Win XP highly unstable...

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Goofy Newfie

Posts: 199   +1
Win XP has me in fits!

* Threads merged by mod

I am running Win XP Pro as my O/S on my home computer. I have a Celeron 466MHZ with 192 MB SDRAM. I have to restart 2-3 times on average every time I start-up in the morning. The thing just freezes. It will then do the same several times during the, and sometimes during very untimely occasions. Is it because my system can't handle it? I know of people running PC's a lot less powerful than mine with no trouble. Also, the Windows auto -update is always asking my firewall (Zone Alarm) for permission to access the Internet. I have folowed directions at Tweak XP to disable this service, only to find that I lose my network connection (online via/cable ISP). I hate it knowing that an app on my PC can talk to Microsoft at will, without me having any control. Please, somebody help me!!


Posts: 704   +1
If you could post your full system specs it would be very helpful for us :)

Although your machine is slow it still should run xp. So, first thing you need to tell us is what types of programs your running at startup. Also, how far in the boot process does the computer go before wanting to restart?

It could be that a program your running is causing the trouble with rebooting. If so then go to the startup by typing msconfig in the run box and uncheck the programs one at a time to determine where your problem lies. But random lockups definitely sounds like a program you have running doesn't like XP

As for Windows Update, it needs to go to the Microsoft site to get the available updates needed. This is why it accesses the Microsoft site when a new update is available. You can turn the automatic update off and check Microsoft's site manually if you want to.

Hope this helps!!!

Goofy Newfie

Posts: 199   +1
My system specs

Intel Celeron 467MHZ
10.2 GB Western Digital UDMA66 @5400
2.1 GB Fujitsu
Intel 810 Series Chipset On-board sound & Graphics( I'm obviously not a gamer)

Goofy Newfie

Posts: 199   +1

At startup:
E-Trust EZAntivirus
Webshots Desktop
Zone Alarm 2.6.363

That's it, basically. I know about MSCONFIG, and use it regularly to block start-up items I don't like or use.

As for the Windows Updater, I tried to block it through the services freature in Administrator's Tools. While it was disabled, my network connection wouldn't work.

Are there any published sites that deal with software conflict issues arising from XP Pro?


Posts: 704   +1
As for your Windows Update problem just right click on My Computer and go to Automatic Update tab and click which way you want to update windows. I think you would want to do the manually update.

As for software sites, I don't know any right offhand, but I'll look around. Microsoft's site should have some information on your problem.


Posts: 1,006   +0
Here is a great MS link too

MS Support

Also, I know no one here would do this, but I have to ask, are you using a, shall we say, less than legit copy of XP. I only ask because I know people who have tried and had nothing but problems and experiance the same things you are.

Also try ace'ing Webshots and see if that helps.

One last thing, I don't remember the spec's, I believe you can go to MS site or and do a test of your system to see if it is XP compatable. If memory serves me, you can also do it from the installation disk from within windows itself.

Good luck, any more questions, just ask !! :)

Goofy Newfie

Posts: 199   +1
Thanks guys..

Thanks to you both for your help. I will try out your suggestions. Boeingfixer, yes, it's a legit copy, but I understand you asking. I think I may just upgrade my PC somewhat, and see if that is the problem.

Thanks again. I am really impressed with this forum. I will be checking it out regularly from now on.


Posts: 704   +1
One last thing you might want to try is simply reformatting and seeing if that makes any difference. I know it is a last second resort, but it might fix your problem. If not then you probably have a hardware issue. Believe me I know it is a pain to reinstall Windows, so don't if you don't want to, only if the problem becomes unbearable. :)

I'm glad your enjoying your experience with our forums here at 3DS!!!

I, along with the other guys and girls, hope you stick around! ;)

Goofy Newfie

Posts: 199   +1

As you may imagine, I would only choose to reinstall if there was no other option. :dead:
I think I will try the waters for a while yet.

Thanks again!
Take it out back and shot it. :)

Nah, j/k. Yes it sounds like you need to do some upgrading. It kind of sounds hardware related to me. It very well could be your mobo. I had similar problems with an Ultra ATA card, I ditched it and everything worked fine afterwards.

And yes I would agree that a complete reformat would be wise. Keep in mind that zone alarm is not exactly the best firewall program out there. BlackICE and some others might be another solution if indeed thats the culprit. XP has a built in firewall also. I use it and it seems to be working as well as any of the others I have used.


Posts: 287   +0
I think the reason you are not getting internet connection is because zone alarm is blocking something it shouldn't. Try disabling it when you disable the autoupdate thingy.

Zone Alarm seems to be quirky in winXP. Even though I permanently allow internet access to certain requests, when I restart, zone alarm will ask me if I want a certain application to have internet access.


Posts: 12   +0
Do you have ZA 3.x? Or an older version? I remember ZA having problems with XP a few months ago, but I don't know if it's still an issue with v3 or not.


Posts: 289   +0
XP pro (due to it's NT/2k roots) is very hardware "picky", while it will run on a very vanilla cel466, it won't perform well.
I assuming you upgraded from 98/se, probably the best choice for this system.
save the Xp for a all new component system, and you will find it runs very well.
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