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Windows 7: Random, hard freezing in Firefox and Second Life. Hard reset required.

01 Jun 2016   #1
Azure Prower

Windows 7
 
 
Random, hard freezing in Firefox and Second Life. Hard reset required.

Hello every one,

I've been having a long term problem that has basically plagued my computer since I've built it. Yet the issue manifests itself in different ways through out the years.

The issue is. At certain, seemingly random points, my computer screen freezes with no BSOD. Computer is still running with fans going. No error message. Sound stops. Mouse is not responsive on screen. Nothing works. Screen is frozen on the last picture. A holding down of the power button for a hard reset is the only way to recover.

Through out the years since 2011 I've changed graphics cards and RAM chips in order to try and solve this problem. I've found that the RAM had no effect on the issue, but the graphics cards perhaps did.

Back in 2011, I had constant random freezing at random intervals during the days of the week whilst basically doing any thing. An SLI set up of two Geforce 9800s. I finally discarded one of the graphics cards to only run one and that seemingly fixed most random freezing issues for some time. Though it did happen on some rare occasion that I could not explain.

How ever. In 2014 I upgraded my graphics card to a GeForce GTX 670 OC and found that issues immediately arose again. I could not activity render videos in Adobe Premiere Elements 8 whilst working on the video editing software with out a hard freeze. Basically unable to render videos in real-time whilst working on them any more.

More issues started occurring later with this same card. When watching Youtube videos in Firefox browser. Occasionally with increasing frequency, watching videos in the browser were causing this problem. Then I discovered the option to disable 'hardware acceleration' and the problem hasn't arisen in the browser since.

Come 2015. Using a program known as 'Second Life' that does tend to use a lot of resources. When computer resources were being strained too hard, this problem did return on a rare occasion when I was running dual clients of this program.

In 2016, this same program known as 'Second Life' had gone through some updates and now for some reason the freezing issue has reared its ugly head in a big way. Some times I can't be on this program for even an hour and the hard freeze occurs.

To fix this issue from that point. I've tried updating to the latest graphics drivers. No success. I've even upgraded my graphics card to a GeForce GTX 980 Ti and again updated to the latest graphics drivers. The issue still persists and renders use of them program unusable.

I am able to play games such as Guild Wars 2, Grand Theft Auto 5, Trove, etc. with out issue how ever.

I do not know what is causing the issue in order to know what I need to fix.

My current setup is:


------------------
System Information
------------------
Time of this report: 6/2/2016, 11:18:53
Operating System: Windows 7 Professional 64-bit (6.1, Build 7601) Service Pack 1 (7601.win7sp1_gdr.150525-0603)
Language: English (Regional Setting: English)
System Manufacturer: Gigabyte Technology Co., Ltd.
System Model: X58A-UD7
BIOS: Award Modular BIOS v6.00PG
Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 950 @ 3.07GHz (8 CPUs), ~3.1GHz
Memory: 12288MB RAM
Available OS Memory: 12286MB RAM
Page File: 5387MB used, 19183MB available
Windows Dir: C:\Windows
DirectX Version: DirectX 11
DX Setup Parameters: Not found
User DPI Setting: Using System DPI
System DPI Setting: 96 DPI (100 percent)
DWM DPI Scaling: Disabled
DxDiag Version: 6.01.7601.17514 32bit Unicode

------------
DxDiag Notes
------------
Display Tab 1: No problems found.
Sound Tab 1: No problems found.
Sound Tab 2: No problems found.
Sound Tab 3: No problems found.
Input Tab: No problems found.

--------------------
DirectX Debug Levels
--------------------
Direct3D: 0/4 (retail)
DirectDraw: 0/4 (retail)
DirectInput: 0/5 (retail)
DirectMusic: 0/5 (retail)
DirectPlay: 0/9 (retail)
DirectSound: 0/5 (retail)
DirectShow: 0/6 (retail)

---------------
Display Devices
---------------
Card name: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti
Manufacturer: NVIDIA
Chip type: GeForce GTX 980 Ti
DAC type: Integrated RAMDAC
Device Key: Enum\PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_17C8&SUBSYS_32331462&REV_A1
Display Memory: 4095 MB
Dedicated Memory: 3072 MB
Shared Memory: 1023 MB
Current Mode: 1600 x 1024 (32 bit) (59Hz)
Monitor Name: Generic PnP Monitor
Monitor Model: SMEX2220
Monitor Id: SAM0686
Native Mode: 1920 x 1080(p) (60.000Hz)
Output Type: DVI
Driver Name: nvd3dumx.dll,nvwgf2umx.dll,nvwgf2umx.dll,nvd3dum,nvwgf2um,nvwgf2um
Driver File Version: 10.18.0013.6519 (English)
Driver Version: 10.18.13.6519
DDI Version: 11
Driver Model: WDDM 1.1
Driver Attributes: Final Retail
Driver Date/Size: 5/10/2


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
03 Jun 2016   #2
Indianatone

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate and numerous virtual machines
 
 

Make and model number of power supply?
Since this issue has persisted since you built the PC this is where I would start.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Jun 2016   #3
Azure Prower

Windows 7
 
 

Hey Indianatone. Thanks for the reply.

It's Antec TruePower Quattro 1000W.


My min/maxCPUID HWMonitor voltage readings are:


CPU VCORE: 0.912V - 1.248 V
DDR: 1.530 V
+3.3V: 3.248 V - 3.264V
+5V: 4.973V - 5.027V
+12V: 12.352V
VBAT: 3.264V
CPU: 0.912V - 1.248V


Attached Files
File Type: txt HWMonitor.txt (39.2 KB, 3 views)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

03 Jun 2016   #4
Indianatone

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate and numerous virtual machines
 
 

OK so we have a good PSU. According to hardware monitor your CPU is running fairly hot.
Temperature 1 56°C (132°F) [0x38] (CPU)
Temperature 0 61°C (141°F) [0x27] (Core #0)

Intel® Coreā„¢ i7-950 Processor (8M Cache, 3.06 GHz, 4.80 GT/s Intel® QPI) Specifications

According to Intel's spec Tcase (temp of thermal heat spreader) is maximum of 67.9C. You are not far away from that at idle so you probably need a better CPU heatsink and fan and or better overall case cooling to drop the temperatures. Your CPU seems to me to be working way to close to the maximum temp where it would start to throttle and probably crash in a big way.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Jun 2016   #5
Azure Prower

Windows 7
 
 

I had an idea that may be the case. I've dusted out my PC case with an air can multiple times that seemingly improves the issue.

Keep in mind that those readings were taken whilst load is being put on.

So you believe it may be the CPU heat sink that's the problem? Because I am using the intel's stock heat sink fan that came with the CPU when I bought it. Is it possible that the thermal paste needs to be replaced or the heat sink fan entirely?

Thanks for quickly isolating the problem for me how ever! Been a great help!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Jun 2016   #6
Mellon Head

Win 7 Pro x64/Win 10 Pro x64 dual boot
 
 

If you can play demanding games, but not SL, I would suggest that SL is your problem. What SL viewer are you using? And is it up to date? And please list your inworld graphics settings and network speed. For instance, are you on ultra resolution and extremely high bandwidth?

Something else to consider is that both Firefox and SL share something in common, and that is a network connection. Try updating your LAN/network drivers. That may help.

And definitely get some better CPU/case cooling as Indianatone suggested.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Jun 2016   #7
Indianatone

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate and numerous virtual machines
 
 

I would get something like a Cooler Master Hyper 212. I have 5 of them in my machines and they have been superb. Get 2 of the fans. That will be way better than the stock cooler which they supply with a CPU of that caliber as "space wasting" get you going CPU fan kit. A serious CPU like yours deserves a better cooler. I think you are suffering from thermal throttle and lock ups would be due to heat. Make sure this will fit your case obviously. At the very least clean off your cooler and replace the paste but long term your system is crying out for a better CPU heatsink and fan combo.

Amazon.com: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO - CPU Cooler with 120mm PWM Fan (RR-212E-20PK-R2): Electronics

Hyper 212 Evo 120mm Fan - OEM Package - Cooler Master Store (2nd Fan optional)

Amazon.com: Silverstone Technology All Black Sleeved PWM Fan Power Extension Cable (CPF03): Computers & Accessories

If you don't have 2 CPU fan headers on the motherboard and choose 2 fans you'll need one of these
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2016   #8
Azure Prower

Windows 7
 
 

Alright, had the CPU heat sink and fan replaced. Apparently one of the clips on the old one was loose. Now CPU temp is sitting around the 40s at idle.

Going to try the problem programs now and hope for the best!


Attached Files
File Type: txt HWMonitor.txt (39.2 KB, 0 views)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2016   #9
Azure Prower

Windows 7
 
 

Ran one of the problem programs (Second Life) and the issue returned within an hour. CPU was not going above 50C. So seems not to be an over heating issue.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Mellon Head View Post
If you can play demanding games, but not SL, I would suggest that SL is your problem. What SL viewer are you using? And is it up to date? And please list your inworld graphics settings and network speed. For instance, are you on ultra resolution and extremely high bandwidth?

Something else to consider is that both Firefox and SL share something in common, and that is a network connection. Try updating your LAN/network drivers. That may help.

And definitely get some better CPU/case cooling as Indianatone suggested.
May look into this next.

Also for SL. I used both default and firestorm viwers (have freeze crashed in both). I have it set on "high" graphical settings with network speed at DSL level (800 Kbps). I run it in window mode and thus it conforms to my desktop resolution 1600x1024.

In the moments before latest crash. My mesh avatar was having issues loading (as mesh always does seem to load slow in this program for me). I was also messing around with windlight settings and typing in chat.

But you say it's network connection that links SL and Firefox together? What about when it happens during video editing software that doesn't use the network connection?

Update: Also checked for drivers for my network adapter using window's automatic search and states it's the best drivers currently.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2016   #10
TechnoMage2016

Windows 7 Ultimate, SP1, x86
 
 

If that PC were brought to me for repair, one of the first things I'd check would be the ram.
High Ram, specifically.
One thing you can do is run Memtest 86+ on just one stick of ram at a time.

Good Luck!
Cheers!

TechnoMage
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Random, hard freezing in Firefox and Second Life. Hard reset required.




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