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Help: Seemingly Random Lock-ups

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November 11, 2012 12:22:15 AM

Hi all,

I've had a recurring problem for the last few months that I've just ignored but I finally have decided to attempt to determine the problem and fix. Any help you can offer, either in how to determine what is causing the problem or general solutions to hardware problems, is greatly appreciated.

The Problem:

My computer will randomly freeze/lock up and can only be recovered via hard reset. I have noticed that it tends to happen most frequently when playing a game on my main screen and try to do something on my second monitor (i.e. typing in skype, web browsing, etc.). My suspected culprits are video card and/or RAM.

System Specs
--Main monitor (Samsung XL 2370) center, second (Samsung E2420L) to my left.
Windows 7 Home Premium
--i7 2600k
--16GB G.SKILL Ripjaws Series DDR3 1600
--EVGA GTX 570
--Gigabyte Z77X-UD5H
--Corsair HX850
--128 GB Crucial RealSSD C300 (Windows Drive)
--120 GB OCZ Vertex 3 (Games Drive)
--1TB WD Black (Storage Drive)

I apologize if this was posted in the incorrect forum, if so please let me know where I can redirect the thread. Thanks in advance for any help. Let me know if you need any additional info.
November 11, 2012 3:38:01 AM

Does it need to be running when the crash happens? Doesn't seem to, but this is what was in it when I ran it for the first time.

On Sat 5/26/2012 12:52:55 AM GMT your computer crashed
crash dump file: C:\Windows\Minidump\052512-10623-01.dmp
This was probably caused by the following module: win32k.sys (0xFFFFF960000A000E)
Bugcheck code: 0x50 (0xFFFFDB00E9CB48C0, 0x0, 0xFFFFF960000A000E, 0x7)
Error: PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA
file path: C:\Windows\system32\win32k.sys
product: Microsoft® Windows® Operating System
company: Microsoft Corporation
description: Multi-User Win32 Driver
Bug check description: This indicates that invalid system memory has been referenced.
This appears to be a typical software driver bug and is not likely to be caused by a hardware problem.
The crash took place in a standard Microsoft module. Your system configuration may be incorrect. Possibly this problem is caused by another driver on your system that cannot be identified at this time.

On Sat 5/26/2012 12:52:55 AM GMT your computer crashed
crash dump file: C:\Windows\memory.dmp
This was probably caused by the following module: win32k.sys (win32k!EngBitBlt+0xAF7E)
Bugcheck code: 0x50 (0xFFFFDB00E9CB48C0, 0x0, 0xFFFFF960000A000E, 0x7)
Error: PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA
file path: C:\Windows\system32\win32k.sys
product: Microsoft® Windows® Operating System
company: Microsoft Corporation
description: Multi-User Win32 Driver
Bug check description: This indicates that invalid system memory has been referenced.
This appears to be a typical software driver bug and is not likely to be caused by a hardware problem.
The crash took place in a standard Microsoft module. Your system configuration may be incorrect. Possibly this problem is caused by another driver on your system that cannot be identified at this time.

On Fri 5/25/2012 10:38:34 PM GMT your computer crashed
crash dump file: C:\Windows\Minidump\052512-6162-01.dmp
This was probably caused by the following module: tcpip.sys (tcpip+0x3A58B)
Bugcheck code: 0xD1 (0x1, 0x2, 0x1, 0xFFFFF88001C3C58B)
Error: DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL
file path: C:\Windows\system32\drivers\tcpip.sys
product: Microsoft® Windows® Operating System
company: Microsoft Corporation
description: TCP/IP Driver
Bug check description: This indicates that a kernel-mode driver attempted to access pageable memory at a process IRQL that was too high.
This appears to be a typical software driver bug and is not likely to be caused by a hardware problem.
The crash took place in a standard Microsoft module. Your system configuration may be incorrect. Possibly this problem is caused by another driver on your system that cannot be identified at this time.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 11, 2012 6:40:39 PM

did you do a memtest on all the memory stick one at the time ? also unplug the second ssd and the hdd to do this if memory past the test then add your game sdd to it after the storage drive for the last one you could use the wd dld for test using the short one
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November 12, 2012 12:07:00 AM

Usually its overheating, either graphics card fan or cpu fan is not compliant with requirements. I had a cpu fan with a skew metal label, peeled it off everything is now OK
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November 12, 2012 12:24:11 AM

Is there a way I can see temps at time of crash other than having a monitor up at time of crash? I installed a Noctua NH-D14 and may have done so incorrectly, but I'm not feeling much heat from the rig in general. Temperatures have dropped significantly where I am, so I am inclined to think temps are fine but will try to monitor them more closely and see if I can provide any additional info.
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November 13, 2012 12:09:20 AM

The bios on most respectable boards now have a hardware monitor section. Giving cpu temp, MB temp. and cpu fan speed. or else this info is monitored on sw provided with the board. Actually its a critically important part of the HW environment to have this.
Another thing is that Windows has a setup that tells it to reboot if a HW incongruency occurs. This can be set to non operation. Also MBs have tested memory brands they recommend, maybe your is not in their range.
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November 30, 2012 10:53:24 PM

Sorry to revive the thread, but I have a bit of added information. I purchased a new SSD and a couple HDD's during the Black Friday/weekend sales and recently installed them. I had hoped (unfortunately incorrectly) that perhaps the issue was something to do with the Vertex 3 my OS was installed on. After formatting my old SSD's (Vertex3 & C300) and installing Windows on the new 256GB Vertex 4, I had the same problem happen.

So, I'm less inclined to think it's the SSD. I have not performed a memtest on each individual stick of RAM. Is this something I do in BIOS or do I need to download some software?

I'm still very opposed to the idea that it is heat causing the problem, as I keep my house very cool and it is already very cold outside. My leg is next to the side fan and I can feel cool air coming from the system. That being said, I will continue to monitor the heat. I just took some compressed air to the inside to help alleviate any problems dust may have caused as well. I would imagine that if it were heat and Windows was just shutting the system down to prevent problems, it would actually shut down successfully. This is not the case. I get a hard lock-up (screen just freezes displaying whatever it was I was doing at the time) and I get a death-chilling noise if my audio is going through the speakers. This audio problem has me thinking mobo but it doesn't happen with the headset, only speakers.

Any other ideas beyond memtesting the RAM? Thanks for the responses so far.
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 1, 2012 12:49:27 AM

since you got a new ssd and the issue still on i would suggest to do memtest one stick at the time http://www.memtest.org/ at the bottom of the page choose your os
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December 8, 2012 2:50:05 PM

So I finally got around the running the memtest last night. Unfortunately, because I've got a Noctua NH-D14 sitting on the CPU, if I want to remove/change memory, I've got to remove that, make my change, and reinstall the fan. For this reason, I ran memtest with my memory in it's current configuration, and this is the result:

http://img19.imageshack.us/img19/4676/img20121207220743...

How beneficial would it be at this point to go through the task of testing each individually? At this point, I'm starting to suspect GPU or PSU over RAM, but I'm sure someone more technically literate than myself has better thoughts?
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