Random freeze problem...

Anytime I play a game or sometimes watch a video my computer will freeze after a random amount of time.  When it freezes it has a loud buzz coming through the speakers. (Not the case speaker, just the ones hooked up to the sound card.)

win2k all updates
2100+, MSI kt266pro2 ru
geforce4 visiontek 4600
512mb pc2100
2 wd caviar 120gig HD's raid0
seagate cheetah system drive

I upgraded to the bios 3.5 (can only use the newest bios or else it wont boot with a 2100+), reinstalled directx, reinstalled sblive, reinstalled detonator (few differrent versions), took out the sblive completely and used no sound, then used onboard, reinstalled 4 in 1 v4.38, 4.37 and 4.35, put in a different vid card (geforce3), and sacrificed a chicken.

I have a dual boot and the problem occurs in both OS's (win98).  I've changed the via agp to 2x, from 4x and also set the memory timings to a less aggressive setting.  I also swapped out the 512mb DDR stick for another one.

Any other ideas? It just completely freezes whenever i play a game, but it's fairly random. Sometimes i can play for 5 minutes, sometimes only 5 seconds. But it's only when playing a game or watching videos.  Otherwise the system is solid and it acts as my wireless gateway and intranet gateway.  It's also surfed on a lot and used for general MS office stuff.

not overclocked cpu or video card...or unlocked

here's most of my bios settings:
set main vid card to agp
internal cache enabled
bios cached disabled
c000, 32k shadow disabled

sdram freq= spd
cas=2 (tried 2.5)
row precharge=2
plse width to 5 (tried 6)
ras to cas delay=2t
bank interleave= 2 way (1 stick-o-ram)
burst lenght= 8 (dropped to 4)
sdram 1t command = DISABLED
fast = enabled
agp fast write disabled
aperature to 128
master 1 W/S write enabled
w/s read enabled
write to read disabled
read to write disabled

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MoondancerConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Thanks for your help, Eric.

300 points refunded, item closed by moving to our PAQ at 0 points.

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Moondancer - EE Moderator
The only thing that sticks out is:

If you only have 1 RAM chip, bank interleaving should probably be set to disabled.

Have you installed the latest drivers for your hardware that are correct for your OS?

What version of Direct X are you running?

Does your video card have an active fan, and is it clean, along with the rest of the case?

Is your power supply AMD recommended? See the following link for an AMD recommended P/S:

pazuzzuAuthor Commented:
The PS is a 400watt and is ok.  The geforce3 and 4 have there own fans.  Not only that they have a fan that sits in the PCI slot in front of the AGP slot and pulls the air away from the card and out the back.  
directx is 8.1a for win2k...definetly the correct drivers.

I'll disable interleaving and see if that helps.  

thanks so far!

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I had the EXACT problem last week on a AXP 2100+, MSI kt7t266 Pro2, and MSI GF4 Ti4400. When talking to various tech support people they insisted that some of the Pro2's are not 100% compatible with the GF4 (of any make). I RMA'd the board, after I got a new one back I flashed the BIOS to 3.5 for the AXP 2100, and have had no problems since. Have you talked to tech support at MSI? You may give them a call or e-mail, and get some help there.
pazuzzuAuthor Commented:
it looks like the card was overheating even with all my cooling....the board or the power supply must not have been able to maintain the voltage.  I underclocked the card to 285/625 and the problem vanished.  So far anyways....i havent had a real gaming test yet, but i played for over an hour this morning and that's a record so far.

Glad to hear that. Althouguh you shouldn't have to run at an underclocked speed. Cooling is also a big concern. The more airflow the better. Make sure the outtake fan on your PSU has enough room to dissipate the hot air, and that the hot air that it blows isn't recycle back into the system. You'll have that vidcard back to stock speeds in no time.
You may want to add additional case fans. One to bring in cool air and another to exhaust it.
 I am having the EXACT same problem.  I have been looking all over the internet, and it seems this usually occurs with the VIA motherboards, especially the k7vta3 and similar types.  I am thinking about buying a new motherboard.  Possibly another power supply (mine is 300W).  I have been working on my comp for like 3 hrs each day for a whole week, and I am quite certain it is not an IRQ conflict.  I hope the new motherboard will fix it (damn taiwanese MOBO manufacturers!!).

Athlon XP 1900+
512mb DDR RAM
ECS k7vta3 motherboard
Visiontek GeForce4 Xtasy Ti-4600
Soundblaster Audigy Gamer-X
Creative Inspire 5100 speakers
Sony 60GB hd
Wireless Intellimouse Explorer
300W PS

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I've got the same problem. I want to use my PC as a Harddisk-Recorder ...

ECS K7VTA3 rev 3.0b
Athlon XP 1900+
1 x Elixir 256 MB RAM
2 x 60,0 GB IBM IC35L060AVVA07
16 MB ATI All-in-Wonder 128

... but every second or third recording it freezes after about 60 min.

(With my girlfriends Pentium III 700 MHz it works fine.)

Until today I've changed these things:

- improved cooling: no  
- disabled the Power Management options: no
- Bios "Halt on Error"-option: no
- with and without RAID (Striping): no

Today I'm trying to install an Extra-PCI-Soundcard (Yahama SHG for 20$), but that's not easy, folks!

1. I disabled the OnBoard-Soundchip
2. I disabled the MPU401 and Gameport within Win98SE
3. I installed the Yamaha-Sounddrivers and software.
4. ATI-TV-Software plays TV with Sound,

but if I try to play a AVI-/MPEG-File where will be no sound and the video will not play fluently.

Can somebody help me to? How do you installed your Extra-PCI-Sound on your K7VTA3 ?



I finally got fed up with the k7vta3 crap and bought myself that new soyo dragon ultra several months back.  So far, I have never had a crash yet!
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