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Windows 7: My system is freezing/locking.

21 Dec 2009   #11
freewheeling

Windows Vista HP 64-bit, Windows 7 P 64-bit, Leopard 10.5.8, Windows 7 P 32-bit
 
 

It went all night and then froze again around noon. I just really don't think it's the power supply. The only things I had running was the HD-PVR (which is the whole point of this computer), two PCI cards (a legacy Belkin wireless card that I don't really need to run and a phone card that I sometimes use for faxing.) I had one LCD screen going. Everything else was on the motherboard, including the graphics driving the LCD display.

In other words, I don't think the power supply will solve the problem.

Is it possible the USB bus is bad? Could I have a short somewhere, or a loose lead? I'm using an old KVM switch to connect to a keyboard and one monitor, but have been using it for years. I used it with this computer for 6 months before there were any problems. And I'm using it now on my other computer, because my Windows 7 box is frozen again.

The reason I say it's not the power supply is that I've already tried swapping it with the 300W that the system came with, and it freezes the same way. No difference. I've also ran this without the HD-PVR connected, and it still froze.

Could one of the PCI devices be bad, like the Belkin wireless modem? Could that cause this sort of thing, even when I'm not using it? Other than that, there's only software. Not applications, but the OS stuff.

I'll try unplugging the modem.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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21 Dec 2009   #12
freewheeling

Windows Vista HP 64-bit, Windows 7 P 64-bit, Leopard 10.5.8, Windows 7 P 32-bit
 
 
Just for grins, here's what I think.

I think something in the OS is corrupted. The drivers are all "right" and up-to-date. A number of other folks on the forum have been experiencing exactly the same thing in Windows 7. They do various stuff, but if and when the symptoms stop there's no particular rhyme or reason for it. Some take out some memory, others do something else.

It would be nice if there were some consistent pattern to the "solutions" but there isn't.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2009   #13
Dwarf

Windows 8.1 Pro RTM x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by freewheeling
The behavior started about two weeks ago shortly after installing an HP-PVR device, but I've tried unplugging that device and deactivating all the software and drivers associated with it, and I still experience freezes.
Have you tried a System Restore prior to that time? There are probably still entries in the registry pertaining to this. Drivers can also hook themselves into services, some of which are scheduled to execute when certain criteria are met.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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21 Dec 2009   #14
freewheeling

Windows Vista HP 64-bit, Windows 7 P 64-bit, Leopard 10.5.8, Windows 7 P 32-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Dwarf View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by freewheeling
The behavior started about two weeks ago shortly after installing an HP-PVR device, but I've tried unplugging that device and deactivating all the software and drivers associated with it, and I still experience freezes.
Have you tried a System Restore prior to that time? There are probably still entries in the registry pertaining to this. Drivers can also hook themselves into services, some of which are scheduled to execute when certain criteria are met.
I have no system restore points that would be useful. I did an "easy transfer" of my original installation (which was on a dynamic disk, which I hear is a bad idea), but there are no restore point from before the transfer, and no restore points on the original installation (on the dynamic disk) from before the point where the freezes/lockups started. So that avenue won't work.

I could install Windows Seven again after repartitioning one of the drives, just to see if that has the same problem (although I can't activate it without a huge hassle).

There is some discussion about a problem with some antivirus software, but I'm pretty sure I've run the system without that as part of my test protocol, and it still froze.

I think it is possible (though not likely) that there's a problem with my current PSU, because it's pretty low quality. But fixing that probably won't solve the freezing problem, because I've run this system with the factory-installed PSU, and it still froze.

I've swapped out everything I can think of, with the exception of the KVM switch. But is that likely to be causing system freezes, especially when it works fine and has done for a couple of years.

The only thing I can think of that I haven't done yet is run some sort of diagnostic of the hardware and drivers, but I don't even know if there is such a thing. I *have* run memory diagnostics, though. If one of my memory sticks has gone bad, it wasn't bad to begin with, because I haven't made any changes there.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2009   #15
freewheeling

Windows Vista HP 64-bit, Windows 7 P 64-bit, Leopard 10.5.8, Windows 7 P 32-bit
 
 
Something else worth trying?

I set up a new user account, and am running Windows 7 from that just in case something in my user account is causing the problem. Not very likely, but it's an easy thing to do.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Dec 2009   #16
freewheeling

Windows Vista HP 64-bit, Windows 7 P 64-bit, Leopard 10.5.8, Windows 7 P 32-bit
 
 

I've currently gone about 12 hours without a freeze/lockup. Don't know what I did, and I've gone this long before and the freezes continued. Here's all I've done:

Create a new user account to run the HD-PVR media server on the USB bus (zero power drain on the system, because it's self-powered)

Removed two small PCI cards that I wasn't using anyway (a fax card and an older wireless network card). Also remove a Logitech camera that I also wasn't using.

Pressed down on the SATA connectors on the motherboard.

That's all I've done. Have no idea whether any of that actually made a difference. All of the stuff I removed had been working fine for a few months before the freezes started.

Oh yes, I also sacrificed a few of my nose hairs as burnt offerings to the computer gods. Maybe that's what did it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Dec 2009   #17
stevieray

windows 7 x64 Home Premium
 
 

I think it was the hair! Heh.

If the system works fine for a few days, then you could begin reinstalling the hardware, one piece every few days, and see if it freezes. With a little persistence, you'll narrow it down to one card... then you just need to figure out if its hardware (the card itself) or software (bad driver, incompatible program).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Dec 2009   #18
freewheeling

Windows Vista HP 64-bit, Windows 7 P 64-bit, Leopard 10.5.8, Windows 7 P 32-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stevieray View Post
I think it was the hair! Heh.

If the system works fine for a few days, then you could begin reinstalling the hardware, one piece every few days, and see if it freezes. With a little persistence, you'll narrow it down to one card... then you just need to figure out if its hardware (the card itself) or software (bad driver, incompatible program).
I think the most likely culprit is the Logitech camera, so will try that first. I just received the new Thermaltake TR2 power supply, which is much better quality than my no-name brand, even though it's 50W less (500W vs 550W). It's possible that the cheap power supply just had some iffy connections too. 500W should be more than enough to run my stuff.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 My system is freezing/locking.




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