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XP SP3 FREEZE-UPs

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by AIANDAS, Apr 23, 2010.

  1. AIANDAS

    AIANDAS Flightless Bird

    Lately I have been experiencing freeze-ups on a consistent basis.
    I have taken the following troubleshooting measures: Opened up my pc and
    removed whatever dust may have been there that may have caused the graphics
    card to stop working; have checked my Event Viewer for Errors and nothing
    really significant there to be a cause for alarm.
    What other troubleshooting measures can I investigate to find out what is
    going on?
    This is a 6 1/2 year old Dell Server.......I am running 4 GB RAM on it and I
    am beginning to wonder if the extra memory may be causing the problems?
    Should I go back to 3 GB of RAM to have some on-going stability?
     
  2. PA Bear [MS MVP]

    PA Bear [MS MVP] Flightless Bird

    Is the computer fully-patched at Windows Update?

    What anti-virus application or security suite is installed and is your
    subscription current? What anti-spyware applications (other than Defender)?
    What third-party firewall (if any)?

    Has a(another) Norton or McAfee application ever been installed on the
    computer (e.g., a free-trial version that came preinstalled when you bought
    it)?


    AIANDAS wrote:
    > Lately I have been experiencing freeze-ups on a consistent basis.
    > I have taken the following troubleshooting measures: Opened up my pc and
    > removed whatever dust may have been there that may have caused the
    > graphics
    > card to stop working; have checked my Event Viewer for Errors and nothing
    > really significant there to be a cause for alarm.
    > What other troubleshooting measures can I investigate to find out what is
    > going on?
    > This is a 6 1/2 year old Dell Server.......I am running 4 GB RAM on it and
    > I
    > am beginning to wonder if the extra memory may be causing the problems?
    > Should I go back to 3 GB of RAM to have some on-going stability?
     
  3. AIANDAS

    AIANDAS Flightless Bird

    Yes my Windows Update is up to speed.
    I currently Avira Antivir v. 10.
    I just installed Malwarebytes and currently running to see if something is
    awry.
    No 3rd party Firewall aside from the one that Windows offers.
    No other trial anti-virus applications currently running. I did have such an
    issue previously but in as far as I can see whether in Services or otherwise
    I seem to have a clean slate, i.e., no concurrent anti-virus programs
    installed, just 1.
    Although I did attempt to run Avira for a complete scan and it froze up as
    well, not my PC but the applicatrion froze up the scan when it encountered
    some kind of an error.

    "PA Bear [MS MVP]" wrote:

    > Is the computer fully-patched at Windows Update?
    >
    > What anti-virus application or security suite is installed and is your
    > subscription current? What anti-spyware applications (other than Defender)?
    > What third-party firewall (if any)?
    >
    > Has a(another) Norton or McAfee application ever been installed on the
    > computer (e.g., a free-trial version that came preinstalled when you bought
    > it)?
    >
    >
    > AIANDAS wrote:
    > > Lately I have been experiencing freeze-ups on a consistent basis.
    > > I have taken the following troubleshooting measures: Opened up my pc and
    > > removed whatever dust may have been there that may have caused the
    > > graphics
    > > card to stop working; have checked my Event Viewer for Errors and nothing
    > > really significant there to be a cause for alarm.
    > > What other troubleshooting measures can I investigate to find out what is
    > > going on?
    > > This is a 6 1/2 year old Dell Server.......I am running 4 GB RAM on it and
    > > I
    > > am beginning to wonder if the extra memory may be causing the problems?
    > > Should I go back to 3 GB of RAM to have some on-going stability?

    >
    > .
    >
     
  4. Daave

    Daave Flightless Bird

    AIANDAS wrote:
    > Lately I have been experiencing freeze-ups on a consistent basis.
    > I have taken the following troubleshooting measures: Opened up my pc
    > and removed whatever dust may have been there that may have caused
    > the graphics card to stop working; have checked my Event Viewer for
    > Errors and nothing really significant there to be a cause for alarm.
    > What other troubleshooting measures can I investigate to find out
    > what is going on?
    > This is a 6 1/2 year old Dell Server.......I am running 4 GB RAM on
    > it and I am beginning to wonder if the extra memory may be causing
    > the problems? Should I go back to 3 GB of RAM to have some on-going
    > stability?


    Did the problems happen immediately after upping the amount of RAM?

    What was the reason you increased the RAM in the first place? Did you
    know that a 32-bit operating system is unable to use 4GB of RAM? It
    won't hurt, of course, but the most you will be able to utilize is
    probably about 3.25GB. For more info, see:

    http://blogs.msdn.com/hiltonl/archive/2007/04/13/the-3gb-not-4gb-ram-problem.aspx

    Perhaps all you need to do is revert to your original RAM configuration.
    If that doesn't work, see if your system freezes in Safe Mode.

    Also, please elaborate on your graphics card not working.

    Finally, you can always boot off a bootable CD (like UBCD4Win or Ubuntu)
    and see if your system acts up in a similar way. If it doesn't, then you
    know your problem is hardware-related.
     
  5. AIANDAS

    AIANDAS Flightless Bird

    I can't say with 100% that the problems began as soon as I made the upgrade
    to 4GB RAM but it certainly is becoming suspect now more and more.
    My graphics card is an NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT with 256 MB DDR memory, whose
    drivers I updated maybe 3-4 days ago.
    Well if I go into Safe Mode and see if the system freezes up I may have to
    wait a while I think..........I happen to have Ubuntu around, v 9.01. What am
    I doing, bott off that CD when I restart the machine and see what happens?
    I have by happenstance created partitions to install Ubuntu but haven't
    gotten around to doing so. It couldn't possibly be those partitions that are
    creating the problem esp. since I have not installed anything there.
    Do you think the graphics card is not agreeing with the 4GB of RAM?
    Otherwise what could be wrong with the graphics card?
    Thank you.

    "Daave" wrote:

    > AIANDAS wrote:
    > > Lately I have been experiencing freeze-ups on a consistent basis.
    > > I have taken the following troubleshooting measures: Opened up my pc
    > > and removed whatever dust may have been there that may have caused
    > > the graphics card to stop working; have checked my Event Viewer for
    > > Errors and nothing really significant there to be a cause for alarm.
    > > What other troubleshooting measures can I investigate to find out
    > > what is going on?
    > > This is a 6 1/2 year old Dell Server.......I am running 4 GB RAM on
    > > it and I am beginning to wonder if the extra memory may be causing
    > > the problems? Should I go back to 3 GB of RAM to have some on-going
    > > stability?

    >
    > Did the problems happen immediately after upping the amount of RAM?
    >
    > What was the reason you increased the RAM in the first place? Did you
    > know that a 32-bit operating system is unable to use 4GB of RAM? It
    > won't hurt, of course, but the most you will be able to utilize is
    > probably about 3.25GB. For more info, see:
    >
    > http://blogs.msdn.com/hiltonl/archive/2007/04/13/the-3gb-not-4gb-ram-problem.aspx
    >
    > Perhaps all you need to do is revert to your original RAM configuration.
    > If that doesn't work, see if your system freezes in Safe Mode.
    >
    > Also, please elaborate on your graphics card not working.
    >
    > Finally, you can always boot off a bootable CD (like UBCD4Win or Ubuntu)
    > and see if your system acts up in a similar way. If it doesn't, then you
    > know your problem is hardware-related.
    >
    >
    > .
    >
     
  6. AIANDAS

    AIANDAS Flightless Bird

    P.S.
    Just as I was writing the previous reply my screen went to black, all the
    meanwhile the PC box continued to work. I was then forced to shut down and
    reboot. Is it possible my graphics card is going south for good?
    Do I need to replace my graphics card? If so should I get a 512MB card?

    "AIANDAS" wrote:

    > I can't say with 100% that the problems began as soon as I made the upgrade
    > to 4GB RAM but it certainly is becoming suspect now more and more.
    > My graphics card is an NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT with 256 MB DDR memory, whose
    > drivers I updated maybe 3-4 days ago.
    > Well if I go into Safe Mode and see if the system freezes up I may have to
    > wait a while I think..........I happen to have Ubuntu around, v 9.01. What am
    > I doing, bott off that CD when I restart the machine and see what happens?
    > I have by happenstance created partitions to install Ubuntu but haven't
    > gotten around to doing so. It couldn't possibly be those partitions that are
    > creating the problem esp. since I have not installed anything there.
    > Do you think the graphics card is not agreeing with the 4GB of RAM?
    > Otherwise what could be wrong with the graphics card?
    > Thank you.
    >
    > "Daave" wrote:
    >
    > > AIANDAS wrote:
    > > > Lately I have been experiencing freeze-ups on a consistent basis.
    > > > I have taken the following troubleshooting measures: Opened up my pc
    > > > and removed whatever dust may have been there that may have caused
    > > > the graphics card to stop working; have checked my Event Viewer for
    > > > Errors and nothing really significant there to be a cause for alarm.
    > > > What other troubleshooting measures can I investigate to find out
    > > > what is going on?
    > > > This is a 6 1/2 year old Dell Server.......I am running 4 GB RAM on
    > > > it and I am beginning to wonder if the extra memory may be causing
    > > > the problems? Should I go back to 3 GB of RAM to have some on-going
    > > > stability?

    > >
    > > Did the problems happen immediately after upping the amount of RAM?
    > >
    > > What was the reason you increased the RAM in the first place? Did you
    > > know that a 32-bit operating system is unable to use 4GB of RAM? It
    > > won't hurt, of course, but the most you will be able to utilize is
    > > probably about 3.25GB. For more info, see:
    > >
    > > http://blogs.msdn.com/hiltonl/archive/2007/04/13/the-3gb-not-4gb-ram-problem.aspx
    > >
    > > Perhaps all you need to do is revert to your original RAM configuration.
    > > If that doesn't work, see if your system freezes in Safe Mode.
    > >
    > > Also, please elaborate on your graphics card not working.
    > >
    > > Finally, you can always boot off a bootable CD (like UBCD4Win or Ubuntu)
    > > and see if your system acts up in a similar way. If it doesn't, then you
    > > know your problem is hardware-related.
    > >
    > >
    > > .
    > >
     
  7. Daave

    Daave Flightless Bird

    Sounds like a hardware problem to me! (I wouldn't bother booting off
    your Ubuntu CD.)

    The same thing happened to one our our older workstations recently. It
    turns out the port on the graphics card had become a little loose (at
    first I thought maybe the card itself wan't firmly attached to the
    motherboard slot). Just gently jiggling the monitor cable where it is
    attached to the graphics card brought back the video. It hasn't acted up
    since, but I'm sure it eventually will. (Since this particular PC is
    very rarely used, it's not a priority. So I haven't yet tried to tighten
    the tiny screws on the port.)

    Perhaps when you added RAM, the graphics card became a little loose.
    That's the first thing I would check. Also check the port that the cable
    plugs into it. Or maybe the cable is bad. Or maybe the monitor is bad.
    Just replace/address all those variables, one at a time, until you
    determine the culprit.


    AIANDAS wrote:
    > P.S.
    > Just as I was writing the previous reply my screen went to black, all
    > the meanwhile the PC box continued to work. I was then forced to shut
    > down and reboot. Is it possible my graphics card is going south for
    > good?
    > Do I need to replace my graphics card? If so should I get a 512MB
    > card?
    >
    > "AIANDAS" wrote:
    >
    >> I can't say with 100% that the problems began as soon as I made the
    >> upgrade to 4GB RAM but it certainly is becoming suspect now more and
    >> more.
    >> My graphics card is an NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT with 256 MB DDR
    >> memory, whose drivers I updated maybe 3-4 days ago.
    >> Well if I go into Safe Mode and see if the system freezes up I may
    >> have to wait a while I think..........I happen to have Ubuntu
    >> around, v 9.01. What am I doing, bott off that CD when I restart the
    >> machine and see what happens?
    >> I have by happenstance created partitions to install Ubuntu but
    >> haven't gotten around to doing so. It couldn't possibly be those
    >> partitions that are creating the problem esp. since I have not
    >> installed anything there.
    >> Do you think the graphics card is not agreeing with the 4GB of RAM?
    >> Otherwise what could be wrong with the graphics card?
    >> Thank you.
    >>
    >> "Daave" wrote:
    >>
    >>> AIANDAS wrote:
    >>>> Lately I have been experiencing freeze-ups on a consistent basis.
    >>>> I have taken the following troubleshooting measures: Opened up my
    >>>> pc and removed whatever dust may have been there that may have
    >>>> caused the graphics card to stop working; have checked my Event
    >>>> Viewer for Errors and nothing really significant there to be a
    >>>> cause for alarm. What other troubleshooting measures can I
    >>>> investigate to find out what is going on?
    >>>> This is a 6 1/2 year old Dell Server.......I am running 4 GB RAM on
    >>>> it and I am beginning to wonder if the extra memory may be causing
    >>>> the problems? Should I go back to 3 GB of RAM to have some on-going
    >>>> stability?
    >>>
    >>> Did the problems happen immediately after upping the amount of RAM?
    >>>
    >>> What was the reason you increased the RAM in the first place? Did
    >>> you know that a 32-bit operating system is unable to use 4GB of
    >>> RAM? It won't hurt, of course, but the most you will be able to
    >>> utilize is probably about 3.25GB. For more info, see:
    >>>
    >>> http://blogs.msdn.com/hiltonl/archive/2007/04/13/the-3gb-not-4gb-ram-problem.aspx
    >>>
    >>> Perhaps all you need to do is revert to your original RAM
    >>> configuration. If that doesn't work, see if your system freezes in
    >>> Safe Mode.
    >>>
    >>> Also, please elaborate on your graphics card not working.
    >>>
    >>> Finally, you can always boot off a bootable CD (like UBCD4Win or
    >>> Ubuntu) and see if your system acts up in a similar way. If it
    >>> doesn't, then you know your problem is hardware-related.
    >>>
    >>>
    >>> .
     
  8. AIANDAS

    AIANDAS Flightless Bird

    Well so far I did open the chassis and the graphics card was firmly installed
    as well the memory sticks they all seem to be tight. I did run overnight a
    virus scan in Safe Mode and nothing came up, thankfully.
    Next thing I am going to do is remove the the 2 1GB RAM sticks and then
    re-install the 2 512MB which unfortunately are now in storage off site.
    One thing I did want to tell you is this.
    I went into BIOS and it showed the AGP Aperture to be @ 128MB, whereas my
    graphics card is 256MB, does this play a role? Although the funny thing's
    that I've been using this card for at least over a year! Now all of a sudden
    it's cracking down?
    Thank you!

    "Daave" wrote:

    > Sounds like a hardware problem to me! (I wouldn't bother booting off
    > your Ubuntu CD.)
    >
    > The same thing happened to one our our older workstations recently. It
    > turns out the port on the graphics card had become a little loose (at
    > first I thought maybe the card itself wan't firmly attached to the
    > motherboard slot). Just gently jiggling the monitor cable where it is
    > attached to the graphics card brought back the video. It hasn't acted up
    > since, but I'm sure it eventually will. (Since this particular PC is
    > very rarely used, it's not a priority. So I haven't yet tried to tighten
    > the tiny screws on the port.)
    >
    > Perhaps when you added RAM, the graphics card became a little loose.
    > That's the first thing I would check. Also check the port that the cable
    > plugs into it. Or maybe the cable is bad. Or maybe the monitor is bad.
    > Just replace/address all those variables, one at a time, until you
    > determine the culprit.
    >
    >
    > AIANDAS wrote:
    > > P.S.
    > > Just as I was writing the previous reply my screen went to black, all
    > > the meanwhile the PC box continued to work. I was then forced to shut
    > > down and reboot. Is it possible my graphics card is going south for
    > > good?
    > > Do I need to replace my graphics card? If so should I get a 512MB
    > > card?
    > >
    > > "AIANDAS" wrote:
    > >
    > >> I can't say with 100% that the problems began as soon as I made the
    > >> upgrade to 4GB RAM but it certainly is becoming suspect now more and
    > >> more.
    > >> My graphics card is an NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT with 256 MB DDR
    > >> memory, whose drivers I updated maybe 3-4 days ago.
    > >> Well if I go into Safe Mode and see if the system freezes up I may
    > >> have to wait a while I think..........I happen to have Ubuntu
    > >> around, v 9.01. What am I doing, bott off that CD when I restart the
    > >> machine and see what happens?
    > >> I have by happenstance created partitions to install Ubuntu but
    > >> haven't gotten around to doing so. It couldn't possibly be those
    > >> partitions that are creating the problem esp. since I have not
    > >> installed anything there.
    > >> Do you think the graphics card is not agreeing with the 4GB of RAM?
    > >> Otherwise what could be wrong with the graphics card?
    > >> Thank you.
    > >>
    > >> "Daave" wrote:
    > >>
    > >>> AIANDAS wrote:
    > >>>> Lately I have been experiencing freeze-ups on a consistent basis.
    > >>>> I have taken the following troubleshooting measures: Opened up my
    > >>>> pc and removed whatever dust may have been there that may have
    > >>>> caused the graphics card to stop working; have checked my Event
    > >>>> Viewer for Errors and nothing really significant there to be a
    > >>>> cause for alarm. What other troubleshooting measures can I
    > >>>> investigate to find out what is going on?
    > >>>> This is a 6 1/2 year old Dell Server.......I am running 4 GB RAM on
    > >>>> it and I am beginning to wonder if the extra memory may be causing
    > >>>> the problems? Should I go back to 3 GB of RAM to have some on-going
    > >>>> stability?
    > >>>
    > >>> Did the problems happen immediately after upping the amount of RAM?
    > >>>
    > >>> What was the reason you increased the RAM in the first place? Did
    > >>> you know that a 32-bit operating system is unable to use 4GB of
    > >>> RAM? It won't hurt, of course, but the most you will be able to
    > >>> utilize is probably about 3.25GB. For more info, see:
    > >>>
    > >>> http://blogs.msdn.com/hiltonl/archive/2007/04/13/the-3gb-not-4gb-ram-problem.aspx
    > >>>
    > >>> Perhaps all you need to do is revert to your original RAM
    > >>> configuration. If that doesn't work, see if your system freezes in
    > >>> Safe Mode.
    > >>>
    > >>> Also, please elaborate on your graphics card not working.
    > >>>
    > >>> Finally, you can always boot off a bootable CD (like UBCD4Win or
    > >>> Ubuntu) and see if your system acts up in a similar way. If it
    > >>> doesn't, then you know your problem is hardware-related.
    > >>>
    > >>>
    > >>> .

    >
    >
    > .
    >
     
  9. Paul

    Paul Flightless Bird

    AIANDAS wrote:
    > Well so far I did open the chassis and the graphics card was firmly installed
    > as well the memory sticks they all seem to be tight. I did run overnight a
    > virus scan in Safe Mode and nothing came up, thankfully.
    > Next thing I am going to do is remove the the 2 1GB RAM sticks and then
    > re-install the 2 512MB which unfortunately are now in storage off site.
    > One thing I did want to tell you is this.
    > I went into BIOS and it showed the AGP Aperture to be @ 128MB, whereas my
    > graphics card is 256MB, does this play a role? Although the funny thing's
    > that I've been using this card for at least over a year! Now all of a sudden
    > it's cracking down?
    > Thank you!
    >


    The AGP aperture does not have to match the video card onboard memory.
    It is perfectly OK to have a 256MB card and a 128MB aperture. That
    isn't the problem.

    For a quick test, you could run the computer with just the 2x1GB
    RAM, and leave the other ones unplugged. The computer should
    run with 2GB total OK.

    You can run memtest86+ for a couple passes if you want, to test
    the memory. The test program is available for various media.

    http://www.memtest.org/

    Verify that the video card fan is still running. The problem could
    be heat related. Also, examine the video card capacitors, for leakage
    or bulging tops on the capacitors. A capacitor is an aluminum cylinder
    with a plastic sleeve around it, and two wire leads on the bottom. It is
    used in the power supply circuitry on the video card. Here is a picture
    of some bad capacitors. (This site is slow...)

    http://web.archive.org/web/20051123021843/www.badcaps.net/images/caps/kt7/image004.png

    Paul
     

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