Question

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Explorer is hanging at login and other odd times

By Slayer_ ·
I am Running Windows XP Pro, Sp3.


The Problem, Explorer seems to hang randomly, at first only when trying to login to the machine, now it has done it while in normal opperation.


So this all started when I started playing Mass Effect for PC. A fun game to be sure, but it has a nasty problem, it crashes, but it doesn't die peacfully, it would seamingly crash your video drivers with it. I run a duel monitor setup, and what would happen is the game would hang, and the primary monitor would black out, and the secondary would suddenly get the task bar, icons, etc. and be the primary, with a hidden secondary. If you look in display properties, it has now loaded the default VGA driver. There are several strange artifacts left over aswell, like the shutdown/restart computer window, will mysteriously just be floating buttons with a black line for a border where the Window usually is.
Restarting the computer would magically fix the problem, everything would go back to the way it was. The crash would not stop the computer from gracfully shutting down and restarting, no hard resets required.
After a few days, when I would restart the computer, and try to login, it would just sit there. I would click my icon at the welcome screen, it would scroll into position and just sit there. I can control alt delete and finally see my walpaper, but no icons, explorer refuses to load. I can end task it, then try and load it manually, still doesn't work. Interestingly, I can login as a different account and (so far) it seems to work 100% of the time.

Up till now, a second restart would fix the problem, so I never gave it much attention.

Then yesterday, it happened, I restarted, and it happened again, it took 4 restarts to get it too work. It finally magically worked, after I used spybot to kill some new DLL (was bold) and suddely logging in worked. It was an MS DLL for apperently notifying stuff for login and logouts and was recommeneded to not be shutdown. I turned the DLL back on and stuff kept working. I did malware scans with Spybot and virus scans with Avira, clean on both fronts. So I did a new files search on my system, except for Mass Effect game files and temp internet files, there is nothing new in the last 4 months.
Also yesterday, after it finally booted, and worked, I was using it. I plugged in my MP3 player and got the safte to remove hardware icon, so I procedded to go and hide it. I went into taskbar properties, told it to always hide, clicked OK, and it hung that propertise window, which of course hung explorer. Explorer crashed, and I could not restart it manually. It would just hang, just like it does when trying to login. At this time I had not played Mass Effect on that session, so now I find it hard to believe that could be the problem.

I have done chkdsk C: /f and I have defragged, done the usual. Explorer.exe seems fine. All my startups look good.


Anyone have any ideas what is causing this or how I can fix it?

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New Info from comments

Also, Temperatures look good (This is at the highest strain, mid game, at idle they are much lower), GPU at 49-50C, CPU at 40C, HDD's at 26C each, Main board at 25C.


Update:
I've since deleted nTune

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its nTune

by macelius In reply to Update

Found it's nTuneCmd.exe, I think it's futily trying to set my geforece's oc settings at startup, which i told it to do, but it never works and goes back to stock anyway. It only happens every few times, if I let it sit a minute or two it will continue, if I kill nTuneCmd.exe or ntunes.exe it loads explorer.exe right away.
GL
~M

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