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My computer "freaks out" for no reason


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#1 Deep_Thought

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Posted 18 May 2014 - 08:09 PM

My old computer was a piece of junk that finally had one problem too many and quit working almost completely. I'll spare you the details, but it prompted me to get the new computer I'm using now. Well, technically, it's refurbished, but it's so much better than my old one and it's been working great, except for one VERY annoying, very bad problem I've encountered over the last few days. For no apparent reason, it just "freaks out", and this has happened three times now with the third one being today. The screen will freeze and be filled with noise, mostly these greenish lines, and you can still more or less see what's on the screen through the noise, but nothing works, it's completely frozen. There's also a terrible static-y noise that comes from my headphones (I don't have speakers hooked up). After a little while of this, it shuts down.

I described this problem to the friend who helped me get this computer, and from some of what he read online, it seems the problem could be caused by video or sound drivers not being up to date (I updated the video driver with Device Manager, the sound driver didn't need an update) or a loose RAM stick, which I haven't checked because I'm not very knowledgeable about hardware. I did open it up for a quick check to see if anything appeared to be loose and didn't find anything, but again, this isn't my area of expertise.

I have noticed that my monitor, which I bought to replace my old one and was also previously used, has flickered a few times and an error message popped up saying something about it having a problem but was automatically fixed (I can't remember the exact wording) but I don't know if that means it's a problem with the monitor or the computer or both. I also have an old Linksys AE2500 network adapter that has had problems in the past where it stops working for no reason and has to be disabled and re-enabled and it's done that again a few times on this new computer. I tried to update its drivers too, but they're already up to date.

Anyway, I'll give you the technical stats on the computer now. I should also mention I've only had this for less than a week, it arrived on Tuesday. I got it because I was tired of dealing with computer problems and now it seems they're not over yet. Very frustrating. Here's the link where it was ordered from:

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=8913826

Computer info:

Computer: HP 8000 Elite Desktop PC
Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo CPU E8500 @ 3.16GHz 3.17 GHz
Installed memory (RAM): 4.00 GB (3.90 GB usable)
System type: 64-bit Operating System (Windows 7 Professional, Service Pack 1)
Hard Disk Drive: ST31500341AS ATA Device (1.5TB)
DVD-RW drive: HL-DT-ST DVDRAM GH24NSB0 ATA Device (LG M-Disc)
Monitor: ViewSonic flatscreen (slightly scratched, was previously used in a dentist's office, from what I was told)
Display adapter: Intel Q45/Q43 Express Chipset (updated driver for this yesterday)
Network adapter: Linksys AE2500 from Cisco Consumer Products
Keyboard: Belkin ergonomic keyboard (connected via USB port, not serial)
Mouse: iMicro USB mouse (HID-compliant, came with computer)

I can try to provide more information if necessary. Please help me out with this as soon as possible. The return policy on the website mentions "defective returns within 14 days of purchase permitted on this product", so I'd like to try solving this problem before then, so I'm not forced to just give up entirely and return this computer.



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#2 donetao

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Posted 18 May 2014 - 08:27 PM

Hello! I read your topic and was wondering if you have this problem if you use the old monitor?

Do you have a TV you could use for a monitor.

Here's how you can use your TV as a monitor!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WDQCXOSJGM0


Edited by donetao, 18 May 2014 - 08:41 PM.


#3 Deep_Thought

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 04:42 AM

donetao, my old monitor had a problem and does not work anymore, which is why I got another one. No, I don't have a TV to use as a monitor either.

 

Tonight I went and bought a Netgear N150 wireless USB adapter to replace the Linksys, since I've been meaning to do that anyway. I was also searching online for problems similar to mine and saw somebody else mentioned having a Linksys (different model) that might be acting up, so I wondered if there was a connection. Either way, I'm considering returning this computer even though I don't really want to since time is short and I'd rather not get stuck with yet another machine that needs fixing. Last night I went to backup the few files I have saved here with my new flashdrive and as the following screencap will show you, my computer "freaked out" yet again as I was getting ready to play a game of Spider Solitaire while I was waiting, although it didn't make any noise this time. But that was the fourth time now and I just can't put up with it anymore.

 

Here's a picture I took with my really old, crappy phone before I had to restart to give an example of what it looks like.

 

weird_screen_error_zpsc175d6b2.jpg

 

Any ideas?



#4 donetao

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 10:15 AM

Hello! I really don't have any ideas. Returning it is probably a good idea. Does it have a on board graphic card ?

The graphic card  could be the problem. You could have a bad cable or mad monitor. I think returning it is a good idea!

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/video-cards-faq#1TC=windows-7



#5 dc3

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 11:32 AM

Go to the Intel website and use their automated driver search to find the best driver for your integrated graphics and install it.

 

If this does not resolve the issue you should try using a monitor which is known to be good.  If the problem persists the integrated graphics chip could be failing.  If this is the case you should return the computer as it will require replacing the motherboard to fix this.


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#6 donetao

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 12:21 PM

 Great advise !!



#7 Deep_Thought

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 08:00 PM

dc3, I had to do a little searching on that site as it couldn't find it automatically, but then I got it downloaded and installed, thanks.

 

I found out I was unable to return my computer today due to certain complications, but I'll spare you all the details. Anyway, it looks like I'm stuck with this one, so I hope I can fix this problem. I have a combined screenshot here from when I ran the "problem reporting" program from the Action Center today. I think this might have been the errors it was reporting when my video device or monitor was having problems a few days ago. I haven't had any problems since Monday night, and I'm hoping it stays that way, but if anyone can tell me more about this, it would be appreciated.

 

th_video_hardware_errors_combined_zpsd5a

 

(This pic is large, so I made it a thumbnail, click to see a larger size.)

 

Thanks again.


Edited by Deep_Thought, 20 May 2014 - 08:00 PM.


#8 donetao

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 09:10 PM

I have a combined screenshot here from when I ran the "problem reporting" program from the Action Center today.

 

I'm very interested in how you found this in the action center!!



#9 Deep_Thought

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 09:17 PM

donetao, the Windows Action Center has messages on problems with the computer or programs, things like that. It gave me a message about it, I ran the program, and that was what it gave me.


Edited by Deep_Thought, 20 May 2014 - 09:19 PM.


#10 donetao

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 10:35 PM

donetao, the Windows Action Center has messages on problems with the computer or programs, things like that. It gave me a message about it, I ran the program, and that was what it gave me.

OK Thanks! That's what I wanted to know. Would you look in the reliability monitor and see what's going on there. I'm curious if any thing there shows your issue!

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/how-to-use-reliability-monitor

PS You can get access to it by typing Reliability Monitor in the search bar.

Thank you!


Edited by donetao, 20 May 2014 - 10:37 PM.


#11 donetao

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 11:02 PM

Hello You should see some thing like this!
Thank you!!

Capture48_zps47a71f12.jpg

#12 dc3

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 08:44 AM

The report is pointing at a hardware problem, this would translate to the integrated graphics being the problem.  In order to resolve this you will need to purchase a dedicated graphics card.  You can purchase one from Newegg starting at $18.00.


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#13 frankp316

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 10:23 AM

if the PC is still under warranty, it should be returned. If he tries to repair it himself, it will void the warranty. And if something goes wrong, he's screwed.



#14 dc3

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 11:32 AM

if the PC is still under warranty, it should be returned. If he tries to repair it himself, it will void the warranty. And if something goes wrong, he's screwed.

I would suggest that you read post #7. :thumbup2:

 

I found out I was unable to return my computer today due to certain complications, but I'll spare you all the details. Anyway, it looks like I'm stuck with this one.

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

 

 

 

 


#15 Deep_Thought

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Posted 24 May 2014 - 09:44 PM

Hey guys. Thanks for your help, but we were able to work out a deal to swap the computer after all, thankfully. I mailed it out a few days ago. I had tried reseating the RAM and even that didn't work, but it gave me an idea. I tried it on my old computer and reset the CMOS too, and it seems to have helped. Chkdsk ran the second time I booted it up (it failed to load Safe Mode after the first time) I think because I had it set to do that before it just went into an endless restart cycle and quit working earlier. Anyway, I managed to fix a few things and my old hunk of junk seems to have some life left in it and should hopefully work for me until the new one arrives, which I'm hoping will NOT have any problems like the last one!

 

Thanks again for your help. :)






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