Ok, I didn't know which forum category to post this under, since I have no clue where my problem is anymore.

For months now, I have been experiencing a problem with my custom PC randomly freezing completely, needing a reboot. First the sound has a stroke or jitters if you will, and then the screen stops moving. No mouse movement, no ctrl+alt+del, nothing works, all I can do is reboot. I explained to several ends of this forum and others, that my freezing happens in random order, once or twice a day, no consistent task being done before it happens. (Sometimes I'm surfing the web, sometimes games, sometimes movies, sometimes completely idle). I have had this PC for over a year before the freezing started, and everything worked well.

Around April 2010 s Corsair P256 SSD, and that's when the freezing happened. Eventually the PC no longer started in windows, and when I tried to re-install windows, my SSD was no longer operational (could not install the system partition on it). I got it replaced by Corsair, and then I installed the new one, everything was fine for a month.

A month later I had my first freeze in a long time. Same thing happened, sound strokes, then screen stood still. It kept happening, and I got really frustrated with my SSD, so I bought a HDD and replaced it with that. But the freezing kept happening. I started to question some of my favorite tech forums, and they all claimed it was a PSU issue. So 300$ later, I replaced my Ultra x3 with a Corsair HX1000 and the freezing keeps happening.

Someone in those forums mentioned the RAM and recommended I do a memtest86 on them, but I haven't yet. I used the windows memory check tool and nothing showed up.

I'm hoping it's the RAM because it's cheaper to replace.

However, I'm wondering. Is it possible that this freezing is caused by GPUs, CPUs, or my motherboard?

Current System Specs:

Thermaltake Spedo Advance (Computer Tower)
Corsair HX-1000 (1000watt PSU)
AMD PhenomII 955 BE 3.2ghz Quad
Ultra Chilltec CPU cooler
Asus M4N82 Deluxe motherboard (980a SLI chipset)
Corsair XMS2 x4 800mhz DDR2 RAM (total of 8gigs)
XFX GTX280 x2 (SLI) Graphics -- Sharp Aquos 52" 1080p HDTV
Auzentech Prelude 7.1 X-Fi Soundcard -- Yamaha HTR-6160 7.2 channel receiver
Corsair P256 SSD
Seagate 500g HDD
WD Caviar Black 1TB HDD
15 answers Last reply
More about help
  1. Define in detail {Corsair XMS2 x4 800mhz DDR2 RAM (total of 8gigs)}; please post CPUz for each DIMM {part-number}** see blow.

    Meanwhile, run MSCONFIG -> select Diagnostic and 'try' to break the PC. Next, SATA corruption -> change the SATA port {Port x->y} for the SSD.

    What BIOS changes have you made??

    **CPUz DDR info -
  2. I would start with a virus scan. I use microsoft security essentials, a free download. Use only one virus protection software at a time. The other issue could be your northbridge chipset. Most newer boards use a cheap aluminum heatsink. You may want to reseat it using fresh thermal paste. As always, use a thin layer, and I mean thin. Too much will simply be sqeezed out on the sides, causing a mess. One drop of thermal paste in the center of the chipset is plenty. Also check windows device manager for conflicts, especially with the soundcard. It's a common problem. If you see any marks next to a device, remove it and reboot, letting windows try reinstalling it, and check again, or update the driver. Same for your video driver. Check ati's website for a newer driver. Most memory issues cause bluescreens or no post events. You can run memtest, but I doubt that is your problem. Run it anyway and see if you get any errors.
  3. Virus - yes - especially if "peek-a-boo" sites...CTDs.
  4. senvae said:
    Is it possible that this freezing is caused by GPUs, CPUs, or my motherboard

    Absolutely and it could also even be caused by hardware drivers.

    Troubleshooting these kind of problems is annoying and time consuming. Sound like you are doing the right thing; start testing what you can for free by swapping components if you the have backup hardware; hard drives, video cards, RAM, PSU, and rule them out one by one.

    Definitely use MemTest86 to test your RAM over night.

    Also check the Event manager in Windows - look for any weird events just before the crash. This might give you a clue.

    Search on the ASUS forums for your motherboard.

    If you have some friends with some extra PC equipment (e.g., old PSU), try to borrow their hardware to test before buying new stuff. However when you get to the point of testing the MB and CPU, it is more complex to troubleshoot these if you don't have exact or similar replacements or if you don't want to spend the money to replace them.

    Sometimes it is better to go to a local PC repair shop and pay them the hourly fee to find the problem.

    You didn't mention which OS but I will assume you are using Windows 7. Are you using 64-bit or 32-bit? Have you tried a different version of Windows (switch to 32-bit if you are using 64-bit)? Do you have all the right hardware drivers for 64-bit (if you are running 64-bit Windows)? Have you updated the MB chip-set drivers and the BIOS? I assume you already updated the video and audio drivers, but are there different version available from the MB manufacturer and the chip-set manufacturer (i.e., ASUS vs. Realtek) that you can try?
  5. I've come to a point where my patience is running extremely thin and this is very dangerous. Shortly after typing this thread with you guys, my Razer Mamba wireless mouse started having cursor issues, then I turned it off and on again to reset it, but now it's dead. A ***king 140$ mouse and it dies after I turn it off, I had it for a month.

    Anyways, I appreciate the advice, and yes I will test the RAM. But I am absolutely shocked to find out that my troubles could be far from over. I certainly hopes it's the RAM cus 4000$+ of computer parts and this is all I have to show for it.

    Sorry: my OS is Windows 7 64 bits

    @ O1die: my board is an M4N82 from Asus, it was expensive, and reviewers gave it some very nice scores. My chipset is cooled by copper pipes, it all looks like a very nice build.

    I haven't updated the BIOS

    I re-installed Windows about a million times and used several storage drives in the process, I seriously doubt it's a virus. Unless it's a virus that comes with Avast Home 5.0 which is always the first thing I install on the PC.
  6. Been there, shut it down. Walk away, kick a tree, but DON'T DO IT!

    Try the mouse on another rig.

    If it were 'me' I would start by breadboarding {bench if you've got one}; a longterm problem especially one requiring/suggesting a new PSU could EASILY be a short. Power issues** are a notorious signs of a 'SHORT' or partial short. Anything from an I/O shield to standoffs {I use plastic washers to sandwich in the MOBO on ALL my builds}.

    The MSCONFIG Diagnostic is to rule-out OS or crapware issues. Also, never use ASUS Utilities.

    My suggestions are from EASY -> REBUILDING, but I prefer EASY first...

    ** BSOD, Lockup, Boot Failures, Sudden Shutdowns, Unexplained behaviors. {other H/W can do the same incl drivers or conflicts}.
  7. I understand your frustration but don't give up.

    Check the Razor mouse on another PC.

    Update the BIOS and chipset drivers on the ASUS M4N82 Deluxe system.

    M4N82 Deluxe BIOS 2301 (2010/08/02)

    NVIDIA nForce MCP72/78 Chipset Package Driver V15.37 for Windows 32/64bit 7.(WHQL) 2009/07/23 update. This driver seems a bit old, I would search for a newer version.

    Realtek Audio Driver V6.0.1.5859 for Windows 7 32bit/7 64bit (2009/07/08 update) This driver seems a bit old so I would look for a newer version on the Realtek website and try that one. If you are already using the newest Realteck driver, switch back to the version Asus recommends.

    As for a virus, if you have a hidden partition, and the rootkit or trojan is stored there, re-installing won't solve the problem, you need to destroy all partitions, format the entire drive and then re-install Windows.

    I also noticed a M4N82 Deluxe Memory Qualified Vendor List so you might want to check that list just in case.
  8. I've had a Asus mobo before and I remember them saying Corsair always makes their qualified RAM list.

    As for the Realtek audio, I don't install it, unless windows 7 does it behind my back, it's non existant.

    I think my chipset version was 15.37

    I want to point out that I always format my system drive. I have 2 storage HDDs, but I'm not sure I could stand to watch 1TB of data get erased on my storage drive. (it's almost full with movies and etc.)

    BUT, if I have a good anti-virus.... I should be able to save those storage drives right? (Assuming my memtest comes clean tonight and the virus thing become more likely).
  9. That might be the problem, don't use the drivers installed from the Windows 7 DVD.

    Download and install the Windows 7 audio drivers from ASUS for your motherboard. I also recommend that you update the BIOS to 2301 if you have not done so yet.

    Which video card drivers are you using? From XFX or directly from nvidia? Which version?
  10. As always I install the drivers from Nvidia's website, and I update frequently. In case you and everyone else here hasn't noticed: I have a dedicated soundcard, I don't need the Asus drivers or anything like that. I have the latest version of my audio drivers. My toslink cable is plugged from the dedicated soundcard to the receiver. The onboard audio is not being used.
  11. I've stated what to do & where to start...soon as I see you do them I'll add some more...
  12. Well, memtest86 was running for almost 8 hours and found no errors. I'm now making in depth virus scans on all my drives.
  13. Nothing in anti-virus scans either...

    I'd like to find out more about that SATA corruption. Does it happen often? Will changing the mobo for a new one take care of it, or can the corruption affect the drives themselves? I have all my accessible SATA ports taken, the other 2 that are free are blocked by my GPUs' big fat ass. I have 4 SATA ports taken by 3 storage drives and my BD-ROM.

    I haven't tried to break the CPU as Jaquith put it, maybe I'll try that.

    Can this problem appear out of nowhere if I don't update my bios? Will I need to re-install anything, like windows, if I update the bios? I haven't updated the bios since I got the mobo.

    Here are pics requested:

    Sorry about the size, you may need to zoom in with your browser, for some reason, photobucket saves them at half the original res.
  14. ^ Changing the BIOS {after the fact} IDE->AHCI->IDE. Moving the port forces the drivers to be 'reinstalled.'

    I'm trying to cause an error by stressing, if it doesn't fail then you're good.

    AV ESET; it's about the best; I prefer over NIS -

    NIS missed {viruses can happen anywhere on of my staff was on Whitepages ; thankfully I understand the registry }->
  15. ^ Try ALT + PrtScn or crop; I cannot read.
Ask a new question

Read More