Problems with Freezing (Epox / Radeon / Audigy)

Alright, I got a .. slightly older system (hah!)


Epox 8KTA3 AMD Tbird 1.33ghz
1024MB PC133 RAM Kingston/Corsair
SB Audigy MP3+
ATI Radeon 9700 Pro
3COM EtherLink XL 3C905B-TX


Now, I don't remember exactly when the random freezings started, 2 or 3 months ago at most, but I know they've stuck around. Since then, I've formatted in a rather fun and time-consuming way...

Format -> Install Win2k Pro
Low Level Format -> Install Win2k Pro
Format -> Install Win XP Pro

Through all of that, the random freezings are still occuring.

The BIOS is up to date, I've underclocked the video card, I've downgraded the Catalyst drivers, I've run MemTest x86 and GoldMemory on several passes, and I'm running low on ideas.

I don't think its a software conflict, I had minimal software installed on the XP install, and it locked up again...

I got a Antec TruePower 550w PSU, the voltages dont deviate from:
12v- 11.83v 5v- 5.03v Core- 1.75v I/O- 3.58v

As for temps, the CPU never gets over 105F (40C) It idles at ~ 90F (32C).
The system overall is around 3 years old, so its obviously time for a new one... but I'd like to hold on to this one for a little while longer...

When I could run Halo, I'd get around 45 fps, and Max Payne 2 left me with around 60, so It's performing okay... when it would work anyhow.

Does anyone have any ideas as to what it could be? Or more diagnostic software I can try? I'm at the end of my rope.


-Skitch
LVL 1
LordSkitchAsked:
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buckeyes33Commented:
How full is your HD?
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LordSkitchAuthor Commented:
94.7GB free at the moment

(120gb 8mb cache Maxtor)
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buckeyes33Commented:
You say you have tried running memtest.  Well mem test will not always catch an error in or memory.  Does it freeze up will playing games or when?  
When you stress your memory it heats up, when this happens a memory module that might work fine doing normal task and playing games some times, will fail.  Try taking each stick of RAM out and seeing if you can run you games. If you are able to play games with a module out, most likely that module is bad. Send it back and get a new one.
I have went through 2 kingston modules this past summer for that exact reason.
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Rob StoneCommented:
Try clearing the CMOS too and using fail safe settings from the BIOS.

Does it ever lock up whilst in the BIOS or windows safe mode?  Check all the drivers are digitally signed.
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LordSkitchAuthor Commented:
I took out the ram and tried em one at a time, in different slots, and it kept lockin up with all of em, so I imagine the rams still good. Sometimes it'll lock up over and over, sometimes itll take a while for it to do it, but sooner or later it'll lock up. I'm down to testing the sound card, the video card, and the motherboard...

I'll clear cmos here in a few minutes, and I'll see if I can get it to lock up.. then I'll try safe mode.

And I would think its got somethin to do with the video card personally, on occasion itll freeze, and then ATI's VPU Recover thing will kick in and bring it back out of computer-hell so I can reboot. I've tried underclocking the video card to see if it was overheating or something, despite the fact I got an exhauster right below it, and 2 92mm fans blowing on it, one of which is a vantec tornado.

Does anyone know of a way I can run diagnostics on the video card itself?


Skitchy
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buckeyes33Commented:
here is a free one to test for stability of you video card. I don't know how it works b/c i never have used it.
http://www.majorgeeks.com/download201.html

I would just take the video card out and put another one back in.  Just get one from a friend or something.  
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buckeyes33Commented:
have you found anything out?  Any more help needed?
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LordSkitchAuthor Commented:
D'oh! I forgot I had this up.  Turns out it was a flaw in the core display driver ATI had. They came out with a new driver set a couple weeks ago, it fixed it right up. Don't know exactly what was wrong with it, but the new Catalyst drivers fixed it. If you want the points, they're yours!


Skitchy
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buckeyes33Commented:
since no one answered your question you can ask CS to refund your points Or you can do whatever witht the points.  Just make sure you close the question.  thanks.
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YensidModCommented:
Question has been PAQed and 130 points refunded.

YensidMod
Experts Exchange Moderator
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