Northbridge fan question.

(At least, I think it's the northbridge. This is the tiny little fan about an inch away from my processor socket.)

This little fan has been rattling something fierce over the last week or so. It's going to need to be replaced before it does permanent damage to my sanity. That said, I'm seeing a lot of "northbridge cooling kits" which consist of just a heatsink and some thermal goo. Now, it's generally pretty cool in my room anyway and I don't imagine that tiny fan is moving all that much air. Is a fan necessary? Is cooling of any kind even necessary?

Well I won't say it doesn't need the fan, that is a choice you have to make. There are several motherboards on the market right now that don't include a fan but just the heatsink on top of that chip. It is a choice you will have to make.

Several years ago I had the same problem with one of my motherboards. I yanked the fan and left the heatsink, I never had any problems. That doesn't mean you won't.

Good luck.

I would suggest cooling it, if it gets too hot it could make the system unstable. And I figure they put the fan on there for some reason. If there wasn't a reason they could have saved a buck by not placing it. I would suggest getting a passive north bridge cooling. Wich is just a heatsink, but probably a bit bigger then the one on it now.

I'd agree with Koning here. A passive cooling solution would probably work fine for you, as long as you don't use the really cheap goo. Go with something like artic silver, or a decent knockoff.

I'd go with a new fan, there is a reason for it to be there. Brand new one can't cost more that a couple of dollars, and it is much easier to install then a new heatsink with the thermal paste and whatnot. Installing a new fan will only take a couple of seconds.