get a site that could help me like that it would make it alot easier to do.

and thanks for all the help guys! :)

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Everest home edition will tell you everything you need to know about your computer.

http://www.majorgeeks.com/download4181.html

thankyou very much!

and, if i don't end up replacing the power supply, im sure if i took the side of the computer off, put a screen there (from an old screen door or something) and put my 36" fan next to it, that i'd end up with plenty of ventilation lol

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thankyou very much!

and, if i don't end up replacing the power supply, im sure if i took the side of the computer off, put a screen there (from an old screen door or something) and put my 36" fan next to it, that i'd end up with plenty of ventilation lol

Taking the side off the Case isnt prefered, it will cause more dust to build up in the case, whcih then can fry components, best to leave it on, n run a lil hotter.

Also theres not really gonna be a program out there thats going to tell you the model psu ur runnin, simplest way, is to check out the amount of molex's you need (the part that goes the the HDD's and CD's) if you need SATA Power Lines, SLI Power Lines, of the psu is MINI-ATX, or just ATX. and How many watts u need to be pumping out.

For the sounds of ur system, it seems like ur gonna be wanting somethin in the 300-400w range.

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thankyou very much!

and, if i don't end up replacing the power supply, im sure if i took the side of the computer off, put a screen there (from an old screen door or something) and put my 36" fan next to it, that i'd end up with plenty of ventilation lol

Taking the side off the Case isnt prefered, it will cause more dust to build up in the case, whcih then can fry components, best to leave it on, n run a lil hotter.

Also theres not really gonna be a program out there thats going to tell you the model psu ur runnin, simplest way, is to check out the amount of molex's you need (the part that goes the the HDD's and CD's) if you need SATA Power Lines, SLI Power Lines, of the psu is MINI-ATX, or just ATX. and How many watts u need to be pumping out.

For the sounds of ur system, it seems like ur gonna be wanting somethin in the 300-400w range.

it's an atx, the only thing i was looking to find out was what type of stuff to buy (like for memory i knew i needed rd ram, not sd or ddr or ddr2, for raid1 hard drive i know i need ide etc)

but, i have a similar system, same proformance but a little less memory, and that only has a 145 watt p.s, most of the parts on that system are higher proformance newer parts then on the one im having trouble with, so shouldn't a lower wattage p.s work? i don't want to try and run it on like 50 watts, i know thats too little, but the local stores, power supplies are rather expensive, a 250watt is $60 and a 430 watt is $80, so i wanted to try and get away with the lower 250 watt one, so i could save 20 bucks. id prefer ordering from tigerdirect where the prices are discount prive at namebrand products, but i don't have paypal, credit card or anything of that nature.

not to mention, i think instead of buying a p/s now, im going to wait another week or 2 and buy a case that has one in it, or buy a case at a computer shop near my house that throws in a free credit if you recruit customers, and i can use that credit to buy a nicer power supply then i would have originally bought

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