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Computer Freezing - Help


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#1 bobdor

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Posted 10 December 2006 - 09:00 PM

I have a computer that is freezing, I mean froze. There is no mouse, sometimes the mouse is visible but will not move, sometimes the mouse disappears altogether, there is no keyboard, Not even 'ctrl, alt, delete' will work. Nothing will work. The picture on the monitor remains as it was at the time of freezing. Only thing that will work is to reboot.

Will do this sometimes once in 3 days, sometimes 3 times a day. Sometimes it will reboot by pushing the big start button (hold for 5 seconds to shut down), then wait a minute and start again. Sometimes it will just blink on the start light and will not start at all (I am told this usually indicates stand-by). Then most times it will reboot no problem.

Ok, I have done many things and I think your help is my last resource. I have ran Norton Anti-virus and found no virus's. I have ran Trend anti-virus and found 2 virus' and were removed. I have ran http://safety.live.com/site/en-us/default.htm and found no virus'. I ran and am running AVG anti-spy software and found and removed 2 spyware. I ran Lavasoft and removed 2 Ad-ware. I uninstalled Norton Anti-virus software and installed Avast Anti-virus and am running it now and found no virus'.

I believe I am clean, however, I have a question. What if Norton did find some virus' over the years and removed infected files. How does one rebuild the files missing if they are system files? Win 98 was easy to do this when the install disk was copied to .cab files. I have Windows XP Home. Have no .cab files and like most computers you buy now, they come pre-loaded so you do not get the install disk. At least not at Future Shop in Canada.

This not a recent problem. I have worked on this nearly a year and have taken it in to computer techs and they can't find any hardware problem. I get it back and after a few days. there it goes again. grrrrrrrrr

Here are some specs:
Windows XP Home edition
Service Pack 2
Hewlett Packard
Pavilion
AMD Athlon XP 3200+ 2.19 GHz 448 MB of Ram

I have looked at System Restore but the earliest date does not go far enough back. I was having the problems way before then.

Would anyone have any suggestions?

Bob

Edited by bobdor, 10 December 2006 - 09:01 PM.


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#2 usasma

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Posted 10 December 2006 - 09:51 PM

Sure, we've got lots of advice! :thumbsup:

Since it looks like you're "clean", I'd start by checking your Device Manager (a long shot) and your Event Viewer (much more likely). Look for red x's or yellow !'s in the Device Manager - look for errors in the Event Viewer.

Go to Start...Run...and type in either "devmgmt.msc" or "eventvwr.msc" (without the quotes) and press Enter.

In case it goes this far, do you have a restore CD/DVD for your system? If not, I'd suggest ordering one from HP. They're cheap (about $15 for the last one I ordered for a Compaq - including shipping).
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.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#3 bobdor

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Posted 10 December 2006 - 10:17 PM

I just checked Device Manager and no red X's, no yellow. I did check event viewer and hardly any red errors, just the odd one here and there.

No I do not have restore CD/DVD as computer was loaded when I bought it and only came with the drivers disk. Not applicable here. Didn't know we could order one from HP. Could be the answer. ??

If it helps with understanding, it does not seem to freeze on any program, or when working on it, it also freezes on it's own and when I come back to it, 'reboot'.

#4 Lazarus Long

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Posted 10 December 2006 - 11:21 PM

In Event Viewer, look for an 'application hang' under the 'Source' column. That will tell you if the freeze is coming from an application, and which. Of course, the timestamp is the critical thing here.

The thing that strikes me here is the blinking light. If this is the power button light, it can be standby if your system was deliberately set to do so, but it can also be an indicator of a voltage error, either from the MB power supply, or even a peripheral or drive, especially on a reboot.

First, write down what program you were using when the system froze, and how long it took from power on to freeze. I have seen intermittent thermal failures do some strange things.
The nice thing about Event Viewer is that it will tell you of failures caused by programs running in the background that you didn't know were there.

So it works for a few days after a trip to the shop, then chokes again. What USB devices do you have plugged in?

~Lazarus

#5 bobdor

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Posted 11 December 2006 - 12:08 AM

I have about 20 'Application Hang's over the past 9 months of recording. Way less than the number of times I have had to reboot, and none in comparison to the times this has happened.

However, there are lots of 'Warnings', to numerous to count and looks like more than the times I have had to reboot. Some of these could correspond to the times.

2 types of 'Warning's in source = 'Userenv' under System user
& 'Mainstaller' under Owner user

What are these?

For the last couple of weeks I have no USB devices plugged in and usually only a Canon Multipass MP730 printer, 4 in 1.

Yes, I had it in and they said they ran it for 3 days and no hickups. I brought it back to work so I could work on it and in 5 days, froze 6 times. I aslo have it pugged into high speed internet all the time. It has froze with explorer open to web page, and nothing open at all, just sitting with desktop, has froze with screen saver on, and with screen saver turned off. grrrrrrrrr

#6 usasma

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Posted 11 December 2006 - 08:10 AM

IMO there isn't any such thing as a random event with a PC - just events that we haven't discovered yet.

Try unplugging the Canon and see what happens (and any other USB/Firewire devices). Also, please give us some of the details on the "userenv" and "Mainstaller" errors. I've got a lot of userenv errors - but none of the Mainstaller. And a google doesn't show anything for Mainstaller - that's suspicious. I do have warnings for MsiInstaller tho'.

Basically, we're trying to figure out if this is a hardware or a software error. I believe that the key lies in the usage pattern of the PC - since the PC shop didn't use the PC the same way that you did. Generally this will point to a software error (although there are hardware problems that can manifest themselves this way).

The restore CD may be an option for you - and it has the added benefit of letting you start out with a fresh copy of the OS with the drivers that were supplied with the PC. But it gives the problem of installing all of your apps over again and the backing up and recovering your data. Also, it will tell you if it was an OS error if the freezing goes away.
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.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#7 bobdor

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Posted 12 January 2007 - 01:10 AM

Ok, just to let you know how I cme out of this. I took this computer in to another shop and they found out that the Modem was faulty. Pulled the modem and 'voila', it booted right up. We installed a new modem card and haven't had a problem.

Thanks for your time and info to help me out with my question. I appreciate your help here on this 'Bleeping Computer' stuff. You have helped me out in the past and am sure I will need help again.

Thanks a lot
Bobdor




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