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I have a pretty decent system. However, when I play a certain computer game (Warcraft 3), the temperatures on my computer go up tremendously as shown here:

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I have seen the motherboard temperature over 100C and the CPU temperature over 80. This seems to be only happening when I play Warcraft 3. As soon as I close the game, the temperature for the CPU/MOBO descend rapidly to the idle state shown here:

enter image description here

Now, Warcraft 3 isn't exactly the kind of game that requires a lot of processing/graphics power. (over 10 years old) Moreover, I play a far more intense game (Starcraft 2) with no problems at all temperature wise.

If I keep playing Warcraft 3 for more than 30 minutes, my computer will completely turn off as if I were unplugging the power. (I assume as a safety mechanism) The only thing I notice that is different between WC3 and SC2 is that in SC2, the fans on the computer seem to kick on to 100% as I continue playing the game whereas in warcraft 3 they stay at a modest speed the entire time.

I have my BIOS H/W Monitor settings set to keep the CPU around 40C, but that doesn't seem to be working properly when it comes to WC3. Dust inside the computer seems to be at a minimum as well.

Does anyone have any ideas as to what might cause this kind of behavior from happening and perhaps some recommendations on fixing the issue?

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Is the CPU fan working? Because this sounds like something is wrong with the cooling. Either the CPU cooler is broken, the thermal paste is dried out, the cooler is not properly mounted or airflow is lacking. (All of which prevent heat from being transported away from the CPU). –  Hennes Feb 22 '13 at 2:03
    
Could also be the graphics card ("gamer" graphics cards are notorious power consumers --> heat generators). –  vonbrand Feb 22 '13 at 2:20
    
@Hennes if the fan wasn't –  Paul Feb 22 '13 at 2:29
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I would try to create a custom Power profile, then set the max CPU on power setting to around 50% and the GPU to Low performance/power saving, then use that profile when playing warcraft. Got similar problem in my laptop, in which it could run on 100% for few minutes but not for extended gaming. Not sure if desktop GPU expose power saving option though –  Martheen Cahya Paulo Feb 22 '13 at 2:45
    
@Hennes CPU fan is working. Keep in mind, I can play Starcraft 2 with no problems temperature wise. –  ROFLwTIME Feb 22 '13 at 3:34

4 Answers 4

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I would try to create a custom Power profile, then set the max CPU on power setting to around 50% and the GPU to Low performance/power saving, then use that profile when playing warcraft. Got similar problem in my laptop, in which it could run on 100% for few minutes but not for extended gaming. Not sure if desktop GPU expose power saving option though.

It's possible to do this with 3rd party software such as BES to target individual process while letting the CPU to give other process full rein (so you don't have to remember changing your power profile). I prefer the power profile method though, since even a runaway browser process from faulty flash or javascript page could bring down your CPU (I use the limited power profile all the time except when compiling/image editing where short speed burst will be beneficial).

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Surprisingly your screenshot is not showing the temperature for the GPU - likely the most power consuming/heat producing device in your system. I can think of only 2 options here:

  1. Video card is the one being overheated (GPU fan issue?) and you just do not see its temperature in the software you are using and the temp sensor on the motherboard is located close enough that it's picking up some of that heat.
  2. The extra heat is being produced by MOSFETs in the voltage regulator circuit of the motherboard. It could be happening if power connector on the video card is not connected to PSU and the card is drawing all its power from the motherboard through PCIe slot.
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The same thing happens with my PC (Core i7) when I push the CPU to 80% or more. At idle it hums along quite happily in the 20's- low 30s's, so I haven't worried about upgrading the HSF yet.

Are you using a stock HSF?

How about your idle temps?

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The reasons behind the game causing it (which I admit is strange that WC3 would do that) shouldn't really effect the results with the hardware. As a result we can probably narrow it down to a hardware issue, because really you should be able to run your PC at full power without these issues.

If you want to confirm that it's not WC3 specific as I say though, go download something like a CPU stress tester, run the stress test and see if you get the same overheating results.

On the assumption that it's purely the setup; I'd look at maximising airflow through the case, clear out any dust / blockages which may be restricting fans. Double check when you're running the game that your CPU / GPU fans are active and working. For the CPU you may wish to dismount the heatsink, reapply some new thermal paste and reseat the heatsink to ensure a good heat conducting connection.

Finally if all that doesn't work you're looking towards a few options;

  • No more WC3.
  • Look at a new case with better airflow and more / larger fans (my recommendation).
  • New CPU heatsink / cooling method.
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