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Windows 7: complete PC lockup without BSOD - maybe VM related

21 Jul 2013   #1

Windows 7 Pro x64
complete PC lockup without BSOD - maybe VM related

So I have a very strange PC crash that happens usually randomly, at a nearly steady interval of once every 2 or 3 days or so. It's not a BSOD, it's literally as if time just stops for the computer. I'll be browsing a website or something and everything will just stop - the screen will continue displaying the same frozen image, the computer is no longer available over the network, etc. It's like the freeze right before a BSOD without the following blue-screen if that makes sense. If the HDD access light is on at the crash it will stay on, if it's off it will stay off, forever. When I hit the reset button it does absolutely nothing for about 5 seconds, then powers off completely and after another 5 seconds powers back on.

I do also get occasional blue screens, usually with the code 0x00000124 3/4 of the time or occasionally 0x1000007E. I've had 8 BSODs this year so far and I have the minidumps for all of them. Yes I am very overclocked and I know 0x00000124 means more voltage is needed, but I've tested for weeks without being overclocked or overvolted and the same problem occurs. (see specs below) The crashes have been happening for more than a year now. It's fair to note that the CPU has been at 3.2GHz+ for about 4 years and is rarely below 50% load.

The problem seems to be mostly random except that there is some predictability, but it could be coincidental - occasionally it'll happen right at the start of a graphics-intensive application, e.g. just now I started up Orbiter 2010 and right when it finished loading it froze. That's not always the case however, it's frozen before while just browsing the web, and I haven't found a correlation with CPU usage or temperature. My system idles at about 45-50C and gets up to 70-75C under load. I've run MemTest, Prime95, and FurMark numerous times and they always come up clean and don't cause a crash. It always does seem to happen only when I have VMWare running however.

It's very frustrating for me to have this problem because I usually have 2-3 virtual machines running that take a while to get back up, and downtime for my website which I host within one of the VMs is not good. My other VM is for software development and the 3rd (which runs in VMWare as opposed to the other two which run in virtualbox) is a mock-physical PC with its own monitor, mouse, and keyboard. The freezes seem to happen only when VMWare is running. For reference of how frequently this happens, my Seagate 3TB drive which has 10,181 hours as of now reports 191 power cycles, 173 of which were unsafe shutdowns (crashes).

Here are my specs: (Built June 2009, RAM is newer)
Core i7 920 C0 @ 172x21 (3.6GHz) (1.125V in BIOS, CPU-Z reports 1.104V)
Gigabyte EX58-UD3R motherboard
16GB (4x4GB) DDR3 RAM, running underclocked at ~1032 MHz and 1.5V
EVGA GTX-275, not overclocked
Corsair 750W PSU, voltages are fine
OCZ Vertex 2 60GB System Drive
4 HDDs at 1TB, 1.5TB, 2TB, 3TB
3 Optical Drives

Hope you can help! I'll test anything anyone recommends.

Also note that somebody suggested my SSD was the problem, so I swapped it out yet encountered the same issue. I've also run plenty of memtest, prime95, etc. so I don't understand what the issue could be.

My System SpecsSystem Spec


 complete PC lockup without BSOD - maybe VM related

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