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Unexplained system freezes, possibly internet/network related

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#1 Lobotomy Lobster

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 07:48 PM

I'm running a brand new system that is built self built from new parts and is just under a month old. A few days after setting it up, it started to freeze, seemingly randomly. The entire computer stops responding, all input from keyboards, mice etc stops, the sound loops and the screen freezes. It will not come back if I wait for 5-10 minutes, the only way to bring it back is to do a hard reset. There are no error messages when it does this and the computer makes no error messages or complaints when it next starts up. Over time these freezes have become more frequent, to the point that they are happening several times an hour sometimes.

I've noticed that the freezes only seem to happen when there is heavy net traffic; browsing the web for more than 10 minutes, viewing picture heavy pages, downloading, torrenting, hosting game servers and any combination of the above will kill it, usually within an hour though sometimes it has run for longer before freezing. Running a game server over a LAN with the internet disconnected also produced a freeze up and it has frozen once and only once right after windows reached the desktop. Lighter tasks like MSN Messenger, IRC and joining game servers on other computers do not produce freezes and I can happily do these for several hours. I use FireFox as my default browser but I have got exactly the same crashes using Internet Explorer 7. Anything that is not network related does not seem to cause a freeze and I can run system intensive games and programs indefinitely.

The Specs are:

Windows XP 32-bit Proffessional SP3
XFX Nforce 780i
Phoenix AwardBIOS v6.00
Intel Core2 Duo E8400 3ghz
4GB DDR2 RAM in two sticks of 2GB
XFX Nvidia Geforce GTX 280

ESET Nod32 anti-virus
ISS BlackIce firewall
and the computer is connected to a D-Link 2640B router

So far I have:

1) Scanned for viruses and malware with no results

2) Updated Windows to the latest version

3) Installed the latest graphics card and motherboard drivers (I have installed the motherboard drivers both with and without the hardware firewall)

4) Installed several different versions of FireFox

5) Updated my Java Runtime to the latest version

6) Updated my Flash plugin to the latest version as well as running with the plugin uninstalled

7) A registry fix for a similar problem caused by MSN Messenger

8) Flashed the BIOS to the latest version using an ISO from the manufacturer's site

9) Checked component temperatures in the BIOS (they are all running at normal temperatures and my computer is not overclocked)

10) Tested the RAM with Memtest 86+ (both sticks passed 5 tests with no errors)

11) The computer crashed once while I had Process Explorer active and there were no unusual processes running and no spikes in CPU or memory usuage

12) I left the computer on for over 12 hours to do nothing and it was still running fine when I returned to it

None of these measures have produced any noticeable results.

I've considered the possibility of it being some kind of software conflict but this is a new system that does not have many processes running and I have experimented with closing down non-essential processes but nothing seems to affect it.

Thank you in advance

Edited by Lobotomy Lobster, 05 November 2008 - 07:51 PM.

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#2 mme


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Posted 05 November 2008 - 08:03 PM

One thing you could do is this Unplug your router
and Disconnect from internet
Next unplug your Modem and disconnect from iternet
Leave it this way for about 5 minutes
then reconnect everything
do the following

Now scan with superantispyware download and update from here
superantispyware will remove tracking cookies


After you run the program
download cleanup
it will clean the crap out of your computer
giving you more disc space


next perform disc defragment
this will place your files back in order
they taken apart and scattered
making the computer look harder for them

from you Start Menu
click on Run
type this in
click ok
press defragment
this may take some time let it finish

and finally do a chkdsk repair
open My Computer on your Start Menu
right click on C:Drive
select Properties
click on Tools Tab
press Check Now
put check in empty boxes and press Start
You will need to restart computer for check disc to run
It may an hour or two to finish


let us know how it goes

Edited by mme, 05 November 2008 - 08:04 PM.

#3 usasma


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Posted 06 November 2008 - 10:04 AM

I'd suggest also trying another network card - you can pickup one up for under $15 (US) and it's handy to have a spare on hand anyway.
Don't forget to disable the onboard controllers.
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

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#4 Lobotomy Lobster

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Posted 07 November 2008 - 02:30 PM

So far it hasn't stopped the freezes. I followed all the steps mme posted to no avail.

Next step is to try a new network card. I'm going to beg, steal or borrow one this week and I'll post when I've tested it

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