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My brand new PC crashes my games

Last response: in Video Games
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August 5, 2008 11:49:41 PM

I just got a brand new Gateway with a nice 22" moniter three days ago:

Specs:
AMD Phenom 9550 (operates 2.2GHz, 2 MB share, L3 Cache, 3600 MHz HT 3.0 Bus.)
6 GB DDR2 Memory
ATI Radeon HD 3450 Video
640 Gig hard drive (hehe)
Windows Vista 64 Bit Home Premium


I tried uploading Sims 2 which is a relatively old game (released in 2004) with basic graphics compared to some new PC Games. My computer crashed very quickly once I started to play, probably within 15 minutes. The screen went black, my PC remained running but my desktop never re-appeared. I had to shut my PC down with the manual button which is bad for the computer. I couldn't understand this. I learned though that my ATI Radeon HD 3450 Video isn't one intended for gaming. But I still think it should play them. I turned all the settings on the game to the absolute low which made it look dreadful. I still had the exact same results - crashing relatively quickly. I also tried another game which my friend let me borrow - Medieval 2: Total War which crashed after around 5 minutes. Do I need a power supply or something? Do I need an entirely new graphics card? I have all my drivers installed and everything. I hope this is something which can be resolved without having to buy new merchandise as this was a Birthday gift from my father...I don't think I'm about to ask him to buy me another gift.

If you have any questions about the problem ask them.

More about : brand crashes games

August 6, 2008 5:33:47 PM

What is your Power Supply? Second you are running a 64 bit operating system. I am not sure that these older games support. Third your ATI 3450 is not the best card I can't even find it on Tom Hierarchy Chart. I would suggest with a PC like that go with a higher graphics ie ATI 3850, Nvidia 8800GT or higher if you can afford it. Also you are running a 22" Monitor that requires a higher res a better video card would be my guess.
August 6, 2008 6:07:26 PM

The 64bit OS shouldn't be a problem. Hell I play Command Keen through Steam with one.

The 3450 is definitely not a gaming card.

You should try to install new drivers for your card (remembering to remove any old drivers first), and if you already have the newest drivers maybe you should try an older driver.

Like cypress said, tell us what kind of PSU you have. That very well could be the problem. If it is a really cheap PSU you should try and talk your dad into returning it and buying a higher quality PSU.

I'm also wondering what kind of configuration you have for your memory since you're running 6gb. Is it 3 x 2gb? Or maybe 2 x 2gb + 2 x 1gb? If your memory modules all are not matched you could have some problems. In the case of 2 x 2gb + 2 x 1gb you could remove the 1gb stick and see if that works. If you have just 3 sticks I'd remove one (especially if it is different) and see how that works.
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August 6, 2008 9:58:29 PM

I've already tried changing the 64 Bit OS to windows XP Compatibility and I got the same problem.

I'm pretty sure it's my graphics card. I've had trouble with ATI before.

Well I'm not extremely experienced with computers. Where can I view my PSU? And how can I check my memory modules? Thanks.





PS: Isn't San Pedro a hallucinogenic cactus/drug?
August 7, 2008 2:57:05 AM

You can look inside your case to see what kind of PSU you have. It will have a big sticker with all the information on it. Give us the make/model. While you're looking in the case see how many memory sticks you have installed. You can go into bios and it should tell you to, or down load cpu-z, http://www.cpuid.com/cpuz.php , which should also shed some light on it. Also, just go ahead and ask your dad. I think there is a good chance that it could be a memory problem if you have mixed RAM modules, which is notorious as being problematic.

San Pedro means Saint Peter in Spanish. When the missionaries told the natives in Peru that Saint Peter had the keys to heaven they replied that they had them to. The key to them was a columnar cacti, so they started calling it San Pedro after the saint. The cactus is one of the fastest growing cacti there is, growing about a foot a year. The cacti does contain mescaline as well as some other alkaloid chemicals, so yes it can be a VERY powerful hallucinogen. It is not really fit to be a popular recreational drug, though, due to the time consuming preparation and the horrendous taste. For more information go here: http://www.erowid.org/plants/cacti/cacti.shtml .
I think you're the first one on these forums to make the connection.
August 7, 2008 4:10:16 AM

^ It very well could be that you're lacking power, especially considering you got a power hungry CPU, even though your GPU isn't power hungry. They did give you an odd memory setup, 2 x 2gb + 2 x 1gb. I'm kind of surprised you got such a nice hard drive that thing though.

Anyhow, Jpain made some good points. For the short term you can try and see if you can take out the 1gb memory stick to see if you that stops the crashing. Each module should have a sticker that says what it is.
August 7, 2008 5:34:46 AM

Alright. So we have determined if I want to keep this computer I need a new 500 Watt+ Power Supply and a better GFX Card. If I were to do this which should I get first if I cant get both at once. I feel like the PSU will solve most of my problems. I might try the memory stick thing too.
August 7, 2008 8:38:47 AM

If it's a new PC, get Gateway to FIX it! :bounce: 

Its not working correctly if games crash!

Mike
August 7, 2008 3:01:45 PM

^ +1

Also, if you want to upgrade both PSU and your graphics card then get the PSU first because you won't be able to use your new graphics card until you get a quality PSU.
August 8, 2008 7:25:05 AM

San Pedro said:
The 64bit OS shouldn't be a problem. Hell I play Command Keen through Steam with one.

The 3450 is definitely not a gaming card.

You should try to install new drivers for your card (remembering to remove any old drivers first), and if you already have the newest drivers maybe you should try an older driver.

Like cypress said, tell us what kind of PSU you have. That very well could be the problem. If it is a really cheap PSU you should try and talk your dad into returning it and buying a higher quality PSU.

I'm also wondering what kind of configuration you have for your memory since you're running 6gb. Is it 3 x 2gb? Or maybe 2 x 2gb + 2 x 1gb? If your memory modules all are not matched you could have some problems. In the case of 2 x 2gb + 2 x 1gb you could remove the 1gb stick and see if that works. If you have just 3 sticks I'd remove one (especially if it is different) and see how that works.


Steam updates its platform when it is installed on 64 bit os...

I know every one went on about steam but to me Steam only gets better and better...

December 7, 2008 1:15:48 PM

hi! i have the same problem with sanitas. all my games freezes after several minutes of game play. i had to push reset button since i couldnt access my desktop to end the applications. i have:

intel core 2 quad q6600 2.4GHz
asus motherboard p5kpl-cm with fsb oc 1600MHz
kingston 2 GB DDR2 Memory
inno3d geforce 8500GT 1 GB video card
500GB hard drive
Windows XP Professional
500 PSU

all the drivers are installed and updated (i think). i just ran the cd that came with each.

hope you can help me, pls....
December 9, 2008 9:47:21 AM

Can i suggest that if Gateway have marketed this as a Quad Core gaming rig for a low price then they would have potentially made other cost savings.
The first thing ocming to mind would be the PSU for sure. The other would be the case, and cooling in general. I have a slightly older version of your CPU and it can run very hot!
It wont be so drastic as to overheat within 5mins of playing The Sims, however if you are looking to make upgrades then dont forget that an overheated component will not last very long. Going with JPain's suggestion of a 4850 and a 500w PSU would probably cause you problems without considering this.

abiegb - do not rely on the OEM to provide you with up to date drivers, as far as i know the original CD is never updated with a new driver as they are released on the internet. I would go through each component, update, test and move to the next to ensure you have the correct drivers.

Aside from that, what games are you trying to run? I know that the 8500 does not have the power to run some of the latest releases eg Fallout 3.
That processor is damn easy to overclock given sufficient cooling though, most can get it to 3.0GHz with minimal effort.
December 9, 2008 12:54:46 PM

it's not actually from gateway. i had someone assembled this pc. i got all the reasonable components and let someone put it all together. the casing has a fan cooler. i've monitored the cpu temp and it started at 47C at start-up and goes up to 49-50C when im using it for a while. ive read somewhere that it's the normal temp for a quad core cpu so im not sure if i should get worried about the temp. also, should i increase the psu?

i tried running red alert 3 and warcraft. still the same problem.

December 9, 2008 1:32:27 PM

To clarify, the first paragraph of my post is aimed at the OP, the second at abiegb.
So...disregard the Gateway / PSU / Temp issues i was talking about abiegb they dont apply to you ;) 
Update your drivers from the manufactuer websites and see if that helps any.
December 9, 2008 1:39:05 PM

noted! :)  already updating as i type. will get back if it helps. thanks!
December 9, 2008 2:01:09 PM

already updated the drivers. still the same problem. the thing is, my game always freezes at the same spot. with the sims 2, it's when the neighborhood loads. with red alert 3, just before after loading the map. had to push reset again :( 
December 9, 2008 2:19:20 PM

You mentioned Warcraft - this the MMO or the RTS?

Heres a fix for random freezes for Warcraft MMO, created with the recentish 3.0.2 patch:

Open the World of Warcraft folder on your hard drive (Default Folder: C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft).
- Open the WTF folder.
- Open the Config.wtf file using a text editor, like WordPad.
- Add the following line to the end of the file:
SET FixedFunction "1"
- Save the file, and restart the game to see if this has resolved the issue.

Its not guarunteed but it has worked for many.

I cannot advise on RA3 or Sims 2, there should be no issue whatsoever with your configuration, and the latest drivers. Perhaps that 2GB of RAM is being hogged with too many background programs eg virus scanners.
Could be faulty media (RMA the CD's), could need a removal / reinstall of the games.
December 9, 2008 2:49:28 PM

ok thanks. i'll try it.
!