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New PC Build, Fresh Win7 Install: Freezes, locks-up.

Posted on 2013-05-30
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Last Modified: 2013-06-10
Hello,

I just built myself a new PC, and installed Windows 7 64bit on it. I am having a lot of trouble with it freezing on everything. It will freeze on installing software or drivers, or windows updates, or anything. I even re-installed Windows three times now. Maybe its a hardware problem?

Here is what ive tried:
Installing the latest drivers for the hardware (Some not successful because computer continues to lockup)
Change power settings to high performance.
Change SATA from AHCI to IDE (didnt work, reverted back)
All Windows updates.


Here is the build:
G. Skill ram. 8gb @ 1866mhz
ADATA SSD 32gb (OS is installed on this one)
ASUS M5A99X EVO R2.0 Motherboard
Rosewill 750 Watt Power Supply
AMD FX 8 Core Porcessor
1gb HDD


Thank you
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Question by:Jonathong
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by:
dlethe earned 300 total points
ID: 39209272
get a usb stick that you dont mind blowing away , and go to ubuntu.com.   Follow directions to make a bootable LINUX stick.   Boot to the stick (do not install the o/s), then use it to surf the web, play games whatever ..

If the system keeps running then you know for a fact it has to do with windows, or your physical HDD.

LINUX has some HDD testing programs, and the HDD manufacturer does as well, so check into that next if the system stays running.
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Expert Comment

by:JeremySBrown
ID: 39209313
Trying going into Safe Mode and see if the computer locks up. Does the computer lock up when installing something or does it lockup when the computer is idle too?
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Expert Comment

by:JeremySBrown
ID: 39209320
If the computer is locking up in Safe Mode, it sounds like a hardware problem. Make sure the computer isn't overheating, also make sure that the fans inside are flowing properly.
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by:dlethe
ID: 39209349
"Locking up" isn't descriptive enough to identify root cause or even to eliminate possibilities.
Does it
1) Recover once locked up.
2) Does screen totally freeze and mouse stops moving, or something else?
3) When/if it does recover does mouse automatically jump to where you expected it to be
4) If it does recover, how long does it take (range in seconds).
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39209365
JeremySBrown: I dont know why i didn't think to try safe mode myself. I am in it right now, and so far it it working without any problems.

dlethe:
When it "locks-up" it never recovers. I usually give it 10 minutes to recover but it never does. Some times when a program or installation locks-up I am still able to open other windows, but that doesn't last long and nothing opens or closes. Task manager wont open either. The mouse however is still happy as a clam and will move wherever I tell it to. Although lately the mouse has been getting very choppy, even when nothing is locked-up. I have to force-shutdown by holding the power button.
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39209401
Also, you built it yourself and it may not be properly certified for Windows 7 (which is ever more picky with respect to hardware). If Safe Mode works but Normal does not, then compatibility may be the issue, especially given that you have done 3 fresh installs.

... Thinkpads_User
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Expert Comment

by:JeremySBrown
ID: 39209458
You're using a Genuine copy of Windows 7?
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39209472
Jeremy: Yes

Thinkpad User: I just ran Windows 7 upgrade advisor. It didnt see any problems with hardware or anything. How else can i check if my hardware is compatible?
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by:dlethe
ID: 39209479
What does windows event log show ... ONE thing that can explain it is serious HDD issues with unrecoverable read errors. Those would show up in event log.


(Another thing you can probably do is turn off any overclocking, and let us know if you are even doing that in the first place. Overclocking can also explain this, but it is less likely to be the problem).
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by:Jonathong
ID: 39209492
There is a big error in the event logs.

Event ID: 55     Source: Ntfs   Log: System    Last Hour: 52,111
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Assisted Solution

by:JeremySBrown
JeremySBrown earned 100 total points
ID: 39209496
Download: http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/download.html

It has great hardware diagnosis tools.

When you download the image file, burn it to a blank disc and boot from the disc.
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39209502
There is also other errors within the past hour:

atapi
volsnap
SudebySide
Esent
Search
Eventlog
Service Control Manager
DistributedCOM
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by:dlethe
ID: 39209518
Well, look for errors that were recorded a minute or so up to the time of freezes.
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by:John Hurst
ID: 39209521
How else can I check if my hardware is compatible?

If the board came separately, it should have a Windows 7 certification sticker, or come with a authentic certification paper. Ask the vendor of the board for certification papers.

... Thinkpads_User
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39209535
Neither the box or the website for the mother board says it is windows 7 certified. It does however say it is windows 8 ready.
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Expert Comment

by:dlethe
ID: 39209563
As I said earlier, you can boot the system to LINUX and surf or do something, even just let screen savers kick in.  If it keeps crashing then you know it isn't windows or driver issue.
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by:John Hurst
ID: 39209567
There are brand name computers that will only run one operating system and not go up or down with respect to OS version. I cannot say about yours, of course.

The power supply (in theory) should not affect the OS version.
Can you try different memory?
If you are loading from DVD, can you try a different DVD reader/writer?
Can you remove the HD and run with just the SSD? and then what happens?

The laptop I have came with Windows 8 but can come with Windows 7.  Most computers that run Windows 7 will upgrade to Windows 8 (Microsoft made that commitment to the best of their ability). I don't know if boards coming for Windows 8 are backward compatible.

This ASUS link suggests the board will run Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8.

http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/M5A99X_EVO_R20/#support

There is a Windows 7 troubleshooting link that might help you.

I would look at peripherals to ensure they are not causing issues.

Looking at this link below .....

http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/M5A99X_EVO_R20/#specifications

Do you have the most recent BIOS and Chipset? Chipset is important. It has Audio on board, so check the audio driver. If you are using their suggestion for video, check it as well. I did see your post that even doing this much can cause freezing so I don't know if you can do these things.

.... Thinkpads_User
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Expert Comment

by:dlethe
ID: 39209582
Some SSDs are also simply incompatible with certain chipsets/motherboard combinations.  If this is a DIY system where you chose the components, then let's go back to my LINUX suggestion and boot from the USB stick.  If that works, (and since you reloaded the O/S several times), try installing LINUX, or even an eval build of Win8.
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Expert Comment

by:ded9
ID: 39209914
Looks like the fan is not connected properly. Apply thermal paste again....make sure there is no gap between fan and processor.

Install windows 7 with ahci settings....post results.



Ded9
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39210030
i have just fixed an asus board with atapi and disk errors by updating the bios
for your system, there are quite a few bios updates, relating to system stability
so i suggest to update the bios : http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/M5A99X_EVO_R20/#support_Download_30
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39211995
Hey guys,
It looks like the solution to my problem was updating the bios. So far I haven't had any problems. Ill test it for a little while longer before closing the question. Just incase =)

Thank you everyone
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by:nobus
ID: 39212471
ok - waiting
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39216356
Ok here is the scoop.

Initially the BIOS update seemed to do the trick. But after awhile the same problems cropped up.

I have always suspected the SSD as the culprit, but for no logical reason. It was a gut feeling I guess. Well I went to the store to get a new one (I wanted a bigger one anyways) and re-installed windows one more time, but on the new SSD.

Its been a few days now without any problems. Big difference. I guess I got a lemon SSD.

Thank you everyone for your time!
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Expert Comment

by:dlethe
ID: 39216398
Don't assume it is a lemon SSD. SSDs are known for interoperability issues with specific controllers & motherboards.  Firmware running in SSD is often vital and many SSDs frequently have updates.

Before choosing a replacement SSD, regardless of make/model, you really need to do some web searching to see what models people are posting about that are known to work just fine with your motherboard.

Also, if you have NOT checked into a firmware update on your SSD, do so now.  That might save you some money.
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Expert Comment

by:JeremySBrown
ID: 39216893
Did you install Windows on a SSD or is the SSD a secondary drive? If you can, install Windows on a SATA drive instead of a SSD. Remove the SSD drive altogether and see if the problem continues.
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Assisted Solution

by:nobus
nobus earned 100 total points
ID: 39218128
it can be bad mobo also - did you run diags on it?
Ram, disk, and video to start

another way is to run from a live cd - if the freezes happen frequently - here acouple :
http://www.ubcd4win.com/                              ubcd  Win
ftp://mirrors.kernel.org/knoppix-dvd/KNOPPIX_V7.0.5DVD-2012-12-21-EN.iso      Knoppix      

this will show if the problem stems from hardware or not

you can also install another free OS -  like Ubuntu  www.ubuntu.com
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39225924
It has been several days now and the computer runs like a dream with the new SSD. I will check for updated firmware, thanks dlethe.

I did have windows on the first SSD, and I also have it on the new one. (I was going to get a new SSD anyways because the first one I got was too small)

I made a UBCD, and booted from it. However being pretty green I couldn't figure out what to use for hardware testing. Most everything seemed to only work with specifically branded items.

Any instructions on how to operate it?
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by:John Hurst
ID: 39225937
You need the testing software installed on UBCD prior to boot. If it is not there, there is nothing to operate.

... Thinkpads_User
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Expert Comment

by:ded9
ID: 39225957
You can search youtube for ubcd ...lots of tutorials are available



Ded9
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by:nobus
ID: 39226085
the ubcd i said is not for diags, just for checking if it runs ok from it
for diags - make this cd :  
Download the UBCD, make the cd, and boot from it
Here 2 links, one to the general site, and a direct link to the download
since the downloaded file is an ISO file, you need to use an ISO burning tool
if you don't have that software, install cdburnerXP : http://cdburnerxp.se/

If you want also the Ram tested - run memtest86+ at least 1 full pass,  - you should have NO errors!
 
For disk Diagnostics run the disk diag for your disk brand (eg seagate diag for seagate drive)  from the HDD section - long diag !
http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/                              ultimate boot cd
http://ubcd.mirror.fusa.be/ubcd521.iso                        direct link UBCD
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39234598
While updating the BIOS somehow made my problem temporarily go away, the main culprit did end up being the SSD. Replacing the SSD solved the problem, and subsequent hardware testing revealed that the original SSD had LOTs of bad blocks. Going to RMA it back to newegg.
 

Thank you everyone.
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39234621
I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 0 points for Jonathong's comment #a39234598

for the following reason:

I appreciate everyone's help, and I wish there was a way to give everyone points for their effort. However the solution in this case was to replace the bad SSD.
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Expert Comment

by:dlethe
ID: 39234618
The very first response, ID: #39209272 suggested to run  diagnostics.  

Points should be rewarded.  Had you done that at the beginning you would have solved the issue immediately instead of messing with it for 10 days.
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Expert Comment

by:dlethe
ID: 39234622
The very first response, ID: #39209272 suggested to run  diagnostics.  

Points should be rewarded.  Had you done that at the beginning you would have solved the issue immediately instead of messing with it for 10 day
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by:JeremySBrown
ID: 39234689
Split-points? I did recommend doing the following in comment #a39216893
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39234701
I am sorry to upset you dlethe, and to have wasted your time. Your advise was useful and much appreciated, but in the end did not solve this problem.
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39234727
I did not have a way to run diags.
Several people suggested the UBCD, but it would not run diags on my SSD.
It wasn't until i replaced the drive was I able to operate windows, and install software to test the original SSD.

JeremySBrown:  You did recommend the action I took, however after I had already taken it.
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Expert Comment

by:dlethe
ID: 39234765
Nevertheless, the advice was sound and the instructions told you how to run diagnostics by booting to LINUX.  I find it hard to believe that you did not have a way to do this, as even if you didn't have a USB stick, you could pick one up for a few dollars.
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39234823
dlethe, you are correct. I apologize. After reading you first post I realize I totally miss-understood what your were saying. If I had done what you said I probably would have noticed the bad SSD much earlier and you would likely have the points. How do I resolve this?
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by:nobus
ID: 39234840
>>  Several people suggested the UBCD, but it would not run diags on my SSD.   << then you made an error making it; you can't hold us responsible for that; thousands did it before, without problems

you can ssign points to one or more experts, as you like
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Author Closing Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39235115
If i had followed the instruction of dlethe on his first post, I would likely have discovered the bad SSD right away. I am awarding him the majority of points. I am also awarding points to the other two people who also suggested to run diags like UBCD.
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by:nobus
ID: 39235284
tx for the feedback - always useful
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Author Comment

by:Jonathong
ID: 39235290
My pleasure! Sorry for the aggravation everybody!
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