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It looks like Windows 7 (x64) froze on me at 8:30AM this morning (I found it like this almost 12 hours later). No blue screen, just frozen. It looks like the screen was a darker than normal, almost as if it froze perhaps before the UAC screen was going to appear (no idea why it would, I wasn't using the computer) or maybe it was going to go into screen saver mode.

This happened about a week ago as well.

I'm currently looking to update all of my drivers in case that's the culprit.

Last event log entry was at 8:28:47AM : "The Computer Browser service entered the stopped state." Looking at the log it looks like the Computer Browser starts roughly every 2-3 minutes, so I suppose that can be a culprit as well.

Any idea on what I can do to find out what's causing the issue? Unfortunately no core dump since a BSOD did not occur. Its really frustrating when you're left with so few clues.


UPDATE (JAN 16 2010)

After a couple of months of not having issues, my computer started freezing again. This time however, I was able to replicate the problem.

Using FireFox, on Twitter using PowerTweet, if I scroll up and down multiple times (or even use page up/down keys) I am able to get Windows 7 to freeze (again not BSOD, just frozen... to the point where even caps lock or num lock don't light up on keyboard).

I'm not sure if the real problem is FF or if it just more easily manifests itself using FF. I'm also not sure if the problem is really PowerTweet, or if its the fact that PT expands multiple Flash Videos (maybe the problem is Flash?).

Either way, the most I'd expect is FF to crash, not the entire computer. What do you guys think:

  1. Software problem (FF or Flash)
  2. Video card problem (hardware or driver)
  3. Mouse driver problem (because it happens on scroll... although the bug did manifest itself through page down key so I doubt it)
  4. Windows 7 bug

Further info: I've tried to update as many drivers as I could... video card, chipset, audio, etc. So if its a driver issue, then unfortunately its probably not fixed yet.

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5 Answers 5

Sounds like a video card Issue. Since it doesn't happen very often it's difficult to troubleshoot. Is hardware acceleration set to full? Is your video driver Windows 7 compatible or just a Vista driver? Have you installed anything lately?

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Not sure where to check for acceleration in Win7. Video card driver is set to whatever Windows Update recommended like a week or 2 ago (downloading a new driver manually from ati now). I haven't installed anything for at least 2 weeks. –  Giovanni Galbo Nov 7 '09 at 1:58
    
Yeah it's always good to go with the manufacturer's driver instead. For acceleration it should be in the advanced settings of display properties. –  John T Nov 7 '09 at 2:04

It is also possible that this problem is caused by overheating. While computers generally turn off when they overheat, I have seen one that freezes and exhibits the same symptoms you are describing. I would suggest grabbing CoreTemp and keeping an eye on it as you attempt to replicate the issue if John T's answer doesn't help.

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In addition to the other utilities mentioned hare, GPU-Z will tell you everything you ever wanted to know about your video card, including the temperature.

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I had the same problem. No overheating. Did some tests - memtest, changed graphics card, swapped RAMs between banks, disconnected HDs, reconnected them, changed PCI places and so on. I reinstalled all drivers, updated BIOS etc.

I don't think it can be a software/driver problem. If so - there should be a BSOD. That's because drivers are "below" the core system. So it had to be hardware. It couldn't be memory (memtest, should BSOD). I did a CPU burn-in test - no problems. I turned the graphics hardware acceleration off - no change. It also wasn't the HD.

The only remaining thing that could be IMO at fault was the mainboard. How do you know if the mobo is stable? You let it run 3dmark for 24h and see if the computer hangs. And so that was my conclusion.

Guess what - after changing the motherboard - all problems are gone.

Once again I would like to stress that I spent long weeks trying to figure this one out. And maybe I was just lucky that my conclusion was correct.

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OK, I hope I'm not jinxing myself here, but I may have solved the problem. The freezing on fire fox scrolling seems to not be happening anymore (the only thing I was ever able to replicate). We'll see if random freezing is fixed as well (I'll report it here if it still freezes).

Doing some research on this, it looks like someone with a similar motherboard as me (ASUS p6t deluxe [I have version 1, he has 2]) had freezing problems as well. His memory timings were set to auto, which did not match the settings specified in Asus's qualified vendor list. Setting them to those settings fixed the issues.

In my case, "auto" was not setting them to either asus's recommended values or the ram manufacturer's recommended values. I decided to go with the RAM's settings because they were higher performing (with the intend of trying Asus' values if it didn't help).

So far I've passed the scrolling test. Hopefully random freezing will be fixed as well.

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I have asus pk5 deluxe, lightly overclocked, and have seen the same freeze using firefox -- every couple of weeks, not often. I thought I was alone in this. No BSOD, no event log errors, nothing. No mouse, no ctrl-alt-del, but the video card is still outputting the desktop display although frozen. I considered memory error or heat as the problem. I think I will start by blowing out the dust. –  P a u l Apr 12 '10 at 17:10
    
Hey sorry this response is so late, I don't use this site much. I found the real solution to the problem (answer above only alleviated the problem), after a ton of research I found that turning windows power settings to high performance fixed the problem for good. Computer has been on for MONTHS without a freeze! –  Giovanni Galbo Jul 15 '10 at 19:46

protected by studiohack May 3 '11 at 10:05

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