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Windows or Hardware?

Posted on 2004-08-28
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Last Modified: 2012-06-21
I have just built my own PC for the first time.

Everything works – mostly. I have a few horrible problems
Spec is:
P4 2.8Ghz, 533 FSB
AOpen Mother board MX533V
512MB Ram
Asus Graphics car and Soundblaster sound car with 2.1 speakers.
DVD CD writer/ reader

It is fairly quick.

I installed XP Pro. I get the following problems. Occasionally I cannot change user accounts, unless I log off one account and lod onto the other.

When I am connected to my wireless LAN I do not always get the video screen icons in the bottom right hand corner, yet I can see the entire network and connect to the internet.

He other day I could not even reboot. I got to the login screen and it just switched off and went round the whole cycle again and again and again…….. I could not start in Safe Mode as it just stuck at ‘starting windows’ for ½ hour. I had to reinstall XP and things started to work again, except for the above.

I have NIS and regularly run a virus check.

There may be more than one problem bnut I don know what they are is there any way to track what it is.
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Question by:bisatt
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Expert Comment

by:Arl
ID: 11920672
Hi,

For the loggin problem, you can switch between different accounts, but if you are logged into one created account, you can switch to the "administrator" account.
But, logged as the "administrator" you can switch on the other accounts.
I hope this is clear enough.

And also check if "Use Fast User Swithcing" is enabled.
-> CONTROL PANEL -> USER ACCOUNTS and pick the task "Change the way users log on or off" and be sure that the second box is checked.
Also, sometimes, some software need this service started, just check the services :
-> RUN : type "services.msc" and check for the one named : Fast User Switching Compatibility.

Otherwise, for the wireless, which wireless adpater are you using ? Linksys, D-Link, Bison...
It can just be disabled after installing the software for the wireless
So check in the "startup" tab's in MSCONFIG if you can see a box checked related to your display Asus adapter, video monitor.
-> RUN : type "msconfig" and select the last tab.

Hope that can help.
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Arl earned 250 total points
ID: 11920683
for the loggin problem, correction :
"you can switch between different accounts, but if you are logged into one created account, you CANNOT switch to the "administrator" account.
But, logged as the "administrator" you can switch on the other accounts
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by:slink9
ID: 11920745
Do you have another memory stick you can try?

Did you observe antistatic procedures while building this system?

Are you sure all fans are running properly and the CPU is properly cooled?  Did you put CPU grease between the CPU and heatsink?
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Author Comment

by:bisatt
ID: 11920928
Fast User switching was set to manual - i have now cahnged this to automatic to see if this makes a difference.

Administrator issue is not  the one. I am the administrator and i was not able to switch to limited acount without logging of the administrator account. This appears to be an intemitent problem.

I observed antostatic procedures best i could. I have used theremal paste between cpu and heatsink. The cpu fan is running, i cant tell what temperature the cpu is at, but i doubt if that was the problem becuse it can run ok for a long time and be a problem at start up ie when it is cold.I have 3 other fans in there as well. It is as cool as a cucumber!

As is stands at present things are working fine.

Wireless network adapter is Edimax 802.11g - I might try putting the belkin in to see if this keeps a better signal. The wireless router is upstairs and the pc downstairs but i thought this would be good enough?
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by:Arl
ID: 11921193
Ok for the administrator stuff...

I have also encountered different problem with wireless... especially with the PCI adapter.
The USB and PCMCIA card are working perfectly together but the PCI and PCMCIA is not a nice couple ;-)

Heuu, the wireless technology is using kind of "simple" radio waves, but I guess that the opposite set-up could improve the way you get the signal.
So, install the wireless router downstair. Just in case...

Also, apparently there are some issues known between the WinXP SP1 and the 802.11G and the protection.
If you use the WAP, apparently this could create a lot of troubles... Microsoft is on the way to give up with the WAP (2nd generation of 802.11 protection).
So, a good advise could be to try with disabling this protection.
Apparently the only "problem" with the WEP is that the system is not so secure...
What you can try, if you are not too paranoia for that :-) is to disable all those protections and check for the service : "Wireless Zero Configuration" set to automatic, and try like that.

Hope this is clear enough.
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Expert Comment

by:Arl
ID: 11921214
sorry, the WPA...
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Expert Comment

by:Hammadian2
ID: 11940904
I installed XP Pro. I get the following problems. Occasionally I cannot change user accounts, unless I log off one account and lod onto the other.

+   -> CONTROL PANEL -> USER ACCOUNTS -> Change the way users log on or off" -> check the second box

When I am connected to my wireless LAN I do not always get the video screen icons in the bottom right hand corner, yet I can see the entire network and connect to the internet.

+  -> CONTROL PANEL -> Network and dialup connections -> Right click 'Local area connection' -> properties -> check "Show icon on the... " box

He other day I could not even reboot. I got to the login screen and it just switched off and went round the whole cycle again and again and again…….. I could not start in Safe Mode as it just stuck at ‘starting windows’ for ½ hour. I had to reinstall XP and things started to work again, except for the above.

+ We never ask what made windows fail :) we just re-install it, it has nothing to do with other things
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Author Comment

by:bisatt
ID: 12083111
Sorry, I have a real problem now. A resurrection of a problem that happened a few weeks ago. It must be hardware - must it?

I have a problem that has reoccurred on my pc I have just built.

I switched on today and it went to the screen which says Windows did not close properly and asks me if I want to restore to last good configuration, safe mode etc. Whatever I did takes me back to the same point. Eventually I had to boot from the XP disc. This is the second time this has happened and I always shut down properly

I tried to repair windows – no look
I re installed windows and when windows checked the disk there was 1000s of orphan files scrolling up the screen an windows was attempting to repair in the end Windows would not re install.
I ended up going right back to the beginning and installed from scratch having to re-format the disc. When I got the option to quick format or not I chose not to, which took nearly 1 hour and then failed saying something like cannot load onto drive (unsure of message) I re-tried again this time selected quick format and Windows loaded OK – or so it seems.

I got network connections working and Norton internet security installed.
However when I boot up it takes a long time and not all the features are properly installed eg: NIS Auto protect is disabled (sometimes) network connections are not always made, when they are I cannot always see the screen Icons in the bottom right. A way to solve this seems to be to log off my user account and log on again. When this is done I know if it is going to work because everything loads back up very quickly and all icons are present in bottom right. But, when I am logging off the user account in order to do this, it takes an eternity to log off. And is saving network settings for up to 15 minutes and sometimes just sticks at the wallpaper with nothing else.

I have a new 120GB Hard disc
Windows XP Pro
New 512mb RAM
Ebay 2nd hand Pentium 4 2.8Ghz CPU
Ebay 2nd Hand AOpen motherboard
New 128mb videa card – problem was before installation so this is ok
New sound card – problem was before installation so this is ok

I thought it may be a faulty hard drive but I just do not know. Any ideas as to how I can get to the root of the problem? Is it a hardware problem? I think so because windows loaded fine.

Now I'm fed up
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by:slink9
ID: 12083149
Since you gave a C grade on this question you are not likely to get much more help.  Good luck!!!
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by:Arl
ID: 12123778
Hi,


So to complete the question...

One thing that I can see it's about your wireless card...
If this is the wireless card, and if this is a PCI one, so try to uninstall the card with the "Add/Remove hardware and software" and shutdown the computer and remove it physically.

Otherwise, try to turn off all the software that could run in background and try to check it out

And obviously, if you ahve a small spare hdd, just try to make a complete installation, basic one, and check it out.

Otherwise, just try to remove physically what is not necessary to start your computer, one by one, and check if something is better.

But anyway in your case, the fact that you could not make a complete format can be due to a lot of different settings...
So, what you can do is try to dwnd the low format level soft from the manufacturer hdd website and use it... and after a successful low format... just try to install WinXP with the minimum of hardware and check it out.

You are now, in a process that can improve in a good way your knowledge, just need to be patient :-)

Hope that can help.
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