Advice Column: Computer Trouble

Burnt ComputerI like to think of myself as a computer expert. Once, when I was helping my friend install a new CD-ROM drive I didn’t feel like waiting for it to reboot. I decided to install it while the computer was still running. I took out the old drive and slid the new one in.

Then I tried to connect the power cable, but I guess I inserted it at a bad angle, because there were sparks, the lights in the apartment dimmed, and the computer immediately shut down. Everything was fried and I had to get him all new parts. So yeah, I think I’m more than qualified to answer technical questions about computers.


Everything Happens for a Reason

Cat Pawi have a hp computer windows xp. when i turn my computer on i get this error saying: error: cpu fan failed: have system service immadiately.
the system will power down in 5 seconds.
does anyone know why this is happening to my computer??
does it mean that the fan is going out or went out? please write me back asap.


This sounds dangerous, it is quite possible that your computer is infested with a daemonic presence. Try this: Turn on your hp computer window xp, and when the error message appears on screen, cry “Ah-ha!” and lovingly press Ctrl-Shift-End while taking a large swig from a tumbler of hard liquor. Then wipe your mouth with the back of your hand, pick the tower up (tearing the cables roughly from their sockets), and heave the computer down a flight of stairs while screaming the Lord’s Prayer. That oughta show those old demons.   

But oh, I thought of something else it could be. Your error messages are not only grammatically unsound, but contain misspellings and a complete lack of capitalization as well. By chance did you purchase your copy of windows from a streetside vendor in Thailand? Look at the CD. Does it say: “one hunned percent good Amereca version window xp 2000” in permanent marker on the label? If it does, you will likely have to go out and purchase a new (non-upgrade) version of Windows from a retailer for approximately eighty thousand dollars. Good luck.


I HAD ONE ERROR FROM MY PC

Scream ManOkay, I picked up this computer from a guy who complained about his PC not booting... When I first plugged it in, it showed the bios screen, but keyboard had no response (or lights on)... so I tried again, this time PC booted all the way to Windows splash screen, then BSOD. So I detached everything (including drives) except the video card and one mem module. Restarted. THIS TIME THE COMPUTER STARTED SMOKING, a closer look revealed that a small black chip on the card was smoking. So I took that card out, put my vid card in and ran MEMTEST86 with both modules in... the mem failed (as listed above). Please help.

COULD THE MOTHERBOARD BE FAILING EVEN THOUGH THE COMPUTER SOMETIMES WILL BOOT ENOUGH TO SHOW VIDEO AND RESPOND TO THE KEYBOARD?


Aaaaahh! What are you SCREAMING at me for?! Well, when in Rome, I suppose:

LISTEN UP: THIS PROBLEM IS FROM THAT SMOKING VIDEO CARD. TAKE A LOOK AT THAT LITTLEChip BLACK CHIP BECAUSE THAT CHIP SOUNDS LIKE TROUBLE TO ME. TAKE THE CARD OUT AND BREAK OFF THAT CHIP WITH A PLIER. THEN PUT THE CARD IN AND SEE WHAT SHE DOES. I WOULD THINK THAT MAYBE THE CHIP WASN’T TOO IMPORTANT IT WAS PROBABLY JUST A MEMORY OR SOMETHIN. IF IT DON’T BOOT OK WELL WHAT CAN YOU DO BUT HERES A FUNNY TRICK:

GO GET THE BOX FOR THAT BROKE CARD AND PUT A LAWN BRICK IN IT (FROM THE YARD) THEN TAPE IT SO IT LOOK REAL (NEW) AND GO TO WALLMART AND TO THE FRONT COUNTER (NOT THE PLACE THAT SELL PRETZEL). SAY HELP EXCUSE ME THIS CARD BROKEN I WOULD LIKE ONE EXCHANGE I DIDN’T OPEN IT ITS WRONG MY GRANDMA BOUGHT. THE LADY DOENST EVEN KNOW ABOUT COMPUTERS SHE WILL SCRATCH HER HEAD GIVE YOU A WHOLE NEW CARD FOR FREE CARD WITHOUT EVEN OPEN.

YOU ARE ON YOUR WAY.


Engine Troubles

Hot Rod PCMy Dell XPS 400 will make a rev up sound when I am using different programs. It gets so bad at times that it will not let mouse or keyboard work. I use taskmanager to end task on what ever is running at the time. I bumped ram up to 4G's and thought that would solve the problem. Was ok for about a week now it is revving up again. Any help?


Hmmm…ok let me make sure I’ve translated your problem to English correctly. Your computer making a “rev up sound” and it is so loud that it causes your mouse and keyboard to malfunction. And also the three ways you have attempted to fix it so far are:

  • Used the task manager to kill unknown tasks at random

  • Inexplicably purchased twice as much RAM as you could ever possibly need to remedy a problem which almost certainly has nothing at all to do with memory

  • Stumbled moaning to your computer in a drunken stupor and smashed out this nonsensical plea for help into your malfunctioning keyboard before collapsing and heaving sobs into a mountain of soiled grey laundry while the fans in your PC droned ominously in the background


Am I pretty close to the mark there? But hey, if you want to know how to fix it, I think you were on the right track with your ill-concieved schemes. But I don’t think you went far enough; you might want to try some more things which make little or no sense. So here’s what I suggest you do if the “revving” starts again:Kid Punch

  • Disinterestedly toss playing cards into an upside-down hat

  • Put your hands to your ears and say, “Aaaaauuuuggggghhhhhhhhhhh.” and then stop doing this after a while

  • Punch the air with your legs planted far apart while shouting “Si-aya, si-aya!”

  • Repeat the ends of sentences under your breath after you say them (after you say them…)

  • Get into a car and drive until the car runs out of gas and then get out of the car and walk just keep walking and if anyone asks you where you are going don’t say anything just keep walking and looking straight ahead




Good luck everyone, and happy computing!