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New build freezes randomly, then tries to restart repeatedly

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June 7, 2011 9:22:08 PM

First off, please pardon my ignorance. This is my first build and I'm pretty inexperienced when it comes to building computers (in fact, I'm not sure why I went through all this trouble).

My (first) build:
Corsair 800D
Intel i5-2500 (no K)
Stock fan (going to replace with Cooler Master)
ASUS P8Z68 V-PRO
Corsair Vengence DDR3 RAM 2x4GB
PowerColor AMD/ATI Radeon HD 6970
Corsair HX850W PSU
Intel 510 series 120GB SSD
WD Caviar Black 1 TB 6 GB/s HD
ASUS OD
Dell U2711

Software installed after build:
Windows 7 Ultimate
Intel LAN driver (from ASUS mobo DVD)
Realtek audio (from ASUS mobo DVD)
Windows updates
Sophos anti-virus
Adobe Reader
Adobe Flash
Microsoft Office 2010
ATI/AMD Display Driver
iTunes

Description of problem:

Computer will freeze. Nothing will work. I have to power off holding power button for ~ 5 seconds. When I hit the power button again to restart, the fans turn on, the optical drive whirls, the lights turn on on the mobo, but then everything stops. The computer repeats this until flip the power switch on the PSU -- holding the power button does not work. This has happened a few times since I built my computer a couple of days ago.

1st time - I think it first occurred while installing WIndows 7 or it was immediately after. I thought it was the CPU temp, which was high at 77 C. I found that I had not installed the fan properly. After I did, the CPU temp went down between 55-60 C. With each subsequent freeze, I have checked the CPU temp after restarting in UEFI and the CPU temp is stable between 55-60 C.

2nd time - Happened when I had MLB TV open, surfing the internet, and downloading Adobe reader. The computer just stopped when it had installed about 80%. I had forgotten to install the Windows Updates at that point, so I installed those thinking that might get rid of the problem.

3rd time - I turned off the monitor (without turning off the computer) and then walked away. When I returned, I turned on the monitor and everything was frozen. This time I opened everything and triple checked all the connections. The only thing I could find was that part of the 24 pin ATX power cable to the mobo was slightly loose so I tightened the connction thinking that this would get ride of the problem.

4th time - Happened when I was typing this note in this morning with the computer on for 10 minutes. I didn't have time to make any further changes. Also, I'm not sure what to do next. Made the decision to post on Tom's Hardware.

A few other thoughts/notes:

1. The RAM freq is listed in UEFI as 1333. The Corsair memory on New Egg lists it as "8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory..." which makes me think that the frequency is not detected or set write in UEFI. I wonder if this has anything to do with it.

2. I did a test boot outside the frame before installing it and it booted up fine.

3. I have a Cooler Master Hyper 212 CPU fan shipping from New Egg that I hope to install on tomorrow.

4. I do not plan to overclock anything.

Please help. Is this a software or hardware issue? I only have a limited to time to RMA some of the components and wonder whether I need to switch anything. Please be very specific on how to fix or check for problems. Thanks.

I've read other posts and it sounds like very similar to these problems.

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/312578-31-computer-fr...

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/312578-31-computer-fr...
June 8, 2011 12:28:51 AM

My instinct is that you have a corrupt install of Windows. I would double-check all motherboard connections and do clean install before trying anything else. I know it's annoying. :( 

Addressing your thoughts:
1. Your RAM speed is ultimately set by your BIOS. Your BIOS is probably defaulting to 1333. You can set it to 1600 later if you want (probably). But leave it as it is for now. The RAM clock is really unlikely to be the source of your instability. Do make sure your RAM sticks are installed in the correct slots.

2. This suggests corrupt install

3. Make sure you clean your old thermal past off and re-apply.
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June 8, 2011 1:08:02 AM

Thanks for the advice. I'll try re-installing everything after rechecking the connections and installing the new HSF when I receive it tomorrow.
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June 8, 2011 3:11:31 AM

i have an asus board and pretty much the same thing was happening to me except mine was bluescreening. the problem was that my board was automatically overclocking the cpu causing the instability. go into your bios and make sure this isnt the problem. if its not, then sorry for wasting your time. (sorry bout the reply it was the only way it would let me post
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June 9, 2011 3:51:14 AM

hey ronnie i know your feeling. the problem i had was after i turn my computer off and it wouldnt turn on unelss unplugging the power cord for while.

Also ur instinct was right it has to do with RAM in the BIOS. i got corsair vengence 1600mhz ddr ram 2 x 4gb and it only reads it as 1333mhz.

To fix this with ur exact ram just have ur ram information and call asus at 812-282-2787 they helped me fix it in 10 min
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June 10, 2011 6:58:20 AM

eightdrunkengods said:
No problem. Let us know how it goes.


Eight, just following up. After a little worrying, I think I've installed the Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus correctly. I downloaded CoreTemp and that program suggests I'm running 5-10 degrees C cooler. Now the core temps are 26-30 C. In BIOS/UEFI, the temps are always higher (still at 40 C) but I've read this is typical.

Anway, I haven't reinstalled Windows just yet since I have avoided the freezing so far (it's been a couple of hours). If it freezes again, I'll start from the beginning.

By the way, I did contact ASUS and the person I e-mailed suggested I update BIOS and the re-install the intel chipset driver and the intel MEI all over. Do you think that's neccessary?

The ASUS rep also told me to enable the hot plug for me SSD and HDD but I haven't done that yet either.
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June 10, 2011 6:59:39 AM

koc88518 said:
hey ronnie i know your feeling. the problem i had was after i turn my computer off and it wouldnt turn on unelss unplugging the power cord for while.

Also ur instinct was right it has to do with RAM in the BIOS. i got corsair vengence 1600mhz ddr ram 2 x 4gb and it only reads it as 1333mhz.

To fix this with ur exact ram just have ur ram information and call asus at 812-282-2787 they helped me fix it in 10 min


Thanks for the post. I've left my RAM at 1333 as I try to figure out this problem. From what people are telling me at ASUS, Tom's, and at Eggxpert, the RAM speed is not the problem.
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June 10, 2011 7:04:40 AM

tph15 said:
i have an asus board and pretty much the same thing was happening to me except mine was bluescreening. the problem was that my board was automatically overclocking the cpu causing the instability. go into your bios and make sure this isnt the problem. if its not, then sorry for wasting your time. (sorry bout the reply it was the only way it would let me post


Tph, I finally figured out how to download the ASUS AI suite to monitor the CPU frequency, like you suggested. The CPU freq never went much above 3300 MHz (which is the right freq for my i5-2500). Still thinking the freq might be the problem, I even went into BIOS and turned off Turbo Mode but that paradoxically caused the CPU to run faster and hotter so I turned it back. Anyway, I don't think it's the CPU freq. I think it might be a combination of the CPU temp and something else.

I posted what the ASUS rep told me and I was wondering what you and everyone else was thinking about it.

By the way, things seem to be running better since installing a HSF but we'll see afer a day or so.
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June 10, 2011 2:15:55 PM

ronnie_ronnie said:
By the way, I did contact ASUS and the person I e-mailed suggested I update BIOS and the re-install the intel chipset driver and the intel MEI all over. Do you think that's neccessary?

The ASUS rep also told me to enable the hot plug for me SSD and HDD but I haven't done that yet either.


I suppose you should follow the rep's advice. I usually don't update the BIOS unless the new version changes something that definitely pertains to my system. It sounds like, in your case, this update might be important.

Generally, you should keep your drivers up-to-date so go ahead and follow the rep's advice on that too. It sounds like you may have fixed your instability, though.
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June 12, 2011 8:30:50 PM

eightdrunkengods said:
I suppose you should follow the rep's advice. I usually don't update the BIOS unless the new version changes something that definitely pertains to my system. It sounds like, in your case, this update might be important.

Generally, you should keep your drivers up-to-date so go ahead and follow the rep's advice on that too. It sounds like you may have fixed your instability, though.


Generally, you should keep your drivers up-to-date so go ahead and follow the rep's advice on that too. It sounds like you may have fixed your instability, though.[/quotemsg]

Eight (and anyone else reading), unfortunately my computer froze again and then started cycling again once I powered it on. I hadn't installed the new bios, so I installed the updated BIOS, installed the new drivers (Chipset and MEI), and enabled hot plug for my two drives. Unfortunately, my computer froze again. I then tried to reinstall everything starting with Windows 7. It froze again while I was reinstalling software. I gave it one more shot but it froze again after installing all the software.

I'm just going to start RMA-ing ***. Right now, I'm thinking the mb, the graphics card, the RAM, and hopefully the CPU too.

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