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Computer randomly restarts


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#1 geno93n0

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Posted 07 February 2009 - 08:03 AM

Hello all, this is my first post at BleepingComputer.

My computer of 5+ years has recently been randomly restarting, but without BSOD. The various error messages sent to Microsoft tell me that I have a hardware issue, particularly with the drivers. Sometimes the crashes occur around 5 minutes after booting, other times I can go for hours without a crash, and my routine is pretty much the same every time I open the comp.

Before this, I was already aware that my old video card (GeForce2 MX) had a broken fan. Assuming that was the problem, I got a replacement card, a GeForce 5500. I've tried system restorations, malware scans with ComboFix, disk checks, virus scans, uninstalling and reinstalling vidcard, all to no avail.

My system restore points have newly been purged, so I only have a restore point for until yesterday, 5 days into this crash-fest. My event logs were also auto-purged because they were "corrupt". I also only have minidumps for today's 10 crashes. I also have a HiJackThis log, if it can help.

Stats (please pardon my system, I'm aware it's old)
===============================================
Windows XP Service Pack 3
Pentium 4 1.7 GHz
256 MB RAM
GeForce 5500FX (used to be GeForce2 MX a few days ago) with Forceware 175.19 driver
40 GB RAM (2 partitions)
CPU regularly at 48
===============================================

Other details
===============================================
  • Black-screen restart
  • Various "serious error" messages upon boot (8E,50,C2)
  • Crashes started occurring after reboot when system froze up while converting MP3 files to AAC format
  • System-restore to before crashes started occurring didn't help
  • Crashes don't seem to occur when computer is idle (i.e. nobody using it)
  • ChkDisk reports both partitions are clean
  • Downgrading vidcard driver doesn't fix it
  • The one BSOD I got was a STOP 0x50 in win32k.sys, about a PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA.
===============================================

If anyone could lend me some help regarding this, I'd be very grateful. Hoping for a solution :thumbsup:

Edited by geno93n0, 07 February 2009 - 08:17 AM.


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#2 hamluis

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Posted 07 February 2009 - 09:19 AM

Hi :thumbsup:.

My first suggestion: Disable Auto Reboot On System Crash - http://www.theeldergeek.com/auto_reboot_on_system_crash.htm

Doing this will help generate reportable data on system STOP errors.

I also suggest running chkdsk /r on the boot drive. Start/Run...type chkdsk /r (with space between k and /) and hit Enter. Type Y in response to onscreen query and hit Enter. Reboot the system and let the command run, system should reboot when command tool has finished.

I would further suggest that you run sfc /scannow in an effort to replace any missing or damaged system files.

LEARN how to use SFC.EXE (system file checker) in this article! - http://www.updatexp.com/scannow-sfc.html

Malware can also cause some of these issues. Please try a couple of these free online scanners to see if anything has slipped by your protection:
(Be advised that some of these scanners will pickup things in "quarantine" from other anti-virus programs - so review the results carefully)

http://www.pandasecurity.com/homeusers/solutions/activescan/
http://us.mcafee.com/root/mfs/default.asp
http://housecall.trendmicro.com
http://www.bitdefender.com/scan8/ie.html
http://support.f-secure.com/enu/home/ols.shtml
http://onlinescan.avast.com/
http://ca.com/us/securityadvisor/virusinfo/scan.aspx
http://www.eset.com/onlinescan/

http://www.kaspersky.com/virusscanner Scan Only - no removal


If you find that you're infected (or the scan doesn't complete or closes unexpectedly), post in the Am I Infected forum located here: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/f/103/am-i-infected-what-do-i-do/

Louis

#3 geno93n0

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Posted 07 February 2009 - 11:14 AM

Hi :thumbsup:.

My first suggestion: Disable Auto Reboot On System Crash - http://www.theeldergeek.com/auto_reboot_on_system_crash.htm

Doing this will help generate reportable data on system STOP errors.

After disabling Auto Reboot, it still reboots but this time it doesn't show an error message upon logon. Also, I've experienced a greater occurrence of the computer freezing up by itself after I disabled that function, something that happened only rarely since the crashes started (and how the crashes started in the first place).

Tried the online scans, but the computer doesn't last long enough for any of them to finish. I get a reboot on an average of around every 10mins or so that the computer is on.

About malware, I tried to clean my system with ComboFix a few days ago, but the problem persisted.

SFC has detected some files that I need the CD for, but it's currently missing. Will post back when I make progress.

UPDATE: On what may be an unrelated issue, Firefox also tends to crash on me now when it didn't use to before.

Edited by geno93n0, 07 February 2009 - 12:01 PM.


#4 geno93n0

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Posted 09 February 2009 - 10:37 AM

UPDATE: Tried sfc /scannow, replaced the system files, still the issue. I don't know how much longer I'm going to last but I've got several different bluescreens now: DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL, BAD_POOL_CALLER, IRQ_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL

Chkdsk also reports that both hard disks are clean.

Also, on recent boots, sometimes I don't even get to Windows: I get stuck at the pre-Windows loading screens, which tend to stop moving and freeze up.

I've yet to open up the case and try a spring cleaning, and I've also yet to reformat the disks. Will any of these help?

Any suggestions?

Edited by geno93n0, 09 February 2009 - 10:39 AM.


#5 hamluis

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Posted 09 February 2009 - 11:55 AM

Attempting to remove dust/dirt should have been an initial step, since heat is the major enemy of electronics.

Louis

#6 geno93n0

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Posted 09 February 2009 - 10:31 PM

Well sor-reee, I just wanted to completely verify that the problem wasn't with my software.

#7 skullpeddler

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Posted 09 February 2009 - 10:51 PM

What other hardware have you tested? Memory can produce some pretty funny errors sometimes. Maybe try a memtest?

EDIT:

Also what hamluis said. Spring clean would be a good idea. Also being one of the quickest and easiest solutions.

Edited by skullpeddler, 09 February 2009 - 10:52 PM.


#8 dc3

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 01:59 AM

What is the wattage of your PSU?

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#9 geno93n0

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 10:18 AM

Problem seems to be solved now. Earlier today, a Windows Update for Microsoft Office removed my MSO Document Image Writer, something I also had a problem with in the past, and I haven't gotten any blue screens/freezes/restarts since then.

Then again, I may be speaking too soon. Will hit back if anything happens. But I'll do a hardware clean anyway :thumbsup:

Thanks for the help.

#10 dc3

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 10:34 AM

Good luck, we will be here if you still need assistance.

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#11 geno93n0

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 10:42 AM

Why thank you, because I was indeed speaking too soon. 5 minutes after this post I get a new bluescreen: apparently win32k.sys was at fault, an attempt was made to write to read-only memory.

What can be made out of that?

#12 dc3

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 11:00 AM

There's a good chance that the use of Combofix has caused some problems with system files, if sfc.exe (scannow) didn't repair the files then you will need the CD to do a repair installation. Do you know of anyone that has a installation disk that is the same version of yours? If you have XP Home you need a Home disk, if it is Pro you will the the Pro disk.

What is the wattage of your PSU?

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#13 geno93n0

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Posted 16 February 2009 - 10:35 AM

Hello again, sorry for not being able to reply these past few days.

Reformatted disks and cleaned out the case. Turns out PSU was clogged up with dust.

It was doing fine for the past 3 days, until I decided to try converting MP3 files to AAC again, which caused another bluescreen. I'm convinced it's that, so I won't convert any more files on this machine. Amen to that.

This topic can be closed now, thank you all.




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