Computer Won’t Boot Cold

[ad]Dear computer lady,

I have an E-machines desktop pc with windows vista premium.

amd athlon 64×2 processor 4000+, dvd rw super multi-format dual layer optical drive, 320 gig hard drive, 1gig DDR2 dual channel memory and Nvidia Ge Force 6150SE video card

After 3 1/2 years of almost flawless service, it now has a boot problem.

On a cold boot (from a power off boot) It makes it to the E-machine boot option screen, then on the next screen the pc powers off.

I can boot it with a boot disk and it will boot up fine and work flawlessly with no problems all day if we want to use it that long.

While it is warm, we can shut it down and a little while later boot it back up and it boots fine on a warm boot.

Do you have any suggestions as to what could be causing this problem? And how to fix this problem? If you could help it would be appreciated.

Thanks and God bless, Tuffy

Dear Tuffy,

Based on your description, my best guess is that you have a small crack, probably somewhere in your motherboard, or possibly the hard drive circuitry.

My reason for this guess, based on the information you have provided is this, heat causes things to expand, and cold causes them to contract.

When your computer is cold, some connection is not being made. Without working on the computer myself, I can’t tell you which component is having the problem, I’m guessing the hard drive, but again, this is only a guess.

When you run the computer for a while, it heats up, and the warmed components expand, just enough to make that connection that was broken when it was cold.

If I had your computer here on my workbench, I might be able to diagnose which component was causing the problem, and fix it if the fix is cost effective.

If you live in the area, give me a call 676-9561 and I will take a look at it. If not, find a local computer shop and see what they charge for diagnostics.



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Elizabeth Boston is a Web designer, Social Media Consultant and managing editor of, “Ask The Computer Lady”.
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    • ron007
    • May 13, 2011

    As well as cracks, another option is simply loose connections. It is not as common these days as it was back in the early days of “home-built” computers (and even “manufactured” computers).

    Open up the case and pop cards out and reseat them, and carefully press down on chips to reseat them too. Look for loose wire connectors.

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