Strange freezes/lockups PSU?

By Sloppy998 ยท 21 replies
Apr 16, 2010
  1. Hey guys, got a problem for yall! Let me begin with my setup:

    9800 GX2 GPU
    Q9450 CPU
    ASUS Striker II extreme 790i
    DDR3 OCZ 1gb 1333 platinum series (2 sticks)
    Zalman fan
    900w akasa psu

    Now here's the probelm: The pc locks up anywhere from 10 seconds to 3 minutes. I've switched graphic cards, tried the ram individually and today replaced the motherboard - which made no difference whatsoever (probably should have tried tech-spot beforehand). I have also installed and reinstalled several different versions of windows on the system; the crashes take place as I'm installing and if i get it passed the installation it crashes soon after.

    It just freezes completely, keyboard and mouse unresponsive, no blue screen or anything, just a freeze (mouse doesnt move etc).

    Any help is much appreciated! Thnx
  2. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    Are all settings on your system at stock?

    Have you tried running on a different PSU?
  3. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    Pretty much all my settings are default. i forgot to mention one thing though - which is why i thought it was the motherboard - i gave my pc a hoover, then as soon as i plugged it back in it started freezing. I'm guessing using the hoover on a pc isnt the wisest thing to do.

    I don't have a PSU powerful enough to take my card, maybe i can switch the card and supply with something.

    Let me know what you think about the hoover and what not, i'll get on changing my GPU and PSU around with another computers and let you know what happens.

  4. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    Then that's where the problem basically is. Ensure that you're running at least 650W with sufficient amperage on the 12V rails.

    I personally vacuum my system. Have not found it problematic.

    BTW, exactly what PSU are you using? Please post the specs.
  5. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Where do you get power supplies as a possibility? Random guess by elimination?
    Insufficient power supplies should only come into effect when your actually using your graphics card, in 2D mode power shouldn't really be a problem unless your running something similar to one of those emachine power supplies. Also, power issues would usually just blue screen.
  6. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    Actually I see your point. You're also right about the elimination part.

    @ Sloppy998 - Try running your system with just a single stick of memory and check if the problem occurs. Use memtest86+ to ensure you don't have any RAM issues.
  7. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    I'm having a hard time locating a PSU capable of running my mobo lol. I've again tried the sticks of RAM individually; damn thing locks up after about a minute. Graphics card definitely isn't the issue now, as i have tried three. I'm left with the PSU, CPU... or the fan. I reapplied the cooling stuff to my CPU and applied the fan, no change. I guess there is nothing i can do until i can get a PSU over here.

    I'm also guessing that if it locks up with a different PSU, it's definately my CPU/fan? Zalman seems to be spinning fine however.

    One thing i noticed was that my computer is magnetized for some reason - not sure if that has anything to do with the problem but i'll check to make sure it's still magnetic tomorrow.

    Could my hard drive cause the problems i'm experiencing? My optical drive, network card and sound card are not connected.

    Thnx guys :)
  8. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    Yeah random guess of elimination :) - I don't have that much experience with these kinds of problems, i thought maybe if my board wasn't getting a constant supply of power it could cause lock ups. I'm using a 900w PSU, so power should definitely not be an issue (i'm running bare-bones anyway).

    Interesting about the blue screen which i didn't know. So in your opinion the only thing left is my fan and CPU?

  9. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    Have you tried running memtest?
  10. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    Memory (as Rit rightfully pointed out again) + HDD both need to be thoroughly tested.

    Please download memtest, and let it run for minimum of 8 passes, if it finds some errors you then need to isolate the troubling module by running it on individual modules for same number of passes. Be warned that, there are times when memtest is unable to find errors; also you need to ensure that RAM is running at its designed timings/settings & voltage.

    To check HDD you need to download diagnostic tool from your HDD's manufacturer's site.
  11. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

  12. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    k guys, doesn't look good. Using memtest86+ and my PC freezes on the first pass every time at around 6-7%. Not even a minute and its frozen. I'm gonna test the HDD, however i have a sneaky feeling its just going to freeze up.
  13. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    I am assuming you have two 1GB sticks. Can you try to run memtest on individual sticks to see whether that helps.
  14. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    Running the first stick now - it's over 60% first pass. This is kinda weird :D

    EDIT: First stick froze 49% second pass. EDIT: I've ran it again, i'm on fourth pass on stick one, no freezes atm.
    EDIT: Second stick froze on 0% then i ran again, froze on 65%. Third attempt freeze at 3%. Fourth attempt freeze at 70%
  15. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    I'm going to try to test the HDD, however i don't think i can get onto my desktop (no longer than a minute anyway) without it freezing. Unless there's a program similar to the memtest86+ iso.
  16. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    You can also download a bootable HDD utility / diagnostic tool from Partition Wizard Site.

    Also please confirm one more thing, i.e. are you running the RAM on its designed/default timings/voltage? If so, then these freezes mean you got issues with RAM.
  17. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    It's a bit strange. Iv'e ran memtest on the 'first' stick of ram a second time, it's still running and it's done eight passes. I'm gonna boot up my pc and see what happens.


    EDIT: Here's the thing that gets me though - i have been running the same timings/voltages for around 2 years. I vacuum my pc, then it starts freezing. I don't believe in coincidences like that, it's left me a little baffled. Also before when booting my pc up using individual ram, it froze both times... and memtest isnt freezing up on one stick of RAM.

    Just booted up the PC using the 'good' stick of RAM. It's frozen within a few seconds of hitting windows. I'm gonna mess around with timings now.
  18. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    Such things can happen any time, few months back my PC had a BSOD while watching a vide on MP-HC; initially I didn't gave it much importance, but when it happened couple of more times while doing not very intensive stuff, I went through the minidumps; and they pointed at probable hardware issues, hence, when all said and done it turned out that one of the RAM modules was causing the issues.

    So really, things can happen at any time without giving you much warning.
  19. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    Honestly im a bit of a noob when it comes to timings. I realized as im using another board all the timings are set to auto. My old mobo had different timings - both are freezing in the exact same way. In your opinion is it still a possible RAM issue?

    As i said before i booted the PC up with the piece of RAM that passed MEMtest but it's still freezing as soon as it hits windows, sometimes before.

    How do you recommend i proceed?

  20. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    Probability is as Asus Boards are very picky about the RAM they work with (ASUS usually roll out a Qualified Vendors List with product details etc. for each board); therefore, RAM timings or compatibility can be a major issue.

    QVL for your board is given here.

    I just went through that list (which is unusually short anyway), and unfortunately your OCZ is not listed in it. Therefore, logical step forward would be to get your RAM modules replaced with the supported one according to this list.
  21. Sloppy998

    Sloppy998 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    Thanks for the help Arch,

    Just to confirm you know i have the same problem using a different motherboard - Asus P5E3 Pro Intel X48 (Socket 775) DDR3 Motherboard. Both motherboards show same freezes. I am going to put my old motherboard (Striker II) back into my pc and maybe buy some new RAM. Problem is, the list showing the RAM (for Strike II) is a few years old right? Would it be hard for me to get those RAM modules nowadays?
  22. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    Probably, however, one way to overcome this can be to exactly match listed RAM's specifications with the available RAM. But keeping in mind that these are Asus boards I will keep my fingers crossed till things actually work out.
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