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PC keeps crashing any suggestions would be much appreciated

Last response: in Systems
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January 1, 2010 7:42:46 PM

Hello
I dont know a huge amount about the workings of computers but im sick of taking them to my local computer repair shop paying £60 and them just reformatting it and for it stop working 3 months later so i thought id give it a go myself.

About 4 weeks ago my computer started to crash randomly, after countless attempts to try and sort it out it crashed and wouldnt go past the booting system and a message came up saying to re-install windows.

After using "copies" of windows for years i decided to buy a copy of XP sp3 and i installed it and all the correct drivers (i think). after a few days of it woking fine it has now started switching off randomly.

I have searched loads of forums again to try and find the solution and still cant find anything,
the computer is running fine but if i start to do anything more complexed than have a few web pages open and play itunes at the same time or try to install office or run AVG then it crashes.

i have tried un-checking the automatic restart box in startup and recovery
- this hasnt solved it (no blue screen has come up with error codes)

When my computer crashes it shows this in the event viewer under error recordsEvent Type:

Warning
Event Source: WinMgmt
Event Category: None
Event ID: 63
Date: 01/01/2010
Time: 14:43:02
User: NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM
Computer: JONNY
Description:
A provider, OffProv12, has been registered in the WMI namespace, Root\MSAPPS12, to use the LocalSystem account.
This account is privileged and the provider may cause a security violation if it does not correctly impersonate
user requests.



But i have also had these too

Event Type: Error
Event Source: nview_info
Event Category: None
Event ID: 1
Date: 30/12/2009
Time: 12:10:45
User: N/A
Computer: JONNY
Description:
The description for Event ID ( 1 ) in Source ( nview_info ) cannot be found. The local computer may not have the
necessary registry information or message DLL files to display messages from a remote computer. You may be able
to use the /AUXSOURCE= flag to retrieve this description; see Help and Support for details. The following information
is part of the event: NVIEW : IDMan: WAIT_TIMEOUT, while waiting for a read to clear - resetting read event


Event Type: Error
Event Source: Application Error
Event Category: None
Event ID: 1000
Date: 28/12/2009
Time: 15:07:19
User: N/A
Computer: JONNY
Description:
Faulting application chrome.exe, version 0.0.0.0, faulting module coreclr.dll, version 3.0.40818.0, fault address
0x00158ad6.



Event Type: Error
Event Source: .NET Runtime
Event Category: None
Event ID: 1023
Date: 28/12/2009
Time: 15:07:17
User: N/A
Computer: JONNY
Description:
The description for Event ID ( 1023 ) in Source ( .NET Runtime ) cannot be found. The local computer may not have the necessary registry information or message DLL files to display messages from a remote computer. You may be able to use the /AUXSOURCE= flag to retrieve this description; see Help and Support for details.
The following information
is part of the event: Application: chrome.exe
CoreCLR Version: 3.0.40818.0
Description: The process was terminated due
to an internal error in the .NET Runtime at IP 7B8D8AD6 with exit code 8013150a.
.

Event Type: Error
Event Source: crypt32
Event Category: None
Event ID: 11
Date: 27/12/2009
Time: 11:09:46
User: N/A
Computer: JONNY
Description:
Failed extract of third-party root list from auto update cab at: <http://www.download.windowsupdate.com/msdownload/update...; with error: An internal certificate chaining error has occurred.



Any suggestions would be much appreciated Thanx in advance

Jonny
January 1, 2010 7:48:19 PM

run memtest

run prime 95

check temps

without any information on your setup its hard to know
January 2, 2010 11:17:25 AM

Sorry im not too sure how to do those things, do you think it could be something to do with the computer overheating?
This is the spec of my computer

Operating System

Windows XP Home Edition Service Pack 3 (build 2600)

Processor

2.20 gigahertz Intel Core2 Duo
64 kilobyte primary memory cache
2048 kilobyte secondary memory cache
64-bit ready
Multi-core (2 total)
Not hyper-threaded

Drives

500.10 Gigabytes Usable Hard Drive Capacity
322.87 Gigabytes Hard Drive Free Space

PIONEER DVD-RW DVR-115D [CD-ROM drive]
TSSTcorp CDW/DVD TS-H492A [CD-ROM drive]


System Model

MSI MS-7366 1.0
Enclosure Type: Desktop

Memory Modules

1984 Megabytes Usable Installed Memory
Slot 'DIMM0' has 1024 MB
Slot 'DIMM1' has 1024 MB

Display

NVIDIA GeForce 7150 / NVIDIA nForce 630i [Display adapter]
NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GT [Display adapter]
Default Monitor
SAMSUNG [Monitor] (40.2"vis, November 2006)
ViewSonic VA2216w-2 [Monitor] (22.8"vis, s/n QPD074303517, October 2007)
Related resources
January 2, 2010 12:16:28 PM

Have you opened the box up lately and cleaned it? Try to get the dust out, especially the dust that builds up between the CPU and fan. Dust is like a blanket to CPUs, and not in a good way. A vacuum works if you're careful (but make sure the computer is unplugged first, and use the vacuum gently, not touching any of the components with the possible exception of the plastic fans).

Are you running SpeedFan? It will tell you if temps are too hot. As an extremely-general rule-of-thumb, the CPU will be around 40 degrees Celsius (or less) when there is little load. Under high load you don't want to see it get above 70 degrees Celsius for long durations. Your CPU will shut itself off if it gets too hot. I don't know about your board, but you can go into the BIOS and look to see if it has temperature warnings when it gets too hot. Many boards will start beeping at you if the temperature reaches a threshold. After that they should automatically shut down. See what your BIOS settings say about this (if anything). I would set the BIOS to start beeping at 70 degrees if it is not already set. That way you know you have a heat problem at the CPU.

When you are having intermittent problems as you describe, the most important piece of information is the PSU: make, model, wattage, and age. If it is more than 2 years old, replace it, and not with any PSU, but with something that is going to last. A common mistake is to use a cheap power supply.

Do these problems happen within the first 20 minutes after booting? If not, if it's taking time for your computer to bake, then it might be a cooling issue. Make sure your fans all work. If your chips are too hot to touch, add a fan near your hottest chip.

If your computer shuts off whenever you place it under heavy load then either your PSU is going out or your CPU isn't getting cooled. Clean the dust on top of the CPU and under the fan, and replace the PSU if the cleaning didn't work.

As stated above, run memory tests.

Unplug everything and then replug everything back in to make sure everything is seated. Don't be afraid to use a little force. As long as you're plugging the proper things into the connector they are supposed to be plugged into, you wont break anything -- just don't hit anything else on your board. (Don't shock your board with static electricity! Ground yourself before working on your board; don't rub your feet on the carpet. Use common sense and you'll be fine.)

Did you check your hardware drivers to see if Windows is reporting they are working properly?
Control Panel -> System -> Hardware -> Device Manager
Do you see any yellow warning signs?

If nothing else works, try unplugging the equipment you don't absolutely need (such as your optical drive and your discrete video card) and see if that helps.

Wiggle your hard drive and make sure it is not loose. Tighten its screws if you can move it in its cage with little pressure. Check the hard drive with SpeedFan if it is a SMART drive. SpeedFan can give you an analysis of the drive and tell you whether it is failing. It will even print a report on a web page for you with all the drive's statistics (assuming you are connected to the internet at the time).

If everything above didn't work, I would say the board is failing. It happens if there have been a large number of on-off power cycles, or you have had an electrical anomaly. Get yourself a power filter of some kind so that your computer isn't hooked up directly to the electric grid.

Good luck.
January 2, 2010 4:39:55 PM

I have just finished cleaning it out and re-plugged everything (with force), there was a hell of a lot of dust in it.
I had the computer running for a while not doing much apart from using the internet, i then went to the bios screen and checked the temps this is what i got:-

CPU – 79 degrees

SYSTEM- 36 degrees

Computer has been on for about half an hour now while i was installing speed fan and these are the temps using the programme:-

Video card 57 degrees

GPU 57 degrees

Hard drive 38 degrees

Core 72 degrees

Speed fan is also picking up one fan running at 1710 but im not too sure which one it would be.

The PSU is about a year and a half old
Make – Atrix
Model - 520u
DC output max 520w


There aren’t any warnings on my hardware drivers, it looks like they are all working properly.
The computer will switch off at random times, i have just managed to install office which i wasn’t able to do before i cleaned it out so maybe that could be the solution but as you said in your post the temperatures shouldn’t be as high as mine are so that’s still an issue.


Thanx a lot for all your suggestions

January 2, 2010 6:11:38 PM

It's common for CPUs to spike to a high temperature. For example, after you first turn the computer on the CPU is very hot setting everything up. A core 2 duo, however, should not stay hot. If it doesn't drift back down to below 40 degrees celcius when the only work it is doing is web surfing, then that is probably the problem.

I would replace the cpu fan and heatsink to try to correct your cpu heat problem (but only after verifying that your CPU is running hot). Make sure you use a thermal paste between the cpu and cooler. There are a lot of places on the web that explain how this is done. You can gain a lot of knowledge on how to do this by trying to take the cooler off. It's pretty much the reverse process when installing a new cooler, except you have to use a fresh layer of thermal paste. Remember to remove the old thermal paste by rubbing a paper towel wetted with nail polish remover on top of the cpu/paste. Buff the top of the cpu dry lightly after the paste has been removed. Install a new, thin layer of paste, and you're ready to install a new heatsink and fan. Arctic Silver 5 costs about $9. Buy one tube.

SpeedFan should be detecting at least two fans in your system (a case and cpu fan), but maybe your motherboard only has 3-pin fan connectors and SpeedFan is having trouble with that. In any case, 1700 rpm is kind of slow unless everything is running cool, then it would be OK.

SpeedFan should be able to display temperatures on its main screen without you having to go into the BIOS to read temps.

Make sure that your BIOS temperatures you report are actual temperatures instead of thresholds. They sound like thresholds that will cause either warning sounds to be emitted or the board to shut down. 79 degrees sounds about right for a threshold to use when shutting the system down.

If it turns out that it's not a cpu heating issue then I would replace the PSU. (And /don't/ replace it with another Atrix!) It has good wattage, but it may be giving you fluctuating voltage.

Also, make sure you test your memory.

Lastly, drop by where you took your computer to be fixed and chew them out. If they didn't do any of these suggestions the last time you took it in for repair then they are boneheads. A dusty computer indicates these guys are slackers.
January 2, 2010 7:36:58 PM

Also, try reseating your memory (RAM). Take it completely out and put it back in. It may require a good deal of force, but it's OK as long as you push straight down on the DIMM. There are plastic latches on each end that you have to undo before taking the DIMMs out. No tools are required. Do not touch the gold connectors! You can touch the green board and the black chips, but stay away from the connectors on the lower edge that plugs in. No static electricity -- ground yourself first.

Then run a memory test.
January 3, 2010 12:47:07 PM

Here are more programs that can help in your diagnosis:

# CPUID's Hardware Monitor - - Very useful tool to download to monitor temps, fan speeds and voltage.
# Real Temp - CPU Temperature Monitoring - Very useful tool to download to monitor your CPU temps.
# CoreTemp - Very useful tool to download to monitor your CPU temps.
# Prime95 - Most used downloaded software to stress your system to make sure it is stable throughout each process (overclocking... etc.)
# MemTest86+ - Most used downloaded software to test your memory to make sure it is not defective.

These are listed in the "Recommended Threads by Usage" thread, where you can find links. They can help you determine whether you really do have a heat problem.
January 5, 2010 7:44:39 PM

WOW a CPU temperature of 79!!
Thats really high isnt it. My old Core 2 Duo was only 20 on startup in the BIOS. Maybe thats your problem, or you said it was randomly switching off. That could mean your Power supply unit is faulty. Good luck!
January 6, 2010 2:26:06 PM

man, you need to run the tests......and then post the results....
!