How can I stop my computer from freezing?

December 13, 2010 at 10:36:47
Specs: Windows XP

Please help me :( I know a bit about computers but I'm no expert, but if someone figures out whats up or knows how I can fix it that's brilliant. Right, it freezes all the time within about 20-50 minutes of being on. Nothing will bring it out of that state, my mouse stops working and ctrl+alt+del does nothing and neither does the start button. I can restart it on the tower but soon enough it happens again, nothing seems to trigger it and I try to run as little as possible but it still does it, playing music seems to make it worse also.

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December 13, 2010 at 10:47:15

Sounds like the computer is overheating. The key is if you can't restart and keep it running for a period of time.

Unplug the computer and open the case. Look for lots of dust/ dirty, etc. Blow out the case using canned compressed air or a compressor. DO NOT vacuum. That can damage sensitive circuitry. Be sure to also blow out the power supply from both the inlet and outlet.

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December 13, 2010 at 11:17:59

Yep, what you describe are classic overheating symptoms, to the extent that I'd be surprised if it isn't. Worth attending to soonest or it could damage the CPU. Once that's dealt with you then go from there if necessary. Most modern motherboards have sensors and if that applies you can get temperature figures by checking in BIOS. There are also freebie programs that give this info from Windows.

We all live on a ball.

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December 13, 2010 at 13:45:51

Right well I've cleaned it all and it's still doing it.. arghh :(

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Related Solutions

December 13, 2010 at 14:00:48

Have you looked in BIOS at system temperatures ? What temps are showing?

It may be you will need to clean and refresh the thermal compound between CPU and heatsink

Goin' Fishin' (Some day)

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December 13, 2010 at 14:11:47

That's called Murphy's law LOL.

Re #2 & #4. If you watch the screen during bootup it will mention what key to press to get to setup (which is what we are calling BIOS). Often it is F2 but on old machines Del key was popular. The screen is an old fashioned looking menu which you move around using arrow keys and change things with Enter. If you change something by accident find the way to back out without saving any changes.

Although this fault doesn't have to be overheating it would be as well to check temperatures (if possible) and exclude that before moving on.

We all live on a ball.

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December 13, 2010 at 15:12:50

Haha I know right.
I've checked BIOS for temps, I got CPU 45'C and M/B 36'C is this normal?

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December 13, 2010 at 15:41:09

Those temperatures are OK. Download and use speedfan to monitor temperatures under use. The program can run minimized in the tray and you can maximize it at any time to see the current temperatures. Get the latest free version at the link below.

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December 15, 2010 at 16:08:05

Will this help?

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December 15, 2010 at 18:21:04

Re #7 & 8.
It would be as well to see if the temperature rises when the computer gets used and particularly if you can catch the readings just before it crashes. We need to eliminate overheating from the equation.

There is one very simple thing I have sometimes run into and that is trouble with RAM edge connectors. A slight vibration can move them onto an oxidized surface. Clean their edge connectors with a pencil eraser and pop the sticks in and out a few times to clear any oxide off the sockets themselves. While you're at it do the same for any circuit cards and also ensure all the plugs and sockets are firmly home. Apart from overheating, it is tricky with this fault to even decide whether it is a hardware or software issue.

Have you run your Anti-Virus lately? It seems a long shot for this one but it would do no harm run MalwareBytes freebie on it just to make sure there is nothing bad around. It's a good little program that often finds and fixes what AV's miss.

We all live on a ball.

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December 19, 2010 at 05:28:05

That RAM edge connector thing sounds complicated, I'd probably break something!
I ran the malware programme and there were a few threats detected to I removed them, but it's still doing it, and I have discovered something else.
I bought a tomtom satnav thing yesterday and whenever I try to connect it to my computer it immediately freezes up. It used to do this with my iPod aswell

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