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Dell computer keeps locking up at random

Posted on 2011-09-21
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12

I have a user that has her computer lockup almost everyday. This is a new pc with a core I7 processor and 8GB of ram so it doesn't seem like a resource issue. This happens at random keyboard and mouse lock up completely and a couple minutes after it happens a message pops up "a usb device has malfunctioned". I have plugged all USB devices (just keyboard and mouse) into other usb ports with no results. There  are not any of the typical  (not responding messages or any of the typical stuff). It's running windows 7.
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Question by:CJ27
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by:rindi
ID: 36575566
Since this is new I'd go for the Dell warranty. Diagnosing this yourself is probably just a waste of time and resources.
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uescomp earned 500 total points
ID: 36575584
Have you tried a different mouse/keyboard.  If there are any other usb devices in there I would remove them (printers, external hard drives).  Something could be shorting out the USB ports.  Check your connections, look at your plugs for USB etc.  If that does not help, I would call dell support to get it replaced, dell is usually pretty quick to get you the parts you will need etc.  Sometimes brand new items can be broke.  I hate troubleshooting defective (brand new) hardware.
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by:willcomp
ID: 36575721
One quick thing to try is uninstalling all the USB controller in Device Manager and reboot allowing drivers to re-install. It may just be a flaky driver. If that is not successful, time to call Dell.
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by:Dr. Klahn
ID: 36579486
agree with rindi.  Let Dell handle it under warranty.  They will send a tech to where the system is, he'll swap nearly everything, and then it will be clear whether it is a hardware problem or not.
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by:nobus
ID: 36580004
you can update the chipset driver -  it can help
you can also visually inspect all USB ports for shorts, or damage
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by:DanCh99
ID: 36599477
you have to take the error at face value first, and do as Usecomp says: try a different mouse and keyboard - ideally a different brand if available to rule out incompatibilities.  After that, I'd try the driver update, and finally call it in to Dell as hardware.

Make sure the user has a backup of their personal data asap, just in case....
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by:Dr. Klahn
ID: 36599506
This is a new pc

Nobody should have to troubleshoot a new PC.
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by:nobus
ID: 36599552
depends on what "new" exactly means  a month or 6 months?
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Author Closing Comment

by:CJ27
ID: 36962223
I replaced the mouse and Keyboard and the problem has not returned.
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