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Eli

Pantium4 deep freeze

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Hi

I have one pentium 4 old machine that freezes a lot, mostly after one or two hours of work and some times even less, I took it to the tech that other than charging money and not solving the issue didn`t do a thing. After freezing it also refuses to restart and only after wait it is possible to boot.

Any ideas? [Win xp sp3, 700RAM] Thanks

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Most freezing is caused by 1 of 3 or 4 main things. I am not sure the exact cause, but here are things that have been known to freeze a PC that you can check.

 

- Dust - Blow out dust around CPU/GPU/case fans, while being sure you lock them with a Q-Tip to prevent over-RPM. Heat kills/slows PC's a lot.

- RAM - If you have less than 1 GB, update if possible. PC's lock up when they run out of RAM because virtual RAM is veeeerrrryyyy slow. (I know you have 700 MB, but the OS needs RAM, the Antivirus needs RAM, integrated video may be using RAM as Video RAM. Sometimes as much as 8/16/32/64/128 MB system RAM gets re-allocated for use as Video RAM. And, your web browser uses RAM, etc...)

- Programs - Try a different Antivirus program. Sometimes, some versions may cause a lockup. Also, see if lockups occur when you use specific programs.

- Drivers - This can be caused by outdated, or updated drivers. Sometimes an updated driver can fix crashing, while there are also occasions that it can cause crashing. Up or downgrade your drivers to see what works best for you.

- Hardware - Disconnect anything you are not using. I have seen cases where, for instance, someone had a PCI dial up modem that would get very hot to the touch on the main chip onboard. It would also cause Windows to endlessly reboot. Having a partially/fully fried chip on hardware will cause problems. Check that you do not have bad hardware, & disconnect anything your not using. I even disable floppy in the Device Manager to speed things up.

- Harddisk - It can happen that a bad/going bad HDD can cause errors or problems. Do a long format of the drive with your XP disk so it can find areas with bad sectors & mark them bad so it won't hang Windows when you re-install it. Also, can do error checking of the drive with CHKDSK utility. Try another HDD if possible, to see if that would fix the lockups.

- Viruses/malware/rootkits - Especially if you use Internet Explorer, you are very prone to auto-run viruses that automatically launch when you visit maliciously crafted websites. I call it auto-runs because it is essentially the same thing. Drive-by malware installs that auto run, install, & take over your PC. Use different web browers, & if your not sure you have anything like a rootkit, might be a good time to test a new install.

 

* Check your motherboard. Look for rounded over, or busted capacitors. If you see rounded capacitors, bulging, busted, etc, your computer will lock up because of errors. See below.

 

* If a re-install of Windows doesn't fix things, you can try XP SP2. There have been occasions where SP3 would cause computers with specific hardware to crash, while SP2 works fine. Not often, but could be worth testing.

 

Additionally, I tested different operating systems, & Linux is the ONLY one I found that will still run with errors (ignore the errors) and keep chugging. If this is the case that you actually have capacitor damage, try installing freeware Ubuntu. It may fail the first time or two that you try to install it, if your hardware is bad. But it usually will figure out what is causing it, & work around it. I have personally seen computers/laptops that Ubuntu would work on with known bad hardware, that would crash Windows.

 

This isn't to say that it will work with all bad hardware, as I do not know. But worth a try.

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I'm instantly thinking of overheating, especially if the inside of the case has never been cleaned.

 

One easy test is to open the casing, and point a house floor fan or table fan at it and see if it still freezes. Although it could be a number of other things.

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Also go with Andavari on overheating as a cause.

 

Another possible could be the PSU (power supply unit) being on the way out.

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Hi, Eli. Had similar issue, older computer, described in the first post here:

http://forum.piriform.com/index.php?showtopic=32929

and it turned out to be the power supply.

Tried cleaning, didn't matter, then took the power supply only to a local shop, not one of the big names.

He tested it in about 5 minutes, it was bad, got another, works OK now.

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Thank you all for your replies, yesterday the freeze took place at a fresh start up, and I`ll have to start by eliminating options one by one, excluding the heating factor, as it also freeezes at a fresh start up. The first I`m trying now is the USB wireless adapter.

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Hi, Eli. Had similar issue, older computer, described in the first post here:

http://forum.piriform.com/index.php?showtopic=32929

and it turned out to be the power supply.

Tried cleaning, didn't matter, then took the power supply only to a local shop, not one of the big names.

He tested it in about 5 minutes, it was bad, got another, works OK now.

Hi login123, I`m trying now a new PSU, hope this one solves the issue, I`m going to find it out

soon enough ;)

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If the powersupply doesn't work I would examine the motherboard. See if any of the caps are broken/leaking.

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Well, tried the power supply and it did not the right thing, so I`m back to the starting point.

Looked at the mother board and bearing in mind I`m not an expert, I did not find anything peculiar.

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There is a capacitors site and forum Eli believe it or not, and it's pretty good.

 

Have a look here and they list symptms that your system can display when the caps are going bad. On the right of the page are some little pictures which when clicked show a big picture of what bad ones look like.

 

http://www.badcaps.net/pages.php?vid=5

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There is a capacitors site and forum Eli believe it or not, and it's pretty good.

 

Have a look here and they list symptms that your system can display when the caps are going bad. On the right of the page are some little pictures which when clicked show a big picture of what bad ones look like.

 

http://www.badcaps.net/pages.php?vid=5

Thank you Hazelnut, good to know there is such a site. Anyways, I`m at the point of considering if it worth's all the efforts and time spent.

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