Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Machine: Asus EEE 1201N netbook / Windows 7 32bit

At first I thought it was my video drivers/codecs because it would only happen while playing a video (streaming, off hdd, whichever. and at random points - sometimes 5 mins into the video, sometimes 20 mins.). So I updated my video drivers/codecs but it didn't change much. Then it started doing it randomly (it could happen as I type this). Sometimes I get a BSOD with "driver_irql_not_less_or_equal" and "dumping physical memory etc etc", other times not.

Questions:

  1. Does this sound like a hardware fault or a software fault?
  2. Are there any windows logs I can check to try diagnose the problem?
  3. Until I find the solution, are the constant restarts/shut downs hurting my netbook?
  4. What diagnostic tools can I run to see where faults might be?
  5. Could it be the USB data dongle (from my mobile service provider) that's causing the problem? I don't remember experiencing the problem before installing this thing, and I've heard lots of complaints about the firmware being buggy etc.

edit: regarding the shutting down OR restarting bit, i just realised that when it gives the bsod (with driver_irql_not_less_or_equal etc), then it restarts. other times the screen just goes black and the machine switches off.

share|improve this question
add comment

closed as not a real question by random Jul 22 '11 at 20:19

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

1 Answer

To determine whether the problem is with software or hardware, use Unetbootin to create a bootable Linux distro on a USB drive, and boot your netbook into Linux. If you can use Linux for hours without a reboot but Windows reboots and shuts down without obvious reason, the problem is software.

share|improve this answer
    
thanks. will give it a try. –  bsodomizer Jul 22 '11 at 19:45
add comment

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.