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Random freezing error (graphical bug/usb)


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#1
allyss

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Hi, i just recently built my first custom PC. Everything runs great but I run into a freezing bug every now and then. So far it has only happened while playing World of Warcraft and Luna Online. My computer suddenly freezes for no reason. My screen becomes slightly distorted, my usb keyboard and mouse stays powered but dont work, and the sound gets screwed up (loops). This freeze happens every now and then and can happen within 10min of booting to 10 hours.

I have updated everything i could. BIOS, video card, windows, etc. I left HWmonitor on to check temps and heat does not seem to be the problem. generally the case stays under 40C. CPU max at 50C and GPU max at 65C.
I have already run Prime95 for 9 hours and no errors and memtest86+ for just over 5 hours and no errors. I have checked every forum for every part of my computer but found no answers. I would like to find out whats causing the freeze.

Here are my specs:
OP - Windows XP Pro 64-bit
MOBO - ASUS P5Q SE/R
GPU - XFX GeForce GTS 250 1GB Core
PSU - BFG Tech LS series LS-550 550W
CPU - Intel E5200 Wolfsdale
RAM - OCZ Gold 4GB
HDD - Seagate Barracuda 160GB 7200RPM.

Thanks in advance!
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#2
Digerati

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I would remove 1 Gb of RAM and run with that for awhile. If fine, swap it out with the other stick (assuming you have 2 x 2Gb sticks and not 4 x 1Gb - if 4, swap pairs). If it fails with both sticks individually, then it is likely the motherboard - though I would try another PSU just to make sure yours is not having problems.

Edited by bill_bright, 29 April 2009 - 08:39 AM.

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#3
pctestcardcom

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Try check the PSU and make sure it is working under spec.

Also when installing the Os, make sure the mobo chipset driver is loaded and reboot to take effect before installing the VGA and other drivers.

Hope this helps!
Bill
tech manager
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#4
allyss

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alright i've tried each RAM stick individually and they do seem to work. I have 2x2gb. Unfortunately the random nature of this bug makes it hard to tell if there really okay or not. Im going to keep one in for a week or so and swap again.

EDIT:: also what does it matter about channel 1 and channel 2. If i put one stick in channel 1 and the other in channel 2 is that okay? I think the problem might acutally be with my 2nd channel 1 slot. Or should i put both sticks in channel 2?

Edited by allyss, 30 April 2009 - 05:44 PM.

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#5
Digerati

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For testing, it should not matter which channel. But for real world, you should use the pair of slots that enable dual channel for better performance. This will be explained in you motherboard manual.
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#6
allyss

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Well it doesn't say anything about using dual channels. It only says use channel 1 for better oc'ing. So its fine tho to use channel 2 only right? So far it hasn't froze when i avoid using the 2nd channel 1 slot. Currently im using slot1 of channel one and slot 1 of channel two and left WoW on for over 12 hours and no freeze. If this does seem to be the case then the problem would lie in the motherboard or PSU correct? That would also explain why the usb ports stop working.

About the PSU...I dont really understand multiple 12v rails. I know mine has 4 (12v1, 12v2, 12v3, 12v4) each gives 16amps. My graphics requires a minimum of 36A. Could this be a problem? Does this mean my GPU can only pull 16amps off the PSU? Using HWMonitor the 12v currently only shows 11.88V.

EDIT:: okay i found the formula to figure out the amps on the 12vrail. My PSU gives 40A, that wouldn't cause a problem even if its barely over the minimum?

Edited by allyss, 01 May 2009 - 12:42 AM.

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#7
Digerati

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Well it doesn't say anything about using dual channels.

What doesn't? Your manual sure does because that motherboard does indeed, support dual channel. If the memory works in channel 2, then no problem. If it does not work, I would just expect the computer to not work. I would not expect any damage to occur, if that is your concern.

About the PSU...I dont really understand multiple 12v rails. I know mine has 4 (12v1, 12v2, 12v3, 12v4) each gives 16amps. My graphics requires a minimum of 36A. Could this be a problem? Does this mean my GPU can only pull 16amps off the PSU? Using HWMonitor the 12v currently only shows 11.88V.

I don't really understand them either - I mean from a technical aspect, I understand them, but I just don't see all the fuss about them - for the very reason you mention. For multi-rail PSUs, the PSU must limit the amount of current any rail can use in order to keep a sufficient supply of current on the other rails. This can, and does lead to problems where there is not enough current on the rail, even thought the PSU has plenty of power. Since all the hype is NOT about safety, or circuit isolation, I can only conclude it is just another marketing ploy - not enough current on your 12V rail? Too bad - let me sell you a bigger (and more expensive) PSU. :)

This is why I like Corsair PSUs - they use a single rail. There are some multi-rail PSUs that will re-allocate on the fly - but that would be noted in the products documentation.

Although this was written by a PSU maker, therefore it is a bit slanted (especially about fans), but still it makes a good read - PSU Myths.

Use the eXtreme PSU Calculator Lite to determine your power supply unit (PSU) requirements. Plug in all the hardware you think you might have in 2 or 3 years (extra drives, bigger or 2nd video card, more RAM, etc.). Be sure to read and heed the notes at the bottom of the page. I recommend setting Capacitor Aging to 30%, and if you participate in distributive computing projects (e.g. BOINC or Folding@Home), I recommend setting TDP to 100%. Research your video card and pay particular attention to the power supply requirements for your card listed on your video card maker's website. If not listed, check a comparable card (same graphics engine and RAM) from a different maker. The key specifications, in order of importance are:
  • Current (amperage or amps) on the +12V rail,
  • Efficiency,
  • Total wattage.
Then look for power supply brands listed under the "Good" column of PC Mechanic's PSU Reference List. Ensure the supplied amperage on the +12V rails of your chosen PSU meets the requirements of your video card. Don't try to save a few dollars by getting a cheap supply. Digital electronics, including CPUs, RAM, and today's advanced graphics cards, need clean, stable power. A good, well chosen supply will provide years of service and upgrade wiggle room. I strongly recommend you pick a supply with an efficiency rating equal to, or greater than 80%. Look for the 80 Plus - EnergyStar Compliant label. And don't forget to budget for a good UPS with AVR (automatic voltage regulation).

EDIT:: okay i found the formula to figure out the amps on the 12vrail. My PSU gives 40A, that wouldn't cause a problem even if its barely over the minimum?

Oh? When I looked up your PSU here, it does not say anything about combining the current when needed. In fact, it says (my emphasis added),

Four Independent +12VDC Outputs, +12V1@16A, +12V2@16A, +12V3@16A, +12V4@16A


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#8
allyss

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Ahh okay thanks. Yea i was wondering if using only channel 2 could possibly cause damage. It works find so far. I guess the problem probably does lie with motherboard.

The PSU link was a good read but may have left me more confused. Lol. Man i should have done more research before building this PC. I got the formula off a website. Basically took the watts off the 12v rail divided by 12. He actually had the math to back it up so it looked okay. I did not notice the "independent" part however of my PSU. Ugh i think next time ill just stick with a single rail. =P.
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#9
rshaffer61

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GTG has it's own System Build forum Here if you have a question about upgrading any component in your system and need to know if it is compatible with your system.

Also just a FYI for future reference:

Go HERE and run the Crucial online scanner. This will give you the exact memory configuration for your system. If you need assistance in purchasing the upgrade memory GTG can assist with suggestions also
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