First System Build - Random Crashes (part 2)

I recently built a new Windows 7 64-bit system and have been having all sorts of crash problems. Here's a link to my original post:

The computer seemed to be operating somewhat stably yesterday. I managed to play a few games of TF2, surf the web a bit, reply to my earlier post, etc. I shut the computer down at the end of the day, and today when I tried to turn it on I started getting BSODs again...

My first bluescreen happened within 10 second of logging onto windows. I should note that a) I didn't actually see a blue screen, but when it restarted I got an error message about recovering from a crash; and b) before it bluescreened, I noticed an error message about Catalyst Control Center. I originally thought that CCC had something to do with my original problems, since my blue screens started while I was uninstalling and reinstalling my video card drivers, and I had operated with only minor program crashes for 2 weeks before these problems started happening. The problems I'm having seem to be more likely related to memory, though. (see my previous post for details)

Anyway, I restarted my computer in Safe Mode, and got another blue screen shortly after logging on. This time I managed to see an error box beforehand - "Werfault.exe - application error. The instruction at 0xf777f7cc referred to memory at 0x04dc2240. The memory could not be read." Sounds like a memory error to me... but my memory has gone through several hours of memtest at multiple settings without a single problem, and GhislainG seemed satisfied with my CPU-Z figures. I tried restarting, upping the memory voltage by 0.04V to 1.54V, and had the same problem.

It seems like the problem is getting worse, as even during my worst periods previously I could log into Windows and not crash until after I tried to open a program.

I should also mention that my computer ran CHKDSK after my last restart. I saw this once before (maybe a day or two before my problems started happening.

At this point I'm tempted to wipe and reinstall Windows. It sounds like I have a hardware problem, but the fact that the problems started after I tried to reinstall my graphics card make me think otherwise. I also feel like I should note that the problems started right after I connected my TV. I realize this basically isn't a change, and I can't fathom how this would have caused any of these problems, but I thought I should provide full disclosure. What do you guys think?

Thanks in advance,
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  1. Best answer
    Have you tried Prime95? There are memory problems that get past memtest.

    A full Windows Reinstall would be best, because then we can rule out Software.

    GSkill has a good forum for their ram (if it turns out to be the culprit).
  2. Can I run Prime95 if I can't even get Windows stable? Is there any way I could improve my chances of being able to run it other than Safe Mode?
  3. hmm, yeah I suppose that would be a problem.

    Have you tried the ram really slow, like at 533?
  4. Turn off "automatic restart"...then you will be able to read the error messages....also check event viewer and examine ya *.dmp files.
  5. Ok, somehow got into Windows. The inconsistency of everything is driving me mad... as much as I'm happy it's working right now I know it's going to blow up in a few minutes.

    Anyway, I just disabled automatic restart (thanks) and am now checking out event viewer. What should I be looking for specifically? (I'm trying to find a good "how to" for using the event viewer in this way using google and tom's search but I'm not having much luck.)

    As soon as I'm done with this I'm going to run Prime95.
  6. You need to sort out basic functionality - in a structured way.

    Pull out or disable everything you can, leave 1 stick of memory, load BIOS defaults and what happens?

    An option here is to remove the hard drive and boot from a CD into one of the diagnostic apps and run a memtest from there. A little more complicated but it removes one more component.

    Memory and processor are first.

    Win 7 has a memory diagnostic feature you can start (forget where as I am at work). Try that. Chkdsk errors are because you are crashing the file system and it sees the inconsistencies. Generally not a good thing...

    If you cannot get past this part we have an issue with the basics of the system. Processor not installed correctly (hey people do it all the time), Ram correct, RAM voltage correct? Cables secure? You are trying to isolate the power supply, the motherboard, the RAM and possible the CPU (not terribly likely).

    If the basic level of testing works, start adding pieces in one at a time. Its painful, I know. I know you want to play with your new toy - we all do. Work through adding one at a time in and checking. You may have to reboot 20 times for each change - do it. If something fails, take a step back and retry. Dont assume anything righ now - try to find a way to prove the various parts are good.
  7. Ok, so still running Prime 95. No stability issues yet... My comp downloaded an update and restarted automatically in the middle of the night, but nothing in the event log so I think it was a nice clean restart.

    If I get through 24hrs of a "blend" in Prime 95, should I do a "small FFTs" test, or should I go ahead with vvhocare5's suggestions?
  8. By the way, what is your processor? (Sorry if I missed that somewhere).

    And Motherboard?
  9. Phenom II X4 955 and Asus M4A79XTD EVO.
  10. Update: it survived the blend-torture with 0 errors, on to small FFTs.
  11. Best answer selected by pcarroll0813.
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