PC crashes and doesn't reboot for 5 minutes

June 21, 2010 at 04:07:20
Specs: Windows XP

I got a serios problem: My mother's PC (AMD Athlon 64 3200+ 2,2 GHz, 512 MB RAM, 80GB HD, 3d on Board, Win XP SP3) keeps crashing from time to time. The Crash is not reproducable (sometimes it happens with no application running (idle), sometimes while playing solitaire, sometimes while surfing or even installung win-xp-updates etc. Sometimes it crashes 5 times a day or more and sometimes not once in a week.

How these crashes appear: the seconds before the crash the mouse-cursor starts "hanging" every now and then, so that it moves pretty unsmooth. The actual crash makes the screen freeze for half second and then the screen turns all black. The PC itself keeps running, but win xp definitely crashes (I put a shortcut to some sound-file on the desktop, which I assigned a keyboard-combination to. It worked even when in another application but it didn't work after the crash)

I'd say it's a Windows-Problem, BUT:
After these crashes the PC does not restart properly for the next ~5 minutes after the crash. When all the BIOS-/HD-checks are done and win xp should start the cursor keeps blinking in the upper left cornor and nothing happens. After turning power on and off this continues for like ~5 minutes and then, it just boots as if nothing had happened.

I already brought the PC to the store which sold it and they ran several tests (Memory check, Everest Stability Test, Prime Test etc., but the error didn't occur to them (they also used the win xp which keeps crashing.

I have absolutely no clue, so i ask you to help me. Please! Any idea may help.

Thanks in advance and bye,

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June 21, 2010 at 08:42:08
Sounds like it might be getting too hot. Either with the cpu heatsink and fan assembly or the hard drive.

While the shop had it they likely had the cover off which may have provided enough venilation to keep it runnning properly.

You're not really green until you're soylent green.

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June 21, 2010 at 08:52:50
If it's crashing, get & post the STOP Error.

Turn off Auto Restart (it it's on). Go into Control Panel, System, Advanced Tab, StartUp & Recovery - click SETTINGS button, Under System Failure, UNCHECK Automatically Restart. Click OK, Apply.

If the "shop" has any competent ppl working there, have them analyze the memory dump files with Windows Debugger: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/315263

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