For the last four days I've been seeing strange behavior with my laptop (Windows 8.1) that I cannot resolve. I thought about posting this in the malware forum, but I'm leaning towards concluding that it's not a malware issue so I thought I'd post here.
Since last Saturday, the machine freezes completely at seemingly random times with no warning. The computer becomes totally unresponsive: if I had any music playing the sound stutters, closing the lid doesn't put it to sleep, and it sounds like the fan stops working after a few seconds. There's nothing I can do other than reboot with the power button. This sometimes happens five minutes after booting, and sometimes after several hours of normal use. I estimate it's happened something like 20 times in the last four days, and with increasing frequency. On rare occasions, the screen actually goes blank, instead of just freezing whatever was on the display - this has happened three or so times.
I've tried disabling various startup processes, running malware scans, updating my video driver, running System File Checker (found a couple things it couldn't fix - I could try to attach the log file if needed) and then using System Restore to go back to two different restore points. (Both points were from before the problem started happening.) Nothing has permanently solved it.
For a while it looked like the hangs don't occur in Safe Mode, but a half-hour ago it happened there too. That was actually a BSOD - Windows gave a "whea uncorrectable error" and rebooted itself, but immediately upon reboot it BSOD'd again, this time giving a "machine check exception". Then it rebooted again (successfully). I left it idling with just a browser open, but a few minutes ago it crashed to black screen again. Subsequent boots (to run Sysnative and PERFMON) resulted in the same unresponsive freezing as before.
Is there anything I could do here? I'm hoping it's not a hardware issue, but I'm not sure at this point. As for the potential of malware, Avast and Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware both did not find anything before I tried the System Restores. After the second restore I noticed some new weird behavior (like Firewall being deactivated and throwing an error when I tried to manually turn it on, a Windows build number watermark suddenly appearing in the corner of the desktop, and MBAM being unable to update or scan until I reinstalled it), but another set of scans and an Rkill scan did not find anything either. So I'm starting to think that those things are more due to System Restore messing with something, and not caused by malware or related to the freezing problem.
Please let me know if there are any diagnostics I could (try to) run or any other details to provide. Thank you in advance!
EDIT: attached partial Sysnative output. The app seems to hang on "waiting for tasks to complete" for over 10 minutes, and then the computer froze again. As instructed I just zipped up and posted what I had. Also, PERFMON does not run either - in normal mode it says an administrator refused it (I ran command prompt as admin, and there's only one user account), and in safe mode it says the file path cannot be found.
Seems like this might be related to system restore messing something up, too. (Seemingly no admin rights, the aforementioned Windows version watermark and lack of access to firewall, and I just noticed that MS Office also says it can't verify my license anymore.) Perhaps I should try restoring forward to a more recent point, to try to resolve these other issues? I apologize for posing two different problems in one thread.
Edited by yodaonthestreet, 17 May 2016 - 11:39 PM.