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Big Fish Games Website

Posted on 2010-01-03
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I have a client who is running a normal Windows XP machine with plenty of hard drive and 1GB of RAM.
The computer is on all day at their house and it runs perfectly throughout the day.  The issue they have is when they try to play games from the Bigfishgames.com website after a little while the PC will just shut down, like losing power.  I initially thought it was a power supply issue and replaced the power supply unit.  It still seems ot be doing it though.  Also lately the graphics seem to shimmer just before it shuts off.  In order to turn the PC back on they have to turn the switch off at the wall socket, then on again, then the PC will boot up.

I am now stumped as to what the issue would be.  Power supply has been replaced for a new one.  I would not think it is software as the PC can not be turned back on unitl the power at the wall is reset.
Strange, has anyone else come across such an issue?
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Question by:mbelletty
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by:mbelletty
ID: 26167656
To add more information, the PC ONLY shuts down unexpectedly when they are playing the bigfishgames.
If they are on the internet, msn, etc the computer runs fine!!
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Expert Comment

by:_
ID: 26168508
Sounds more like a overheating issue. Videocard or cpu most likely, though a few mobos have had Northbridges that run hot, lately.
Whatever 'engine' those games are using, is making that rig WORK.

If they don't have a Temp Monitor already (either installed or on an included CD), give SpeedFan a try.
http://www.almico.com/sfdownload.php
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by:_
ID: 26168520
whoops, forgot to ask about the hardware specs.
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by:mbelletty
ID: 26168668
I dont have the PC with me at the moment, but I think it is a P4 H/T 3.0GHZ
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by:_
ID: 26168732
OK.  Also, when you changed the PSU, did you check the dust buildup in the CPU Heatsink/Fan, and Intake/Exhaust fans/grills?
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Expert Comment

by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 26168873
Pretty much all BigFish's games are DirectX or Flash based so make sure they have the latest verisons of both (and graphics card driver).
If it's a specific few games check their user forum (http://forums.bigfishgames.com/games/list.page) sometimes they'll push an update that ends up buggy.

On what you've given us so far though I'd agree with coral47 this sounds like a hardware problem.  Do they have any other games that will push their graphics card? If the only time they make their hardware work is on this site then it's probably co-incidence that BigFish is involved.
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Author Comment

by:mbelletty
ID: 26207516
I have just gotten this PC in.  It seems like the problem is getting worse and not exclusive to the Big Fish Games.  It is now shutting down unexpectedly after ten minutes or so of use on internet, email, etc.

I am going to strip down the PC and clean & check all components.  Check CPU, Motherboard capacitors, etc.  Maybe put some more paste on the CPU and put back together.

Maybe it is hardware issue.  Anyone got any other suggestions I should be looking at with overheating issues?

Thanks

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Accepted Solution

by:
_ earned 2000 total points
ID: 26207653
CPU, Video, and the airflow, are mostly it. If it is the chipset, one can sometimes repaste or rig a small fan to that heatsink.
If it is the other thingamagigies, you might as well say the mobo is bad.

But it is surprizing what a good dusting and new paste will do.   (crossing finger you get an easy fix)
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Expert Comment

by:_
ID: 26207671
One more thing, if the PSU fan looks dirty, you might want to pull the PSU, pop the casing, and dust it out also.
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Author Comment

by:mbelletty
ID: 26207682
I just stripped PC down, cleaned everything up, repasted, blew the crappers out of the components for all dust left out.
Put it all back together then started it up.
Funnily enough the power supply was whining like a dog going through a bansaw.  I replaced the power supply with another one.
I have started the PC up. Nice and quiet.  I am wondering if it was an amateurish mistake and I should have replaced the power supply as it was faulty/overheating!!

Anyway, going to run it now all night and see how it goes!
Thanks for your help to date!
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Expert Comment

by:_
ID: 26207742
Actually, you said (or were told) the power supply was already replaced (just saw it in the original post). Anyway, a good dusting almost never hurts anything.  ; )
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by:_
ID: 26215068
Thank you much.   : )
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