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Windows XP +SP2 Machine reboots if I don't log in right away

Hey everyone, I've got an odd situation here.  My PC:

Athlon XP 2600+
1 GB Kingston DDR
WD 180 GB HDD 7200 RPM
Asus A78nx-e
Powercolor Radeon 9800SE

has been running Windows XP just fine for about a year now, execpt for an annoying problem.  On boot, if I don't login within the first 10 seconds or so of the welcome screen showing up, the machine reboots.  It keeps rebooting (i've let it run for 8 hours) in the cycle unless I log on right away.  If I'm away for a while and the computer locksout to the welcome screen, it's fine.  It only happens on first boot.

Also, a few days ago my brother got a video game, "Star Wars Empire at War" or something which will crash the machine anywhere from 2 minutes into a game to an hour.  The funny thing is the BSOD has no text, just the blue screen.  I don't know if this is a related symptom, but I thought I'd throw it on the table.

As a result of these wacky occurances, I've tried 3 sets of video drivers... The last two versions of the Omega Drivers, and the latest official ATI catylyst driver.  I've also upgraded to the .NET framework 2.  None of these steps helped.  As of now, I'm running a memtest86 check on it.

Has anyone ever dealt with a similar "better logon quick!" problem before?

Thanks,
Alan
I am running AVG antivirus with the latest update.  
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alanteigne
Asked:
alanteigne
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2 Solutions
 
alanteigneAuthor Commented:
Update:  memtest86 found one of my memory modules was bad.  i've removed it and ran my brother's game on the max settings for an hour now with no crashes.  i believe the game problem was a result of the memory.  

however, the rebooting if i don't log in quick enough issue still exists.

any suggestions?

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alanteigneAuthor Commented:
Another update (if anyone cares):

I used MSCONFIG to do some trial and error and have found the source of the issue is a Service.  I'll keep digging.
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Purple_SkyCommented:
Sorry about the delay.

Good catch : ram problem.


Something to try in MSCONFIG :

run msconfig - under general tab pick up selective start up - uncheck load start up items. go to the services tab and check hide MS services - and then disable all and restart. if its any 3rd party service(s) or start up items causing this we would catch it.



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Purple_SkyCommented:
This most likely is a winlogon problem that requires us to do some registry changes.

What happens when you try safe mode ?
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kingkong_307Commented:
Not fixing your problem but a work around - If you only have one user and no one else uses your machine, you could auto login.

Go to start --> run
type control userpasswords2
select the acount you want to auto login as and untick "Users must enter a username and password to use this computer"
click apply
fill in login details
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alanteigneAuthor Commented:
Hey guys.  Safe mode works fine, and setting up autologin works too.  Setting up an autologin worked too, but my wife uses the machine as well.  

I used MSCONFIG and broke it down to a service that was causing it.... WinVNC 4 service.  The funny thing was that there were two of them.  I deleted one of them from the registry HKYLM/SYS/CURCTLSET/SVCS and the problem is gone.  

I'm going to go ahead and accept the answer and try to split points among you two.  You both had good solutions/workarounds/advice.  

Thanks!
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Purple_SkyCommented:
you are most welcome.
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kingkong_307Commented:
Yup ditto
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