During the Windows boot process, the computer may stop responding (hang) and the following error message may appear:
*** Hardware Malfunction
Call your hardware vendor for support
*** The system has halted ***
Windows can display only basic error messages regarding hardware malfunctions and this can make troubleshooting equipment issues difficult. Most equipment problems are centered around the motherboard, RAM on a motherboard or adapter card, or the cache memory on a motherboard or adapter card. To troubleshoot basic hardware problems, do one (or more) of the following:
Remove any extra memory modules you may have in the computer leaving only the least amount required for the computer to start and run Windows. In many cases, this will be either 16 MB or 32 MB, depending on your computer. Restart the computer to see if the error messages you received early still persist.
If the error does not reappear, the issue is isolated to one or more of the RAM modules removed from the computer. Continue to remove and replace the minimum amount of RAM required with the memory modules you removed earlier. If the error returns, you have isolated the individual memory module responsible for the problem. This process may require you to restart your computer several times to pinpoint the specific memory module that is not working correctly
Replace the defective RAM module.
Remove any adapter cards that are not required to start the computer and run Windows.
In many cases, you can start your computer with only the drive subsystem controller and video adapter card. If the error message does not appear, one of the adapter cards that you removed is the source of the problem. Reinstall each adapter separately, restarting after each card is installed, to see if the error returns. If the error does not return after reinserting all the adapter cards, it is possible that one of the adapter cards needed to be reseated. After you computer is running again, monitor the computer for an agreed upon period of time to make sure that the error does not return.
If resetting the adapters did not solve the issue, you may be required to replace the adapter that is causing the error.
Verify that you have installed the latest revisions for your computer's BIOS or firmware configuration software. Go into the bios and set load Fail safe defaults or Bios defaults, disable any antivirus protection inside the bios, and set Plug and Play OS to NO
The type of hardware your computer uses and the motherboard design determines what part of your computer's firmware can actually be updated. Various manufacturers will also provide different diagnostic tools for troubleshooting this issue.
Update the BIOS, firmware, and/or EISA configuration.
NOTE: If all three options fail to isolate or resolve the issue, the problem can be narrowed down to the motherboard, drive subsystem controller, hard drive, or the video adapter. Advanced RAID or other caching controllers can have RAM and/or processor chips that could also be the problem. If the simplest configuration contains one of these advanced adapters, additional troubleshooting or diagnostic software may be required (possibly using duplicate hardware) to resolve the problem.