Why does my Windows XP computer literally shut off when I play Sims 2 and Sims 3?

belinda diann wears April 14, 2011
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I hope someone can help me. Do I have the right stuff for my games or what? My computer shuts off in the middle of the game, no warning nothing, just shuts off.

System Information
Time of this report: 3/12/2011, 14:40:04
Machine name: 30AD5D5A47F1459
Operating System: Windows XP Home Edition (5.1, Build 2600) Service Pack 3 (2600.xpsp_sp3_gdr.101209-1647)
Language: English (Regional Setting: English)
System Manufacturer: BIOSTAR Group
System Model: NF61S-M2A
BIOS: )Phoenix – Award WorkstationBIOS v6.00PG
Processor: AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 5200+, MMX, 3DNow (2 CPUs), ~2.6GHz
Memory: 2558MB RAM
Page File: 351MB used, 4096MB available
Windows Dir: C:\WINDOWS
DirectX Version: DirectX 9.0c (4.09.0000.0904)
DX Setup Parameters: Not found
DxDiag Version: 5.03.2600.5512 32bit Unicode

DxDiag Notes
DirectX Files Tab: No problems found.
Display Tab 1: No problems found.
Sound Tab 1: No problems found.
Music Tab: No problems found.
Input Tab: No problems found.
Network Tab: No problems found.

DirectX Debug Levels
Direct3D: 0/4 (n/a)
DirectDraw: 0/4 (retail)
DirectInput: 0/5 (n/a)
DirectMusic: 0/5 (n/a)
DirectPlay: 0/9 (retail)
DirectSound: 0/5 (retail)
DirectShow: 0/6 (retail)

Display Devices
Card name: NVIDIA GeForce 9600 GT
Manufacturer: NVIDIA
Chip type: GeForce 9600 GT
DAC type: Integrated RAMDAC
Device Key: Enum\PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0622&SUBSYS_0545196E&REV_A1
Display Memory: 512.0 MB
Current Mode: 1024 x 768 (32 bit) (60Hz)
Monitor: Plug and Play Monitor
Monitor Max Res: 1600,1200
Driver Name: nv4_disp.dll
Driver Version: 6.14.0012.6658 (English)
DDI Version: 9 (or higher)
Driver Attributes: Final Retail
Driver Date/Size: 1/7/2011 22:27:00, 6397824 bytes
WHQL Logo’d: n/a
WHQL Date Stamp: n/a
VDD: n/a
Mini VDD: nv4_mini.sys
Mini VDD Date: 1/7/2011 22:27:00, 9888672 bytes
Device Identifier: {D7B71E3E-4562-11CF-DC60-492500C2CB35}
Vendor ID: 0x10DE
Device ID: 0x0622
SubSys ID: 0x0545196E
Revision ID: 0x00A1
Revision ID: 0x00A1

  1. Lunacii
    July 28, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    My Gateway Touch desktop will randomly shut off, and when I try to turn it on it shuts off- I have to wait a while to turn it back on and it'll be okay. It mainly happens when ever I'll play a slowish load up game of sort online or disk game. Is it just because it need to rest or something?

    • Tina
      July 29, 2011 at 1:18 am


      I'm afraid I do not know the answer. In order to receive an answer, I recommend that you post a new question using the 'Ask a Question' button on MakeUseOf Answers.

    • karen tscherner
      November 15, 2011 at 11:45 pm

      Did you fix it , and how....mine does the same thing

      • Tina
        November 22, 2011 at 8:10 pm


        if you are still seeing for a solution, I recommend you to ask a new question. It will be posted on the MakeUseOf Answers front page and will receive a response within a few hours.

  2. Robin
    July 2, 2011 at 7:26 pm

    Recently my Gateway Windows Vista 32 bit (about 3 years old) shuts down when I am in the middle of certain time management games or hidden object games.  I can be on any other program for hours with no problem.  Is there is a quick fix that a newbie can do to stop this from happening?  I don't know how to replace the fan, although I have taken the back off and cleaned out the dust etc...  I even placed a fan in front of my computer to keep it cooler.  It worked for awhile but still having the problem.  Thank you.  :)

    • Tina
      July 2, 2011 at 10:57 pm


      to get some fresh ideas on your specific issue, I recommend that you ask a new question.

    • karen tscherner
      November 15, 2011 at 11:44 pm

      hi mine does that too, what did you do to fix it?

  3. Tina
    April 17, 2011 at 11:22 pm


    were you able to fix your computer in the meantime? What did the trick? Please let us know in case you need more help. Thank you!

    April 16, 2011 at 2:49 am

    Hello, does the computer shuts off under any other circumstances? I guess what I am asking is if the computer shuts off in the middle of doing something else or if it just happens when you are playing those games. Usually when a computer shuts off like that it means that it is overheating. Best thing you can do is to open the case and check your cooler fan for dust. Before opening case make sure to unplug your case, if there is a switch in the back of case, turn it off and then check the cooler fan on top of cpu for dust. Get a can of compress air, put something between blades to stop cooler fan from turning and use the compress air on fan. Even better good be to take cooler fan from cpu, clean old thermal paste and add new thermal paste. Then, put cooler fan back.

    Also you can go to the following link to check for the system specifications required to play those games and check on the can you run it tool provided on the site.

  5. Anonymous
    April 15, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    Update your graphic card driver, such as uninstal and reboot then let windows to instal a new one and then upgrade.

    try changing a few settings in nVidia control panel:

    conformant texture clamp -> Use OpenGL spec.
    Trilinear texture optimization -> Enabled
    Force mipmapping -> Trilinear
    Vsync -> Forced enabled

    also go into the system configuration and turn off all Microsoft services when playing the game.

    Firstly, download and install HWMonitor.

    With HWMonitor running, use your computer normally for twenty or thirty minutes - no games, just browsing the web, playing minesweeper etc - and at the end of the twenty or thirty minutes, take a screenshot of the HWMonitor window and save it.

    Then do the same again, keeping HWMonitor open, while you play Sims for twenty to thirty minutes. If your game is crashing before the thirty minutes is up, just play until it crashes. If your computer is freezing, shutting down, or restarting itself, play for as long as you think you can before the freeze/shutdown/reboot, then quit the game. Take another screenshot of the HWMonitor window.

    then check for temperature difference between those 2 screenshots,

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