Do PCs have automatic protection against overheating?

riffin

I was using my Compaq laptop literally on my lap, and running a pretty graphics intensive program. After a while, it shut down. I thought about it and realized the way I had been holding it had blocked the vents, and it was pretty warm to the touch. I waiting a little while and restarted it, and everything seems to be fine. Is there built-in protection against overheating, or is it likely I caused damage because of my slip-up?

Topic: Hardware
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bgwatters
Vote Up (24)

Well that is part of your issue, get it off your lap. 1st Thing is to keep the vents free and clear. If those get blocked then you have Thermal probes that kick in that once they kick in it can and will shutdown. I personally run a application that run 100% processor usage, and it sits on its regular feet with no overheating issues.

owen
Vote Up (23)

Most, perhaps all, modern CPUs have a thermistor, and if you go into your BIOS you can configure shutdowns based on temperature. You probably just crossed the factory set threshold and triggered the shutdown that is in place to protect your hardware. When I overclock Android devices, I always throttle back CPU clock speeds at set temperatures to prevent damage, i.e. at 120 degrees throttle back the CPU to 75% OEM clock speed. Oh, and as the other poster mentioned, laptops aren't really that great on your lap. :-)     

 

Here is a screenshot that shows what I'm talking about. 

 

jimlynch
Vote Up (21)

BGwatters has it right. Be sure to keep the vents open. Other than that you shouldn't have a problem if the PC is operating properly and there are no malfunctions with the hardware.

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