Intel® Xeon® Processor
System Boots with No Problem, but Crashes After Several Minutes of Operation

Important Note: Only a computer professional should perform assembling, disassembling, upgrading and troubleshooting computers since the electronic devices may cause serious damage to the installer, the system, or its components if it is done improperly. Before attempting to disassemble or assemble computers, install components in a computer or troubleshoot computers, carefully review the documentation specific for the computer and its related components. Lastly, make sure to follow Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) procedures.

  • Determine if the system worked before. Determine if there have been any recent changes. Often if a recent change is been made, the recent change is the cause of the problem.

  • Check to see if your system feels warm and check the processor for overheating.
    Note: Use extreme caution when checking for heat, since you can be easily burned.

  • Make sure that the power supply fan is running properly and any other external case fans are running properly. Make sure that the air intakes for the external fans are unobstructed and have at least several inches away from walls and other items.

  • Make sure the fans on the processor are connected properly and running.

  • Make sure that the thermal interface material or the thermal grease is applied properly.

  • Disable thermal measurements and power saving features in the BIOS setup program.

  • Update the system BIOS to the newest version. In addition, check to see if your system has a firmware that could also be updated to the newest version. Refer to your motherboard documentation.

  • Check the BIOS using the BIOS/CMOS setup utility, particularly the boot order. Make sure that your system is detecting all of the drives and make sure that the drive you are trying to boot is listed.

  • Do not overclock your system. Your system can become unreliable, may shorten the life of your PC components, may damage your PC components and may void your warranty.

  • Check the BIOS using the BIOS/CMOS setup utility, especially the RAM settings.

  • Suggest running ScanDisk to see if your hard drive has a lot of lost clusters and other anomalies. If you don't properly shutdown your computer using the Start button shutdown option, you may see some lost clusters and possible bad clusters.

  • Suggest running an updated virus checker to see if your system is affected by a virus.

  • Suggest reloading the OS, drivers or program.

  • Suggest reformatting the hard drive and reinstalling everything.

  • Verify that your chassis/case and power supply is appropriate for the processor model and frequency and the motherboard you are planning to use.

  • Verify that the power supply has the capacity to power all the devices used in your system. It is recommended to use at least a 200 W power supply, but may require a power supply with a higher capacity depending on the number of devices and the type of devices connected to your computer.

  • Ensure the selected motherboard is appropriate for the processor model, frequency, and stepping you are planning to use. For more information, refer to the Selecting a System Board and selecting a Chassis section of the Integration Overview document.

  • Check for foreign objects such as screws that may ground the motherboard and make sure the screws that hold the motherboard are not too tight.

  • Make sure the power cables inside the computer are attached correctly and secure. Note: All Intel Xeon processor-based systems require the standard 2x10, 20-pin ATX power connector as well as the new 2x4, 8-pin 12V connector.

  • Use a voltmeter to verify that each output from the power supply is correct. If any output is very low (especially the +5 volt output, replace the power supply).

  • Use a voltmeter to verify the Power Good signal is +5 volts. If the signal is below 1.0 volts, there may be a short or overload causing a constant reset. Consider replacing the power supply.

  • Check for shorts and overloads inside computer by removing nonessential items such as extra controller cards and IDE/ATAPI devices and turning the computer on to see if it starts to boot. Leave the motherboard, power supply, RAM or processor. If the problem goes away, there was a short or overload with one of the components that you just removed or one of those components is faulty. Replace each of those one at a time until you isolate that is causing the problem. If the problem still occurs after removing the nonessential components, the problem has to be with the motherboard, power supply, RAM or processor.

  • Remove the processor and RAM and reinstall them to make sure that they are installed correctly.

  • Make sure that you have mounted the motherboard correctly with the spacers/stand-offs. In addition, make sure that when you insert the screws to tighten the motherboard into place, make sure not to tighten the screws too much.

  • If the problem still persists, swap the RAM with known good RAM. In addition, test the suspected RAM in another known working system.

  • If the problem still persists, swap the processor with a known good processor. In addition, test the suspected processor in another known working system.

  • If the problem still persists, swap the motherboard with a known good motherboard. In addition, test the suspected motherboard in another known working system.

This applies to:

Intel® Xeon® Processor

Solution ID: CS-007763
Last Modified: 16-Nov-2009
Date Created: 15-Dec-2003
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