Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

My computer freezes for about 30 seconds, this happens occasionally. When it happens I can still move the mouse, sometimes even alternate between tabs in google chrome. If I try to open windows explorer nothing happens. Also chrome rapports "waiting for cache". It also happens in starcraft II, during which the sounds loops.

I have made a Trace as this topic describes: How do I troubleshoot a Windows 7 freeze or slowness?


I have looked at it, but I couldn't figure it out.

My system specs are:

  • AMD Athlon X4 651
  • Asus Ati HD6670
  • ADATA SSD sp900
  • Asus f1a55 mainboard
  • 4 GB crucial 1333 ram
  • 500 watt atx ps

I'm running Windows 7, fully updated.

Any help is much appreciated.


I tried something before your reply that may have helped the problem. I don't know for sure if it has, it's too soon to tell.

A bit of history first. I had problems installing win7 on my ssd from the start. In IDE mode it worked, but I had the same problems as above. AHCI was a total fail, with it on before install as well as turning it on after install (including tweaking register). I didn't bother installing the AMD chipset/AHCI as it was reported to have no TRIM function and thus make problems worse.

Eventually I did install the AMD SMbus driver as the stability issues were driving me crazy. It worked, no more issues, until I installed some extra drivers and software. Audio/LAN/ASUS suite, I don’t see the relation, but somehow it screwed up my system again. As a last effort I posted here on this site. After which the thought occurred to me turn on AHCI again as by now I had all necessary drivers installed anyway. (plus all windows updates downloaded/installed in the meantime)

I did and stability didn’t seem great the first few reboots, but eventually everything seemed to work great. I tried to play starcraft II – an almost guaranteed freeze before – and I had no problems. I’m basically crossing my fingers and hope the problem is gone for good.

I still think it has something to do with my SSD. In my research into the problem I noticed a lot of these issues with sandforce 2281 firmware, the exact same firmware I have. People reported the same problem that I had, freezes. Additionally they reported that during a freeze the hdd light stayed on, I noticed after I read this that this happened with my computer as well. None of this is conclusive evidence that my SSD is really to fault, but it is suspicious.

And why turning on AHCI would fix it I don’t know.

Thank you Tom for taking a look, if the problem returns I will certainly do what you advised.

share|improve this question
Saw your question, as I'm on a clean install I'll check this once I'm up and running again. Hopefully there is something interesting in the trace... – Tom Wijsman Jun 30 '12 at 12:27
Well, Windows has the tendency to do this, apparently because it suddenly discovers that it needs to do a whole bunch of disk activity. No one (likely including M$) knows why. – Daniel R Hicks Jun 30 '12 at 12:27
DUDE that file is over 200MB!!!!!! If you actually look at the question you linked to, Tim says to ZIP it. Compress it. Then he says it's very small. I suggest you do that. – barlop Jun 30 '12 at 13:27
No worry, downloaded in under two minutes. But yeah, want to prevent people from sending traces of over a GB because that'll leech quite some unnecessary bandwidth... – Tom Wijsman Jun 30 '12 at 13:37
AHCI might be somewhat related to HAL, so that would most likely have been the cause of this problem. – Tom Wijsman Jun 30 '12 at 19:11

The first thing I notice is that all your CPUs shoot up to ~85%.

Inspecting the top processes that cause this, they all are from Google Chrome.

There barely happens any I/O activity during the freeze, a lot of it continues afterwards, upon inspection of the I/O activity that happens afterwards that just seems to be you capturing the trace so there isn't any big I/O activity happening. During the hang it appears that it tries to write to the Google Chrome crash (and this takes some seconds).

There seems to be higher HAL / USB activity, but that might just be due to the freeze itself.

There isn't a clear cause, but here are some suggestions:

  1. Do a memory error and disk error scan, as well as check the S.M.A.R.T. information of the hard drive, to conclude whether the memory and disk are (still) alright.

  2. Remove any USB devices you don't necessarily need, this could show you whether a driver for one or another USB device is malfunctioning.

  3. Make sure your OS and ALL drivers are up-to-date on your system, to ensure stability.

  4. Empty the cache of Google Chrome, to ensure it gets accessed from a different disk sectors.

  5. Capture a trace during SC2 as an attempt be able to correlate the root cause, do not run Windows Explorer or Google Chrome in the mean-time to get an idea whether they might be causing the problem. It could maybe be useful to even literally kill exlorer.exe.

  6. Try disabling non-Microsoft explorer shell extensions using ShellExView.

  7. Get rid of any software or start-up things you don't need. HijackThis is pretty safe to go through, if you want to go a step further you can try Autoruns but that one will require you to inspect any entries (Google them) because simply unchecking vital entries can render your system unbootable and to some extent even Safe Mode. However, you can mount an offline system to re-enable the entries, but you would need a WinPE CD for that; so be careful...

share|improve this answer

Try this:

SSD Freezing Fix

I had the same issue and it ended up being the only thing that worked for me; I realize this is an old question, but I suffered with the problem for almost a year, so any solutions that might help people...I'm going to post anyways :)

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

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