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USB Modem Issue


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#1
John McKenna

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I have a laptop which has developed a problem recently. It stated shutting down at random intervals and blue screening. Unfortunately the blue screens flash up so quickly I don't get the chance to read the error information.

I then started having problems with my broadband modem. The OS was failing to recognise it despite numerous reinstallations. It would recognise it at first but as soon as I rebooted the machine, the modem was gone from device manager and unable to connect to the net. I tried a different USB for the purpose of troubleshooting and the same happened so it's not a modem problem.

As the machine didn't have much on it apart from a backup of my HijackThis research, I decided to do a complete format and reinstall of the OS with a new file system. Reinstalled the USB modem, drivers and software and once again the modem disappears on reboot.

Other software is unaffected it would seem.

The specs of the laptop are as follows:

Athlon 1500+
240 MB RAM
20 GB HDD
XP SP2 <--problem still apparent without Service Packs though

I'm inclined to believe this is a possible RAM or HDD issue but I'm not techie enough to pinpoint it exactly.

Does anyone have any thoughts?
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#2
ZEUS_GB

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Hello John McKenna!

The blue screen flashing up to quickly can be solved by disabling automatic reboot on system failure.

Right click My computer > click properties > click advanced > click settings under the startup and recovery section > untick automatically restart > click ok > click apply and ok.

Have you looked in event viewer for any error/warning messages?
Have you run chkdsk on the hard drive?
Have you tried the modem on another computer?
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#3
John McKenna

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Thanks for the reply Zeus.

In answer to your questions, yes I'd looked in Event Viewer and pinpointed one error.

Event ID 1003 + Category 102. I googled these and found a few links related to RAM.

I've run chkdsk c: /f and but it froze (not for the first time) on 60% completed, leading me to think I may have some bad sectors on the HDD. I then ran a surface scan by itself which completed and then another 'fix' chkdsk which this time finished.

I've tried the modem on my friends pc and it's fine.

I tried his modem on the laptop and once again it disappeared from device manager on reboot.

This got me thinking, could it be the USB ports?

I installed a webcam on the laptop and low and behold it disappeared on reboot.

So I started wiggling the end of the USB cables of both the modem and the webcam while device manager was open and watched while the devices appeared and disappeared continually while device manager refreshed itself.

Looks like I've got to the bottom of the problem.

Could the faulty USB ports be responsible for the BSOD's I wonder?
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#4
Neil Jones

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Most likely a problem with the USB ports. Is it just a problem with one USB port or both/all the ports?

If you can trace it down to just one faulty port, then the obvious solution is just to not use that port, and swap any other devices in and out as you need them.
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#5
John McKenna

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It affects both USB ports unfortunately.

I'll have to get a quote to see how much it will cost to replace them.

Until then it looks like it will have to stay an expensive storage device!! :tazz:
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