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The problem has only occurred during gaming. The three games I've seen it happen on are osu, Minecraft, and The Sims 3. The games run completely fine, even at highest settings. Without warning, the computer does as described in the title: It becomes completely unresponsive, the last sound playing loops briefly then stops, and the screen continues to show whatever was last on it. My only solution is to turn the computer off and then back on.

The specs are:

  • Windows 7 64-bit
  • A785GM-M ECS Elitegroup Motherboard (Which has built-in Radeon 4200 GPU)
  • A discrete Radeon 5450 GPU
  • Athlon X3 at 3.0 (Not unlocked or overclocked yet)
  • 500GB Harddrive
  • 550 Watt PSU
  • 4GB RAM

I've run memtest, ruling out any sort of memory problem (not that I really suspected one anyway). I often have many things running, but as stated before the games run fine so I don't believe stress is an issue.

Personally I believe the machine either needs cleaning, the PSU isn't providing enough power under stress, or the Discrete GPU is defective.

I will be cleaning the computer out today, but because the freezes are random I can't definitively prove if that solves the problem in any short amount of time. So, before I consider buying a PSU or GPU (both relatively expensive items, though my GPU is still under warranty I believe) I ask for additional opinions on the matter.

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How long did you run Memtest for? If it was any less than 48-72 hours straight I wouldn't trust the results. – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Jun 3 '11 at 19:17

It sounds like it might just be running a little hot to me...the fact that you indicate you think it needs cleaning tells me it's probably very dusty, which can make thermal problems a real nightmare. I'm willing to bet a good cleaning will help.

Beyond that, this could very well be a hardware problem - I'd swap the GPU for another if you can find it. This could also be faulty RAM, even though it passes memtest (which is good but not 100% foolproof). I think the PSU is unlikely to cause this-and-only-this-behavior.

Other thoughts: it doesn't sound like a software problem but make sure you have the latest driver installed. Also, make sure the BIOS on your motherboard is updated; there could potentially be a relevant bugfix!

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