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Win XP freezes/becomes unresponsive & computer crashes

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#1 lammas


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Posted 14 April 2010 - 10:39 AM

Hello, this is a somewhat long post so bare with me :flowers:

Anyway, I'll try to describe the problem as well as possible.

A few weeks ago I decided to reinstall Windows XP. Reason was that explorer.exe kept crashing when doing file operations (copy/paste, delete, open properties) and I couldn't find a way to fix the problem. The XP install was a couple of years old too so it was starting to get a little sluggish. My XP Home install CD is very old so I decided to make a new install CD where I slipstreamed Service Pack 3 using these instructions: http://www.howtohaven.com/system/slipstrea...ce-pack-3.shtml. Main reason why I decided to slipstream it, was that the original install couldn't fully detect my 500gb hard drive and I wanted to keep the one partition of the HD where I had stored most of my media files. I have another 160gb HD I use for backups but it's not big enough for all the media files.

So, I reinstalled Win XP using the slipstreamed CD with SP3. I deleted all partitions except the one where my media files are and installed Win XP on the empty space. Everything seemed to go fine. On the new XP I installed Zonealarm Free firewall, Panda Cloud Antivirus, Windows Defender and Sandboxie as security programs. I was using these also before the XP reinstall. After I had everything set, I ran Comodo System Cleaner to clean the registry and unnecessary files from my comp. After a couple of days problems started appearing. Most commonly some program first goes nuts: graphic glitches, buttons disappearing, etc. Then I start to get windows error boxes, that have no text in them. Graphic glithes spread to the desktop: window borders still remain after moving/closing windows, start menu loses text, task bar icons disappear. The problems just progresses the longer I wait. Sometimes I get windows error boxes that have text in them, most common is "Failed to initialize application (0xc000012d)", that comes for example when I try to get to task manager using ctrl+alt+del. Other ones include "Try saving the file elsewhere", this may come even if I'm not doing anything, and "Error getting clipboard data" which I got when I tried to take a print screen and paste it to Paint. Also have got "Unknown software exception (0xc00000fd)". This all leads to a explorer.exe crash and total system freeze, where only solution is to flick the power switch. At the moment, I try to be quick enough to restart XP before it becomes unresponsive :trumpet:

My system seems to exceptionally volatile to this problem when I'm playing games, watching videos online/offline or running antivirus/malware scans, but it can really happen anytime. Haven't found a specific pattern to it. During antivirus/malware scans the system sometimes crashes right away. Sometimes after a crash and reboot, Windows gives a notice that "System has recovered from a serious error". I've filed the error report a few times, Microsoft webpage then suggests that the error was caused by an antivirus or firewall program, or that it was caused by a hardware driver.

I've uninstalled Zonealarm and I'm using Windows firewall atm, also uninstalled Panda Cloud Antivirus and installed avast! Antivirus instead. I've reinstalled my display and audio drivers. None of these have helped.

I've done several scans with more or less success. I've listed them with results below:
Windows Defender, full scan = No detection
Panda Cloud Antivirus, full scan = No detection
Trend Micro HouseCall, full scan = No detection
avast! Antivirus, quick scan = No detection
avast! Antivirus, full scan = System crash
avast! Antivirus, boot-time scan = No detection
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware = System crash
ESET Online Scanner = System crash
GMER = Unsure, program seemed to have stopped scanning. Got no notification that it was complete. After closing the program, system freeze/crash

The system crashes during scans trouble me so I decided to try something different. I installed Ubuntu 9.10 using Wubi, then tried running ESET Online Scanner from Wine. After around 3:30 minutes of scanning, Ubuntu started to become unresponsive and froze totally. Had to reset from the power switch.

During the making of this post, something new happened, luckily I had the post contents saved to notepad. I had Windows Messenger on and was listening to music with foobar2000. lsass.exe and explorer.exe suddenly took up 100% of processor usage, I killed explorer.exe from task manager to see what would happen. Then msmsgs.exe and lsass.exe took up 100% of processor usage. Then tried to restart comp from task manager, task manager stopped responding and I had to reset once again.

Needless to say, I'm getting pretty fed up with this situation. I have to reset/restart my comp on a daily basis + the crashes. I've been thinking that there's a few possible reasons for this:
- Something went wrong with the reinstall of Win XP
- I broke the OS after reinstall with Comodo System Cleaner
- I have some quite nasty malware on my comp (can't figure out how one would've gotten in though)
- There's something wrong with my hardware drivers or the softwares I'm using (unlikely since they're pretty much the same as before reinstall)

I won't be posting a HijackThis log yet, since whoever responds to this, will probably want a fresh log.

Here are my computer specs:

Windows XP Home Edition, Service pack 3
ASUS P5QL PRO motherboard
Intel Core 2 Duo E6750
ATI Radeon HD 4670 1gb
4 x Transcend Jetram dual channel DDR2 800MHz 1gb
Seagate Barracuda 500gb (SATA)
Samsung Spinpoint 160gb (IDE)

I'm not completely opposed to reinstalling XP again, if that's the most convenient solution. I'm just worried that it won't help if there's something wrong with the slipstreamed CD or if I have some resilient malware lurking here.

On a side note, I moved to a new apartment in december and apparently my comp took some damage in the process. Long story short, I replaced the motherboard and graphics card and got this baby running again in january. Probably not relevant information but decided to tell it anyway :thumbsup:

Waiting for a reply and thanks in advance.

EDIT: Moved from XP to Am I Infected, more appropriate forum ~ Hamluis.

Edited by hamluis, 14 April 2010 - 11:11 AM.

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#2 lammas

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Posted 23 April 2010 - 08:44 AM

I don't know what's the average response time on this forum but it's been 9 days and I'm starting to feel like my post has faded in the background, so I decided to do this little bump.

Is here someone who can help me or is this a hopeless case?

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