Stumped with freezing issue, can anyone help?

OS: Win7 Home Premium 64-bit
CPU: Phenom II X3 720
Mainboard: MSI 790GX
Video: ATI 4870 1GB

Okay, so I'm officially stumped. Can anyone give me ideas to fix the issue described below?

I built my girlfriends computer a little over a year ago, and it's been running great until about two
weeks ago. It's started to freeze in the middle of applications. To describe the freeze I'd compare
it to a still image. The computer will be working fine one minute and then the computer will freeze
and I have a still image displayed on my monitor and there's nothing I can do other than a restart
that will get it working again.

This made me think that it must have been some kind of overheating issue so I booted up realTemp
and prime95 and put the CPU under a stress test. After the CPU load hits 100% I'd guess that no
more than 2 or 3 minutes will go by before it freezes. The weird thing is that the temp doesn't
ever make it above 50 degrees centigrade, so it couldn't be overheating.

I then assumed it might have something to do with the overclocking that I had done when the computer
was new, but the same thing happens under the stock settings. The temperature when the CPU is at
stock never makes it above 42C before it freezes up. I even underclocked the CPU and the same thing
happened at an even lower temp.

I moved on to the memory and tested it in the Windows Memory Diagnostic which it passed. I booted up
memTest86+ and had it run through like 10 loops which it passed just fine. I'm doubting that it has anything
to do with memory now.

I've check to see if all the power cables were plugged in right, and they are. I'm now thinking that it might have
something to do with the power supply, but I have a little device that measures voltage and it says that the
motherboard power, CPU power, and GPU power are all running at the correct voltages. I've had a bad power
supply before and when it crashed it was much different from what this computer is doing now. I'm not ruling out
the power supply yet, but it seems to be working well and I doubt anythings wrong with it.

I've updated the BIOS to the newest version and that didn't work. However, it did allow me to unlock the fourth
core on the Phenom II X3 720 which I've got running a 3.2GHz now.

The one thing that seems to trigger the freezing is high CPU usage. Anytime the CPU gets around full load, lets say 85% plus, it puts the computer in the danger zone for freezes.

Anyone got any ideas?
5 answers Last reply
More about stumped freezing issue help
  1. Back off the unlock of the core. Back off the overclock. Check that the voltage to the RAM is correct in the bios. Then try PRIME again.

    What PSU do you have and how old is it?
  2. It is possible that the CPU has failed due to overclocking. Overclocking is not without risk. As the PSU voltages seem to pass the test I would look at the CPU and the Motherboard.
  3. I am currently experiencing what appears to be the same issue on my machine. I too have tried everything I can think of. Driving me nuts. At least it only take 30 seconds to reboot.

    Here are my hardware specs in case they help you narrow anything down. Was thinking it could be the SSD but now I am not so sure. I have never overclocked my CPU.

    OS: Win7 Home Premium 64-bit
    CPU: Core i7-920
    MB: ASUS Rampage II GENE LGA 1366 Intel X58
    PS: CORSAIR HX Series CMPSU-620HX 620W
    Video: ATI 5770 1GB
    Boot Drive: Intel X25-M SSD 80GB
  4. Well I hadn't updated my BIOS since early summer and just noticed a newer BIOS was available yesterday [1307]. Read a few posts that said this firmware fixed some QPI voltage instability.

    It has only been a day but so far no freezes since the update. I'll post back here with an update after some more testing.
  5. So it has been a few more days and my machine has not frozen since I installed the new bios (used to freeze several times a day). It has however randomly restarted twice which it never did before but overall it has much better stability. I would look into QPI voltages if you haven't yet.
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