General Troubleshooting for Windows Startup

By theH
Jun 8, 2006
  1. Recently my computer has been sporadically freezing on startup. It freezes at the login screen. Sometimes it freezes immediately and I get no mouse movement, sometimes I manage to get mouse movement, and sometimes it freezes completely when I press enter (to login).

    The thing is that this problem is quite infrequent. I happens maybe around one in ten boot ups. It also leaves no trace in the Windows Event Viewer.

    Because it freezes here it makes it very hard (in my opinion) to troubleshoot.

    Any general advice about how to solve or investigate further a problem like this?
  2. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,404

  3. theH

    theH TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    Thanks for that post, but I have already tried those things.

    1 - I have updated all drivers I can think off.
    2 - The problem does not appear in my event log.
    3 - My problem does not cause the computer to restart, so I don't think minidumping is an option.
    4 - The fact that this problem is limited to the login screen and not any other programs or intense applications leads me to believe that this is not a PSU issue.
    5 - The fact that this problem is limited to the login screen again leads me to believe that this is not an over-heating issue.

    However after reading your (linked to) post; I feel I should tell you that I suspect my Wireless Network Card is at fault. It is the last hardware that I installed and I begun experiencing problems only after installing it. The reason I didn't mention this before is because I wasn't really expecting anyone to help me solve a very specific problem with my specific Wireless Card and my specific PC setup. However, it appears I have underestimated your kindness!

    The thing is I am really just asking if there is anyway to investigate this matter further. There is nothing in the event log, I can't open task manager when it occurs, the problem does not cause a reboot, and Windows seems to have no memory of it occurring (whenever it does). This makes it difficult for me to... diagnose with my already limited capabilities.

    Just In Case:
    - Pentium® D Processor 820 with Dual Core Technology (2.80GHz, 800FSB)
    - 1GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 533MHz- 2DIMMs
    - 250GB Serial ATA Hard Drive (7200RPM) w/DataBurst Cache™
    - 256MB PCI Express™ x16 (DVI/VGA/TV-out) ATI Radeon X600 SE HyperMemory
    - Sound Blaster Audigy™2 ZS (D) Card w/Dolby 5.1, and IEEE 1394
    - FSP PSU | AX450-PN 450W RT
    - Linksys WMP54GS Wireless Network Card

    Thought: Maybe my normal Network Interface Card (though disabled) is interfering?
  4. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,404

    The best thing you can do right now is some DETAILED troubleshooting. No guessing, get the facts. Run the tests, get the figures. System temperatures, PSU voltages, run memtest etc.

    Use that link I gave you, and do the dirty work. Frustrating and time consuming, yes. But it has to be done.
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