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Vista freezes ~3 minutes after boot.


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#1
benoakes

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I was hoping that someone could help us with a problem that has been infuriating us for several weeks. We got a new computer about 4 months ago which worked fine out of the box. Recently it's starting freezing about 3 minutes after boot up approximately 75% of the time. I'm running

Windows Vista home premium 64-bit build 6001: Service pack 1 on a Packard Bell desktop.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260 running driver version 8.16.11.9062.
Sophos which hasn't found any viruses.

When I first installed SP2 my PC wouldn't stay up for long after boot but I managed to fix it by updating by graphics card driver. A couple of weeks later the real problems started.

When the computer starts everything works fine and any individual application can be started. However approximately 3 minutes after boot there's a good chance that the computer will jush hang. The mouse pointer still moves, but clicking, alt+tab or ctrl+alt+del have no effect. I have to turn off using the power button. I've tried running with the task manager visible and the clock showing and nothing else. The clock just stops but no new process appears in the task manager. The event log doesn't show any error before the computer hangs, just that the shut down was not clean. I have tried the following with out success

- uninstalling SP2.
- uninstalling NVIDIA drivers and reinstalling from scratch.
- deactivating all non essential programs in the startup menu.

Note that if the PC makes it past the 3 minute mark it works fine for hours. The computer starts fine in safe mode.

There is one thing that does seem to help, but not in any deterministic way. I have 3 * 2Gb of RAM. If I remove 2 of them the PC is much more likely to start. The PC ran fine for a while with one of the RAM cards removed, so I tried using just the trird stick to see if it was faulty and that started fine as well. Then I switched back to the first 2 sticks and the PC began hanging again. Sometimes it runs fine with all 3 sticks, other times if hangs 10 times in a row. I can't pin the problem on any particular piece of hardware or motherboard slot, but the PC seems more stable with less RAM.

Your help would be much appreciated. We're nearly ready to take the PC back to the shop and try to get our money back.

Ben
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#2
gordyhunter

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I am having the exact same problem. I too am running vista. My sony vaio freezes at precisely 3 minutes after startup.
I have 2 * 2GB ram, i have tried removing one which gives me almost 4 minutes before the computer freezes, i have alternated the ram boards to eliminate the possibility of faulty ram, and also put new ram in its place with no success. I have 2 internalHDD, a 300GB and a 320GB.

I have tried these in other laptops and work great!
i have done nothing new with the laptop in 2 months, not even been connected to internet, and all of a sudden this happens.

There have been a couple times out of a hundred when the laptop does not crash- and like your situation- if i make it past that 3 minute mark, it works for hours.

I have re-installed vista- done system restore, anti- virus, spyware removal- the whole lot.
PLEASE HELP ME!?!?
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#3
ashyo

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Is your hardware full?

Also have you got an antivirus software? It could be a trojan attacking your computers.

Trojans can delete files and inportant stuff.
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#4
gordyhunter

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Thanks for your reply ashyo.
Sorry, i do not know wwat you mean (is my hardware full?)
I have been using the laptop daily for over 2 months, not even online- only been using to play audio/ video.
I have run numerous anti-virus and spyware, and even formatted the HDD and re-installed vista from a genuine disc- Still keeps freezing.
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#5
othersteve

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I see we have two different posters with similar symptoms here.

Have either of you tried a memory diagnostic?

Assuming you are running Vista/7:

1. Reboot and enter the Advanced Boot Options menu by repeatedly pressing F8.
2. Once in the menu, do you see a Repair Your Computer item on the list? If so, select it. If not, skip this list and go to the alternate method below.
3. Select a keyboard layout, and then click Next.
4. Select a user name and enter the password, and then click OK.
5. On the System Recovery Options menu, click Windows Memory Diagnostic.


If Repair Your Computer is not listed, you will need your original Windows Vista installation CD.

1. Insert the Vista CD and reboot.
2. If prompted, press any key to start Windows from the installation disc.
3. Choose your language settings, and then click Next.
4. Click Repair your computer.
5. Select the operating system you want to repair, and then click Next.
6. On the System Recovery Options menu, click Windows Memory Diagnostic.

Let it run and when it's done, your system will reboot and you will be notified of the results via a popup in the lower-right hand corner of the screen. At least once this is done we can rule out any possible memory issues.

~os
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#6
ashyo

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Then its your hardware.

I suggest taking to a computer shop and getting it looked at it will be atleast £125 to get it fixed.
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#7
gordyhunter

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Thanks for your input othersteve, extremely fast replies!
I have printed out this procedure- i will try it in a couple of hours and keep this blog updated. Thanks a lot.
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#8
gordyhunter

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Hi othersteve,

Thanks for the advice- i did what you suggested, and it seems my memory is not a problem. I managed to do the memory check, and it said 100% working correctly.
So, still no joy.

I even tried re-installing vista again, just in case...but no luck.
Any other suggestions?....your help would be very much appreciated.
Thanks,
Gordy

(BTW, yes im running vista sp1)

Ashyo- u think hardware- what in particular do you think the fault/ faulty component may be?
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#9
benoakes

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I called my supplier's customer support and they suggested a memory checking program. This didn't find any faults. Next suggestion was a factory reset, which I did last week and it's been running okay so far.
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#10
sdnoel

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I called my supplier's customer support and they suggested a memory checking program. This didn't find any faults. Next suggestion was a factory reset, which I did last week and it's been running okay so far.




my daughters computer is doing the exact same thing, also running vista. how do we do a factory reset?
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