Vostro 1500 heat

Discussion in 'Dell' started by Ron Hardin, Aug 20, 2007.

  1. Ron Hardin

    Ron Hardin Guest

    I must say, the core 2 duo throws off a lot of heat when it's working. The temp at the upper
    left air vent is about 30 degrees F higher than the room, even with a Belkin laptop cooling
    stand under it. Your arm notices it a lot.

    Only one cpu running hard at 1600MHz, the other idling at 800MHz.

    My comparison is an Inspiron 1200 with a celeron M, which is notably cooler.
    Ron Hardin, Aug 20, 2007
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  2. Hi!
    Hmmm...is there a difference in cooling fan designs and placement between
    the two systems?

    I ask because I can crank a 2GHz Core Duo Macbook up to a toasty 185-190
    degress F. Its little fan just cannot dissipate the heat. It has never shut
    down or complained, but I've been worried about that much heat building up
    and don't run it that hard very often.

    By comparison, my Latitude D800 (with a much bigger heat radiation surface
    and fan) with a Celeron M at 2GHz will top out at about 150 on the

    Yes, they are different processors, but both are being asked to run
    distributed.net. That gets things plenty hot no matter what CPU is doing the

    William R. Walsh, Aug 21, 2007
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  3. Ron Hardin

    Journey Guest

    The MacBooks have been known to have heat problems, and many of them
    have been damaged by the high temps that it can get to. Even the
    salesperson at Comp USA, who advocates the Macs said that the heat
    ruined the video on his laptop.

    It is a serious design issue that I hope Apple fixes, because I would
    sell one of my two Windows laptops and use a MacBook.

    I may buy a Mac Mini when it comes with Leopard. Apple was
    advertising Leopard for several months when Vista came out. I was at
    Comp USA in the Mac section today and a guy was ready to buy one of
    the new iMacs, and I said that Leopard is coming out in October so it
    would be good to wait. Only then did the salesperson talk about
    Leopard. I could never do a sales job in which I'd have to "lie by
    omission" and I hate the slime that would sell someone an Apple system
    in mid September knowing that Leopard would be out in a month. I
    think it's better to tell the customer all the relevant factors, and
    by doing the right thing in the end it will result in more business.

    Now though, Apple isn't advertising Leopard as much because it would
    cause people to wait, and would hurt current sales. Before, it might
    have been to keep users who might have defected to Vista, but now the
    release date is much closer. It would be nice to see Apple offer a
    free upgrade for people to buy now.

    I think the default warranty for Apple notebooks is 30 days! Given
    the heat problems, I wouldn't touch one (no pun intended) right now.

    As far as the Vostro and Ron's experience, all I can say that on the
    640m I have, the M1210 I have, and a friend's D520 which I have used
    on several occasions, NONE of them get very hot and they are properly
    ventilated with a very silent fan.

    One thing you can do Ron is go into power management (if you have
    Vista) and go into the advanced settings for whatever power scheme you
    are on and then set the maximum CPU speed (in percent terms). That
    would likely help a bit.
    Journey, Aug 21, 2007
  4. Hi!
    (wandering way off the topic here---tune out now if that bothers you!)

    It seems to me that you either get a good one or you get a...not so great
    one. Mine has had three repairs, none of which were heat related. A key
    popped of the keyboard, the onboard ethernet port somehow came unglued (may
    well have been my fault?) and the hard drive was replaced as a pre-emptive
    measure when it started making the odd "click" sound while working. I have
    heard the horror stories of the "mooing" and of many thermal problems with
    the Macbook Pro. I've also heard of Magsafe power adapters burning up. I
    haven't had any mooing, thermal failures or power adapter problems.

    In day to day use, I've not been able to make mine get all that hot--no more
    than maybe 160-165. With distributed.net left running for days, it would get
    quite hot. But it never seemed to mind much apart from cranking up the fan
    speed. That's the only thing that really gets my goat--for what is such a
    nice machine otherwise, is there a reason why the fan has to sound so darn
    cheap and high pitched?
    Now the mini...I could highly recommend that. I have two and love them. They
    just run and run. No trouble from either one. If you'd like, take a look at
    the reviews I wrote:

    http://greyghost.dyndns.org/mmreview/ (PPC model)
    http://greyghost.dyndns.org/mmintelreview/ (Intel Core Duo model)
    http://greyghost.dyndns.org/mmintelreview/windows/ (...and Windows shortly
    after the announcement)
    Apple's had two generations of solid operating systems now...both 10.3.x and
    10.4 have proven very stable in a corporate network of about ~25 machines
    spread across two locations. I don't have a lot of trouble with them. Unless
    you know you need something offered in Leopard, I'd go consider a machine
    now and run with it if that's what you want to do.

    Apple has traditionally offered a free (or very, very low cost) OS upgrade
    program to hardware that is purchased within 30 days or so of an OS release.
    I have done of these and they came through without hassle each time.
    One year for parts and hardware. Telephone support is where they get you! 90
    days is the standard fare. You can get Applecare and dial up both the phone
    support and warranty for "three" years. (However, the first year is your
    standard warranty.) It's $250 for that and you'd have to decide. I went
    against it and stuck with the stock warranty/support.) They are real
    sticklers on the 90 day support policy and getting them to go a little over
    is like pulling teeth.

    Telephone support problems can be circumvented by having access to a good
    independent Apple dealer. I wouldn't have bought my Macbook direct from
    Apple, not after dealing with them to get a good replacement set of restore
    media discs for the Intel mini. (There's something I should probably stick
    into the review.) I went around and around with them before they sent a set.
    At the same time, playing my ace in the hole, I went to the independent
    Apple dealer and was taken care of immediately without any undue noisemaking
    or fussing.
    My D800 is a great machine. Ever since the mainboard was replaced (busted
    port, cosmetic damage only), the fans seem a little louder but are by no
    means intrusive. I couldn't complain, especially when it will stand up and
    deliver computing for over four hours on a battery.

    A desire to have a system that I could take with me to work on others
    computers and have both the MacOS and Windows handy drove me to purchase the
    Macbook. I bought a black one, although I paid nowhere near retail for it.
    (Hint: Wait for a "speed bump" and order then. A $1499 machine dropped to
    $1103 just that quickly for me.) Since the D800 is my main computer, and has
    many things on it that would not be good to lose (even with regular backups,
    the data on it is quite dynamic in nature), I thought a second laptop with a
    small size would be nice. The Macbook has certainly delivered, although I
    feel it is too expensive if you have to pay full retail price.

    William R. Walsh, Aug 21, 2007
  5. Ron Hardin

    Journey Guest

    Hi William,

    I enjoyed your Mac comments. I live in Wisconsin, so a MacBook would
    have more of a chance of mooing, although it might be a false positive
    if a real cow just happened to be outside my window :)

    I wonder if Gateway notebooks moo too.

    I am going to stay away from the MacBook until Apple deals with the
    heating and other quality issues, however I am fairly certain that
    after Leopard is released I will get a Mac Mini. They are
    inexpensive, and I'd like an entry point into the Mac world again (I
    was a Mac user from the original Mac in 1984, up until 1996 when I
    switched to Windows 95). With a Mac Mini I also would not buy any
    extensions to the standard Apple warranty because things are less
    likely to go wrong. I will take your advice and buy from the
    independent Apple dealer rather than through the web. That way I
    might get better support locally if something goes wrong.

    Leopard has some really nice new features, so I will wait for that. I
    will probably use the Mac Mini for my "home stereo" iTunes, and for
    some of its included digital software -- the improved software that
    manages photos looks really good. I also want to try the new iWork
    software. I have a registered copy of Office 2004 for the Mac, but I
    bought it before the Intel processors so I don't know if / how I can
    get a version for the new processors. I assume my older version
    doesn't work. I bought Office 2004 when I tried out a MacBook Pro,
    but returned the Mac very quickly because even back then it got VERY
    hot and it was unacceptable.
    Journey, Aug 21, 2007
  6. Ron Hardin

    Ron Hardin Guest

    It seems to run cooler on XP (it's hot under Ubuntu linux 6.10) but I don't have similar
    jobs set up yet to really test it.

    Linux you'd think would be cooler since it runs idle CPUs at half speed, and the other
    CPU is idle.

    But the job in question is a processor burner (no pun intended) that wildly accesses
    about all of the 4gb of ram, and so it might be the cache or the RAM that's generating
    the heat; I have to duplicate that under XP somehow to test if it's the system or not
    (ie. maybe XP manages the cpu better, as one possibility).

    It's not a bad sign if the air coming out is hot (that shows, after all, that heat is
    being removed); it chiefly shows that heat is being generated. Generated heat has to
    go somewhere.
    Ron Hardin, Aug 21, 2007
  7. Ron Hardin

    Journey Guest

    Hi Ron,

    What are you doing that processor burns and wildly accesses about all
    of 4GB of RAM? I think it's a bad sign if air coming out is hot and
    continues to be hot for a long period of time. If the fan is on all
    the time, you may be exceeding what the system was designed to handle,
    because the fan might be maxed out.

    As a former programmer, I am wondering if you could design your job
    better to not be so intensive (not the right word but I haven't had my
    first cup of coffee yet!).

    I would not think either way about Linux running cooler. The laptop
    was designed with a MS OS in mind, with Windows power management in

    When you say Linux runs idle CPUs at half speed, what do you mean? I
    would think that idle CPUs should run at close to zero speed.
    Journey, Aug 21, 2007
  8. Ron Hardin

    Ron Hardin Guest

    Idle cpu's typically are in a spin loop, busily watching for something to do,
    and so generating heat like always, except with a cache they presumably are
    not hitting actual RAM to do so.

    I don't know about the 8086 family, but the PDP-11 for instance had an actual
    wait instruction, which stopped the processor entirely but left it responsive
    to interrupts (depending on the interrupt, it would start taking instructions
    on various addresses), and so fairly idle. I don't think the 8086 has that or if
    it does, uses it.

    There's also an actual halt instruction, which leaves the processor stopped and
    unresponsive. Typically you want to power down at that point, or perhaps toggle
    in something to investigate this or that. No toggles on an 8086.

    Linux actually decreases the CPU speed from 1.6GHz to 800MHz if it isn't busy.

    I'm on an Inspiron 1200 at the moment but its cpu is characterized as follows
    (Cygwin under XP)

    $ cat /proc/cpuinfo
    processor : 0
    vendor_id : GenuineIntel
    type : primary processor
    cpu family : 6
    model : 13
    model name : Intel(R) Celeron(R) M processor 1.40GHz
    stepping : 8
    brand id : 2
    cpu count : 0
    apic id : 0
    cpu MHz : 1396
    fpu : yes
    flags : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat clfl dtes acpi mmx fxsr
    sse sse
    2 ss tmi pbe

    Linux actually changes the cpu MHz line to whatever it wants for the particular cpu.
    Ron Hardin, Aug 21, 2007
  9. Ron Hardin

    Journey Guest

    Hi Ron,

    You may be more technical on how processors loop, etc., but I would
    imagine different processors work differently.

    I find it hard to believe that a Core 2 Duo processor would have an
    idle loop taking up 50% of the CPU cycles but I may very well be

    The heat situation you explained is not what I experience on my Core 2
    Duos, so I would look at what you are doing as far as load on the
    processor, and see if you can make your job less demanding. You may
    be pushing it past the heat limit the laptop was designed for.
    Journey, Aug 21, 2007
  10. Hi!
    Thanks. I hope they have been useful. Since nobody has complained (!!!) here
    are some more.
    I've got cows here in Illinois here as well. :)

    Seriously though...I have seen a video of the alleged "mooing" behavior. To
    me it sounds like a fan going start/stop/start/stop/start/stop endlessly
    instead of a "moo".
    Probably not. ;-)
    That's the wonder of the so-called Rosetta translation layer. Yes, it will
    work. No need to throw away your investment. There will be no Intel-native
    version of Office:Mac until 2008. Rosetta works better than I made it sound
    in my review, but a person shouldn't go into it without a fair amount of
    RAM. 1GB is good, 2 is nearly perfect.

    iWork comes with a nice set of templates that are truly incredible. I'm not
    sure how much I'd like to design a document from scratch using any of its
    programs...but that's just me.

    I don't think the Macbook (no Pro) gets anywhere near that hot to the touch.
    Let me go and find my IR thermometer.

    William R. Walsh, Aug 22, 2007
  11. Ron Hardin

    Journey Guest

    Oh, a flatlander. I grew up in Rockford, unfortunately, but now am
    living in the #1 rated city according to Money Magazine -- Middleton,
    WI -- really an extenson of Madison.
    It must have been a cow with hiccups.
    I'll get the lowest-end Mac Mini with 1GB of RAM. Apple's transition
    to the Intel platform was way beyond expectations. Probably one of
    the greatest computing transitions in history.
    Cool -- I like good templates, one of the reasons why I haven't
    uninstalled MS Works 8.5 with my computers. If I want a good template
    it can often be found there or in Publisher 2007.

    My Java instructor was always touting the Mac and how good it was so I
    bought the smallest MacBook Pro, which was the one he had and raved
    about. I hated it from the beginning. At the time I was also doing
    development in a Unix / Linux command environment, and I had to jump
    through more hoops with Apple's underlying 'nix environment to set
    things up than I had to in other environments (I basically decided to
    do things on the server instead of the client which made it easier,
    other than the file transfers which I ended up mostly automating).
    Journey, Aug 22, 2007
  12. Ron Hardin

    Ron Hardin Guest

    One of the Ubuntu forums mentions downloads to ``fix the fan'' so apparently it's another thing
    that needs new software. I gather it's a fan that comes on late under existing Ubuntu.

    The machine seems to be chock-full of hardware that needs new drivers.
    Ron Hardin, Aug 30, 2007
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