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Computer keeps crashing, dont know what to do HELP!!!!!

by jedione / April 15, 2005 2:26 AM PDT

My computer has been unstable and crashing for a long time now - several months at least. Its so annoying, I simply dont know what to do. Anyway I just couldnt take it anymore, so I formatted the hard drive a couple of days ago. It was a little more stable the day after I formatted but now I think its starting to crash again. It crashed once this morning. Its really unpredictable and sometimes it crashes several times and hour and I get blue screens (which say the system has halted due to a hardware error or something), random reboots and freezes while im doing stuff. Sometimes it beeps a low continuous beep right after it freezes. Im thinking it might be a hardware problem or a problem with the bios settings. Anyway its really pissing me off and any help would be appreciated its driving me completely nuts.

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Do the following
by AussiePete / April 15, 2005 2:46 AM PDT

it is probably an incorrect or incompatible driver/hardware with XP - what you need to do is update all your drivers and make sure they are digitally signed and are compatible with XP - when i say drivers i mean drivers for your hardware such as:
motherboard, graphics card, modem, printers etc and also check for bios upgrade.
If you need help let us know - also, ALWAYS do virus and spyware checks first.
Regards,
Peter

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bios
by jedione / April 15, 2005 3:04 AM PDT
In reply to: Do the following

How can I find out what kind of bios I have and how can I upgrade it?

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bios
by jedione / April 15, 2005 3:09 AM PDT
In reply to: bios

Just downloaded some bios updates from the motherboard site. Ill see if it helps. Thanks.

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Fail safe mode
by AussiePete / April 17, 2005 5:36 AM PDT
In reply to: bios

If you have been tinkering with your bios you may have your settings too high - either turn down your ram timing etc or load failsafe (basic) values and see if that stops the problem - I suggest you do the above regardless if you have been tinkering or not.

Also download one or both of these programs - they will test many aspect of your system - they are like benchmark/diagnostic tests
http://www.drhardware.de/english/
http://www.sisoftware.net/index.html?dir=news&location=2005_release&langx=en&a=

As others have said it sounds like one of the following problems:-
>Incompatible drivers and or hardware with XP
>faulty hardware eg ram, graphics hard disk etc
>Incorrect bios settings or over clocking
>Over heating
>Also as someone else has said - get the hard disk manufacturers diagnostics program to see if the disk is faulty - manufacturer's programs are much more than just a surface test.
Regards,
Peter

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fail safe mode/second look at pc health
by jedione / April 17, 2005 2:28 PM PDT
In reply to: Fail safe mode

Loading fail safe defaults makes my mouse and internet not work. Also took a look the pc health status: sytem temp is 37C and cpu temp around 49C. Doesn't seem that high at all. Im gonna try running a hdd utility.

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If not fail safe then
by AussiePete / April 18, 2005 12:59 AM PDT

The idea of fail safe was to see if you still get problems - it is a diagnostics exercise and not a permanent thing - try and get a serial mouse and see if the system still crashes - another way I suggested was to only slow the RAM timing down or any other time settings - so do this first (after the disk program).
Peter

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Motherboard Diver?
by jmt3x / April 15, 2005 3:12 AM PDT

Make sure you download the latest drivers for your motherboard. Your problem sounds very similar to mine. I had installed XP onto my old PC. It worked ok but I was constantly dealing with random freezes and reboots. As it turned out it was caused by my MB being incompatable with XP.

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XP Crashes
by wynelldj / April 15, 2005 7:25 AM PDT

It is helpful whenever possible to include the error code that XP shows you when it blue screens. Some of these error codes are quite commona, and fixes for them can be in Microsoft's Knowledge Base Library.

Here are a few questions for you to answer that may help narrow down your problem:

1. What type of mobo (motherboard) are you using i.e. Gigabyte, MSi, Asus, etc..?

2. Are you still using PC100/133 RAM, or are you using DDR PC2100/2700/3200?

3. What Service Pack level are you using SP1 or SP2?

4. Have you added any new hardware i.e Video cards, Sound cards, etc.?

It actually sounds to me as if you have a bad memory module, but without knowing the error code it's hard to tell. Try a product like Memtest to check for bad memory.

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System is overheating
by billzhills / April 15, 2005 11:08 PM PDT

Open your case and check that all fans are running and free of Lint and Dust.

From your Post.....
"Its really unpredictable and sometimes it crashes several times and hour and I get blue screens (which say the system has halted due to a hardware error or something), random reboots and freezes while im doing stuff. Sometimes it beeps a low continuous beep right after it freezes."

The Beeping sound is a Warning. Most M/B Mnf provide Hwd montiors that will warn you with an audiable sound or will shut the system down if acceptable heat limits are exceeded.

Bill
.

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overheating. hard drive problems too?
by jedione / April 16, 2005 1:26 AM PDT
In reply to: System is overheating

It crashed again last night, went to work left it on to idle, and when I came back it was frozen. It could be overheating but I doubt it. The motherboard cpu and mem, are less than 6 months old and as far as I know all the fans(stock) are running and the temp never goes above 50 or mid 50. The case does make an annoying buzzing noise when multitasking and etc. I really dont know what to do. Could it be the hard drive? Thas probably the oldest part of this comp and everything else I replaced recently.

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Possible Hard Drive
by billzhills / April 16, 2005 2:50 AM PDT

Download the Mnf H/D diagnostic utility. Tho with the beeping sound you are hearing during a freeze I will still lean towards a heat issue.

A system that is overclocked may generate unacceptable amounts of heat using stock coolers and fans. Also...

Who built the system?

Any of these items not done correctly will
cause overheating.
Incorrect HSF
Heat sink on CPU improperly placed
None or too much Thermal paste


Odd buzzing sound could also be a failing or under powered Power Supply. This component will cause system to freeze also.

Bill
.

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I agree with Bill and..
by AussiePete / April 17, 2005 2:27 AM PDT
In reply to: Possible Hard Drive

take your cover off (but dont touch anything when turned on) and see if the noise is coming from your power supply or hard disk - it may also be a CPU fan on the way out - this could just be a faulty fan or the CPU is just getting too hot for the reason Bill pointed out - I went through 5 fans in the space of 12 months when I got my first Pentium!!! Ended up having to install 2 fans - it really is laughable the fans they put in some machine - also some power supplies are really not up to the task and end up causing the whole system to over heat.
But first BACKUP your data!!!!!!!
Peter

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XP keeps crashing; suggestion
by grilledtomatoes / April 16, 2005 10:21 PM PDT

I too have experienced this fault, I am presuming that you built the computer yourself, what PSU are you using? Also, do you have any system specs that I can look at, e.g. RAM, CPU, HDD and graphics card. Have you checked the thermal compound between the heatsink and the cpu?
Tim

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yup
by jedione / April 17, 2005 12:49 PM PDT

Built it myself. Also what is a PSU?
My specs are:
pentium III 3.0ghz
512mb ram
60gb hdd
Radeon 9700 pro
ecs pt800ce-a mobo.
I will try to take a second look at the bios and the internals and post if I find anything.

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RE: What is a PSU
by grilledtomatoes / August 27, 2005 2:20 AM PDT
In reply to: yup

A PSU is a Power Supply Unit. This is where you plug the power lead into the back of your PC!

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blue screen
by jedione / April 21, 2005 9:06 AM PDT

It hasnt crashed in the past couple of days but today I got a blue screen again and this is wat it said:
"The sytem has halted"
Hardware malfunction
Contact your hardware vendor for support.
Not much to go on.
I tested the hard drive with the manufacturers diagnostic utility and it passed all tests. Any other suggestions?

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ram timing?
by jedione / April 21, 2005 2:23 PM PDT
In reply to: blue screen

Question: what does the ram timing setting do?

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Basically
by AussiePete / April 22, 2005 2:22 AM PDT
In reply to: ram timing?

See this link - also read the items in the chipset section of your bios setup
http://www.pcguide.com/ref/mbsys/bios/set/advch.htm
The RAM timing should match your RAM type.
If you downloaded the "Sandra" and or the Dr Hardware programs they will check your bios settings and your actual RAM capabilities.
Happy reading,
Peter

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