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Computer keeps crashing when I play a game.

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July 5, 2011 10:19:12 PM

I don't know if this is the right thread to post this in and if it's not I apologize.

A few weeks ago my computer was running great then one day I was playing Star Wars galaxies and my computer acted like it shut down but my computer was still running so I shut it down and restarted it, and I had a pop up saying Windows encounted a critical error and that something might not be installed properly when I didn't even install anything for about a week if not more, so I figured I got a virus, so I did a vius scan and tried to play my game again and it crashed yet again, so I figured I had a virus that was deep down in my files so I reinstalled windows and put my computer back to out of the box condition, so I downloaded everything back and tried it again, it worked for about a day or two and crashed again, so I figured it was in the windows update cause everytime I downloaded that last one this happened, so I went out and got Windows 7, installed that from a fresh install instead of a upgrade and downloaded everything, worked again for about 2 or 3 days and crashed again, and it doesn't matter what game I'm playing cause it crashed with any game I play so its not just Star Wars galaxies.

I'm not sure why my computer was running great then all of the sudden this happened, it's almost like my computer is over heating but I have my tower on my desk getting good airflow, so my other thought is that it might be that my processor is burned up which I hope it's not, so if anyone can give me some suggestions or help I would greatly appreciate it, thanks in advance.
July 5, 2011 10:29:57 PM

If your comfortable opening up your computer, in addition to just inspecting the insides in general, take out the CPU fan and processor. Check BOTH the under surface of the processor and the CPU socket on the motherboard. If it looks fine, but it back. Reseat the memory in case (doubt thats the issue though). For checking temperatures, use Core Temp or Speedfan and check the temperatures of the CPU and GPU. Your graphics card may have its own temp monitoring program (for example, EVGA makes EVGA precision).

Does the sound still work? If it does, it can possibly be an issue with your graphics card. Can also run Memtest in case nothing else works to check the memory. What graphics card do you have?
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July 5, 2011 10:45:21 PM

I have never messed with my CPU before so I'm not sure if I trust my skills with that and I don't even know how I would go about doing it lol.

I have a EVGA GeForce 430, and do you mean when my computer crashed if it still works? if so then it works but it lags and repeats the same thing over and over, other than that it works fine.
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July 5, 2011 11:51:12 PM

Viruses: They really aren't that common, that dangerous, or that severe. Nowadays they're typically adware. Disclaimer: Occasional viruses are more severe and common like the Sasser Worm, for example. I've used Avast! Free Antivirus the last couple years and haven't had any problems. Before that I used no antivirus software for many years (I eventually picked up something and decided to get Avast!

@cpatel1987--This guy's doesn't disassemble computers frequently, so let's start by assuming it's not the CPU socket until there's more evidence to that effect.

@Nemisis342--don't bother taking your CPU out of its socket YET. If it's fried to the point where any visible defects would occur, you probably wouldn't be able to install Windows.

My first guess is it's your PSU. That's mostly because it's usually your PSU. Look at the label on it. How many amps are on the +12V rail? What is its make and model?Bad PSUs cause crashing--especially when playing games or something intensive that pushes up power draw.

The first thing you should do is turn off your computer & unplug the power cable, ground yourself, and then make sure everything is properly connected. Just check cables and RAM.

The second thing you need to do is find out if it's a driver/Windows issue or hardware. So download Memtest86+ and install it to a flash stick. Boot to your flash stick and see if it ever crashes during Memtest86+. You can also boot to Linux Mint by downloading Linux Mint and burning it to a CD: http://www.linuxmint.com/download.php
(It's not installing Linux Mint--more like a quick trial reading from the CD. It will take 7 minutes or so to load all the drivers and boot up.)

You should go into your bios on startup and check your settings. Maybe just load defaults. You can check what your temperatures and voltages look like. If the Health Monitor doesn't show 12V, 5V, etc. coming from the 12V, 5V, etc. voltages, then your PSU is not operating properly. A 5% tolerance is acceptable.

Let me know what you find.
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July 6, 2011 3:50:02 AM

I unpugged everything and opened my tower up and made sure everything was plugged in, then plugged everything back in, when I started my computer back up it installed like 10 different things and it seemed to work for the time being, but it has also worked before for a few hours then did it again so if it happens again I will let you all know, thanks for the help guys!
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July 6, 2011 4:23:27 AM

Installing doesn't tax your machine. Benchmark with MSI Kombustor (Furmark) or LinX or both at once. Keep an eye on your temperatures while doing so.
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August 28, 2011 10:00:48 PM

Hello again, my computer acted fine for awhile after I made sure everything was plugged in it worked fine for a few days then crashed, then worked fine for a few more days and crashed again, it got to point where it was clockwork and didn't bother me anymore then stopped completely.

I started playing Age of Empires: Online and Deus Ex: Human Revolution and now it has started again, I have tried pulling all of my RAM out and reinstalling my old 2gigs that I had when it worked fine, and it still crashed so it isn't my RAM, so I installed my 4 gigs back, this is the power supply I have

http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-CMPSU-550VX-550-Watt-Cert...

but my computer didn't start crashing till about 2-3 months after installing it so I honestly don't think that's the problem either, the last thing I installed on my computer was my EVGA 430 graphics card, and it didn't start crashing till about 3-4 weeks after installation, and I installed my old graphics card that worked fine for about 5 years, 7800 GT and it still crashed, so I am stumped... And I don't have any flash drives to boot from to do what you guys said to do, so any other options on what it could be I would greatly appreciate it, thanks.
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