This is my first question asked on SF, so be gentle kids.
As my desktops (approximately 110 or so) have begun to age and with my users resisting Windows 8, I've begun to notice an odd trend. We are primarily an HP shop. So the desktops I am having the issues with are DX2200 and DX2300 series business desktops. (Yes yes, I know they are old, but they are still serviceable for what my users use the machines for.) The users of some of the machines are complaining that the machines are very loud and/or "racing". And they seem to be very slow opening up applications like Outlook and IE. At first I went on the obvious hunt for viruses, but in not finding any and not being able to find a task that was consuming resources, I was stumped. Task man showed very little CPU usage, but the fans were running full out. Typically a sign that the CPU is under heavy load as these have variable speed fans controller by the motherboard.
In trying to solve the problem, I pulled the heatsink and fan assembly off the motherboard. I discovered that the heat sink compound on many of these machines seems to have dried out. I would describe the compound as flaky rather than smooth and gooey. The fix for the issue is embarrassingly simple; Simply clean and reapply some paste as recommended by the manufacturer. I've had this happen in five desktops in the last few weeks. Odd coincidence or simply a matter of finally noticing this? Who knows. This resolves the issue with the CPU in all 5 machines.
While I had never considered this to be an issue, suddenly now I am beginning to wonder if this is unique to my facility. We are a commercial printing facility and have chemicals and solvents in the building. Or if this is simply a matter of maintenance on aging equipment. I am inclined to believe this is an "old machine" issue.
I typically pull the cover off any machine I am working on just to physically inspect fans and heat sinks, but I now have added pulling the CPU heat sink and reapplying compound to any system work done on the bench.
Is anyone else having the same or similar issues with HP desktops/servers?