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Power Troubleshooting

  1. My UPS doesn't seem to be handling the power outages very well.
  2. My UPS doesn't deliver the amount of backup time the manufacturer said it would.
  3. The power supply fan isn't working or works intermittently or is noisy.
  4. The power supply is whining.
  5. Sometimes the electricity in my house dims and my PC reboots.
  6. When I turn the PC on, nothing happens. The power supply does not turn on.
  7. I want to connect another device to my system but am out of power leads.
  8. Windows 98 Power Saving/Standby mode does not work.
 

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My UPS doesn't seem to be handling the power outages very well.

The UPS may have a bad battery. Follow the instructions per the manufacture to fully charge the battery. The unit could also be overloaded. Try taking some of the hardware off and see if that helps. You may also want to try a different wall outlet. All other things checked, though, it is probably a bad UPS.

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My UPS doesn't deliver the amount of backup time the manufacturer said it would.

Don't believe everything you read. Its marketing hype.

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The power supply fan isn't working or works intermittently or is noisy.

You probably need to replace the power supply, but first, clean the dust out of the supply using a vacuum and/or compressed air and see if it goes away.

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The power supply is whining.

It is probably your CPU fan, in which case you can troubleshoot as above. If it isn't the fan, then there is a problem with some electrical component within the power supply. This would warrant replacing it.

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Sometimes the electricity in my house dims and my PC reboots.

Well, what do you expect? The PC gets a power brown out and it thinks the power is turned off, so it shuts down. Then, when the power comes back, even a second later, it thinks you turned it back on, so it tries to reboot. The solution is to get yourself a backup power supply, or UPS.

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When I turn the PC on, nothing happens. The power supply does not turn on.

Well first, make sure the unit is plugged in and actually getting power. If you have an ATX system, you need to check the case connectors from the power switch to the motherboard's Power Switch connectors. Very often, especially when just building an ATX system, these connectors will be incorrectly connected and will cause the PC to just sit there dead. You could also have a short circuit in the case, so check for this as well. If you rule these things out, then the power supply could be bad.

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I want to connect another device to my system but am out of power leads.

Wow, you must have a very full system. But, this is no problem. Head down to your local Radio Shack and pick up a Y-connector. You can use this to turn one power lead into two.

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Windows 98 Power Saving/Standby mode does not work.

There are several potential causes for Windows 98 Power Saving / Standby mode not functioning such as:

Not enabled.
Third party applications.
Screen Savers.
Power Management Enabled / Disabled in CMOS.
Corrupt APM (Advanced Power Management) drivers.
Hardware components preventing Power Saving / Standby from working.

Verify Power Management is enabled.

Click Start / Settings / Control panel / double click the Power Management Icon verify that the Power schemes is Always on and specify the time which you want power Management for the monitor and hard disk drive to activate.

Remove all third party applications running in the background.

Follow Clean Boot  instructions for removing all software running in the background. Once third party programs are removed from the background verify if the Power Saving / Standby feature still exists. If the issue has been resolved its a good possibility that a program that was running in the background such as a virus protection utility is causing the computer from going into Power Saving / Standby mode.

Screen Savers.

Attempt to disable all screen savers, screen savers such as 3D Flower Box, 3D Flying Objects, 3D Maze and 3D Text can cause the computer from going into Power Saving / standby mode. 

Power Management Enabled / Disabled in CMOS.

Generally computers have the capability of having the computer hardware (BIOS) control power management and or Windows control power management. Check your computer CMOS to verify if Power Management is enabled within CMOS. If enabled and the computer is not going into Power Saving / Standby mode attempt to disable Power Management in CMOS and follow the below step for reinstalling the APM drivers in Windows.   

Corrupt APM (Advanced Power Management) drivers.

Click Start / Settings / Control Panel / double click the Systems icon / click the Device Manager tab / click the + next to System if the first device is not Advanced Power Management support skip to the next paragraph. If Advanced Power Management support is present highlight and click the Remove button to remove it from Device Manager. Once removed reboot the computer and let it reinstall and try power management again.

If Advanced Power Management was not listed in Device Manager or once removed was not reinstalled after rebooting the computer click Start / Settings / Control Panel / double click on Add new hardware, and let Windows detect and install new hardware (should detect and install Advanced Power Management support). If Windows does not detect Advanced Power Management support verify in CMOS that Power Management is Enabled.

Hardware components preventing Power Saving / Standby from working.

Some hardware devices such as USB devices can cause the computer to not go into Power Saving / Standby mode. If you have recently installed an new hardware it is recommended that you temporarily remove it to verify it is not causing the issue of going into Power Saving / Standby mode.

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