PC hardware--CPU & Motherboard & RAM/Del Vostro 410


Thank you so much for taking my question!
I have a Dell Vostro 410 that after a few minutes of inactivity shuts itself off.
I have done some research but sort of confused (technically impaired!), I did do the bios reset (I think that is what's call)
I have learn to do a hard start since sometimes it will not start after a shut down.
Any easy suggestions (more than easy inexpensive?)
Running on XP x32 Pro edition SP3 - Intel core 2 quad Q6600 2.40 GHz x 4 - Memory is maxed out.
Any suggestions you can provide will be really appreciated
Thanks again, your help will be greatly appreciated

Hello Ed. This sounds like one of two things. [1] If the computer only does this with "inactivity", it may be an operating system setting with having it automatically turning off to save power. [2] If it does this even with active use of the computer and it turns on in the middle of actually using it, you likely have a hardware issue, possibly an overheat issue or something to do with damage already caused by heat.

[1] If your computer is set to "Hibernate" after a set time, the computer may appear to completely shut off and some hardware is not fully compatible with Hibernate, so the computer could fail to turn back on normally. I would check those settings. Computers are more likely to function properly with setting it to "Standby" due to the higher rate of compatible hardware.

[2] Do you hear your cooling fan(s) spinning kind of fast/loudly? That is usually always the case of overheating that needs to be addressed immediately or you may lose the computer altogether. Even if this is not the issue after doing some further research and fixing a different issue, it may be worth opening the side and looking at the dust build up situation. If it is dusty inside, take the computer, unplug all the plugs from the back and bring your computer to a place with an air compressor to blow out the heatsink(s) and fans and any dust covered components. Dust is a huge heat factor in how long a computer will last from purchase date and most computers customers bring to me have experienced some sort of heat damage from not being thoroughly cleaned once in a while.

If you still have an issue after checking up and doing everything I've mentioned, open up the side case and take a good bright picture of your motherboard so I can see all the components that way I can determine if there is damage.

Hope this helps, have a great day!

PC hardware--CPU & Motherboard & RAM

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I can answer most No POST problems, compatibility between parts, upgrade options, troubleshooting, etc. Before you ask me a question, please do some research. I do not give PC speed reviews for video games.


Many, many years of experience working with the hardware components of many types of computers including desktops, laptops, kiosk computers, and even running Windows 3.1, 95, and 98 on the PSP (Sony PlayStation Portable). I've replaced capacitors on desktop motherboards making them working like new again with a high success rate. This is my hobby/job every day.

Associates of Science in Computer Information Technology

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