One of the questions I answered this week was about computer overheating. In this case, the individual wanted to know the “right” temperature for his processor — but he didn’t mention which processor he was using or its speed.
His underlying problem was that his computer would spontaneously turn off occasionally. This is usually an indication that the motherboard has shut down automatically to prevent overheating and damage to the CPU.
Many computers allow you to monitor the temperature of the processor, the power supply and perhaps other points, too. You may have to run a special program for your motherboard or computer to be able to see these.
The average temperature for the CPU depends on which processor you’re using. Each manufacturer has difference specifications. For that matter, each of their processor models and speeds has different specs.
Check the manufacturer’s site for specifications on your specific processor — it will tell you the acceptable operating temperatures. I would want to be in the low half of the range.
If you suspect temperature, get a can of compressed air. Open your case and blow the dust out the heat sink and the power supply.
I’ve had some severe issues with shutdowns that tracked back to heatsinks that were filled with dust — so there was no cooling air flow.
If you don’t have a dust problem or if the program shows normal temps for the CPU, check your cooling fans. You should have an equal number of fans blowing in and blowing out.
One frequent problem is having two that blow in _or_ two blowing out — neither of which options provide good air circulation in the PC. Dont’ forget to count the power supply fan in that equation — some of those blow in, most blow out.