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AnaB29Flag for United States of America

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Replaced the NB Heatsink, computer won't boot

Hello,

I have an older PC, Windows XP Pro (ECS C19-A SLI (1.0A) LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce4 SLI XE ATX Intel Motherboard ) and the fan over the north bridge has started making an horrific clatter.  I discovered if I tugged the wires a certain way the noise stopped so I tied the fan wires up to some other wires and it was quite for about 5 minutes then began its mack truck impersonation again.

I figured the heat sink probably needs to be replaced (it's 6.5 years old) so I took it off and noticed that the paste was super dry and cracky.  So I cleaned it with Arctic cleaner, purifier and the applied Arctic 5 to the chip and clipped the HS back into place.  I thought maybe the old paste had become inefficient and was causing the fan to work harder, hence the noise?

Well, the noise did stop but the computer will not fully boot :(

I tried starting it 3 times and it got a little further than detecting the CPU then it would shut down.  I let it rest 5 minutes, started it again, and it was just about to boot from HDD and then shut down.

I let it rest again, started it, and it got to the 'Windows didn't shut down correctly...'  screen. Just as I was about to press enter to start normally, it shutdown.

I've attempted to start it 3 more times at 5 minute intervals and just before or just after I press enter to start normally it shuts down.   I did notice when I took off the HS that the green square that surrounds the chip was a tiny bit corroded along two sides of the chip.

Anywho, I don't  know what's wrong, please advise.

Thanks,
Ana
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ASKER

Thanks for the input.

Since I had planned on replacing the HS anyway, I'm going to order this one unless you have a recommendation for a better model, and some ceramique, since its non-conductive, then I'll post back with the results.  

nobus: I checked to make sure that I hadn't dislodged anything else, and I changed the CPU paste 1 year ago so it should still be fine, yes?  How often should it be changed?

PantherTech: I have a feeling the the fan may be the root cause of the issue, as I mentioned above, when I  wiggled the wires into a certain position the noise stopped for a bit.

web_tracker: I think the paste layer was thin enough, (I squeezed two tiny, flat dots and spread it on the chip with an old library card) but I'll double check when I install the new HS.

Thanks again
and I'll be back ASAP

Ana
<<   How often should it be changed?    <<  if you don't touch it, and the cpu does not heat up - you don't change it
if you want to monitor the temps - use speedfan:  http://www.almico.com/speedfan.php
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ASKER

EE is nudging me to engage with this question.  

So...I just received my parts today and I will be putting them in tomorrow and post the results!

Great Evening,

Ana
EE wants you to keep engaged, evry 2-3 days posting helps
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So I got the HS/Fan yesterday and its not a fit.  Firstly the clip mounts are functional in the opposite direction than my MOBO's loops (Intel board). I tried using the clip mount from my old HS but the fins on the Silenx are too wide.  My board does not have any screw holes for any other mounting option.

So my options are now these:
Find a replacement FAN that will fit my current HS. 40mm x 40mm 3 pin fan with no side casings so it will fit INSIDE the edges of the old HS.

User generated image    User generated image
Or... order one of these:  Swiftech MCX159-CU .  It is the only 40mm heat sink with mounting clips in the correct direction that I could find in my search online today.  

The problem with the second option is the price of the new HS/fan is almost one third the price of a new MOBO, and my current board is almost 7 years old.

So I will search for a new fan replacement that will fit my current HS and go from there.  Any tips on were to find one like the image above would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Ana
mabe you can use a fanless cooler :  http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/zalmanzmnb32j/
here the zalman is out of stock (too old) but the price is 8$
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835118214
look if ypou find anyhting at zalman 's   : http://www.zalman.com/eng/product/CategorySecond_Pic.php
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Thanks for the tip, I did find an option but I need to find one more item.  

The old heatsink has a thermal pad on it that covers the pins that surround the NB chip.  If the pad was a whole square it would measure roughly 35mm x 35mm  I've not been able to find one close to that size.  I'm assuming that those pins shouldn't come in direct contact with the heatsink?

User generated image
Where does one get obscure replacement components anyway?  I have found some that are designed to cover the chip itself but obviously they are much too small to span those perimeter pins.

Thanks,
Ana
from this site, i can't see how the heatsink can contact any contacts..this is your chip, right?
contacts are on the underside imo
http://www.techarp.com/showarticle.aspx?artno=285&pgno=3

you can try to find it on second hand material fairs

i assume cleaning and oiling the fan does not work?
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ASKER

OK,

got the new fan and put it in.  I also cleaned and oiled the fan on the hard drive holder because it was humming slightly too.  I put it all back together and still a no go.  It shuts down just after windows loads, the widows xp screen appears briefly for 2 seconds.  

The new fan is working as it should, so the only question I have now in relation to the NB chip is the thermal pads issue.  Yes nobus that image is my chipset, however the contacts are face-up not on the underside so they are in full contact with the heatsink, here's an image from inside my case:

User generated image
If you look closely, you'll see a bit of the old thermal pad stuck in amongst some of the contacts.  There was more of it, but I was able to clean it away.  So, the original pad is still stuck to the bottom of the heatsink (image above, previous comment) with tiny bits of it missing. This pad I'm still looking to replace.

But how does one diagnose the a computer if it won't turn on?  Is there a way to test he motherboard without going through through the OS? This is what I'm researching now.

Ana
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Update!!!

I went through the system and checked all  connections (good) and cleaned and oiled as many fans as I could.  I also re-pasted the cpu cooler and the computer is working now, yeah!
It has only been one year since I installed the cooler master hyper 101, but apparently the paste needed to be replaced.  This time I applied the paste to the heatsink instead of the cpu since it has those direct contact pipes that create cracks along the seams.  

I will now be monitoring all of my systems to keep abreast of the temperatures.

Thanks for all of your help and input!!


Have a great weekend,
Ana
looks like a bad contact, or dislodged connector
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ASKER

You're right, it was a bad contact.

Thanks again,
Ana