TechSpot

Computer Freezes when playing games online

By Buje
Apr 26, 2010
  1. Hi, hopefully someone will be able to help!

    When I play Call of Duty 4 or Battlefield Bad Company 2 my computer will randomly freeze. The screen will freeze and the sound will lock up and the only way to restore the computer is via a hard reset.

    I can play other games such as Crysis and Oblivion without ever having a problem. I dont recall this problem ever happening in single play mode only when online but I dont really play the games in single player mode that much.

    I have had the problem before with COD4/5 and never been able to fix it, I just lost interest in playing the games. With these games I have tried all the usual reinstalls and formats....

    I thought it was the graphics card over heating but I have installed Rivatuner and it now never gets over 65-70c under load. So I have ruled that out.

    Now i think that is might be either bad RAM or my PSU not being powerful enough. The computer is stable and never crashes when I am not playing games, so am I right in thinking it is more likely to be the PSU than the RAM?

    I also upgraded the BIOS last night and managed to play for an hour and half until the system locked up again.

    Ok to the specs:

    I have a DELL XPS 420

    Running Windows 7 64bit
    Windows: Microsoft Windows 7 6.1.7600
    Memory (RAM): 3070 MB (came with the system)
    CPU Info: Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Quad CPU Q6600 @ 2.40GHz
    CPU Speed: 2389.6 MHz
    Sound card: Speakers (High Definition Audio) Realtek
    Display Adapters: NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT
    Network: Network Present
    Network Adapters: Intel(R) 82566DC-2 Gigabit Network Connection
    CD / DVD Drives: F: Optiarc DVD+-RW AD-5170S
    Manufacturer: Dell Inc.
    Product Make: Dell XPS420
    AC Power Status: OnLine
    Time Zone: GMT Standard Time
    Battery: No Battery
    Motherboard: Dell Inc. 0TP406
    PSU: Dell KH624
    375W, +5v max 22a, -12c max 1a, 3.3v max 17a, +12v max 18a

    Most of the computer is the same as from the factory but I have added another Sata hdd and I have an external USB seagate harddrive too which has its own power lead. I also have a few extra USB devices such as webcam.

    Could these extra HDD be using too much power?

    Any ideas?
     
  2. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,056   +76

    Please check system logs in Control Panel, Administrative Tools, Event Viewer. Look for events marked with Yellow/Red tags and see what info they are providing.

    Also download OCCT and run the stress test on your graphic card to ensure it is not the issue.
     
  3. Buje

    Buje TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I think these are from when the system freezes

    Log Name: System
    Source: Microsoft-Windows-Kernel-Power
    Date: 26/04/2010 23:25:04
    Event ID: 41
    Task Category: (63)
    Level: Critical
    Keywords: (2)
    User: SYSTEM
    Computer: Joe
    Description:
    The system has rebooted without cleanly shutting down first. This error could be caused if the system stopped responding, crashed, or lost power unexpectedly.
    Event Xml:
    <Event xmlns=hxxp://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">
    <System>
    <Provider Name="Microsoft-Windows-Kernel-Power" Guid="{331C3B3A-2005-44C2-AC5E-77220C37D6B4}" />
    <EventID>41</EventID>
    <Version>2</Version>
    <Level>1</Level>
    <Task>63</Task>
    <Opcode>0</Opcode>
    <Keywords>0x8000000000000002</Keywords>
    <TimeCreated SystemTime="2010-04-26T22:25:04.145611700Z" />
    <EventRecordID>33730</EventRecordID>
    <Correlation />
    <Execution ProcessID="4" ThreadID="8" />
    <Channel>System</Channel>
    <Computer>Joe</Computer>
    <Security UserID="S-1-5-18" />
    </System>
    <EventData>
    <Data Name="BugcheckCode">0</Data>
    <Data Name="BugcheckParameter1">0x0</Data>
    <Data Name="BugcheckParameter2">0x0</Data>
    <Data Name="BugcheckParameter3">0x0</Data>
    <Data Name="BugcheckParameter4">0x0</Data>
    <Data Name="SleepInProgress">false</Data>
    <Data Name="PowerButtonTimestamp">0</Data>
    </EventData>
    </Event>
     
  4. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,056   +76

    Having gone through few threads on MS's site; I have found few instances where people were having same issues with Microsoft-Windows-Kernel-Power like you.

    The issue with them turned out the Realteak Sound drivers. Have you taken a look at your motherboard manufacturer's site and update the drivers?

    Also do you have Start up and recovery options set so if the freezes happen you get a BSOD and error code to understand what actually is happening. If not so, right click on my computer, then on Advanced System Settings, then on Start and Recovery's settings, match the settings as in this picture.
     

    Attached Files:

  5. Buje

    Buje TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I will have a look at that when i get home tonight, i would have thought i have it on. I just have whatever the default is when you install windows 7.

    I will have a play around with the sound drivers later. I have unplugged all the extra hdds when playing battlefield and have managed to play for 2 hours without a crash so far.
     
  6. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,056   +76

    Ok, please keep things updated here.
     
  7. Buje

    Buje TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I have the same settings as you now but i dont get a BSOD the screen just freezes.

    i cant install the audio drivers, device manager says i have the most up to date drivers when i try to manually install them and the install program doesnt seem to work for windows7 (even in compatibility mode).

    people on another forum seem to think the PSU is a bit weak and that I should get a new one, what do you think?
     
  8. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,056   +76

    I guess it can be, especially as PSU's degrade overtime; how much you are willing to spend on a new PSU?
     
  9. Buje

    Buje TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Up to £70 i guess.
     
  10. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,056   +76

    Check this one out; its just skirts around the price range you set; and should be enough for your current needs.
     
  11. Buje

    Buje TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Just to let you know, I think that I may have found what the problem is. Although I probably could do with a new PSU I found it strange that really heavy resource games such as Crysis play with no problems and games online that are older freeze.

    The problem also only happens when I play online and so I think it is a problem with punkbpuster (the software to stop cheats online). So far when I play on non-pb enabled servers I do not have the crash.

    I have googled punkbuster hardlocks and there are lots of posts with realtek onbaord sound causing problems.

    I am going to log a support ticket with the people that make punkbuster but from judging some of the posts I have seen I am not sure if they will help to fix it.
     
     
  12. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,056   +76

    Thanks for sharing the information.

    Another cheaper solution can be to buy a dedicated sound card, and see whether that helps alleviate the issue (keeping in mind that realtek issue you mentioned)?
     
  13. Bror40

    Bror40 TS Rookie

    Freeze problems

    Hi there.
    I`v had the same problems for long time now, i have tryed everything, looked everywhere on the net etc.etc. No luck. BUT:
    The last thing i did for resolving this problem, was uppdating the chipset driver and the LAN driver on my MB. WOW....it helped. I am running with a GIGBYTE UD5 MB. So You could mybe look for drivers for your MB and try to uppdate them.
    GOOD LUCK.
    Bror40
     
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