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Christopher Low

Frustration Unlimited

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Well guys, after my comments regarding the colours in FU3 when using my ATI Radeon 9800 Pro, I have another (bigger) problem to attend to. I powered up my PC on Saturday morning.....and then it shut down after a few seconds. Er.....****. I tried it several times, but without success. So, I disconnected all of the cables, and opened her up.Oh dear. The massive Thermaltake heatsink and fan assembly that should have been sitting directly over the CPU had decided to go for a walk :-eek It was sitting on the motherboard....together with a couple of pieces of broken black plastic. The metal bracket that was presumably used to hold this huge piece of cooling kit in position was also loose and disconnected.It looks very much like I will have to send the entire PC back to be repaired, which almost certainly means that I will not be seeing it again until the latter half of next week (since the Easter holiday has arrived at just the wrong time).:-fumeChris Low.

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Ouch! Looking at the huge lump of copper that is the SLK-800 CPU heatsink I use, held in place only by six tiny bits of plastic I always feared that would happen. Especially last year when the computer regularily travelled by bus to and from my student home, a distance of 50 km :-lolThere is another type of cooler, that screws directly into the motherboard. Worth looking into, especially if you move the PC around by bus a lot.

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Gee Chris :-(This is not good news. Don't suppose you still have the old one? I've never traded any of my PCs in, due to the insulting price they offered. I either sold them as complete systems or (as I do now), cannibalise them to upgrade my daughter's PC and help friends out.This way, they stay 'in the family'. If my PC died tomorrow, I could easily beg and borrow the required bits to get up and running - albeit at reduced speed.I hope the shop is helpful and rebuilds it straight away - another good case for dealing with local shops and not buying through Dell or IBM. Whilst they can deliver PCs within 24 hours, their service takes weeks (if you're lucky). In fact, our multi-national corporation recently dumped Big Blue and has switched back to local support. One reason was the 7-10 day service turnaround :-erksRegards,**************Jonathan Point**************"I'd rather be down here wishing I was up there than up there wishing I was down here"

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Jon,I do still have the old PC, but I can't be bothered to reinstall everything :-) The DVD drive on this PC isn't exactly one of Windows XP's best friends, and the install routine regularly crashes if I attempt it directly from the CD's. I had to copy the contents of all of the CD's to temporary directories on the hard disk before installing FU3, but even that could result in a system shutdown. The benefit of this method was that I didn't end up with a half installed piece of software that XP thought was COMPLETELY installed :-eekMy new PC is being collected today, so it should be delivered to the system builder tomorrow (Wednesday). Unfortunately, Easter is almost upon us, which means that I will not be seeing it again until at least April 14 :-(Chris Low.

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>>> It was sitting on the motherboardMore or less the same "damage" a virus can cause to the operating system ;-) The latter I currently have as a problem. The concept of worms and trojans, this spontaneous shutdown and restarting all on its own... I removed the Lithium, the P2P.SdDrop, Cardown and Backdoor, eh pardon, b_a_stards...Pieter

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Chris, "The DVD drive on this PC isn't exactly one of Windows XP's best friends, and the install routine regularly crashes if I attempt it directly from the CD's. I had to copy the contents of all of the CD's to temporary directories on the hard disk before installing FU3, but even that could result in a system shutdown. The benefit of this method was that I didn't end up with a half installed piece of software that XP thought was COMPLETELY installed :-eek "Firstly, you obviously had a 'wobbly' in your old PC from day 1. This is bad. How come the shop never fixed it? I know that shops 'duck and dive' because face it - they know about as much as you or I do. This is no excuse. I have never had a problem with hardware that wasn't sorted out with the shop, although I have had to have 'terse words' with a few shops over time. Similarly with software. Again, we all 'persevere' but, if it doesn't install, or crashes regularly, it's probably a hardware fault. I am what most shops probably consider a 'painful' customer as I know enough to stand up for myself, yet still demand satisfaction. I've been asked a few times 'if you know so much, why didn't you fix it?' My answer is 'that's why I paid you in the first place'. I'm buying a new car right now and the dealer already hates me - before it's been delivered ;) When going through ALL the paperwork for the 5th time, I uncovered some glaring errors between the warranty statement and the dealer's advertising. Now, I'm getting $2500 worth of accessories for free - and the 6 year(!), 175,000km warranty :-lol PS I hope you're not using the same builder this time! Regardless, I hope you make any problems THEIR issue immediately, before accepting 2nd best. YOU'RE the customer - and the customer is ALWAYS right ;)Regards,**************Jonathan Point**************"I'd rather be down here wishing I was up there than up there wishing I was down here"

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Jon,There is nothing wrong with the DVD-ROM drive in my old PC. When I bought the system in February 2001, it had Windows ME installed. I never had any problems with system shutdowns when using the drive until I decided to upgrade to Windows XP.The simple fact of the matter is that Windows XP does not like a large range of "legacy" hardware and software....and my old LG Electronics DVD drive presumably falls into that category.The new PC is from a different company, but that doesn't make me feel any better. A failure of the support structure for the CPU heatsink and fan should not occur after only two weeks of use. I am ALWAYS very careful when I handle any electrical components (or the PC itself), so this isn't a result of "rough handling".What annoys me is that I am almost getting the feeling that this is all my fault (which it isn't). I NEVER touched the CPU heatsink and fan before this happened, so the bracing obviously wasn't up to the job. In addition, I packed the PC in the original packaging, and the courier picked it up yesterday. Then I discovered that the PC company had sent me an e-mail (how was I supposed to receive this when I didn't have access to my PC ? It was only when I decided to check my home e-mail on my WORK PC that I discoverd this). Anyway, this e-mail informed me to remove the cooling kit completely (it was stuck fast to the CPU by the thermal paste when I last tried to remove it), and pack it separately. Oh, great. Thanks for letting me know (they have my phone number). So now I have to hope that the courier company will handle the box with care (I wrote KEEP THIS WAY UP in large letters on the top of the box), otherwise this company will declare that any damage caused to the cooling kit or motherboard will be due to not following their instructions properly. You see where I get this "it feels like it's all my fault" idea ? :-(They also wanted me to fill in a "PC Returns Form". Again, sending me an e-mail that I couldn't immediately access was pointless. By the time that I discovered the e-mail, it was too late.I am just hoping and praying that this is all sorted out without another huge hit to my wallet. I have been very pleased with the PC so far, but things like this can really dent my confidence. I sincerely hope that they provide some extra support for this cooling kit, since it is rather heavy. It would be fine in a desktop PC, since it would be sitting on the CPU with gravity holding it there. This is not true in a tower case.I would request that everyone here say a little prayer for my PC every night until it is returned :-)Chris Low.

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Chris,We are gathered in a circle, holding candles and humming softly - will that do? :-lolIt's not your fault, although I know only too well how retailers try this on when they don't want to admit anything. The fact they sent an email instead of calling you isn't the sign of a conscientious retailer.Just stick to your guns. You paid good money for it (cheque didn't bounce) and now it doesn't work. 'Why' is their problem, not yours. Give them a reasonable period (2-3 days because they'd build a new one in less time...) and demand (in this order):* Your repaired PC back with the warranty rewound to the day you receive it back AND a more appropriate cooler mounting)* A replacement one (with a more appropriate cooler mounting).* Your money back.The cooler issue is simple because there are alternative motherboards that provide the required mounting points and hardware. Again, demand action. If they wish to use the old line 'but you were happy with it before', point out that you weren't shown the inside of the PC prior to purchase and if you had, you wouldn't have bought it! Use a roofing analogy (like using plastic clips on a copper downpipe) if they don't understand.And, do it in writing (not email).Regards,**************Jonathan Point**************"I'd rather be down here wishing I was up there than up there wishing I was down here"

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Well, my PC should be back with me tomorrow (Thursday, April 15). Unfortunately, the heatsink and fan detached yet again during transit to the supplier....and this is my fault. It may seem like a harsh punishment, but I have to face reality here. I didn't remove this and pack it separately, and I should have known that there was a possibility that it would "wander" and cause more damage. In fact, it actually pulled the CPU out of its socket this time, which means that I have to pay a total of

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Cheer up Chris it could have been worse. Imagine if Ansgar had released the Concorde during your PC's convalesence ;-)Cheers, QvdG

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Chris ;Sorry to hear about your PC problem,Hope it works well for you . I have an AMD chip and there is no way it can fall out or come unattached from motherboard .As for hardware config I have a desktop where everything is laying flat and upright I like it so much that I just replace components to get the latest upgrades . So far this is # 4 computer upgrade . Chaintech ATX MOBO,AMD 2600XP ,256 dual matched DDRRAM-400 bus , ATI radeon 9600,Chaintech AV710 24bit snd card . I guess the next step is AMD 64bit Cpu chip and motherboard,Ram,and serial HD'sOf course avery upgrade is an expensive move. THE never ending plight to make things faster better.!!!!CaptRolo

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For anyone who is interested, I have regained my determined attitude. When my PC arrives today, I will be contacting the supplier regarding this entire sorry affair. I would like to be compensated for what has happened, since NONE of it is my fault.Stay tuned for more news :-)Chris Low.

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***UPDATE***The PC is working fine as far as I can see. The large Thermaltake heatsink and fan have been replaced with another combo (which is a shame, since I rather liked it). As for the cost, I have sent a letter to the Managing Director of the company, explaining the situation in detail. He has just responded to let me know that he will look into the problem to see if there is anything that can be done. Well, it's a start :-)Chris Low.

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