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Windows 7: Computer hard locks -

19 Jan 2012   #1

Windows 7 64 Ultimate
 
 
Computer hard locks -

Hello,

I thought my issues were solved, but I was wrong. Before I tell what the problem is, here are the specs:

CPU: Intel I7 2600
GPU: EVGA GTX 570
Memory: 2x4gb Kingston Hyperx 1600 mhz
Mobo: Asus P8P67 PRO
Power Supply: FSP Aurum Gold 700
Audio: Onboard


My computer freezes during gaming, when iddle in Windows, when installing Windows and even inside BIOS(latest version). It can happen 5 times in 30 minutes or once every 12 hours. This computer is 7 months old, and I believe after 2-3 months the freezing started. At start it would freeze maybe once ever 3 days or so. Then it started freezing almost daily and now it freezes 1-7 times a day.

- So far, I've tried switching my GTX 570 for 2 other weaker cards and the freezing continued.

- Then I tried both sticks of RAM separately and on different slots. I even tried another monitor, as I had visual problems because of a bad HDMI cable, in the past. This also did not work. Also, my memory is set to run at a lower frequency and voltage(1333mhz/1.5v). This is automatically set by the mobo, altough the memory has a XMP profile to run at 1600mhz and 1.65V. Both configurations did not work.

- I cleaned my entire case and all it's components of dust(barely had any) and reseated every component and replugged every cable twice.

- I've run several 15 minutes sessions of furmark. This did not cause any artifacts or shutdowns.

- I've run memtest(boot version) several times. I've seen at least 20 passes so far, altough not sequential and not a single error.

- I've run Prime95 for over 8 hours. This did return a error on one of the workers, saying "rounding was 0.5 expected less than 0.4". The error occurred after 7 hours.

- I've run CHKDSK and it did not return a single bad sector.

- In any of the previous steps, my computer did freeze at least once, but the pattern makes me believe the following:
1 - It is not memory because memtest did not return a single error after 20 or so passes. Also, if it was memory, it would probably be a single stick of it and not both of them at the same time.
2 - It is not the power supply because my system would most likely shutdown or restart and my motherboard would also most likely beep telling my there is not enough power. Additionally, this is a very good power supply and I've monitored the voltages and they are all correct with barely any percentage of fluctuation.
3 - It is not the GPU. Running furmark for several sessions without artifacts or shutdowns and also trying different GPUs on different slots did not seize the freezing.
4 - It is not temperature. The case is very well ventilated and the temps of every component is below the average reported by the manufacturers.
5 - It is not software. I had most recent drivers for everything inside my computer and it still froze. Stock drivers that were running fine during the first months of my PC also did not work. Reinstalling Windows did not work. The biggest proof though is that it froze inside BIOS.
6 - It is not the Hard Disk. The proof is that it froze inside BIOS, with the HD cables unplugged.

I believe the issue is either the motherboard or the CPU, most likely the first. I don't think there is anything else to do, as I have no spare mobo or CPU to test. I'm thinking of buying a new motherboard, but before that, I wanted to know what is everyone's opinion about this and if there is something else that can solve the problem.

Thank you

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

19 Jan 2012   #2

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Well, RAM would have been my first guess, but you seem to have covered that pretty well. I would lean more towards the motherboard before the processor, I can't remember the last time I had a problem with an Intel processor. I have had many ASUS mobo problems recently, a lot of the symptoms that you report, in addition to BIOS being screwed up (the screen is askew when in BIOS, totally strange, and ASUS unsuccessfully tried to repair it, hellooooo Intel Motherboard).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Jan 2012   #3

Windows 7 64 Ultimate
 
 

Yeah, I also think it's the motherboard. I talked to an Asus engineer and he thinks the motherboard is the cause. I've never even heard of an Intel processor causing issues. It's quality is incredible.

Unfortunally I moved to Brazil and will stay here for 2 years and Asus refuses to approve an RMA, even after I stated that I will pay shipping both ways. I am never buying an Asus product again as it sold me a bad product and does not want to put any effort to help me. I already selected the MSI P67A-C45 ATX to replace it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


19 Jan 2012   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Could be the motherboard or CPU, could also still be memory if it is incompatible with the motherboard. Sometimes that will not show up through Memtest86+. In case Memtest86+ missed anything, run the extended version of the Windows Memory Diagnostics Tool for at least five passes. This you may want to run overnight since it takes a long time to complete (run an hour before bed and check before going to sleep that it is still running).

You may also try the following steps.
Note: backup any files if you are using a RAID controller of any kind.
1. Go into your BIOS and load default settings to clear the CMOS memory (this will reset your RAID configuration resulting in loss of data, so if you have RAID and want to proceed from step 3, that is fine).
2. Save Settings and exit the BIOS.
3. Shut down and turn off the computer.
4. Unplug the computer from the wall or surge protector (then remove the battery if it is a laptop).
5. Hold down the power button for 30 seconds to clear the software connections between the BIOS and hardware and clear any corruption in the temporary memory. This closes the circuit and ensures all power from components is drained.
6. (If it is a laptop, plug the battery back into the laptop and then) Plug the computer back into the wall.
7. Turn it on to reinitialize the software connections between the BIOS and hardware, and post back your results.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jan 2012   #5

Windows 7 64 Ultimate
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by writhziden View Post
Could be the motherboard or CPU, could also still be memory if it is incompatible with the motherboard. Sometimes that will not show up through Memtest86+. In case Memtest86+ missed anything, run the extended version of the Windows Memory Diagnostics Tool for at least five passes. This you may want to run overnight since it takes a long time to complete (run an hour before bed and check before going to sleep that it is still running).

You may also try the following steps.
Note: backup any files if you are using a RAID controller of any kind.
1. Go into your BIOS and load default settings to clear the CMOS memory (this will reset your RAID configuration resulting in loss of data, so if you have RAID and want to proceed from step 3, that is fine).
2. Save Settings and exit the BIOS.
3. Shut down and turn off the computer.
4. Unplug the computer from the wall or surge protector (then remove the battery if it is a laptop).
5. Hold down the power button for 30 seconds to clear the software connections between the BIOS and hardware and clear any corruption in the temporary memory. This closes the circuit and ensures all power from components is drained.
6. (If it is a laptop, plug the battery back into the laptop and then) Plug the computer back into the wall.
7. Turn it on to reinitialize the software connections between the BIOS and hardware, and post back your results.
Thanks, but I already did all that. Windows memory diagnostic tool takes too long to get a single pass though, and the computer always freezes before it can finish.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jan 2012   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Did you try resetting the BIOS and its software connections? Same problem?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jan 2012   #7

Windows 7 64 Ultimate
 
 

Yeah, I tried. I just turned off bluetooth and other unused controller on the BIOS. Also something about CPU4 and CPU reports, but told me it solved for them. So far it hasn't crashed, bu it's been 2 hours
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jan 2012   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by meuqsaco View Post
Yeah, I tried. I just turned off bluetooth and other unused controller on the BIOS. Also something about CPU4 and CPU reports, but told me it solved for them. So far it hasn't crashed, bu it's been 2 hours
That sounds like a motherboard/cpu problem, most likely the motherboard since CPU failure is rare. It's too bad you cannot RMA it to narrow down possible problems. Have you tried re-seating components (including the CPU) in the motherboard? Careful, things may be hot. Make sure you re-apply any thermal paste before putting heat sinks back, too. Also, have you made sure all components have power linkages in the correct place and the power plugs are securely connected?

If you do anything with the computer internals, make sure you follow good electrostatic discharge safety techniques. Keep yourself grounded. Before you open the case up, turn the computer off, unplug the power, hold down the power button for 30 seconds to close the circuit and drain all residual power (for your safety as well as for the components). Then it is safe to open the case.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jan 2012   #9

Windows 7 64 Ultimate
 
 

Yeah, I tried re seating and I did use thermal paste. So far after my last changes, I haven't had any freeze issue. I'm shooting myself in the feet by saying this, but I hope it keeps going like this.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jan 2012   #10

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Keep us posted. Best wishes!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Computer hard locks -




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