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PC Hangs in dos or Win

By garetht ·
Hi

I'm running Win98, on an AMD 800 chip. Recently, the pc has started to hang, after a random amount of time (usually within 10 minutes, sometimes after only 30 seconds), whether in dos or Windows. There's no response to crtl-alt-del.

I'veopened up the case, so I'm pretty sure it's not overheating. I've run full scandisks in both dos & win. I've swapped between 3 RAM sims so I don't think it's faulty RAM.

Additional hardware: LG CD Writer, CDRom, one 8 Gig, one 20 Gig HD, smc NIC, riva 2/3D card.

I don't think it's an of that lot, as they've all been happily installed for a least several months, and I've tried unplugging various combinations of them to no effect.

Any ideas...? please....?

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by garetht In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

Point value changed by question poster.

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by TimTheToolMan In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

Hi,

It could be a failing power supply.

I wouldn't discount overheating on a hunch. Opening the case doesn't help. I did the same and my temp actually went up for the CPU! Your motherboard may have downloadable diagnostic software that will monitor the CPU's temperature - check the manufacturer's site.

Also utilities like SiSoft's Sandra will tell you the CPU temperature...

http://www.sisoftware.demon.co.uk/sandra/

(remove spaces from above URL)

Over time, high temperatures take their toll on CPUs and they'll start to fail periodically...
This is especially true if you turn the PC on and off a bit...

Although its very annoying, I'd re-install windows to make sure one of the fundamental drivers hasn't become corrupt.
Run diagnostics (SiSoft Sandra again) to stress the machine and see if it fails during any one test... video or memory or CPU for example.

Hope these suggestions help,
Cheers,
Tim.

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by garetht In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

Hi

Thanks for your input. I ran Sandra, and everything seems to be ok - the video card test made my screen go an unchangable bright green, but my pc was still running. I've changed my video card now, but still same problem..
Would a faulty power supply cause this hanging problem?

Also, although it's hanging in DOS, I reinstalled win98 to satiate my own curiousty, but of course, it'd still happening..

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by maxwell edison In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

This may or may not be a heating problem, as you've suspected. There are many possible reasons for those dreaded computer hangups, overheating just being one of them. Among other possible causes are:

Hardware: Defective or mismatched components in your computer.

Aluminum Migration & ESD: Premature ageing and “Electro Static Discharge” can make a computer very intermittent.

Operating System: Some versions of Windows have bugs that can cause these problems.

Drivers: Buggy or down-level drivers can cause many problems.

Software: Some programs have bugs in them that can cause these problems.

Memory Fragmentation: Do you often see the message, "System is dangerously low in resources" If so you are probably suffering Memory Fragmentation.

CMOS Settings: Improper CMOS settings can cause many problems. Changing CMOS settings can also be used to help diagnose some hardware problems.

Loading Order: The order in which the software components of your computer are loaded into memory, at startup each day, can cause a multitude of odd problems.

A Combination of the above: Defects in any of the above may only show up under specific circumstances.

Chack out this site for troubleshooting tips on this problem:

http://www.jrwhipple.com/computer_hangs.html

(REMOVE SPACES from the pasted URL.)

Also, don't overlook the (not so) obvious. Clean up the hard drive by deleting temporary files and temporary Internet files, clear the Internet history files, delete unused program files or data files, those jpg files that clutter the drive, empty the recycle bin, and do a thorough disk defrag. And do a scan disk as well (do this first) to clean up and delete those lost clusters.

Good luck,

Maxwell

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by garetht In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

Hi

I don't think it's hardware. I've now tried changing everything except m/board & cpu. Even tried a diff. HD, but no joy.

I've got 256 MB, so I don't think that should be the problem. I've also cleared out autoexec & config.sys.

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by gcaloyloy In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

What kind of motherboard do you have? I find that the Windows drivers that are installed for a motherboard might not give you the max performance you need. See if you installed the motherboard chipset drivers... It usually comes on a CD with the motherboard. If you just recently reformatted, you may of forgot to install the motherboard chipset drivers.

Also, try flashing your BIOS to the latest rev.

AND, turn on your PNP settings in your BIOS.

I am just brainstorming... let me knowif any of the above helps

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by garetht In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

Tried all those. The win drivers should matter, as it's hanging in dos too.. PNP was already enabled. Tried resetting BIOS to 'Fail Safe Defaults'

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by meddjay In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

The other answers were quite good, so this one will sound lame compared, but sometimes it's a matter of simplicity? Heh...well, it sounds good anyway! Try going to start then to run and typing in sfc in the run box, have your windows 98 cd rom ready in case the computer finds damaged files. (And I think it just may). Think back to when it started having this problem, did you install anything new, any new prog or any new piece of equip, did you open any strange email? Is your computer acting strange besides just that? The most important thing is did you scan for viruses and scandisk and defrag? Just some of my scattered thoughts...hope it helps!

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by garetht In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

Tried a reinstall of win, but no joy. I run antivirus & Zonealarm, so I'm happy it's not a virus.

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PC Hangs in dos or Win

by derekdcosta In reply to PC Hangs in dos or Win

Disable the secondary (L2) cache and video BIOS shadowing in the BIOS settings. Then re-boot

If it behaves your CPU is shot

Good luck

Derek

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