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My Computer Keeps Crashing... Reasons?


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#16
ewufan

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Yes, that is my motherboard.

I am looking at some memory from Fry's electronics. I am looking to get 1gb of DDR2 RAM. What would be the difference between getting 1, 1gb stick of memory or 2 512mb sticks of memory?

If there isn't a noticeable difference, I would like to get 1gb now and be able to upgrade later if need-be. Seems like I could save a few bucks by getting just 1, 1gb stick. What are your thoughts?
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#17
computerwiz12890

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What would be the difference between getting 1, 1gb stick of memory or 2 512mb sticks of memory?

There will be a slight speed increase by using 2 sticks of 512 than 1, 1GB. The reason being is that the computer can write to two sticks at once. It probably won't be a noticeable speed difference.

In addition to a slight speed increase, you'd also have 2 sticks of RAM, so that if 1 goes bad, the other can hold you until you get a replacement. However RAM tends to last a few years, and by then you'll probably have bought a new computer (assuming this one is already 3+ years old.)

And yes, 1 GB stick is cheaper than 2 512 sticks. My recommendation is to go with the 1 GB stick. But it's ultimately your choice. :whistling:
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#18
ewufan

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I would like to thank you so much for helping me through this mess. I left a little something for you in your PayPal account for your trouble. Thanks again.
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#19
computerwiz12890

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You're quite welcome. :blink: And thank you for the donation. :whistling:

Let me know if you need anything else. :help:
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#20
ewufan

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Ok, I'm back. I just got my new RAM installed and I tried to burn a DVD and it crashed again :blink: . Dang this is frusterating :whistling: So is my motherboard bad or what? I had my computer had been running for a while when I tried to burn the DVD, but I am fairly sure it didn't overheat like we might have thought. What is my next step? Thanks

Edited by ewufan, 18 January 2007 - 08:28 PM.

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#21
computerwiz12890

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Crud, I thought we had it. :whistling:

When it crashes, does it just restart with no warning, or is a Blue Screen displayed? If so, what does that screen say? If a blue screen is not displayed, do this:

Right click MY COMPUTER, choose PROPERTIES, choose ADVANCED, choose the SETTINGS button in the Startup And RECOVERY section, and uncheck AUTOMATICALLY RESTART

Now reboot. This should result in the BSOD error, either right away or later on when it normally would restart.

When you see it, report the STOP ERROR and any parameters.
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#22
ewufan

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When my computer dies on me, it shuts itself down like I was holding in the power button. The weird part is when it reboots it starts up like normal. No blue screen, no error results. Nothing.

When I turned off the AUTOMATIC RESTART box in My Computer->Properties and restarted my computer. I did not get anything different than normal. It didn't receive an error and my computer ran normally.
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#23
computerwiz12890

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Interesting. Let's see if we can find any clues in Event Viewer.

Click on Start, Run, type eventvwr in the text box and then press Enter. Click on Application and see if there are any exlamation marks or red X's at the time when your computer had an error or froze. If there is an exlamation mark or X next to an item, double-click on that entry and copy the description of the error. Do the same thing for the System section. Post the description along with the source so I know what the description belongs to.
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#24
ewufan

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I will run Event Viewer in a second. But my computer shut down again, but I received an error this time. I got a screen shot of the error here:

Posted Image

Posted Image
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#25
ewufan

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I just ran Event Viewer...

The application errors I received repeatedly were FireFox related. I have re-installed it, hopefully it fixes that problem... I am sure it isn't effecting my main problem. This is a screenshot of the application error:

Posted Image


This is the screenshot of the system errors I received:

Posted Image
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#26
ewufan

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Any idea on what is happening now?
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#27
computerwiz12890

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My how time flies! :whistling:

I haven't forgotten about you, just been caught up in things.

I believe that System error is related to the Stop 0xa error

• A Stop 0xA message might occur after installing a faulty device driver, system service, or firmware. If a Stop message lists a driver by name, disable, remove, or roll back the driver to correct the problem. If disabling or removing drivers resolves the issues, contact the manufacturer about a possible update. Using updated software is especially important for multimedia applications, antivirus scanners, and CD mastering tools.

• A Stop 0xA message might also be due to failing or defective hardware. If a Stop message points to a category of devices (video or disk adapters, for example), try removing or replacing the hardware to determine if it is causing the problem.

• If you encounter a Stop 0xA message while upgrading to Windows XPl, the problem might be due to an incompatible driver, system service, virus scanner, or backup. To avoid problems while upgrading, simplify your hardware configuration and remove all third-party device drivers and system services (including virus scanners) prior to running setup. After you have successfully installed Windows XP, contact the hardware manufacturer to obtain compatible updates.



Can you remember installing any hardware or updating any programs/devices just before you started noticing this issue? If not, we'll go ahead and start updating some of your devices since there are instances when the drivers may become corrupt or out of date due to a recent installation.

The following program and instructions will collect information about your computer so I can assist with the updating of your device drivers:

Download and run WinAudit. Save the audit to your desktop. This will save three files. Take all three files and put them into a single zip (compressed) folder. Name the folder WinAudit. In order to protect the safety of your computer, do NOT attach the folder to a post here. Take that folder and send it to me through a PM (Private Message) instead, that way it is not available to the public.

If you have trouble sending it to me via PM, let me know and I'll give you my e-mail address.

Edited by computerwiz12890, 22 January 2007 - 09:18 PM.

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#28
computerwiz12890

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I got your e-mail. Before we start updating device drivers, let's try 3 more things.

Step 1
Boot your computer into Safe Mode and run Stress Prime. To get into Safe Mode: restart your computer and as soon as it starts booting up again continuously tap F8. A menu should come up where you will be given the option to enter Safe Mode. Make sure it is just Safe Mode, NOT Safe Mode with Networking.

If Stress Prime runs 30 minutes without problems, then we now know it is an OS problem and not hardware. If Stress Prime fails, do step 2.

Step 2
Download Memtest86 and save the file to your desktop.

After the file is downloaded an extract must be done to uncompress the file(s). To extract, right click on the downloaded file and select the "Extract All" option. The extract option will let you choose where the files will be extracted to. To build a bootable floppy go the the folder where the files were extracted and click on the Install icon and put a floppy disk in the floppy drive. The floppy disk will appear to be unformatted by Windows after the install is complete.

To build a boot-able CDROM, download this version of Memtest and use your CD burning software to create an image from the un-zipped ISO file.

Once you create the floppy or CD, reboot the computer with the floppy or CD in your computer. This should start Memtest. The testing should beging automatically. If not, start it.

The testing cycle will repeat over and over, as long as you let it. Let it run for at least 1 hour. The longer you let it run, the more accurate the results. Let me know if it finds any errors or not.

If it does not generate an error, then we have ruled out hardware and can now focus on Windows (since this program is totally independant of Windows). If Memtest crashes or fails...we can totally rule out Windows. And if that is the case, it sure doesn't look good since we've already replaced the RAM. At this point it could be either the motherboard or the CPU. Or...although highly unlikely...you could have brought a bad stick of RAM. :whistling: If Memtest fails, I will see if I can find something that will test the CPU without needing Windows.

Also, if it fails, move on to Step 3.


Step 3
Please open up your computer. One possible cause of your problem (which I found with a bit of research) is that one of the fan connectors could be loose and it "thinks" it's sensing a fan failure. If I remember correctly, you said you had a lot of fans? Please check each of them, and maybe even unplug and replug each of them to make sure they are firmly in place.

Another possibility is a bit of solder flash, or a screw head somewhere is shorting something intermittently. Thermal or mechanical stress could make that show up after a period of months. I'd go through and re-seat all connectors and visually check all mounting screws.

Finally, check for bulging or leaking capacitors on the motherboard. This is a tell-tale sign of motherboard failure.



Please report back to me with what happened in each step (if applicable).

Edited by computerwiz12890, 26 January 2007 - 09:31 AM.

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#29
ewufan

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I am starting to think I am having a problem with Windows. My computer will not boot up in Safe Mode for an unknown reason. I have been getting a lot of problems with Firefox and IE closing down in the middle of browsing. I get to the Safe Mode screen after hitting F8 and my computer shuts itself down like it has been recently. The problem seems to be that I won't be able to re-install Windows because everytime I try to do something that requires my computer to "work" it shuts itself down.
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#30
computerwiz12890

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Let's see if it is indeed windows or not. Please continue with Step 2. Follow the directions and if you are instructed to do Step 3 in it, do Step 3 too. :whistling:

Edited by computerwiz12890, 26 January 2007 - 11:16 AM.

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