TechSpot

PC hangs when video is played.

By agent47
May 24, 2004
  1. Hey guys, hope you can help me out with a prob i'm having (and it's annoying as hell).

    My PC overheated (60 C) a few weeks ago. Fans were clogged, so I cleaned it up nice and good and temp dropped to 49-53. Which is fine since I use a generic fan/heatsink.

    But since then I've been getting this video problem, anytime i try to play video, no matter what format (DVD, mpg, avi, online streaming videos), my PC will definitely hang, but you just don't know when. Kinda like the longer you play a video, the higher the chance of my PC hanging. It happens with some games too, I tried playing Divine Divinity (which relies heavily on DirectX), it hangs most of the time.

    I've formatted countless times, and it's still like this, so I think one of my hardware is screwed up a bit (from the overheating perhaps, or it's just its time).

    I was thinking maybe DirectX or DetonatorXP problem, tried changing versions, no help. BTW dxdiag sez nothing is wrong, except if I try to change the "music" port to something other than the default (first in the list).

    I've had this prob for quite a while now, coupla weeks, a little over a month, BUT yesterday I discovered that if I try to use internet phone, it hangs as well. So not just video anymore for god's sake. Also, when it hangs/freezes, there's always a high pitched sound, like someone flatlined.

    My setup:

    Hardware
    AMD Athlon 1.2 (overclocked 1.33)
    Soltek mobo (can't remember model, DDR333 compatible)
    512MB DDR PC2100
    MSI GeForce 4 Ti 4200 64MB
    SB Live! DE 5.1
    skipping the irrelevant stuff...

    Driver side
    I've got all the latest drivers including:
    VIA Hyperion 4in1 451v
    DetonatorXP 56.72
    Live! Driver Pack (updated, can't remember ver)
    and Direct X 9.0b

    Thing is, b4 this happened, I've been using these drivers and nothing like that has ever happened. That's why I'm thinking maybe it's hardware fault. Any ideas which piece of hardware is guilty..?

    What's a PC good for if you can't play any form of video (esp DVDs), and now not even internet phone? It's not just the phone problem, I mean now it's just not ONLY video it's audio as well! ARGGHH

    Any help would be great, thanx a lot!
     
  2. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 8,165

    Welcome to TechSpot

    Check that your graphics card is properly seated. If there is a fan on it, make sure it works.
    Remove and reseat the memory as well while you're at it.
    As you had a lot of dust on your CPU-fan, take a good look at the Powersupply's fan and clean it if needed. This might be the "whiner".
    What are your PSU's brand, model and output and how old is it?
     
  3. agent47

    agent47 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanx for the reply & welcome.

    PSU is from iCute, model ATX-450W (yea sorry it's a 450W not 400W). It's about 1 1/2 years old.

    When I vacuumed my PC the last time (a month ago?) I did the same with the PSU as well, and yeah the PCIs and RAM are plugged in good. *sigh*.

    I've tried various tests, and here they are:

    Formatted XP, and did the following:
    1) Installed InterVideo WinDVD 5, played DVD. No hang.
    2) Installed Creative SB Live! Drv Pack, played DVD. No hang.
    3) Installed Creative SB Live! Drv Patch, played DVD. It hung.
    4) Formatted, Installed DetonatorXP 56.72 and Creative SB Live! Drv Pack. It hung
    5) Uninstalled Detonator (and used Detonator RIP to clean up), played DVD. It hung.
    6) I made a mistake by updating the NVidia drivers thru windows, now it's detonator drivers, since the lil NVidia icon is on my systray now. Anyways, used those, and it still hung.

    I'm thinking it's Detonator's fault, since at Step no.2, it was fine, even with the Creative Live Drv Pack. Tho why this is so is beyond me as I've used detonators all the way since they came out, and never had this problem before.
    Hardward fault?

    I'm gonna try getting older non-Detonator drivers and see if it still hangs.

    I'll post some more when I try that. Thanx.
     
  4. agent47

    agent47 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    hhmm tried removing Creative SB Live! drivers, using the ones windows provides, (sacrificing my stereo 4 speaker privileges).... and it still hung.

    I'm quite sure it's the graphics card now, tho I'm still curious why it didn't hang at step 2 (aka fresh windows XP, no external drivers loaded).
     
  5. agent47

    agent47 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Ok I bought a Radeon 9200 128MB. Everything works fine now.
     
  6. agent47

    agent47 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    OMG IT HUNG! S*** what is wrong maybe it's my sound card...

    arggghhh

    - Post edited
    Didou
     
  7. agent47

    agent47 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Changed gfx card, it hung, just changed the sound card, and its still messed up. I give up. I really don't know what to do. Anyone got any ideas b4 I actually have to change motherboards, only to find that it'll hang again?
     
  8. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 8,165

    Do you always talk to yourself?

    Seeing the buzz-word "vacuumed", you may have ruined your memory. Surf over to www.memtest86.org and D/L and run Memtest. Let it run overnight and check the results.
     
  9. agent47

    agent47 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    but only during DVD/games/internet phone?
    Anyways. I'll try that out, and reply to myself when I get the results. thanx.
     
  10. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,568   +103

    As RealBlackStuff pointed out, Vacuuming may be the cause of your hardware problems :(
     
  11. agent47

    agent47 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    ooops. s***. the price to pay for bringing down the temp by 10 degrees. And I just bought a CoolerMaster Jet 7 today.

    goddamn it.

    well.. thanx a lot guys. I'll try memtest and see if it's my ram. if not i'm gonna get a new mobo.

    - Post edited
    Didou
     
     
  12. Janan

    Janan TS Rookie Posts: 16

    If the memtest doesn't give you any answers, test your components one by one on a similiar mobo. Then try them all together on that same mobo. When ever the test machine suffers the same problems you've found your culpritt. If everything functions well on a different mobo, then I would asume it is the original mobo.

    I know this is a tiersome way of doing things, but it helped me isolate a defunct video card.
     
  13. agent47

    agent47 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanx for the idea, I have thought about it, but that doesn't help me check my processor and mobo, and the fact that nobody I know would be willing to borrow me their socket A mobo and processor, and I can't blame them...
    I've tried a reverse of that as you can see, swapping parts one by one on my machine, it still freezes. Now memtest (it's been over 12 hours for god's sake, i didn't read memtest86.com b4 running extended tests, on my spare Pentium II now) will tell me if it's my ram, and if it's not, then what's left is mobo and processor.
    But more tests before I fork out some dough for a mobo and processor (it should be cheap, Socket A mobos supporting PC2100, and probably an AthlonXP 1800/2000 are 3 years old now, I might even have to buy 2nd hand), cos if it hangs after i spend on that, and find that it's something else, I'm gonna kill myself.

    Not much time to test it out I am swamped with work, in a 2-3 weeks maybe. for now i'll just have to keep hitting Ctrl-S every few minutes.

    Thanx for all the help.
     
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