Since winter started, the air has been dry in my office. Sometimes when I go to plug in an HDMI cable or a nano receiver for my headset into a USB port, there is a static discharge. After that, it completely freezes my computer. I can still see the screen but nothing moves and no response from keyboard or mouse. I have to reboot it.
Is it because the electricity shorts something in my computer? It's happened many times and no adverse effects yet thankfully (or that I've noticed anyways...aside from the freezing). I read somewhere that it may not be properly grounded but how do I figure that out? My plug is 3-prong so one of them is the grounding.
Does anyone know how I can stop my computer from freezing from static?
I've learned from experience that a three holed electric outlet does not guarantee a good ground. I've lived in a few places where an amateur did the wiring, got the polarity backwards or never bothered actually attaching a ground wire to the outlet terminal. I always keep one of these handy to test for the correct wiring.
^Agreed, a grounded outlet is only as good as the wiring.
As a stopgap measure, try touching the metal of the connector to the metal of the computer case before you plug it in. The case will help to dissipate some of the electrical charge which might help a little.
I am having the same issues. I will be checking outlets tonight with a multi meter. So far I have seen no damage. I can replicate this this by getting even the smallest of static charges built up (rubbing socks on carpet) and then touching anyplace on my case. (front or side panels)