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Thread: Carputer Randomally Freezes When Car's in Motion

  1. #1
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    Carputer Randomally Freezes When Car's in Motion

    My Carputer is built and ready to go. It works great at home (w/AC power supply) and it works great in a parked car (using opus). The problem is the carputer Randomly freezes when my car is in motion. Here's what i've observed.

    1) The sound stops coming through speakers.
    2) Frodoplayer feezes.
    3) Touchscreen becomes inresponsive.

    Here are the strange observations that happen only sometime.

    1) Keyboard is working after the system is froze. (I can open the start menu using the windows key) This happens for very limited time and then I get loss of signal on monitor.
    2) Sometimes, windows doesn't respond to keyboard (start menu doesn't open); however, if I hit the num lock key, the light goes away. But the same is not true for caps lock.

    My opinion: Since this only happens when car's in motion, it can only be two things.

    1) Battery Level drops when car's in motion: This is least likely to happen since I've a brand new G35 and besides isn't OPUS suppose to take of that?

    2) Hard Drive Shock: I'm currently using a desktop 3.5" IDE 20GB hard drive. I have a feeling that hard drive skips and windows freezes...

    Does anyone else have any other suggestions. I'm running my computer with bare minimum (keyboard and a usb sound card) to test whether any peripherals have a role to play. I've tested with and without touchscreen to see if that makes a difference.

    Should I invest in a laptop hard drive to see if that makes any difference. Please help me my fellow carputer users. I'm trying to get this carputer working in my car from last 3 mos

  2. #2
    Constant Bitrate KaiTech's Avatar
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    It is 100% positive you have a bad connection somewhere or your HDD can't take the vibration... I'll go with the bad connection though. Check your cables, especially the RED input lead for the OPUS. (If it's not connected directlly to the battery do that)
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  3. #3
    Maximum Bitrate carpcnoobie's Avatar
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    I was getting similar situations and quickly determined it to be bumps and the hard drive. Which way is your hard drive situated? Horizontal or vertical.

    I also did have a situation where a bolt from my case came loose and bounced around on the mobo. I found the bolt, and no harm was done, but I was getting strange freezes too.
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    Jesus Freak antimatter's Avatar
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    I had this exact problem...

    It is a power issue. Since then i got a 2.5" hard drive and an Optima Yellow top battery as my cranking battery.

    One strange thing that i noticed was that if i turned the car off and cranked the engine (like at a stop sign) the hard drive would spin back up and everything would unfreeze.

    Now i have no problems. Also it could be your wiring. what gauge wire did you use for the Opus. You could be starving it
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    Self proclaimed spoon feeder TruckinMP3's Avatar
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    Check all your connections: Power to the PC, power cables inside the case, Cards, memory, ribbon cables and such.

    It could be a loose wire. It is not common for HDs to cause this due to vibration. They are very durable, even when the car is totaled with a bent frame (personal experiance)
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    Do you have a TV tuner installed? Check for Driver updates for your BIOS/Chipset...AGP Fast Write, PCI latency < 12 etc.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiTech
    It is 100% positive you have a bad connection somewhere or your HDD can't take the vibration... I'll go with the bad connection though. Check your cables, especially the RED input lead for the OPUS. (If it's not connected directlly to the battery do that)
    I'm going to hardwire the opus to eliminate this out of question. Thanks for the suggestion. The Opus is directly connected to battery using an 8 gauge wire.

    Quote Originally Posted by carpcnoobie
    I was getting similar situations and quickly determined it to be bumps and the hard drive. Which way is your hard drive situated? Horizontal or vertical.

    I also did have a situation where a bolt from my case came loose and bounced around on the mobo. I found the bolt, and no harm was done, but I was getting strange freezes too.
    I initially had my hard drive mounted vertically; however, even though I have it mounted horizontally now I still get random freezes, not as many though.

    Quote Originally Posted by antimatter
    I had this exact problem...

    It is a power issue. Since then i got a 2.5" hard drive and an Optima Yellow top battery as my cranking battery.

    One strange thing that i noticed was that if i turned the car off and cranked the engine (like at a stop sign) the hard drive would spin back up and everything would unfreeze.

    Now i have no problems. Also it could be your wiring. what gauge wire did you use for the Opus. You could be starving it
    Well if it's a power issue then it must be the connection from battery to opus. Originally there was an issue with that plug on OPUS and Kris at Opus asked me to fix it. According to other suggestion, i'm going to hardwire battery wires to opus (doing away with the plug) I'm sure the battery is fine since it's a 7 mos old car.
    Quote Originally Posted by nickmig
    Do you have a TV tuner installed? Check for Driver updates for your BIOS/Chipset...AGP Fast Write, PCI latency < 12 etc.
    I don't have a tv tuner installed. I'm using the computer with bare minimum (keyboard, touchscreen, usb sound, and other peripherals. This include no cd rom, no pci card, no mouse, etc..)

    Things to Do: (In order of Priority)

    1) Hardwire Opus
    2) Check for all connections
    3) Check for secure MOBO to chasis
    4) Replace 3.5" drive with a laptop hard drive
    5) Buy all parts again and start over (IMPROBABLE)
    6) Scratch off the project (IMPOSSIBLE)

    I'll update all members after I gett through the first 3 at least. Please have the suggestions coming in so I can enjoy being a happy carpuser as well Thanks guys for all the support. This forum is the best!

  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate knubile's Avatar
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    My system has the same symptoms, but mine has also happened sitting in my house using a brick power supply.
    I haven't figured out what it is in the least, but you should try running it for a couple of hours in your house to make sure it's not software related or you case not providing enough air flow etc.. I'm using a Travla c134 case.

  9. #9
    Constant Bitrate leemik's Avatar
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    what is your exact setup? which opus is it? maybe you are drawing too much current?

    --mike

  10. #10
    MySQL Error MatrixPC's Avatar
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    - Not enought power? (Less likely because it works when car not in motion)
    - Power connector to hard drive loose?
    - Hard drive mounting. Vibration while in motion. (This is the problem I had before. Since I tighten all 4 screws, it works fine). Make sure the HD is tight to the case and the case MUST securely tight to the car.
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