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Windows 7: Laptop Freezes (completely locks up) when playing a video

28 Dec 2012   #1

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
Laptop Freezes (completely locks up) when playing a video

The Problem:

- This first started occurring on Monday the 24th, I played a youtube video on Firefox and the video lagged with a black screen on the first 1-2 seconds of the video. At around 3 seconds, everything stopped. My cursor, the video, the whole laptop etc. The time was no longer moving on the video and my system time wasn't changing either so I concluded that my laptop was frozen. I waited it out and there was nothing I could do but hold down the power button in an attempt to try and turn it off.

- At this point I'm still able to watch youtube videos on chrome perfectly, however... Playing a video file from my Hard drive produces the same problem. I've tried playing files from both WMP and VLC player, and the same thing happened both times.

What I've tried:

- Uninstalled and then re-installed my display driver
- I tried a system restore yesterday and got a BSOD before my laptop even got to shut down
- I did a successful system restore to the 22nd via safe mode
- Searched the web for solutions but couldn't find anything

What I'm considering:

-Reinstalling windows (I'm in the middle of doing uni work atm so I'm trying to avoid this)
-Buying a new laptop (When I get the money)

May be useful:
-I was getting quite a few "Low RAM" messages from the system on the day that it first occurred, before it first occurred. Haven't seen anymore of them, however.
-Playing 3GP and MP3 files on WMP is fine

I really appreciate any help and if there's anything missing from my post, please let me know and I'll try and get back as soon as I can.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


Hello swifty and welcome to Seven Forums.

Just for confirmation, you were able to do a successful system restore to 12/22. However, you are still unable to play a video from the hard drive using WMP or VLC. And you still can't watch You Tube videos while using Firefox. When you uninstalled/reinstalled your display driver, did you get the latest driver directly fom Dell? Did you make use of their diagnostics?

Support for Home Users | Dell US

You might want to go through these tutorials prepared by one of the Forum experts. They have some additional suggestions on things to try. It's possible your computer is having some hardware issues and the first tutorial addresses some of the common diagnostic tools you can use.

Troubleshooting Steps for Windows 7

Troubleshooting Windows 7 Failure to Boot
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Dec 2012   #3
Borg 386

Win 7 32 Home Premium, Win 7 64 Pro, Win 8.1, Win 10

I don't know if this will be of any use, however I had that problem a while back, the videos would stop playing at a certain point & the entire PC froze up. As it turned out, I had just installed some new RAM I ordered & as soon as I put the old back in, the problem ceased. My lock ups were caused by a bad RAM stick I got, but it only locked up when I attempted to watch video. I didn't notice a problem with anything else. Odd one for the books...

Anyway, might want to try that if you have some extra RAM lying around, swap it out & see if you still have a problem...
My System SpecsSystem Spec


 Laptop Freezes (completely locks up) when playing a video

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