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Windows 7: Random Freezing Problem in Fullscreen Applications

24 May 2011   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
Random Freezing Problem in Fullscreen Applications

Okay, so I've searched and searched, and I can't find a forum ANYWHERE that google can see with my particular problem. It's a strange one, so try to bear with me. I can only describe what happens as a computer brain shart.

First off, I have Windows 7 x86 Ultimate Edition. I'm running a Pentium D @ 3.4 GHz, and 3 GB of DDR2 800 on a Foxconn G9657ma-8ekrs2h motherboard. My video card is an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3650, PCI-E 16x 1.0.

Now, if I'm just messing around on the desktop (using pandora widget, surfing the web, using Word, etc.) then the computer runs just fine, no problems at all... usually. This remains the case when I'm playing a full screen game and I alt-tabbed to my desktop to check something on the internet or change the song or whatever. A couple times the desktop has frozen for about 5 seconds, then come back for about 1 second, then frozen for 5 seconds, then come back... blah blah blah. This cycle usually ends in a blue screen (which I can't get an image of because I don't know how to MAKE the computer blue screen), UNLESS I alt-tab back to the game quick enough, and then it just goes through its regular error that I've described below.

When the computer BSoD's, it only shows that screen for about 2 seconds, then the computer restarts itself.

The BSoD is not the real issue here, because it has only happened a couple of times (and hasn't happened in at least 2 weeks). Usually the issue that I'm trying to resolve doesn't end in a blue screen. Usually the issue just goes through its error and then everything's fine for anywhere from 5-45 minutes before it happens again.

But now onto the real issue, which I believe is causing the blue screen anyway. When I'm playing a game... really ANY full screen game... at random times while playing the screen will freeze, then change to all one color, then the monitor will restart and the game will continue. The whole error usually lasts about 5-10 seconds. During this time, the music from my pandora widget doesn't change at all... it keeps playing without a hitch. Also, when this happens on Starcraft II, it seems that it gives other players that 'Waiting for player...' dialog, and after a minute of total time stuck in the frozen computer error, they are able to drop me from the game. This makes me think that it's not just a video card error, because if it was, the game would continue unabated while my screen froze, and it would just look like I stepped away from my computer for a few seconds and then came back.

It happens in WoW as well, but I never get DC'd because of it. Also, sometimes it will do its normal thing, where I'm running along, the screen freezes, monitor resets, and BAM, I'm right back where I was when the error started. However, sometimes I will be farther forward than I was when the freeze happened.

It also happens in Portal AND Portal 2, with graphics set to low, medium, and high. The graphics don't seem to make a difference for when this happens, another reason I don't think the problem is solely the video card. With Portal, sometimes the screen will do its normal freeze (during which time the sound from the game will loop about half a second of audio over and over and over until the game comes back), and sometimes it will just straight up crash to the desktop. No error message, nothing, just game then BAM, desktop.

By the way, it's not JUST in full screen that this happens. It will happen (albeit less often) in windowed mode as well.

Oddly enough, the problem NEVER happens in League of Legends. Don't know if that's useful information, but it's certainly noteworthy.

Every once in a while, if I alt-tab right before the computer was going to have a brain shart, then the error will continue on the desktop (as I described int he first part), ending in a blue screen.

Again, I think the problem is actually with the whole system somehow, and not just the video card, because of the fact that it shows up to others as lag.

Any help or advice of how to go about fixing this would be greatly appreciated. I would just upgrade the damn box (because this didn't happen on my old, more powerful build -- but it got stolen so I was forced to go with very inexpensive parts).

Also, I've included 2 images of HWMonitor (someone at another forum suggested it, then never returned to give me feedback on them). The first one is while the system was idle, and the second one is after playing a game for about 5 minutes.

Thanks, and I'll check back periodically today to see if anyone needs more information.

Oh yeah, and if I posted this in the wrong section, please let me know where I should post it.

Okay, this is over now.



Oh, something worth mentioning... yesterday I installed another gig of RAM (making the total 4 gigs) and a new hard drive, which I installed a fresh copy of windows on and reformatted the original drive. After getting everything updated and patched, the problem still persists. I was playing Splinter Cell Double Agent and Oblivion and both games (while running with very smooth fps) did the freeze at least 4 times each in the 10-15 minutes I was playing them (I wasn't playing them at the same time). I'm really confused as to what the problem could be, but I would really like to get your input on ideas of how to find out. Thanks guys!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 May 2011   #2

Seven ultimate 32bit

Have you had a look at your eventviewer for any serious reports.?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 May 2011   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Ah, yes. There was an error that caused Splinter Cell to crash completely... Here is the text from event viewer:

Faulting application name: SplinterCell4.exe, version:, time stamp: 0x4539e082
Faulting module name: Engine.dll, version:, time stamp: 0x4537dfde
Exception code: 0xc0000005
Fault offset: 0x000b5ff5
Faulting process id: 0xea4
Faulting application start time: 0x01cc1a28f1d2e3e0
Faulting application path: D:\Games\Splinter Cell - Double Agent\SCDA-Offline\system\SplinterCell4.exe
Faulting module path: D:\Games\Splinter Cell - Double Agent\SCDA-Offline\system\Engine.dll
Report Id: f934a9e1-861c-11e0-9801-001558c057b4

Also, in the system logs, this appeared:

Display driver amdkmdap stopped responding and has successfully recovered.

I have searched for the second error message, and I can't really find anything that describes the problem I'm having. At the moment I'm researching deeper into a fix that didn't work before, but more information was found pertaining to the problem.

Also, I just went into advanced power settings and made a couple changes... for some reason the thought occurred to me. I also disabled Catalyst A.I.

I doubt either of those things will play a part, but I thought I'd try them anyway, just in case.


Well, I just had a big scare. I flashed the GPU BIOS to try and raise the voltage a tiny bit (a few people said that it helped with screen freezes in games) and that resulted in me having to do a DOS Atiflash back to the default. I'm completely out of ideas now. :)


Faulting application name: SplinterCell4.exe, version:, time stamp: 0x4539e082
Faulting module name: d3d9.dll, version: 6.1.7600.16385, time stamp: 0x4a5bd9a9
Exception code: 0xc0000005
Fault offset: 0x0006144f
Faulting process id: 0xc58
Faulting application start time: 0x01cc1a3baeb0dd39
Faulting application path: D:\Games\Splinter Cell - Double Agent\SCDA-Offline\system\SplinterCell4.exe
Faulting module path: C:\Windows\system32\d3d9.dll
Report Id: 115ca83a-8630-11e0-8732-001558c057b4
My System SpecsSystem Spec

25 May 2011   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 May 2011   #5

Seven ultimate 32bit

RUN > CMD > SFC /SCANNOW (System integrity scan ) Does it bring back any violations.?

Also use DRIVER SWEEPER to uninstall that VGA driver..
Then download & install your latest package..

Catalyst Package.

Is this splinter cell patched? Or do you run it from the disk?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 May 2011   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Right. I will get on that. And Splinter Cell is not patched, I'm only playing single player on it anyway. I do have a no-cd crack on it. It's not just Splinter Cell though, it's any game I play. Splinter Cell is the only one that really CRASHES though. The others just have the screen freeze I described and then go on playing. And also, League of Legends NEVER does the freeze... don't know if that's relevent... something about 2D and 3D maybe?

Also, with the Driver Sweeper, there are no download links on Guru3D's website, so I downloaded the version. And by the way, my Catalyst drivers are the correct ones for my card... and the only ones that actually install CCC when installing the package.

I used Driver Sweeper and removed the only entry I could find with amdkmdap in it.

Anyway the computer had a BSoD today while playing Oblivion... sadly I didn't have the 'no-restart' option on, so I couldn't get a picture of it. Here's all the info I have on it:

From the windows error popup on reboot:

Problem signature:
Problem Event Name: BlueScreen
OS Version: 6.1.7600.
Locale ID: 1033

Additional information about the problem:
BCCode: 116
BCP1: FFFFFA8006D1D010
BCP2: FFFFF88002C1F45C
BCP3: 0000000000000000
BCP4: 000000000000000D
OS Version: 6_1_7600
Service Pack: 0_0
Product: 256_1

Event Viewer:

The computer has rebooted from a bugcheck. The bugcheck was: 0x00000116 (0xfffffa8006d1d010, 0xfffff88002c1f45c, 0x0000000000000000, 0x000000000000000d). A dump was saved in: C:\Windows\MEMORY.DMP. Report Id: 052511-21637-01.

Can't upload dmp file for some reason... SevenForums won't let me. It is 409MB after all... If someone can tell me how to view it, I can post the entry here.

The sfc /scannow found some errors and pointed me in the direction of a log file. Can't upload entire file of that either, and I can't make heads or tails of the text in it.

Updated to latest version of CCC and it seems like nothing actually got installed. Running driver sweeper again and reinstalling the CCC drivers that worked before. Here.

That's all I have for now. Will check back periodically to see if anyone has responded.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 May 2011   #7

Seven ultimate 32bit

Please upload-

From that it looks like you might think about upgrading the service pack...

But upload the bsod. We need those dmp files to assist you further.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 May 2011   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Ok first off, that's effin weird. Windows Update reports no new updates available... I know I have the most recent service pack updates. Hmmm.

Anyway, the zip file you wanted is attached. Also, Windows 7 Ultimate x64 is the current OS. It was a clean install on this drive, only installed twice (first x86, about 2 months ago, then x64 when I upgraded to 4GB of RAM last week). It is *technically* an OEM version... but let's not get into that. I'm thinking a 'don't ask, don't tell' situation is in order here. Other than the MoBo (which sat in a static-free bag in the box for a couple years), all the hardware in the machine is less than 3 months old.

I hope this is everything we need to solve this. It would make me so happy to finally have this issue resolved!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 May 2011   #9

Seven ultimate 32bit

This is causing your bsod:atikmpag.sys

Use driversweeper to uninstall your ATI driver,then download & install the latest driver for your device from HERE.

That should fix your BSOD right up..

Hope this helped.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 May 2011   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Ok, you know what I really don't get? SIW tells me that my video card is a *Mobility* Radeon HD 3650... but everywhere I look for that driver, it says it is a "Notebook Reference" driver....

I don't have a notebook... but the "Mobility" drivers are the only ones that actually INSTALL CCC when I install them. Ok, let me step back a second...

I've downloaded and installed the latest ATI drivers quite a few times since getting this card. However, even after downloading the catalyst software suite 11.5 package, and installing it... WATCHING Catalyst Control Center get installed to C:\ATI blah blah\CATALYST CONTROL CENTER... but then after the install is complete and the system reboots, there is NO FOLDER THERE. It is the weirdest thing... no errors in the install, multiple downloads and installations, it happens every time... EXCEPT when I install the "Mobility" driver. Then "catalyst pro control center" gets installed. But is that technically the wrong driver for me since I don't have a notebook computer? And if so, then why doesn't the correct driver install correctly? How do I figure out WHY it isn't installing correctly?

Oh, by the way, I *tried* installing it in safe mode, thinking it would bypass whatever the hell is blocking it from installing correctly, but I got an error about some kind of system verification error, or that it couldn't launch system verification or something. Is there a way around that? Do I maybe have to be in safe mode with command prompt or something like that?

Oh, by the way, I downloaded the driversweeper you pointed me to, and I've downloaded both the mobility drivers and the HD 3600 series (non-"mobility") drivers from the link you provided. I'm going to try the non-"mobility" ones first, and if those don't work I will repeat the process with the mobility drivers. Will get back to you with results of installation and testing tomorrow.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Random Freezing Problem in Fullscreen Applications

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