Computer not Starting up

By Hakkyjr ยท 6 replies
Aug 13, 2009
  1. Hi.

    I'm new to techspots, trying to find solutions to problems i've been having with my computer as of lately.

    My computer has been freezing for the past 3-4 weeks. I've installed different versions of windows a gazillion times, but maybe after 1 day (or even right when it's installed) windows freezes. When i restarted my computer it kept freezing when starting up getting the windows icon, or it would freeze right when it entered windows. Nothing i could do but restart. I restarted so many times i can't count, and maybe 1 in 20 or 30 tries windows would work properly only to freeze a few hours later.
    When windows worked i could play games that need a beefy pc, so it couldn't have been a problem with processing or graphics card or in that direction.

    My specs are:

    P5E3 motherboard
    2gb dd3 ram
    ati radeon 4870
    700 megawats psu
    2x 250 7200 rpm sata hard drives.

    Today i reinstalled another version of windows and deleted everything. Previous installations i kept my e and d drives and installed windows on the c drive, but i thought there might be a glitch/virus/bug on my other drives which caused windows to crash/freeze. Anyways xp worked fine and everything when installed, all software was being installed and then when i was installing a game it crashed again.
    This time i tried restarting another 10 times, nothing happening, getting a black screen after windows startup icon. Then i restart again, and nothing happens.
    Absolutely nothing, i can hear my hard drives running, fans are going full speed and all lights are green on the motherboard.

    Can anyone help with solving this problem? I'm thinking it has to be my motherboard. The freezes have been totally random, and can't be due to overheating since i've checked temperatures many times and could run demanding games for hours when windows worked. Besides that, it could freeze when randomly browsing the internet or even doing nothing.

    A few months ago i did get a new fan, a biggy (scythe mine). I had trouble reaching the push pins with my big fingers and might have pushed a little hard. Could this possibly have created electrical malfunctions in the motherboard.
    I'm assuming i'll have to get some new hardware, but i don't want to spend money on parts that i'm not sure will repair my computer.

    I hope someone can give me some ideas. Thanks in advance.
    Kaspar from Holland.
  2. snowchick7669

    snowchick7669 TS Maniac Posts: 660

    Hi and welcome to TS.

    My first suspect would be bad RAM, due to the random freezes and then deterioration to it actually not POSTing.

    You can run through these steps here, to see if it brings any life into your machine. Or if you are comfortable, try removing both sticks of RAM and cleaning the contacts with a pencil eraser then reslotting them.

    If you have no luck, then try using the rule of elimination on the RAM by taking one stick out and testing it with the remaining and vice versa. Sometimes it is just one stick of bad RAM other then both of them going at the same time
  3. Hakkyjr

    Hakkyjr TS Rookie Topic Starter

    hey there and thanks for replying so fast. Never had that before.

    I'll get to it right now considering i really want my pc fixed :)

    Why would it be the ram if i may ask? Why would ram cause random freezes? and i never had problems with running anything when it worked.

    I'll get back soon with the results of switching ram and cleaning it with an eraser.
  4. snowchick7669

    snowchick7669 TS Maniac Posts: 660

    Just from the nature of the freezing, in my experience it would be wise to look at the RAM first. Basically the best way to describe it is that the RAM carries instructions from the CPU when you ask the computer to do specific tasks. It's sort of like the transport system between components, not just the CPU. So if there is memory corruption in the RAM then you may not see it all the time, and it may not be in a specific pattern. But everytime something addresses the bad memory then the computer hangs/plays silly. It's usually random in some cases, or whenever you are using a large amount of RAM (more likely to hit bad spots).

    I've had bad RAM cause some interesting problems including horrible graphical issues. It just pays to check it out, its rather common :)

    Hope it answers your question, didn't want to use technical jargon its all very boring for a Friday :p
  5. Hakkyjr

    Hakkyjr TS Rookie Topic Starter


    I cleaned both sticks of ram with an eraser and now windows started up. I cleaned the golden strips on the ram. Put them both back in before trying the elimination method but i didn't have to do that.

    Now windows started up in one go and didn't hang on the black screen after the windows icon. I guess now i'll just have to go about doing normal things on my pc to check if it freezes again or not. Any ideas on how to check if that is solved?

    Thanks for the help, you're awesome. I was getting depressed with all this freezing but hopefully we can solve that if it hasn't been solved yet.

    Now that you say what ram actually specifically does it makes sense. Sometimes when the freezing occured i did get bizarre rainbow coloured blocks when it froze.
  6. Hakkyjr

    Hakkyjr TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Oh and please do use jargon, i am eager to learn everything about computers. Since i was small i've been wanting to be a computer expert, but instead i choose to study environmental sciences at university :p
    But there's still time enough, considering i'm only 20.
  7. snowchick7669

    snowchick7669 TS Maniac Posts: 660

    That's good to hear we got it working :)

    You could try actually stress testing your RAM to see if there is some corruption. That would be the best indicator if your memory is dodgy or if the computer was just bumped and the contacts slipped orrrr got dusty.

    Run through this tutorial for using a tool called memtest. Leave it running on your machine for at least 7 passes, most people leave this test running overnight to get the best results.

    You can find a few articles on explaining the different jobs of components try this one here and also this one

    Everyone has a different way of describing, but it knuckles down to being the same at the end. Have fun :D

    Oh and I'm 19 so I guess there is hope for me too! Haha
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