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Weird Lockup Issue

Last response: in Windows XP
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January 15, 2003 1:29:36 PM

I've been fighting this lockup issue I've been having for the last few days and I'm going to try and get some thoughts from you guys cause I'm out of ideas.

The machine runs stable and fine with apps like AIM, IE and it can stay up for extended periods of time no problem. The problem comes when I try and play games. While the machine lockup is consistent, it happens at different times. For instance, I've had it lock up in Unreal on the initial load screen, as well as when I was just running through a hallway in the game. Same deal with Age of Mythology.

I thought it might be a video card issue, however I've now tried the Radeon 7200, Radeon 7500 and an Asus GeForce 3 card. No luck with any of them. I tried installing Windows 2000, thinking it was just some driver problem between xp and my hardware. I've tried disabling agp 8x, disabling sound, etc etc, all to no avail.

Machine specs:
Asus A7N8X w/ athlon 2100+
ATI Radeon 7500 video card
512 mb of ram
400 watt power supply

Thanks

More about : weird lockup issue

January 15, 2003 5:23:12 PM

hmmm does it just crash to desktop? or does it show some kind of warning.

It MIGHT be your psu but i doubt it, could you tell us the brand and how old it is? i have a 350w one and cant even get my system to boot with a radeon 9700 pro card. Though it runs fine on a geforce2.
January 15, 2003 6:28:44 PM

Just a thought. Did u install the latest directX? Both UT2003 and Age of Mithology are new and I think they need 8.1b to run ok.
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January 15, 2003 9:07:07 PM

no its not booting to desktop, its a solid freeze, cant move the mouse, cant get sound etc. I've got all the latest drivers and directx 8.1.

the power supply is a skyhawk (sh-400a8s)
January 15, 2003 10:27:42 PM

i replaced the power supply with an older 300w unit i had lying around. im still getting lock ups however it is taking a lot longer. I was able to play age of mythology for ~30 minutes whereas before i could only get 5 max
January 16, 2003 1:26:10 AM

30 minutes with a 300watts, and 5 minutes with a 400 watts. Hmm, sounds fishy.
Are you over clocking or maybe not enough volts to your cpu. What are your cpu temps, do you have a couple fans in the case? What about your memory setting, or AGP, and such, try lowering those.
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<A HREF="http://forums.btvillarin.com/" target="_new">When you don’t have a snickers bar for the wait.</A><P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by jiffy on 01/15/03 10:27 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
January 16, 2003 3:04:03 AM

Sounds like an overheating problem, but that wouldn't explain the difference in uptime with different PSUs. When machines of mine in the past have frozen it's always been heat-related. Check your fans!

-- Ah sh*t! sys64738 --
January 16, 2003 3:31:24 AM

Well I guess it ended up being a freak occurence because its not lasting that long anymore. My BIOS hardware monitor is showing:

mb temp - 31 degrees celsius (87 F)
cpu temp - 57 degrees celsius (132 F)

I've got a fan left that I can put in it I just cant find a good spot to put it :)  Any ideas?
January 16, 2003 3:41:46 AM

There should be an exhaust fan blowing out behind the CPU. That's the most important one. The power supply has it's own fan to take care of it's heat. Next step would be to install a fan above the power supply on the rear of the case if there is space there, but if it's a mid-sized tower or smaller then I doubt there is room. If that's the case, install it as an intake fan in the front of the case at the bottom, blowing inward. Be sure to route cables (especially ribbon cables) in a way to allow good air flow through the case. Round cables help as well. From research, I've decided the new Cooler Master Clear round cables are the best.

With all that said, it doesn't sound like you're overheating but it never hurts to run cooler if you can stand the added noise. :) 

-- Ah sh*t! sys64738 --
January 16, 2003 11:46:33 AM

57 C sounds pretty warm to me, I’d be crapping my paints if my CPU got that hot. When you start playing games your cpu may well be going over 60 C, I’d try to get it under 50 C, even if it took a monster heat sink and fan.

I run close to 40 C and had problems if I got to 50 C. Some say if you’re not having problems don’t worry about it, but your freezing. What is the temp inside the case? You should have at least two fans in the case the one in front and back. Also, you computer should be out in the open and not closed in a desk. Your room temp will influence you PC temps as well. I have a water cooler, but still need to have the air conditioner on in the summer time. If you have a two foot fan you can try taking a side of the case and blow the fan directly in and that should help lower your temp.

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<A HREF="http://forums.btvillarin.com/" target="_new">When you don’t have a snickers bar for the wait.</A>
January 17, 2003 2:58:30 PM

Blowing a fan straight into it I was able to play for quite a bit longer. When I finially did crash my cpu had crept up to nearly 57 C even with the fan blowing on high at it. I need a serious cooling solution I guess, can anyone point me to something that is cost effective? Would underclocking be a valid solution?
January 17, 2003 5:31:34 PM

I don’t know if under clocking will help you much. You can try lowering your CPU operating speed and the Volts to it. But you should be familiar with these setting, and clearing the CMOS if you have to.
For cooling<A HREF="http://forumz.tomshardware.com//modules.php?name=Forums..." target="_new"> look here </A>


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<A HREF="http://forums.btvillarin.com/" target="_new">When you don’t have a snickers bar for the wait.</A>
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