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Split-second freezes when watching videos.

Last response: in Windows 7
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December 6, 2012 1:13:28 PM

Hello!

I've been having this weird issue where my entire computer lags up for a second or two and then continues like normally, it only seems to be doing it when I'm watching videos. I'm not sure if fullscreen or not affects it, I'll will try that later.

I started having these freezes about 4-7 days ago and as I said, it seems to only occur when I'm watching videos. I've tried both VLC and WMP but it still freezes and when I've watched whatever I'm watching and then close down the media player it freezes again randomly afterwards but only once and after that it never freezes again until I start watching something again.

"Specs"
CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 @ 3.4GHz (temperatures are fine)
GPU: XFX Radeon HD6870 1GB, not OC'd.
RAM: 2 x Corsair 4GB (1x4096MB) CL9 1600Mhz VENGEANCE
MB: MSI 970A-G46
PSU: Corsair TX850w

The only new thing that I've installed since the issue started appearing were some Realtek audio drivers for the motherboard. I've also noticed how the CPU usage sometimes spikes, randomly jumps from 5-8% up to 30-50%, even if I'm not doing anything.

I'm going to try and not watch in fullscreen and see if that does anything, if not then I'll try and uninstall the Realtek drivers. I suppose you might need more information and I'll try to provide some more if you ask. Hopefully it's not a hardware issue, but I suppose I can try some HDD test or RAM test.

Also, I recently got the MSI motherboard and when I installed it I "might" have bent a few pins on my CPU, managed to straighten them out (enough) so I could place the CPU back in the socket but if the CPU was the issue I would imagine this happening more randomly and not just when videos are being watched.

Any help would be greatly appreciated :) 
a b $ Windows 7
December 6, 2012 1:53:28 PM

had the same problem when i updated the realtek sound drivers on my asus board

only when watching videos--thought it was the new version of vlc causing it but it wasnt

try uninstalling the realtek driver
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December 6, 2012 3:06:46 PM

First check for viruses and run Malwarebytes.
Are you running any kind of "cloud" service like Skydrive? If you are syncing files to one of these it can slow down internet speeds incredibly.
Run Memtest86 to test ram, Run chkdsk or HDTune for hdd.
If it's generally running all right then you probably haven't bent the pins too much.
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Related resources
December 6, 2012 3:52:41 PM

Uninstalled Realtek but it's still freezing.

The only programs I'm running online are Skype, Steam and Windows Live.
I'm going to run Memtest86 and HDTune.

Generally the computer runs well, no issues at all so the pins are probably not the problem. I noticed however that when it freezes the CPU usage spikes and if I look in the taskmanager on Performance, each core has its own "CPU usage history" window and they go in stairs I.E. core 1 is almost at 100%, core 2 might be at 80%, core 3 at 50% and core 4 at around 20%. Odd behavior, not sure if it helps.
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December 6, 2012 4:02:45 PM

This is the only thing HDTune is reporting as a warning, everything else is OK.
Quote:

(C7) Ultra DMA CRC Error Count

Number Date/Time Current Worst ThresholdData Temp

1 12/6/2012 18:55:04 200 199 0 338
2 12/6/2012 18:55:08 200 199 0 338
3 12/6/2012 18:55:52 200 199 0 338
4 12/6/2012 18:57:04 200 199 0 338

Description: Number of interface communication errors: 338
Status: There were communication errors. This may be caused by a damaged cable.

I have two internal HDDs so I suppose I could try and switch cables and see if that "fixes" it on this^ one.
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a b $ Windows 7
December 6, 2012 4:06:13 PM

streaming video (ie netflix) or watching local movies (ie dvd)?
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December 6, 2012 4:14:20 PM

Local movies, from my external HDD.
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December 6, 2012 5:03:56 PM

Also, before I run Memtest how long would it take?
10 passes at 8GB? Wondering if I should just set it to run over the night.

Edit, switched cables between the HDDs and it's still telling me about the CRC error on the "original" one, so the cables are probably not the issue for that warning.
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December 6, 2012 6:54:08 PM

Yes, run it overnight. CRC errors are not good. You may be having HDD problems.
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December 6, 2012 7:13:01 PM

I read that CRC errors have something to do with writing speed, doesn't seem that harmful o_O. Anyways, I'll keep googling tonight and see if I can find something else.

I have noticed that the CPU usage definitely spikes when it freezes but I have no idea why, and the only thing happening in the event viewer is that the Computer Browser service is starting and stopping all the time.
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December 6, 2012 8:14:22 PM

Update, I read somewhere that Netlimiter can cause freezing issues so I googled something like "windows short freeze netlimiter" and found a lot of results with people having issues with it. So I stopped the process but I still had the freezing issues and I gave up for the night, but I also uninstalled Netlimiter because I didn't need it anymore; so there's not point in keeping it, right?

Well, Netlimiter requires a reboot to fully uninstall so I rebooted and I haven't had a freezing issue yet. I've only watched 20 minutes of "Community" but it hasn't frozen yet, it froze like 5-10 times in 20 minutes before.

Hopefully Netlimiter was the issue, I'll keep watching stuff and see if anything happens :p 
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December 6, 2012 10:13:40 PM

That could be the culprit! Hope so, it's a lot better than failing hard drives....
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December 7, 2012 11:46:44 PM

....Don't think so. I am having the exact same issue and I don't have Netlimiter installed. It started happening when I upgraded to W8 (don't get me started on that dumb move). Related to the video freezing sporadically, I also get a message after boot that my catalyst control center is not compatible with w8. If I go into Device Manager, disable the Radeon driver and then enable it, the message goes away until the next reboot. Video still freezes sporadically though...
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December 8, 2012 2:09:02 PM

That makes it sound like a driver issue.

First download the current driver to your desktop from here:
http://support.amd.com/us/gpudownload/windows/Pages/rad...

Completely remove (control panel, uninstall a program) your amd video drivers (not chipset) and re-boot. It might come back in low-res mode but should find the latest drivers from AMD for your card. After that updates try your videos.

If it doesn't automatically load the right drivers install the one you downloaded earlier.
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December 10, 2012 7:01:51 AM

Hmm, well. Netlimiter was the culprit for me. PC hasn't frozen at all since I uninstalled it.
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December 10, 2012 12:45:07 PM

Glad you fixed it. Reading about netlimiter it could very well cause the problems you describe. I try to keep my computer as clean as I can and uninstall any programs I no longer use. Also use ccleaner to clear files and windirstat to determine what is taking up space on my drives. Good anti-virus and malwarebytes, too.
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!