Problem: Computer Boots Inconsistently

Discussion in 'Computers' started by Mad Scientist, Aug 9, 2009.

  1. Mad Scientist
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    Mad Scientist Deplorable Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    I'm having a problem with my computer that I've never seen before so maybe one of you could help me with it. A little background on it:

    It's a Dell 4600i PC with Windows XP. I've added a wireless card to it so I can connect with the router in my house. That works just fine.

    The problem is when I start it up. Because of the strange wiring in my garage done by the previous owner, I have to shut off all power to the garage at the breaker box when I lock up. I shut down Windows as normal but when I return and turn the power back on my computer will turn on by itself. No need to hit the power button.

    Sometimes it will boot normally but usually it will not. I usually have to press "F1" at start up to load the system and it will advise me to run the "setup" program. Anyone know what that means?

    Here's the weird thing: After it boots, the clock/calendar/system time always says "12:00 PM, November 5th, 2003" (And no, that wasn't the day Dr. Brown invented time travel!) :lol:

    The BIOS has been updated.

    If any of you have seen this before or have any ideas to fix it other than changing from Windows I'd appreciate it.
     
  2. BasicGreatGuy
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    BasicGreatGuy Aut libertas aut mors

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    When is the last time you replaced the internal battery? They usually last several years. But, sometimes, they can go bad.

    Sounds like you have corrupted boot file(s). Have you tried reinstalling XP?
     
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  3. Terry
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    Terry Shut the $%$ Up!

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    Change the internal battery in your PC
     
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  4. Terry
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    Terry Shut the $%$ Up!

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    Open up the case, the battery looks just like a large watch type battery. Also check to make sure your fans are working. Overheating can be the cause also but what you stated it sure is the Battery!
     
  5. Mad Scientist
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    Mad Scientist Deplorable Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    Ah, I'd forgotten about the internal battery! I'll see if I can get a replacement. There's a Radio Shack not too far from here.

    I did an format on my hard drive and re-installed XP. Auto updates are on so there should be no problem there.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2009
  6. JBeukema
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    JBeukema BANNED

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    Well, there's your problem, right there. :eusa_eh:


    Check your BIOS. Some systems are set to reboot after power is returned after an outage.

    Also, get the wiring fixed before you burn your house down or something.
    Your BIOS battery is probably dead, if the internal clock is getting reset. It could be a worse problem, but check the BIOS battery first.
    The BIOS has been updated.
     
  7. BasicGreatGuy
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    BasicGreatGuy Aut libertas aut mors

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    I second what Terry said. Make sure the fans are working properly as well. Double check the power supply too. They can go bad as well.
     
  8. Terry
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    Terry Shut the $%$ Up!

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    smelling the power supply will tell you if it's overheating. The dead give away is the time changing, and pc shutting down. Long ago (1995) this happened to me and I gave my PC away thinking it was garbage...the person I gave it to told me it was the battery. LOL Lesson Learned.
     
  9. JBeukema
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    JBeukema BANNED

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    Set auto updates to notify only. Always set a system restore point before installing updates. MS is known for releasing updates that crash your computer and only telling you after everything's gone to shit. Also, grab your xp install disk and invest the time to build a BartPE disk.
    Bart's Preinstalled Environment (BartPE) bootable live windows CD/DVD

    Also, get at least GParted Live in case you ever need to work with your partitions. You can dl the iso here or just burn a Puppy disk

    If you
    're wiring's the shit, you might want to get one of these, too
     
  10. Xenophon
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    Xenophon Gone and forgotten

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    If you open the case, make sure you have non magnatized tools and that you are careful.

    You can fry the motherboard very easily.
     

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