I've been having bizarre, random crashes, and all searches point to nowhere...

By scyther
Nov 29, 2008
  1. Hi, how are you?

    I've been having this problem with my sister's computer for a while. I built her PC myself, and for a while it ran great until it began rebooting randomly. After trying to figure out what the problem was and reinstalling Windows XP three times, I'm still left utterly clueless.

    The first set of error codes I was getting were 0x1000008e, which point to a multitude of things, bad RAM being foremost, and other issues such as reading from NTFS volumes. I've ran memtest several times, and no errors have come up. This is my third install of XP.

    Sometimes under moderate stress the system reboots (it skips the blue screen and just reboots, but I read the details in the error code as well as examining the minidump), sometimes barely any, and sometimes while playing her favorite games, Age of Empires III and the Sims 2.

    And the weird part is, tonight, the computer didn't crash when put under my non-scientific 'stress test' (four youtube tabs open in firefox, each playing videos, and playing a song in iTunes), but when left to load the Sims, it crashed, leaving a completely different error code behind.

    I've left the system specs below if that affects anything, and I've also attached two minidumps, one with 0x8e and the other with 0x03 being the first error code given. Any help would be kindly and greatly appreciated.

    PS the kicker is that my debugger 'is not using the correct symbols,' and I haven't figured out how to change that, either.

    System specs:
    Intel Pentium 4 Processor, 2.8 GHz
    960 MB RAM (thats news to me, yesterday it was displaying that I had 1022 or something like that -- I really have 1GB installed, I'm going to investigate that)
    200GB Western Digital HD
    nVidia GeForce MX 4000
    Asus p4r800vm motherboard (with newly flashed BIOS, I did that Thursday)
    1 CD ROM drive
    1 CD RW drive
    Running Windows XP Home SP3

    Thank you, again!
  2. peterdiva

    peterdiva TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 1,088

    Both of those crashes give Zonealarm a mention. Uninstall Zonealarm and use the Windows firewall for the time being. Post any new minidumps if it continues to crash.

    Flashing the BIOS has probably re-enabled the onboard video. That's where the missing 64mb of RAM has gone.
  3. scyther

    scyther TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks, Peter

    I've uninstalled ZoneAlarm and it still crashed while my sister was playing the Sims. The previous two installs have had Norton, so I thought something new might fix it.

    And I've adjusted the BIOS, too, thank you.

    Attached is the crash from earlier tonight. thanks again!
  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

  5. scyther

    scyther TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Just to clarify, the previous two installs of XP had Norton. This new install has AVG anti-virus on it, so Norton hasn't even come into the equation.
  6. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

  7. scyther

    scyther TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I ran memtest for almost 20 hours. No errors...
  8. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    ok, sorry for the brief replies

    I would like to solve (or help solve) this issue with your computer

    ok Memtest passed, but there was this issue of changing Ram reported sizes
    This can happen when your Bios settings (sometimes called CMOS or Setup) has allocated a specific amount to your Video card
    If you're able to go to Bios Setup (usually by pressing DEL at startup)
    Locate and enable system Defaults. then save an exit (being F10)

    I would recommend (or basically highly suggest) to remove AVG, and use Avira
    AVG is just too high on system resource

    Also, are you receiving any more Minidumps? (actually I'd suggest do the above first)
    Then run CCleaner (always a good idea, all the time)
    Then, use your system normally, and post a Minidump, if it eventuates
    Otherwise, post back anyway, with the results
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