Computer Freezing - what now?

April 13, 2011 at 09:17:43
Specs: Windows 7
My computer 'freezes' after 20 minutes-60 minutes of use. The Screen keeps a frozen image of what was being displayed, but no longer responds to keyboard/mouse commands. This is a recent issue (froze once 2 nights ago, started becoming more frequent yesterday). It's an alienware desktop, so I was able to use its built-in hidden partition to restore the factory image. After that it became much less frequent (its frozen twice) but still the same symptoms. CPU Usage according the the (frozen) meter at the time of freezing is about 10-20% for both cpu and memory. Since the problem is continuing after using a fresh install, it doesn't seem to be a software issue (unless chrome or silverlight are the culprit) so that leaves hardware. CPU/Ram usage were low, the fan seems to be running fine. What should I test/try next?

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April 14, 2011 at 09:31:12
Opened up my cast and noticed my cpu fan was not running. I touched - and it starts spinning again. I kept my case open and 'restarted' the fan whenever it stopped, and my computer hasn't shut down since. I tried turning off an 'smart' fan control settings in bios but the behavior remains the same. Obviously this isn't a long term solution, does this sound like a faulty fan? (it seems to run fine until it stops)

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April 14, 2011 at 13:16:25
Freeze-ups after a time period are classic symptoms of overheating.

If you touched the fan and it started running then it was obviously getting the right message from the computer but had got jammed. So, yes, you need to replace the fan.

There is just a chance that if you remove the sticker (if any) from the spindle end and apply a drop of oil it might fix it. The other possibility is excessive dirt on the blandes. However if it keeps stopping it could wreck the CPU so the safest advice is to replace it.

I doubt there is/was a software issue at all.

Please come back and let us know how you got on.

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April 19, 2011 at 01:58:04

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April 19, 2011 at 05:58:14

Interesting but see post #1 where it was clearly established that this is a fan issue.

Please come back and let us know the outcome.

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