My PC has been acting up ever scents some storm a couple weeks ago.
I'm pretty sure it got some electrical surges, the lights in my office got a little brighter at moments, and the PC rebooted several times during the storm.
The results were PC sometimes failed to start, when you push the start button nothing would happen as if it were unplugged.
I tested the power supply by shorting the green wire to a black ground on the ATX plug and the power supply works.
But now I can't start my PC without jump starting it, by shorting the green and black and then pushing the normal power on button. Something on the mother board got screwed up that tells the power supply to turn on.
And now I seem to be getting bad sectors on my C: HDD
Then last night I spent 3 hours trying to delete an e-mail that seemed to have a virus, unless the e-mail happened to land on bad HDD sectors. I also found in a FOUND.000 chkdsk dir bazaar non identifiable files that I couldn't delete until I changed the dir name.
So tonight I'm thinking maybe the storm surge fried some HDD sectors besides screwing up my power on motherboard controls.
Tonight my wife couldn't get the PC started while I was at work. Sometimes it will start and sometimes you need to jump start it, with a paper clip shorting the green and black ATX cable.
So it may not be a virus, but just a chain of problems from a surge.
But I know there are viruses that attack the HDD chips, but I haven't seen that for 10 years.
I might just put a momentary button on it to short the green and black so my wife can start it up. And put in a spare HDD if the wacky file thing keeps occurring.
Just short it out and it will start every time LOL hahahaha
Gee, your PC rebooted several times during a violent electrical storm?
I think there was a clue there.
Most people would disconnect their PC from power etc, before the storm hit.
Those who dont care if they lose their PC, their data and perhaps their home might do as you did.
Just a thought.
I have a surge protector but it didn't do the job this time.
"Gee, your PC rebooted several times during a violent electrical storm?"
"I think there was a clue there." ya I think so....
It didn't seem to affect my PC at first, because it isn't a constant problem, but unpredictable to this time.
... is that the power supply is your problem. The surge may have blown a capacitor and now your motherboard power is no longer a "flat" voltage but has hash in it. (Voltage would be lower on average as well).
The power button probably turns a transistor on to short green to ground but can't turn the transistor on because of the hash.
The hash is causing corruption in the data going to your hard drive and so your files are getting screwed up.
It's not a good environment in which to continue using the computer (if the above is true) because before very long ... your operating system will quit too. Corruption in the running system gets written back to the hard drive ... which eventually screws the stored OS.
Have you got an oscilloscope with which to check your power rails? That'll show you hash if there is any.
I don't have an oscilloscope, just a Fluke I think 84, and some other cheaper multimeters.
I did replace my first HDD today, and noticed a huge difference.
But before that;
I formatted the surged HDD two times, and kept getting the same errors after restoring the OS from a backup.
I don't care to check for bad sectors, that takes forever on a large HDD.
But now it seems to be running normally.
But there is still a problem with cold boot power on.
I still have to jump start it some times. So I'm putting on an extra button for jump starting so my wife can get it running also.
So I'm not sure if its (Like Vince said) a problem in the power supply or on the mother board. But when I short the green and ground and hit the power button it starts up every time
A RAM problem also crossed my mind, for the data error problems.
Because every time I would shut it down an error message would come up for about 1/10th of a second about memory???? But Microsoft considers the HDD as memory as well as RAM. And the message was way to fast to read, just a flash.
And when I put in a different HDD the message stopped appearing at shutdown.
And hopefully my analysis is correct and I and my system is stable again.
... that the main problem is your power supply (creating "hash") on the DC rails ...
It won't take long before your system starts corrupting again.
The reason I think it's a power supply hash problem is that your power button won't work. Although I've never physically explored the circuitry, I know that the power button simply connects green to ground and so ...
If you can't turn on with the power button but CAN turn on by shorting green to ground ... it would indicate that the power button doesn't PHYSICALLY connect green to ground but instead ... uses a solid state switch to do it. (Motherboard receives 5 V standby power all the time, even if it's off ... and this power is used for turning ON the motherboard for events like wake-up-on-LAN and Standby/hibernate. This 5 V power would be used to activate the same solid state switch).
It would further indicate to me that there's a built-in safety circuit in the power-on switch which PREVENTS the computer from turning on if it detects power fluctuations/hash.
Now ... you've got a corrupted hard drive which you've replaced and the replacement seems to work better. Yes it would ... but for how long?
[I formatted the surged HDD two times, and kept getting the same errors after restoring the OS from a backup.
I don't care to check for bad sectors, that takes forever on a large HDD. ]
It does ... and doesn't always work either.
One EXCELLENT method I've found ... is to do a complete "low level format" on such drives, using the manufacturers' own special tools. I've got them for Maxtor, Seagate and Western Digital. Maxtor and Seagate use the same tool; Seagate has its own.
The tools are very simple ... run from a floppy or a CD. They run in their own DOS. They go through and zero out EVERY SINGLE CLUSTER on the hard drive ... which takes an incredibly long time ... but when finished, the drive is usually as good as new again.
So I use an old retired computer sitting off to the side ... connect the hard drive ... and let it run as long as it takes. (A UPS power backup is desirable since any power interruption will abort the entire process and you have to start from scratch again).
On a 250 gb hard drive it takes about 30 hours to finish. But who cares how long it takes ... if you don't need that old computer for anything else anyway?
I've restored quite a few hard drives like this and have had success every time.
Mostly what I'm saying is that you might be well-advised to change out your power supply before you suffer another wrecked hard drive. I could be wrong of course but personally, I'd put my scope on that PSU and check for ripple/hash before I'd keep using it ... with a hack power button.
Its working very well today, as normal, accept the hack power button but it works.
And I still have a couple extra hard drives laying around, so I'm not to worried about wrecking another one.
The TV card and the Nvidia card and the RAM are my biggest concerns. But they seem to be just fine.
But all seems well now scents I replaced HDD #1, and added the hack power button.
At least now I can leave the cover shut because I don't have to short the ATX plug with a paper clip to get it started and yes, my ancestors were hillbillies hahahaha I guess its in my blood.... Makes me think of the Red Green Show.... Duck Tape fixes everything!
Read that page and then go to the NEXT one at the bottom. He has a new problem on the next page ... a power supply that's INADEQUATE ... and it "wrecks" his hard drive!
Bottom line ... if there's an inadequate or dirty power supply or a device sucking too much current (also causing or creating potential ripple/hash) ... the safety built into the power switch SHOULD prevent a user from turning on his computer ... and thereby save him from corrupting his OS and stored data.