As I said previously, the symptoms you describe could be due to hardware or overheating problems caused by a failed processor fan, bad memory (RAM), failing or underpowered power supply, CPU overheating, motherboard, video card, faulty drivers, CMOS battery going bad, BIOS and firmware problems, dirty hardware components, etc. If the computer is overheating, it usually begins to shutdown/restart on a more regular basis.
Did you perform one of the ARK scans I recommended? If not, please do so.
If you are not finding any malware then its sounds like one of the latter problems.
Some video cards can generate such intense heat while playing games with high quality graphics that they require a separate cooling system. If the fan fails, the video processor will not be far behind and your system may start crashing. If that is the case see "Illustrated How to Replace an AGP Video Card
" and "10 things to know before buying a video card
Look for problem entries (colored coded symbols
) in Device Manager
as described here
. Check for any updates that may be available for your drivers
. Driver issues are a known source
of conflicts that can cause stop errors and BSODs. If you need to update a driver, a convenient place to start is at DriverGuide.com
. If you're not sure how to update a driver, please read How to update a Windows hardware driver
and How to manage devices in Windows XP
.Other Troubleshooting Tools:
Download and run Motherboard Monitor 5
. If Motherboard Monitor's seems to be reporting high temperatures for your CPU check to see what your max CPU temp is from here
You can also use NextSensor
to check temperature and voltage or SpeedFan
to monitor voltages, fan speed, SMART status, and temperatures. SpeedFan can help you investigate the reasons for an unpredictable reboot or for a failing hard disk as well as whether you are likely to experience temperature related issues.
There are suggestions for troubleshooting power supply, video card, CPU, RAM, MB and hard drive here
You can use BurnInTest
to stress test the CPU, hard drives, RAM, CD-ROMs, CD burners, DVDs, sound cards, graphics, network connection, printers, video playback. This utility works on all Windows versions to include Vista (32-bit & 64-bit)
Another option is to use Microsoft's Online Crash Analysis
. The Windows Memory Diagnostic tests the RAM for errors with a comprehensive set of diagnostic memory tests or you can test your RAM with either of the following tools:
and follow the instructions to Diagnose with Memtest86+
.Once a bootable disk is made, just leave it in the drive and reboot your computer. However, before rebooting, you need to enter the BIOS setup and make sure that the Boot Order is set so that your first boot device is either the floppy drive or the CD-ROM drive, depending on which type of disk you made. If necessary, change the boot order, save your changes, and exit Setup. When the machine restarts it should boot from your Memtest disk, and the program will start automatically.
.Download ISO images for creating a bootable Memtest86 CD-ROM or an installable from Windows/DOS to create a bootable floppy disk or usb flash drive. Read the directions under Technical Info and allow Memtest86 to run through the entire battery of tests for at least 4 full passes (or let it run overnight). Any errors indicate that there is likely a problem with your physical memory (RAM).