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Windows 7: 7 Lockups, just like Vista, but a discovery

20 Jan 2009   #1
pizzafoundry

 
 
7 Lockups, just like Vista, but a discovery

One of my main systems runs an ECS RS400A motherboard, a 3ghz P4, 2gb memory, not a screamer by any stretch, and it uses the non-mainstream ATI Radeon Xpress 200 chipset. It runs like a rock under XP or *nix, but ever since the first Vista betas, it has locked up after the Vista boot for only a few minutes, no matter what video driver it was running. So I decided I didn't have time to fool with Vista and kept the box on XP where it has happily run for years.

Now I'm trying 7, and find a related issue. Under Firefox (same conditions as above), while browsing webpages, 7 will lock up after some random period of time. Today, after the last lockup, rather than just push the button again, I decided to leave the machine on and go to my appointment. Upon returning several hours later, I found the machine alive and responsive, and running fairly well; in fact this message is created under that same boot. So it seems whatever this lockup is will eventually clear itself if you have that kind of time. I'm unsure how much time it takes at this point, but no doubt, it appears that it's not fatally hosed, just temporarily waylaid for some unknown period of time.

Any clues out there?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Jan 2009   #2
smarteyeball

 
 

When you say lock up, are you referring to no input movement (KB/mouse)? Any HD activity?

Does it only happen with Firefox (that you've noticed)?

Is it the same KB and mouse you've been using all along?

Maybe you could have task manager running and watch for CPU/RAM usage spikes.

Not much of a clue yet, sorry.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jan 2009   #3
pizzafoundry

 
 

When you say lock up, are you referring to no input movement (KB/mouse)? Any HD activity?

* No discernible activity anywhere; as far as I can tell, nothing responds, nothing is alive. No HD activity. cad gives nothing, no keystrokes produce any results, no beeps, clicks, nothing. A good candidate for a reboot; that's why I was stunned to find that it apparently recovered all by itself. I have never waited and watched for more than a couple of minutes though.

Does it only happen with Firefox (that you've noticed)?
* It has also locked up while manipulating files in Windows Explorer. Also, today, while
in device manager, just after I clicked on Update Driver, it froze... so yes, it does appear to get hosed in a variety of places. But now for instance it has been running for probably 3 hours without a hitch, as I type here.

Is it the same KB and mouse you've been using all along?
* Yup; no changes there on this box for probably 5 years.

Maybe you could have task manager running and watch for CPU/RAM usage spikes.
* Was doing just that, and at the point of lockup, graphs all looked boring and normal. Also, way back, the MS folks liked to say "it's probably your memory"... but back then, I ran memory tests overnight with no drama, and now, in fact, the system is running on completely new and known good memory, memory that has run memtest86 overnight without any error, and quite different from the 'vista' memory it ran before. So I'm fairly sure memory isn't an issue here either.

Not much of a clue yet, sorry.
* Thanks for looking.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Jan 2009   #4
pizzafoundry

 
 

UPDATE - Ok, while cruising around in Firefox, I decided to x out of firefox, and just as the screen was blending into the desktop, it locked up again, in fact, it left the 'half-blended' Firefox screen displayed with the desktop about 50% visible "behind" it. So I left it sitting to time it; 9 minutes later, it reverted to a 7 "login-blue" options screen where I chose to start task manager; at that point, I was greeted by what looked like 4 or 5 dialog box windows complaining that "IE wasn't the default browser, yada yada"... I certainly wouldn't have started IE up, I was in the middle of a Firefox shutdown. But it did come back, and it was pretty close to exactly 9 minutes after the lockup... and we're back typing now. Whuddyaknow.... not sure if the boss will accept those 9 minute periods of zero productivity though. Kinda sucks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jan 2009   #5
smarteyeball

 
 

hmm. Long shot, but off the top of my head, those 4-5 IE boxes sound as if an app is trying to access the net by firing up internet explorer. Some sort of Automatic update?

Have you installed your chipset (motherboard) drivers in Seven yet?

From memory, did Vista and 7 lock up before or after you started installing apps?

it sounds more like a h'ware issue though. Have you installed your chipset (motherboard) drivers in Seven yet?

Check the device manager for any exclamation marks alongside anything (if it doesn't lock up on you that is )
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2009   #6
azirishman

Win xp SP3 32-bit, Windows 7 RC1 Build 7100 32-bit
 
 
Check for driver issues

I fought this issue for months on several diffrent builds. I'm now on RC1 (build 7100), and discovered that a missing driver for my Airlink101 PCI wireless card was causing the lock up.

I loaded the xp sp3 driver (not even vista drivers exist for this card), and low and behold, INSTANT STABILITY!!!


I am VERY HAPPY now!!!

I'm running a P4 3.0Ghrz porcessor on an ECS RS400A MB(on board Radeon Express video), 2 Gb DDR2 Ram; Duel booting w/ xp SP3.

PS. I also did load the ATI beta driver 9.1, no vid issues what so ever!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 May 2009   #7
pizzafoundry

 
 
7 lockups on RS400A

Wow... someone ELSE with an RS400! Cool. Thanks for the reply. I haven't actually even ventured into trying to load any drivers for the motherboard, as DM seems fairly content that it found 'em reasonably well already... Have you loaded a batch of RS400 drivers on 7? What did you use, Vista stuff?
Guess shame on me for that... I sort of expected that without bangs everywhere, things were at least ok to proceed carefully. Did you ever find that your "lockups" were actually just "off in the weeds for a while" as I have found?

I will say that after loading 7100 on several other machines, it has not failed a single time for any reason whatsoever on those machines; only the RS400 has the problems; I realize it's already an orphan of sorts and someday I'll replace it with an Asus or Intel of some sort but it does just fine for most of my needs.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 May 2009   #8
azirishman

Win xp SP3 32-bit, Windows 7 RC1 Build 7100 32-bit
 
 

I'm using teh Vista drivers for most of the devices. Been running stable now or 2 days.


The one thing I did do was flash the BIOS to a slighty new version then what was pre loaded to the MB. the flash went smooth using the ECS flash utility.

the only thing that I did find is in the pawer options section in control pannel, I tried to change to the "balanced plan, which immediately locke the system up. if you stay on high perfomance, no worries!

so far, so good. I'm happy!

Good luck, hope my experience helps you out.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 May 2009   #9
pizzafoundry

 
 
7 lockups on RS400A

Hmm... well, I haven't flashed the bios; I've always been a little leery of that, though I've done it many times over the years... but having created a few doorstops as well, I don't usually go that way. I'll likely try the vista drivers though. Still spending most of my time in XP or FreeBSD though... but the apparent stability of 7 is certainly a breath of fresh air after Vista.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 May 2009   #10
comfuser

Windows 7 RC1 Build 7100
 
 

I have experience a couple of lockups since installing Windows 7, 3 days now. One while viewing a web page in FF 3 another while away from system for a few hours and upon return noted a constant on HDD light, black screen and no response from keyboard or mouse. Hard reset button would not reset either, had to force power off. System rebooted and instead of the standard "Starting Windows" I got "Resuming Windows" system was very flaky so I shut down Windows and started over.
I read about installing MOBO drvrs in Win 7, went to ASUS site and only found Vista 64 bit drvrs (not surprised) and installed those. Did I install appropriate drvrs. Anyone have any suggestions on what I should be looking for to aid in troubleshooting this problem.
From what I've read in this forum Windows 7 is pretty stable and I would not expect those 2 lockups in a couple of days time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 7 Lockups, just like Vista, but a discovery




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