Can HWiNFO be used to dignose a faulty PSU?

Not sure if this is the right place to ask, but... my PSU is 6 and a half years old. Recently I have been having random full system crashes when playing video games. As far as I can tell, this is not an overheating problem. So, I'm wondering if the PSU is failing. I am not really experienced with diagnosing hardware problems or know how to read much of the info in HWiNFO. Am I supposed to look at the voltage numbers under the motherboard section to determine if the PSU is working correctly? Also is it possible that a bad HDD could cause these crashes? The S.M.A.R.T section shows a drive warning for my HDD (however my OS is on a separate, healthy SSD).
 

Dalai

Well-Known Member
Also is it possible that a bad HDD could cause these crashes?
Such a drive is primarily slow because it needs to read bad sectors multiple times, and it needs quite a while doing so. But since there are a lot of different kinds of "bad", it's certainly possible that it could cause an OS crash.

Do you get any BSODs when the OS crashes? If so, what do they say? NirSoft BlueScreenView might help with that.

The S.M.A.R.T section shows a drive warning for my HDD [...]
What kind of warning does it show? For which attributes? If in doubt, please provide a screenshot of the SMART attributes (you could/should blur out any serial numbers).

[...] (however my OS is on a separate, healthy SSD).
That doesn't really matter. I/O issues can cause all sorts of problems.

Regards
Dalai
 
Thank you for the response, Dalai. The computer does not get a BSOD. The monitor immediately loses video input and the computer crashes then restarts. I am attaching a screen capture of the offending HDD.
 

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Dalai

Well-Known Member
Can you provide a screenshot of the SMART attributes/values in the System Information window (not the Sensors window), please? You can also use CrystalDiskInfo for that. Pending sectors might be problematic, but they don't paint the whole picture.

Regards
Dalai
 

Dalai

Well-Known Member
Yes, this is what I meant. Thanks. So it's just the pending sectors. It's a Seagate drive, isn't it? They tend to "collect" bad sectors over time. I recommend to closely watch the SMART values and if they increase, I'd replace the drive. You can check the serial number on the manufacturer's web site to see if it's still covered by warranty - if it is, I'd file an RMA before the warranty expires.

Unfortunately, I can't rule out any hardware component in regards to the crashes. It could be the HDD, the PSU or high temperatures, the GPU, or even a software issue (mainly driver). Or it could be as simple as a bad connection of any plug to the mainboard or other component - keep in mind that metals expand when they're getting warmer and contract when they're getting colder.

Here's what I would do: Try to figure out when exactly the crashes occur by putting different kinds of load on the system. I'd start with Prime95 (CPU load) and FurMark (GPU load). If it crashes with either of them, it's either a GPU, CPU or memory issue, depending on the test.

If it doesn't crash, I'd (temporarily) swap the components one by one, starting with the PSU. It's a little bit of work to swap it, especially when there are a lot of cables to route, but IMO it's easier to swap than an HDD. And that could also rule out bad connections, from the PSU cables at least.

Regards
Dalai
 
Thank you for the suggestions, Dalai. I ran Prime95 and Furmark, neither of which caused my computer to crash. I'll attach the logs for those tests, if that is helpful. I have been trying to play Skyrim Special Edition, and that consistently causes the full system crash. When I make it into the game, it tends to crash the computer within five minutes. I'll attach the log associated with the Skyrim crash as well. Perhaps this is not a hardware issue after all? I just thought that is a possibility, because it is my understanding that full system crashes are unusual, rather than crashing to desktop.
 

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Dalai

Well-Known Member
According to your logs, the temperatures look fine. However, there's something odd about the FurMark log. It looks like you stopped the test after about 1.5 minutes - D3D usage, GPU temperatures, GPU voltage all drop after that to idle values. It's probably not enough time to trigger a crash. If you tested FurMark for a longer period of time (let's say 20 minutes), ignore my previous comment.

Do other games cause crashes as well? If not, it's possible that this particular game is located on the HDD's bad sectors. If you have enough space on another drive, try copying it and launch it from another drive.

But as I said: Can't rule out anything so far...

Regards
Dalai
 
Yeah, I have no clue why it stopped the test. I set it up and walked away for half an hour. Maybe I clicked the wrong button in furmark. However, I do not think it will make a difference. I ran the Heaven benchmark a few days ago for 20+ minutes and it did not cause a crash. There are indeed some other games that crash. And furthermore, I put Skyrim on the SSD, not the suspect HDD. I am thinking about refreshing Windows 10 to see if that will solve it. I will rerun furmark, though. Are there any other actions I should take?
 

Dalai

Well-Known Member
Well, if you're going to change something, you shouldn't change anything else. Otherwise you won't know what change exactly solved the issue (if the issue goes away).

If reinstalling the OS doesn't help, I'd swap components one by one.

Regards
Dalai
 
So, I did the reinstall. Afterwards, I launched Skyrim, and it crashed the computer the first time the game launched. After that first crash, it is no longer causing crashes. To qualify, I haven't tested it for more than 20 minutes, or with other games, but before it was consistently crashing within a few minutes of getting into Skyrim. This is at least a good indication that the issue is software related, right? Considering it did cause a full system crash upon the first launch, should I continue to investigate the issue?
 

Dalai

Well-Known Member
Maybe the graphics drivers were updates after your first attempt with Skyrim. But it's hard to tell for sure. You can check in Device Manager, open the graphics card's properties and switch to tab Events (not sure what it's called in English) and try to match the times shown there for any driver installation/update with the first time you played the game.

I would definitely closely watch the system, and if the crashes come back, it's more likely a hardware issue. However, if it crashes after you installed a specific software, it could be related to that software.

Regards
Dalai
 
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