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  • Latent ESD testing

    Hi,

    I'm paranoid that I may have inadvertantly subjected my PC to ESD damage....the latent kind that doesn't manifest itself right away. You see, I just built a new rig and everything has run flawlessly so far....almost too good. I've been reading up on ESD and now it's got me paranoid. I fear that one of these days my PC will start malfunctioning due to it being weakened (and from what I read...it could be Ok for months and then start showing signs....now THAT would suck). But it's probably perfectly fine....after all, I tried to wear the geek strap throughout the entire install, but my entire house is carpeted and I think I may have forgotten to ground myself a few times. That brings up another question...is hardware these days made to withstand a certain amount of ESD (like 2000 volts)? Do they have ESD diode chips these days that "take the hit"?

    Is BurnInTest (say run for 8 hours straight) a good test to see if any of my components have been subjected to any form of ESD?? I've run it for a short while, and everything seems to be tip-top. I know ESD is hard to pin point, and I'm probably just worrying for nothing. But like I said, I'm paranoid (I think by nature) and I'd like to not be any more! I just want to enjoy my PC without having to worry about it failing! One last thing....if I do run the BurnInTest, and it passes after 8 hours, is it safe to say that the entire PC has been spared of ESD up until this point?

    By the way, I love what I've seen of the PassMark products so far...keep up the good work!

    Thanks!

    P.S. - I know I'm weird....my friends give me crap about it all the time!!
    Last edited by RockyBalboa; 07-03-2008, 11:37 PM.

  • #2
    All the ESD (electro static discharge) damage I have seen is of the immediate and total failure category. I think doing minor damage (that leave the component fully working in the short / medium term) is much more rare.

    Yes, running BurnInTest for several hours should raise your confidence level that all is OK. Some componets just fail with age however and there is nothing you can do about it (like cheap capacitors on the motherboard and in the power supply).

    Better to use the PC with the expectation that it will fail. And keep good backups. Then you might get a nice surprise in 5 years if it doesn't fail (rather than a nasty surprise).

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    • #3
      Originally posted by passmark View Post
      All the ESD (electro static discharge) damage I have seen is of the immediate and total failure category. I think doing minor damage (that leave the component fully working in the short / medium term) is much more rare.

      Yes, running BurnInTest for several hours should raise your confidence level that all is OK. Some componets just fail with age however and there is nothing you can do about it (like cheap capacitors on the motherboard and in the power supply).

      Better to use the PC with the expectation that it will fail. And keep good backups. Then you might get a nice surprise in 5 years if it doesn't fail (rather than a nasty surprise).
      Thanks, that's good advice. That's kind of what I was thinking...just wanted some confirmation. Hopefully this PC will last for 5 years, but I plan to build another in 2-3 so as long as it lasts that long, I'm straight.

      Thanks again, I appreciate the speedy response! Now I'm off to go start my BurnInTest...

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