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Windows 7 Computer Locks Up

Posted on 2011-02-16
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I build myself a Windows 7 Computer with an Intel 2nd generation 1155 CPU with a GA-P67A-UD3 Gigabyte Motherboard.

The computer randomly locks up (freezes) and I have nothing in the events logs.

I have already installed the latest drivers and updated the BIOS.

Does any one have some troubleshooting ideas for me?
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Question by:Gerhardpet
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25 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:storkyIV
ID: 34905523
Page file?
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Author Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 34905567
What do you mean....Page file?
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Expert Comment

by:storkyIV
ID: 34905579
Is what the system uses for "real time" and uses the hard drive instead of ram.
Right click my computer and go to properties, go to advanced system settings, advanced, performance settings. Go to advanced then cjhange virtual memory. Rule of thumb is 3 and a half times the amount of physical memory you have.
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Expert Comment

by:danubian
ID: 34905592
If there are nothing on events log, most probably is a hardware issue. Start by verifying RAM memory with memtest. Then other hardware components (HDD, video, power source, motherboard). If your computer is on warranty - better let the seller to test it.

Just to be sure that Windows is not an issue you could test with a Live CD (Ubuntu or whatever).
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Expert Comment

by:danubian
ID: 34905622
By default Windows 7 auto-manages the paging file. And even without paging file the computer does not have to freeze.
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Accepted Solution

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_3mp3ror_ earned 500 total points
ID: 34905679
Hardware causes:
- bad PSU
- bad memory
- bad CPU
- bad clusters on HDD
- defective data cable

Software causes
- driver conflict
- software conflict

Testing:
Memory (1 Pass should be enough)
CPU (5 Passes should be enough)
Bad clusters
While still in windows do Start > Run > cmd
type chkdsk c: /f /r
reboot and wait
If you have multiple partitions you can test them without rebooting if they don't have the pagefile
just do chkdsk d: /f /r /x
It will dismount the volume and check it.
Defective data cable:
Replace with spare
Bad PSU:
Run a benchmark like FurMark (it will use mostly the GPU but on modern systems that is what is using most of the power)

Software causes:
Those are a bit tricky, depending on what software you have installed after.
Try to see if there is a pattern to the lock-up. (Starting a game, playing a movie etc.)
Also if you install the system again try to use it for a limited time without some of the drivers.
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Expert Comment

by:edbedb
ID: 34906116
The most common cause for system lockup is overheating.
I would install SpeedFan to monitor the operating temperature.
http://www.almico.com/sfdownload.php
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Expert Comment

by:ded9
ID: 34906412
Monitor the computer in safe mode with networking. If the computer does not freezes in safe mode with networking then the problem is caused by device driver.

Try  updating graphics driver, network driver etc. Also can try disabling one driver at one time from device manager to identify the problem.



Ded9
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Author Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 34906781
The lockup happens only when I'm away from the system. Mostly overnight every few days or so. I just installed the latest driver for the video card and will see if that make a diference.
I will do hardware testing as over night.

What is good for testing the CPU? For memory I will use memtest
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Expert Comment

by:davy999
ID: 34909305
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Expert Comment

by:ded9
ID: 34913688
The best ways to check your cpu is in bios. Set an alarm in your bios if it gets overheated. But first work on drivers. I think its a driver issue. If Cpu was the problem then you wont be able to install windows.




Ded9
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Author Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 34945424
Here are the results I got from the intel test. I will do a memory test later on today
 
----------------------------
IntelBurnTest v2.50
Created by AgentGOD
----------------------------

Processor:        Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-2600K CPU @ 3.40GHz
Clock Speed: 3.39 GHz
Active Physical Cores: 8
Total System Memory: 16367 MB

Stress Level: Very High (4096 MB)
Testing started on 21/02/2011 1:03:27 PM
Time (s)		Speed (GFlops)		Result
[13:06:51] 172.083	44.7906			3.161416e-002
[13:10:13] 171.997	44.8131			3.161416e-002
[13:13:32] 169.146	45.5685			3.161416e-002
[13:16:43] 162.285	47.4949			3.161416e-002
[13:19:56] 164.602	46.8264			3.161416e-002
Testing ended on 21/02/2011 1:19:56 PM
Test Result: Success.
----------------------------

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Author Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 35011965
The computer is still freezing randomly

I have replaced my motherboard, CPU (I will build antoher computer with the left over parts so no money wasted)
I have done the intel burn in test - passed with no problems
I have done the memory test - pass with no problems

The only thing remining are the two hard drives (on RAID 0) and the power supply.

How can I test the power supply?
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Expert Comment

by:edbedb
ID: 35012015
I have never seen a power supply cause system lock ups.

does the motherboard have an onboard display adapter?
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Author Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 35012079
no it does not and I have already tried it with three different video adaptors and it still freezes
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Expert Comment

by:edbedb
ID: 35012120
Then I would guess that it's being caused by software. The most likely candidate would be the anti virus software. My next guess would be a scheduled event like mayby a system backup, a disk defrag or the like.
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Author Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 35012169
I have nothing sheduled...no anti-virus installed for a few days... still freezing

Expert _3mp3ror_ did say that it could be the PSU and I suppose he meant power supply

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Expert Comment

by:edbedb
ID: 35012224
That's what PSU means. Maybe he knows something that I don't.
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Expert Comment

by:_
ID: 35013960
hmmmmm... It's a long shot, but it might be some kind of Power Management conflict.

Make sure PM is disabled in the BIOS, and Hibernate and Sleep in Windows.
I would also set the Monitor and hard drive to Never Turn Off, in W7 (at least for a couple of days).

Probably wouldn't hurt to turn off anything that auto-updates, also.
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Author Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 35014069
Believe me I have tried everything under the sun
PM is disabled...so is sleep and hibernate in windows

As per _3mp3ror_ suggestion I will run benchmark test FurMark and see what happens
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Expert Comment

by:_
ID: 35014128
>> ...tried everything under the sun.

I can believe that.   : |
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Expert Comment

by:davy999
ID: 35015007
1)      The most common cause for system lockup is overheating.
2)      Reply Termal paste
3)      Check the cmos battery can also cause freeze/lockups
4)      Power supply unit could be defect all though there is power
5)      Safemode, do the lockups happen then
6)      Check you harddisk While still in windows do Start > Run > cmd type chkdsk c: /f /r
      Defective data cable check all cables

 Iam not after to help points just want help. 3mp3ror has suggested most of these,what are the
results,       
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Expert Comment

by:edbedb
ID: 35015697
Is the desktop visible when it locks up? What time does it happen? Is it always the same?

I would leave Process Explorer and or Process Monitor with auto scroll enabled running.
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Author Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 35110133
I think it is safe now to report on this now. I changed the power supply 6 days ago and the computer has not locked up since. Before it was locking up once to twice a day.

This is the first time ever for me to see this and the power supply is a good quality (Ultra 650 Watts).

I will award points to _3mp3ror_ because he was the first one to suggest checking the power supply.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Gerhardpet
ID: 35110136
Thank you for the help.
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