Motherboard - Asus A8N-SLI Premium
BIOS Type - Award (09/22/05)
CPU - DualCore AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+
Memory - 2048 MB (4 x 512) (PC3200 DDR SDRAM) (corsair Value)
Video Adapter - RADEON X300 (128 MB)
Audio Adapter - Creative SB X-Fi [NoDB]
Disk Drive 1 WDC WD360GD-00FLA2 (36 GB, 10000 RPM, SATA)
Disk Drive 2 WDC WD1200JB-00REA0 (111 GB, IDE)
OS - Windows XP Home Edition Service Pack 2
DirectX 4.09.00.0904 (DirectX 9.0c)
Initially, I ordered a Gforce 7800 GTX 512b video card but of coarse it was on back order so they gave me the Radeon x300 until the 7800 comes in. The new card might change things…
The problems started the first day. I would get DEP errors when trying to access standard Windows functions i.e. clicking on 'My Computer' or pulling up 'Task Manager' or trying to view my hard drive in Windows Explorer: it would say DEP has shut down the program, and ask me if I want to send an error report. So, in Control Panel/System/ I found the DEP (Data Execution Prevention) menu but there was no way to disable it. The Help file said DEP had to do with protecting dedicated portions of memory from threats. That's when I first started to wonder about my "Value" memory.
That issue became less frequent over the next couple of days, until the error/crash finally stopped altogether. I don’t have that problem anymore. But I thought it might be helpful to mention it.
And then I started playing games. NFS Most Wanted would play ok for about 20 minutes and then it would crash to the desktop with a brief error that said something about a Virtual Error in C++. A problem with the game? I uninstalled/reinstalled it. Same.
And many times I could play for hours without this crash/error, but it would start to speed up in a jerky, sputtering way. I want to describe this correctly because all my games do the same. It's with both the game play and the non interactive cut scenes. Instead of a smooth flow, the motion will sort of catch and then lurch forward over and over, creating a kind of stuttering ebb and flow in speed. And the overall speed of this sputtering movement is about twice as fast as it should be. A PC restart will solve the issue for a little while and then I'll notice it start to sputter and speed up again. Or crash…
…Or freeze up with a sound loop. That's another issue that's plagued me from the very beginning. The screen will freeze and the last sound will play in a loop. Once in NFS Most Wanted, the game froze with a sound loop of a police dispatcher saying "No, no, no, no, no," over and over. That's what I thought, "no". I spent too much for this system to have all these issues.
The sputtering/ lurching issue and the freeze ups happen on every game I've installed: FEAR, NFS MW, Swat 4, Chaos Theory, King Kong.
I've only had the system a few weeks so I haven’t had time to mess my system up much. But I ran speeddisk, defrager, virus/spyware utilities, a Norton optimizer... And Everest Home Edition always shows all four memory chips as ok, and the physical memory/ virtual memory and page file is always utilizing what seems normal, with over 80% free when running small basic programs.
But, concerning memory ... I ran a couple of tests. The first test program I ran (called memtest86?) ran for hours (2 or 3 cycles) with no errors. But then in “Norton Check It Diagnostics“, under the Memory Test part, it fails. There are five or six memory tests (Data pattern, walking ones, etc), but it doesn’t even get as far as starting the first test. It instantly fails with: "Memory Allocation Failed!" And it suggests I increase my pagefile. But my pagefile is at the max. the pagefile is set for Auto managed by Windows, and says "Currently allocated: 4094MB" (two hard drives).
Some times a game will crash by just disappearing, no sound, no error, no sputtering speeding up. One second I'm shooting bad guys and the next second I'm staring at the desktop.
So, what do I do? Do I get some quality memory and get rid of the Value stuff? Do I wait for the new Video card to arrive and see if that improves things? Or do I ____________________? (fill in blank)
I want to thank anyone who waded through this and tries to help me. Reading through other topics, I'm amazed at the time and thought total strangers give to each other. Maybe the human race isn't going to helll after all.