I recently purchased the following pc components and built myself a gaming rig:
GIGABYTE GA-P35C-DS3R Intel Core 2 Duo (Desktop) Socket 775 1333MHz FSB DDR3 1066MHz ATX Motherboard
INTEL Core 2 Duo E6850 3GHz FSB1333MHz 4M LGA775 l BX80557E6850 Processor
OCZ OCZ2RPR800C32GK 2GB PC2-6400 (DDR2-800) DDR2 Memory
ULTRA Lifetime Series LS600 600W Power Supply
MSI NX8800GT-T2D512E OC Geforce 8800 GT 512MB GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 Video Card
Western Digital Caviar SE WD1600AAJS 160GB SATA 300MB/s 8MB Cache 7200RPM Hard Drive
COOLER MASTER CAC-T05-UB Centurion Case
I plugged everything in and brought the machine up. I loaded the OS (Windows XP Pro) and applied all the patches and service packs. I downloaded the newest video drivers for my video card and made sure all my other hardware had the latest drivers. I then loaded my favorite game (Lotro) and began playing it. I was in love. This machine worked like a champ for at least the first week.
After a week or so, I noticed that if I left the machine on for more than 5-6 hours, it would develop a "stutter" the sound would stutter, the mouse would stutter across the screen, anything you were doing would stutter, etc. and it seemed very weird. If you reboot the machine, the stutter would go away for another couple of hours. I started thinking that it might be heat related so I loaded nTune to monitor all of the internal temperatures. I did not see any getting very high (30-50c) across all the components. I could not monitor the temperature of the northbridge so I made sure that it had a large heatsink on it (OEM) and then I added a 120mm case fan directly above it pulling the heat out the side of the case. The problem still persisted. I even ran the nTune system stability tests for an hour to see if I could cause the machine to overheat, I could not. The machine stays , relatively, ice cold inside.
I began doing some internet research and found another guy with a similar problem. He said that his machine had the stutter about 5 minutes after startup. He would open task manager and could see a few system processes all trying to use the processor at the same time and his processor would jump to like 50% for a split second every second or so, almost like a heartbeat. Sounded a lot like mine.
I waited for my system to have the stuttering issue again. I opened task manager and could see the processor jump to 19% for a split second every second or two but the System Idle Process showed as using 99% of the processor (completely idle even though the CPU was at 19% momentarily) I downloaded Process Explorer from Microsoft. I ran it and found that the System Interrupt controller was the culprit. Every time the CPU would jump to 19%, the System Interrupt Controller would jump to 19% also. Now I am thinking it is a motherboard issue. I examine my BIOS and find that I am running version F4 and the manufacturer is up to version F10. So I go ahead and Flash my BIOS to version F10. The machine runs for an entire day without an issue. Then the stutter comes back.
I replaced the mouse, strictly because I didn't like it, and the stutter went away for almost 2 days. I thought to myself "Of all the dumb things it could have been..."
Today, it started stuttering again with the same issue. The System Interrupt Controller... I am at a loss as to what else I can try. Any help you can offer me would be greatly appreciated.