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PC Freezing & Monitor going to Standby

By Kefka
Mar 12, 2006
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  1. Greetings all,

    Lately (the past 3 days), my PC has started to freeze outright (no response from mouse or keyboard), followed by the monitor turning itself off.

    I've not made any changes to the system recently... the latest thing I changed was a few weeks ago - removing an internal dialup modem, replacing it with a nic, and connecting my broadband router to it... No problems seem to have been caused from that though.

    The freezes happen at seemingly random times - The first few were about 10-15 minutes after booting (Win XP), then it was after a few hours, and today it's done it a number of times, sometimes before windows finishes booting. There's no extra hardrive activity right before the crash or anything like that.

    Hence I'm starting to think it's a hardware problem. Perhaps a badly seated component, or an overheating problem? Maybe something with low voltages? I'm not really a hardware person.

    Any suggestions for what i can do to make my PC usable again would be much appreciated - ive got an honours thesis to write =/

    Stats:
    CPU - Intel Pentium IIIE, 800 MHz (6 x 133)
    Motherboard - Asus CUV4X (1 ISA, 5 PCI, 1 AGP Pro, 1 AMR, 3 DIMM, Audio)
    Motherboard Chipset - VIA VT8604/5/6 ProSavage PL133/PM133/PN133
    RAM - 640 MB (SDRAM)
    Video - NVIDIA RIVA TNT2 Ultra (32 MB)
    Monitor - Targa M1769 [17" CRT] (1028926)
    Audio - Creative SB PCI128 (CT4815)
    HDD - FUJITSU MPF3204AT (20 GB, 5400 RPM, Ultra-ATA/66)

    (yeah, it's old and crap:p)
    Thanks muchly,
    Kefka
  2. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 3,566

    Let's check here first: right click on "my computer" then pick "manage" then "event viewer". Poke around in the various categories in there looking for red symbos indicating system errors.
  3. Kefka

    Kefka TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Tried that, found nothing new or interesting :(

    The only error things are:
    AMLI: ACPI BIOS is attempting to read from an illegal IO port address (0xcfc), which lies in the 0xcf8 - 0xcff protected address range. This could lead to system instability. Please contact your system vendor for technical assistance.

    They've been cropping up regularly since i got the pc (yeeeears ago) and havnt seemed to have caused any problems.

    The pc hasnt crashed for an hour or so - i took the side of the case off and wiggled the components a bit... also took my router off the top of my pc, in case the jumble of wires around back was messing things up somehow (hey, it could happen..:p)
  4. Kefka

    Kefka TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Ok, I think the problem may be a little clearer now...

    First of all, i opened the pc up and got rid of 5 or so years of dust from the fans etc... Doubt it helped much, but it's a good thing to do:p

    After that however, my video card stopped working - had to reboot and let windows sort it out.

    And after that, the one time that it crashed, windows detected and recovered from a device failure, leaving me at the lowest colour depth and resolution possible... Event viewer gave me this error under system:

    The driver nv4 for the display device \Device\Video0 got stuck in an infinite loop. This usually indicates a problem with the device itself or with the device driver programming the hardware incorrectly. Please check with your hardware device vendor for any driver updates.


    So, im fairly certain it's a problem with my video card (nvidia riva tnt2 ultra). It's caused me minor headaches in the past - computer failed to boot and the startup beeps indicated faulty video card... i just reseated it and it worked fine.

    Reseating it may well fix the problem for a while now as well, but if there's anything else i can do, it would be nice to know.

    As far as drivers are concerned - i went to the nvidia site and downloaded the drivers it told me to download (ForceWare Release 80 - approx 20mb), which then told me they couldnt find a driver compatible with my hardware. -.-

    So im still using the standard windows xp drivers for it... If anyone knows where to find the most recent drivers for my card, that would rock.

    EDIT: Ah, i found the right drivers hidden away on the nvidia site after some more prodding :)
    EDIT 2: ok, wtf?! i downloaded the second set of drivers (http://www.nvidia.com/object/winxp_2k_71.89.html) which list the tnt2 ultra as supported, and i got the same "no compatible driver for my hardware" error?! I've uninstalled any previous drivers and disabled my antivirus software as they suggest on the site, and still nothing! Grr.
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