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I have a Quad core Q9550 processor, and it is displaying the temperature of 86 - 100 °C. I'm pretty sure that's not correct, since just a few minutes ago I have reapplied the thermal parse and right after that BIOS was showing 83°C. And a few other windows tools have shown up to 100+ C.

The CPU is not overclocked, BIOS settings are default, and the cooler is default too. Windows runs fine at first, but after 4-5 hours it gets terribly slow - I suppose throttling gets enabled? If so, how can I disable it? I guess, this is a motherboard's (Asus P5Q-E) fault, so I'd have to replace it as an ultimate fix?

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Update: I've changed the cooler to another one and now it works like a charm. The previous one has been installed badly for 2.5 years (I am one stupid guy).

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The thermal sensor is built-in to Intel processors and they're fairly accurate (to a few degrees I was told). It would be very unwise to disable them (if it is even possible). You should check again if your thermal paste was applied correctly. Note that anything that is thinker than 0.1mm between the CPU and the heat sink is problematic. You should make the thermal paste layer as thin as possible. – Dec 6 '11 at 22:58
Is the BIOS set to shutdown at 100°C? Because you shouldn't be able to see that screen if that temperature is true. Do you feel any hotness near the CPU? Please do not actually touch anything while the power is on. – Tom Wijsman Dec 6 '11 at 23:03
If the bios was reporting 83c at idle, then it is very likely something isn't right with the cooling. – Paul Dec 6 '11 at 23:44
When initially turned on, at the BIOS screen, if you are any hotter than 60°C something is horribly wrong. Try this: Turn your computer off. Leave it off for 30 minutes. Turn it on and go directly to the BIOS. It will start at about 25°C (room temperature) and rise from there. If you are over 60°C in under the 60 seconds it takes to reach the BIOS sensor, then something is horribly wrong with your heat sink. – Myrddin Emrys Dec 7 '11 at 1:41, but too much paste won't make it 100C, right? – Fluffy Dec 7 '11 at 10:03
up vote 8 down vote accepted

There is almost no way these on-die temperature sensors can be inaccurate, and they cannot be disabled as they are vital physical safeties. Your CPU is overheating because something is terribly wrong with its cooling. Are you sure you applied the right kind of thermal paste? Are you sure the heat sink's fan is working? Are you sure the heat sink is properly mated to the CPU?

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