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Seemingly random freeze-ups...

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by AlexM, Dec 1, 2007.

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  1. AlexM

    AlexM Thread Starter

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    Where to start...

    Ever since I replaced a 2GHz P4 CPU with a 3.06GHz P4 CPU, my computer has started occasionally freezing up randomly. Some days it won't freeze up, other days it will; sometimes not long after starting up, sometimes after hours of normal use. Sometimes when playing a video or music, sometimes when playing a game, sometimes when downloading/surfing, and other times when I've left it idle, I'll return to find it frozen up.

    By frozen up I mean, the image on the monitor stuck as it was, if I was playing music, it stutters for a split second then cuts out. Fans and such continue running inside the case, and there are no irregular noises from hard drives.

    I've dusted the inside of the case; fitted an extra chassis fan, cleaned out the CPU fan... the CPU idles at about 35 degrees C and never gets above 55 even when running at 100% for >10 minutes...

    I've replaced the old 300W PSU the system was built with, with a new 500W one, so PSU should be no problem... The processor, video card, DVD drives, power supply, RAM and motherboard have all been replaced very recently.

    The fact that this started happening shortly after putting the faster processor in points to the processor being the problem, but if so, why can't I make it freeze-up under a stress/stability/torture test? I have no control over when it will do it at all... It copes with the toughest tests I throw at it, then freezes up at random when I'm checking emails or something.

    I've also run diagnostic tests on hard drives; the C drive was fairly recently formatted and XP freshly installed. No errors found, although the C drive is the oldest part of the system now. I've also run that Memory test you run from a bootable floppy (memtest 86?), no errors.

    Any suggestions? Have I missed anything?

    :(
     
  2. Goldfish92

    Goldfish92

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    Sounds like it could be overheating.. did you re apply thermal paste?
     
  3. AlexM

    AlexM Thread Starter

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    Yes, I put thermal paste on there. I've run stability tests on the processor while monitoring the temperature, and it never went above 55 degrees C, plus I've seen it freeze up when I know the temperature SpeedFan was showing was around 45 degrees, so I'm really doubtful that it's overheating.
     
  4. Goldfish92

    Goldfish92

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    Hmm, puzzling... I will have a think... mine does that sometimes and i just put it down to general system feezes... Have you tested the RAM?
     
  5. AlexM

    AlexM Thread Starter

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    Yep, Memtest 86 I think it's called, the standard test... no issues found.

    :(
     
  6. Goldfish92

    Goldfish92

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    Hmmm, can you enable BSOD too see an error code? And can you check in computer manager in the event logs etc... see what goes on when it crashes.
     
  7. Rich-M

    Rich-M

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    When you ran memtest, did you run 4 complete tests? That means 3-4 hours to complete.
    Feels like ram here or bad hard drive. Can you put back the ram that was in there before you replaced it and see if this happened? Did you mix two different rams when you upgraded and did you do it with a configurator at a ram makers site?
     
  8. AlexM

    AlexM Thread Starter

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    Hi, sorry to come back to this after so long but the problem persists.

    I don't know if this is at all relevant but when it all froze up again tonight, I tried opening my DVD-ROM and CD-ROM trays to see if they were responsive, and they were. I have no idea whether that is significant or not though.

    This couldn't be anything to do with video codecs, could it? It's not guarunteed, but it does quite often like to freeze up when I'm trying to render videos. Of course, it also freezes up when I'm NOT rendering videos, or playing them...

    I checked my motherboard's capacitors and there are no bulges. I've read that CPU's tend to either work or not work, rather than cause these kinds of random failures... I am now considering the possibility of trying a new, named brand PSU... Any suggestions? (I'm in the UK, Pentium 4 3.06GHz, 1 PCI for my FireWire, 1 16x PCI-e, 2 Hard Drives, a couple of USB2 ports in use). I have a 500W PSU I bought in hopes of curing these freezes but I think it's a no-namer so maybe the wattage isn't as important as that issue.


    I'd just like someone to tell me whether I've looked at all the possibilities and that all my suspicions/assumptions/theories are correct, really. I haven't come across another problem like mine exactly on here; I can boot up as normal immediately after it freezes, I get no BSOD even when "Automatic Restart" or whatever it's called is disabled so no error messages, no clicking HDD, no overheating, nada. GRRRR. :confused:
     
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