In the midst of an adrenaline-pumping roll-away from an enemy blow, while playing Guild Wars 2, your computer just shuts down randomly without warning.
We’re sure that’s one of the last things you’d want. And, we know exactly how it feels when the PC shuts down randomly.
So, here’s a quick guide to understanding why the computer turns off without warning? More importantly, how to fix it?
Why does my computer turn off by itself in Windows 10?
If your PC shuts down randomly, or the computer turns off and won’t turn back on, then the first step is to figure out the causes. Most often, when the root issues are identified, it helps to resolve the problem faster.
Moreover, it helps to avoid future occurrences of the issue.
Computers today come equipped with heat sinks and fans, which cools off the CPU. So, when you are playing a graphically intense computer game like Guild Wars 2 or Assassin’s Creed Origins, the inner components of the computer may overheat.
This would lead to the PC’s built-in mechanism turning off the computer automatically.
- Verify, if the fan on the power supply is working.
- Examine the heatsink, case fans, and the video card.
- Look for abnormal noises coming from the PC, like high squealing sounds.
Inspecting would reveal if there is a fan malfunction, which could cause the computer to turn off without warning.
How to fix?
- If the fan malfunctioning has been identified, then replace the faulty power supply.
- Invest in a cooler pad for your laptop, which would facilitate lowering the temperature.
- Clean the inside of your machine, as dirt, dust, pet hair, or other trapped debris could clog air flow.
- Use software utilities like SpeedFan, which works fine with Windows 10 and helps to monitor the fan speeds, voltages, and read temperatures of your PC components.
- When you remove the processor heatsink, try cleaning off the thermal compound, and apply the new thermal compound.
Cleaning the fans of your computer would not only resolve the overheating issue but also increase the life of the computer. Needless to say, it would also fix the PC from shutting off randomly without warning.
2. Hardware Issues
Have you recently added any new hardware? If you have recently installed a new hardware component, then you may remove the component and check if the issue goes away.
- Check Device Manager for errors that may have occurred.
- Remove the network card, sound card, modem, or other expansion cards, to facilitate the diagnosing of the issue.
- Check the RAM, motherboard, CPU, power supply, or video card for any hardware issues.
How to fix?
- Remove any new hardware.
- Get your computer serviced.
3. Power Supply, UPS, or Wrong Charger Issues
At times when the power supply goes bad, your computer may turn off without warning.
- Check if the UPS or surge protector is defective. You may try disconnecting the UPS and connect your PC directly to the power outlet for checking.
- Check if there are too many devices that are connected to the UPS.
- If you are a gamer, then check the voltage capacities required by the games. As some of the games require a voltage of 100 watts to 240 watts, and the chargers used may be around 90 watts or less.
How to fix?
- If the UPS or surge protector is defective, replace the device.
- Make sure that your UPS has the latest software updates.
- Replace the power supply.
- While gaming, you may want to run the fans at top speed.
- Use chargers with appropriate voltage capacities to support activities like computer gaming.
- Clean the laptop vents occasionally.
Your PC may occasionally get infected with viruses, Trojans, or other malware, which are programmed to shut down the PC randomly.
Take for instance the Sasser worm, which targets computers running on Microsoft OSs and is featured with unwanted restarts. An affected system may display a message looking like:
System shutdown initiated by Authority/System
The system process: C:\WINDOWS\system32\lsass.exe
terminated unexpectedly with status code 128.
- Check if your PC turns off when executing particular programs at specific times of the day.
- Check if a traditional virus scan is interrupted by the shutting down of the PC.
How to fix?
Download an anti-virus program. Next, update the virus scanner definitions, and run a full scan.
5. Display Driver Crash
At times the changed drivers on the PC could completely shut down your computer. The display drivers that are commonly known to crash are AMD display drivers and the AMD Catalyst Suite.
Check for the dump files at the top of crash posts.
Now, that you have a fair idea on the root causes and some ways of fixing the issue, let’s explore a little more on how to fix the annoying problem of your computer turning off unexpectedly.
How to fix the computer from shutting down randomly?
Are you still wondering on how do I stop my computer from shutting down automatically in Windows? Here are some more methods, which could help you resolve the issue.
Method 1: Turn off Fast Startup
As a Windows user, you may want to turn off the Fast Startup feature, which triggers errors and affects the way the PC shuts down. Try disabling with the next steps:
- Right-click Start.
- Select Power Options.
- Find ‘Choose what the power buttons do‘.
- Select ‘Change settings that are currently unavailable‘.
- Uncheck the ‘Turn on fast startup (recommended)‘ option.
- Click OK.
The method is known to resolve random shutdowns.
Method 2: Update GPU Drivers
You may want to update your PC with the latest GPU drivers that are offered by the official manufacturer. Try these steps:
- Right-click on Start.
- Select Device Manager.
- Look out for Display adapters.
- Right-click on the GPU and open Properties.
- Go to the Details tab.
- Open Hardware Id and copy the first line to the clipboard.
- Next, go to the Drivers tab, and Uninstall driver.
- Paste the first line and search. You will find the exact name of the GPU being used.
- Navigate to the official drivers’ provider site, download the latest drivers.
- Install the latest drivers.
- Restart PC.
Note: In the case, you are using dual-GPU make sure to update drivers for the appropriate graphics cards. Also, try and update the SSD firmware.
Method 3: Turn off the Sleep Mode
As a Windows 10 user, you would have experienced that the standard sleep mode often triggers complete shutdowns. So, you may wish to disable the sleep mode, here’s how:
- Open Start.
- Select Settings and Open System.
- Find Screen and Sleep options and Select ‘Never‘.
The basic method could avoid the occasional shutdown.
Method 4: Fine-Tune Advanced Power Settings
If you are a Windows 10 user, you may have already experienced random shutdowns.
The Power settings seem to be at the heart of the issue, and by fine-tuning advanced power settings (with administrative permissions) you may be able to fix the issue.
Here’s what you could try:
- Right-click on Start.
- Select Power Settings.
- Click on ‘Change advanced power settings‘.
- Go to Processor power management.
- Find ‘Minimum processor state‘ and change the value from 100 to 0.
- Next, go to Hard Disk > ‘Turn off hard disk after’ and change value to Never.
Note: In the case for laptops, change the value to Never for both ‘Plugged in‘ and ‘On battery‘.
- Save changes made and exit.
The method could help in resolving the shutdown issue.
Method 5: Update BIOS
You may also want to check your HDD for damaged sectors or if it is corrupted.
You could use a 3rd-party-tool like HDDScan (a free test tool for hard disk drives, SSD drives, USB flash, and RAID volume) of your choice and scan the disk. Alternately, you can use the built-in tool.
Here’s how to use it:
- Go to Start, select Command Prompt, and Run as administrator.
- Key in the following text on the command line.
wmic diskdrive get status
- Hit Enter.
- When ‘OK’ is prompted for every partition, it would imply that your hard disk is healthy. In contrast, your hard disk would have issues if you find ‘Caution’, ‘Bad’, or ‘Unknown’.
Method 6: Use Tool (PC Repair Tool)
You may also consider using the PC Repair Tool, and Scan your system to find issues that could be causing the probable shutdown. Also, select the Repair All to fix all the issues found.
Method 7: Update BIOS
The BIOS update could be pretty much complicated for a newbie. However, one can follow the detailed steps that would be found on the PC manufacturer’s website. Once the new BIOS utility is installed, it could help in resolving the issue.
Note: If you are not comfortable with the steps, you may also visit the computer service center and have it fixed. Remember, that updating the BIOS incorrectly could be fatal to your PC.
Method 8: Try Clean Reinstall
Another workable option to fix the random PC shutdowns is to try a clean reinstallation. You may want to use the Media Creation Tool for the installation setup.
Note: Remember to backup all your data from the system partition and also note down your license key.
Finally, the next time you are all set to dodge an enemy blow while playing your favorite game, you can be relaxed that your PC would not shut down randomly without warning.
Just in case, it does, follow the quick checks and step-by-step methods and enjoy getting back to your activities, uninterrupted.