system freezes after dial-up

The modem (Motorola SM56K) connects fine at 50k or higher. About half the time it will not find any pages (tried this with two different connections, with different DNS numbers) or it will work fine for 10-15 minutes, then it will slow down and the system will freeze, requiring a reset. System is a Celeron 300, 64megs, plenty of disk space. All other apps seems to work fine. I tried system file checker, which found the file setupx.dll needed to be replaced (no effect), I deleted history files and temp internet files - also no effect. Any suggestions are welcome
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swwelshAsked:
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dew_associatesCommented:
SW, unless the modem is heading for a physical failure, which is always a possiblity, the problem sounds more like either a Windows 98 problem, and Internet Explorer problem. The PC freezing after a while could be the result of two possibilities, a bad video card driver or there's some corruption in the IE files. Try replacing the video card driver first with the latest Windows 98 approved driver you can find (usually on the manufacturers site) and then we can try and rebuild IE (which version are you using?)
Dennis
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Alisher_NCommented:
'not finding pages' is not related to modem in any way!
Internet problems arise from wrong config or your provider only!

first of all check your modem, this could be a hardware problem...
get a system approach ;-)
1) if your PC runs always good w/o modem ?
2) try your modem with other PC
3) try to connect not to Internet, but to other PC with modem (ask a friend) via good terminal program, try to exchange huge files (5-10Mb) and check the speed of transfer. Does it hang now ?
4) Internet config is next and last place to check...


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rlippertCommented:
Look at the modem log, located at C:\Windows\"Name of your modem in device mangager".log
(this is assuming logging is turned on, which it should be by default)

In particular, look down towards the bottom and see if the modem is using error correction (which it should be) as not having it can cause connections to drop out or freeze when an error is encountered.
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swwelshAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the comments. I suspect you are both right that it isn't a modem problem - I've never had one that would connect with no problem and then stop working. I hadn't thought of video drivers, I will check for newer drivers and reinstall. I know there is a procedure to rebuild/repair IE5 (it's the version that comes with 98SE - no upgrades or patches) I'll give that a try as well. Alisher, your thought about using a terminal program is a good one. They use hyperterminal to connect to a company bbs, I'll see how that works. It's a customer's machine, I don't have it here, so I'll try to work on it sometime tomorrow and get back to you
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garsueCommented:
there is allot of ideas i see listed for you to try.  if all is working GREAT then it just up's & locks the machine. i would start by looking for a HEAT problem.
make darn sure your case is not geting hot.  try to keep the machine as cool as u can under 100 F is doing good. leave the case cover off.
 it sounds like a HEAT prob to me. but like i said all the answer are good places to start, swwelsh
try adding a fan to it & let it blow on the cpu chip & the cmos chip both. u can get small fans  for 4.00 to 15.00 so be careful when shopping for one. try shows, & radio shack.
---gary
garsue@atnite.net
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dew_associatesCommented:
Garsue, this is one of several questions that you have locked in spite of being asked not to unless you had a conclusive answer, which you do not. Please quit blocking questions as it removes the question from the view of experts that may be able to help this person.
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swwelshAuthor Commented:
Garsue, thank you for the input, I have checked the fan and it is fine, and also other programs run fine on the computer. See Dennis' comment and I would add that usually you should let the first experts that get started on the problem have time to go through their fixes. That keeps the question from jumping around
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dew_associatesCommented:
Have you changed the video drivers and rebuilt IE5?
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swwelshAuthor Commented:
Not yet. I couldnt hook up with the customer - I'll get to it tomorrow - I'm confident one of the suggestions will get it fixed - I think I'll take another modem along just in case.
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dew_associatesCommented:
Good idea!
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swwelshAuthor Commented:
OK, I have some updates if anybody is still following this: found that a system tray program for a Microsoft Sidewinder Pro joystick was causing IE to freeze up, and also a faulty cpu fan was causing overheating after about a half hour of operation. Fixed those,and just for fun replaced the modem with an identical model and reinstalled the drivers. Now I can browse without problems with my dialup service (which I have set up on the machine for testing), but the customer's service (Mindspring) will connect at 50k+ but it will not get any pages or only one or two before stopping. I have the DNS settings correct according to their tech.  Mindspring tech support has so far not been helpful. Oh, I also reinstalled video drivers. I'm out of ideas on this one - except trying a different isp
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swwelshAuthor Commented:
Adjusted points to 400
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swwelshAuthor Commented:
I forgot to mention that Garsue was partially correct. The customer had told me that the system was running fine, but I got a crash unrelated to the net problem and found that the fan was not running full speed. I'll give you some points, look for a question for you in this area. I should also mention that I reinstalled win98, and removed and reinstalled all networking stuff to rebuild tcp/ip

Scott
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Alisher_NCommented:
again: try to send/receive huge files via terminal program to another computer, not to ISP (spend an hour on this!). You have to be sure that modem is working, if it is, so it is an ISP problem, but from my experience (actually I AM ISP ;-), and responsible for clients support) I can tell you that 95% of problems arise on client's side. If your ISP has a problem with traffic or server everybody among their clients will have the same problem as you do, so it is more likely that it is on your side

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dew_associatesCommented:
Scott, run a test on that machine and use your ISP (you can always delete it) and see how it stacks up to MindSpring. Unfortunately they were one of the biggest and best at one time, but their quality of service has turned extremly bad.
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swwelshAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the responses. I don't think it is a modem problem (maybe a modem driver problem) because I have been able to consistently connect and browse with my isp that I have set up on the machine. I also replaced the modem and had the same symptoms. It is only the Mindspring connection that wont resolve (actually it will on occasion, I had it get about 20 sites once before hanging up), no indications of any problems with Atlanta servers on their network status page. They have sent me an email with a checklist of things to check, but I am pretty sure I have done them all. I will give Mindspring credit for having good tech support resources, but they did say they are constantly changing things on their servers these days. I'll try to get some time on the machine in the next day or so (can't take it with me - kid's using it for homework, parents using it for work) and I will try your suggestions
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dew_associatesCommented:
Okay Scott!  I have a son in Atlanta and he has had a number of problems including unexplainable problems with IE and at times, unexplainable crashes when sending email via Outlook Express. When I was there on a visit a few months ago, I called another ISP that I've worked with providing them with servers and used one of their dial-ups and everything ran great. When the annual agreement is up, he'll be switching.
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swwelshAuthor Commented:
Interesting. The first symptoms they noticed were problems with mail that they sent getting lost, and with OE crashes. I think I'll set them up with Netzero or Freeinet for now, until they can get a new provider. I've heard good things about Atlnet and a few others. If you can recommend the isp you were working with I'll give them a look as well
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dew_associatesCommented:
I'll get the info from my son tomorrow!
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dew_associatesCommented:
My son is currently logging into http://www.atlnet.net/ and he told me his logon speeds average between 44.4 to 52.6
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