Windows XP Keeps Freezing On Startup

By TheJediSlayer · 7 replies
Nov 11, 2008
  1. Hello,

    My Windows XP installation has recently started to freeze and I can’t seem to fix the problem. The problem starts at boot up where the splash screen can sometimes freeze, or even when I get to my desktop the entire system freezes, including the mouse cursor.

    I think I can rule out safely that it’s not a hardware issue as my Windows Vista installation (Installed on the same HDD.) does not freeze at boot up/the splash screen.

    Things I've tried:

    I’ve attempted to fix the problem by doing a CD Disk cleanup, turning off all startup items in MSCONFIG, doing an error-checking on Windows XP through my Windows XP disk, and cleaning all temporary files in all user accounts through (C://documents and settings/user/local settings/temp)

    Computer specs:

    Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo CPU E8400 @ 3.00GHz (2 CPUs)
    Memory: 4 GB
    Hard Drive: 500 GB
    Video Card: EVGA NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GX2 Superclocked Edition
    Monitor: SyncMaster 226BW(Analog)
    Sound Card: SoundMAX HD Audio
    Keyboard: USB Root Hub
    Mouse: USB Root Hub/optical mouse
    PSU: Corsair 750w
    Operating System: Windows XP SP2
    Motherboard: Asus P5K-E WiFi-AP


    I'm about to try a Windows XP recovery installation through my XP disk. As shown, I have not updated my XP installation to SP3, it is still at SP2. The last few things I did was install ZoneAlarm and the game called F.E.A.R. and that was before this freezing issue arose. Oh, and as shown, I also don't believe it to be a PSU problem as my Corsair is a 750w PSU.

    Thanks for any help,



    Now, out of the blue, my Vista installation has also started to randomly freeze, too. It hasn't frozen to the point where it entirely freezes, but it does freeze the OS for a few seconds before returning to normal. So, a hardware issue possibly back in the game? = ( I've done some of my own researching and found out that it's probably a motherboard issue, but how to go about checking for a damaged motherboard in this situation?

    Thanks again.
  2. TheJediSlayer

    TheJediSlayer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 164

    I disassembled my computer to check for any hardware problems, cleaned it out, and checked to make sure no screws, etc were touching the motherboard itself, and everything checks out just fine. Nothing, as far as I could see, was physically wrong with the boards.

    Now, the XP install likes to go to the blue screen of death with an IRQC_non-equal-or-equal (Not exact) message. Windows Vista still continues to work.
  3. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

  4. TheJediSlayer

    TheJediSlayer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 164


    I did the first test, the one for the H.D.D., and both test came out just fine for it. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to get around to the memory test, yet.

    Anyways, an idea popped up that I thought was worth discussing in regards to this. My graphics card has been messing up on me a lot over the past month and a half. At first I'd turn the computer on only to have the graphics card still making the big fan noise that it makes right before it starts up and never coming on, just sitting there basically making a big fan sound. There doesn't seem to be any physical damage to the card that I can tell, but I can't be for sure.

    I did a test to see what would happen by switching the normal graphics card I use (One above) with another one I have and when I swapped them the computer worked just fine, except for some odd reason I couldn't use my mouse or keyboard during bootup to select an OS. From what I could tell, it looked like everything was fine without the normal graphics card, so could this be the issue to the discussion above? That being why XP keeps freezing, sometimes displaying blue screen of death, or even Vista lagging at points.


  5. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Asus P5K-E WiFi-AP

    Last updated bios revision 2008/10/09 1202

    Hmm, I checked the Bios history, but nothing mentioned about lock ups
    I wonder what your Bios revision is?

    I think your Video card should be removed, and high compressed air put through it (sometimes dust can be a factor too)
  6. TheJediSlayer

    TheJediSlayer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 164


    It's been along time since I last posted a reply to you guys for my issue, so sorry about that; was waiting for an RMA return. Anyways, I switched my graphics card with an entirely different graphics card and immediately upon entering into WinXP (With new GPU installed) it went entirely nuts and showed the almighty BSoD. I tried Vista then and Vista worked perfectly fine, except for the few occasional freezes, there was no BSoD issue or a complete freeze.

    I just ran Memtest, kimsland, for about a pass so far and thus far it reports back no errors, but I will be sure to post the final results when it passes pass number 7. As stated before, I already ran a H.D.D. test with the tool provided above and everything checked out just fine, no errors.

    Again, the BSoD crashes are localized to only WinXP it seems and Vista sometimes freezes for moment, but that could just be something entirely diff. I'll continue to update you guy's if I find out anything new...

    Again, any help is much appreciated.



    P.S. If nothing turns up on the Memetest, then I'll enter BIOS and get the BIOS revision I have.
  7. TheJediSlayer

    TheJediSlayer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 164


    Alright, I got you the BIOS information you need:

    BIOS Type: AMI
    BIOS Date: March 21st 2008
    BIOS ID: 65-1013-000001-00101111-032108-Bearlake-A0812001
    BIOS OEM: BIOS Date: 03/21/08 09:56:22 Ver: 08.00.12 - 1013
    Chipset: Intel 29C0 rev 2
    SuperIO: Unknown
    Manufacturer: ASUSTeK Computer INC.
    Motherboard: P5K-E


    I let Memtest run past the recommended 7th pass all the way up until the 12th pass and absolutely no errors at all the entire night were recorded.

    Safemode Issue:

    For the sake of asking for an eventlog from Windows XP, don’t at this point. My Windows XP is no longer accepting my password through safe mode and anytime I login to Windows XP normally, as you know, it just freezes or gives me the wonderful BSoD.

    Screenshots/BIOS Agent Plus:

    I do know about the IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers issue that is displayed here. It was a result of my error when not putting the cable back into its right slot, got to get on that, or just switch it up in configuration. The problem, however, did NOT start happening after I made this mistake.
  8. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Hey your back, and with another card as well

    Well, I have a few posts to get through and yours is number 1, so I may be brief.

    Regarding Safe mode password
    Well, there's two options there, reset Administrator password in normal mode (loggged in with an Administrator account, more info here:
    Or if you can't do that, then just download the live bootable Xp password viewer CD from here:

    Now that Bios.
    Really updating the Bios is always a last resort
    But according to the dates, yours is not the newest
    Really updating the Bios should be done before installing Windows (at all) as it may in fact cause more issues, and we don't want that ;) (well it will be the last resort though)

    So here's the 2 new ideas:
    1. Reset Bios (or if you prefer "cmos") from pressing the key (usually DEL or F2 or whatever key it states) on your computer startup
    Locate setup "defaults" and enable it, then save and exit
    2. Clean out all old Video drivers, here's how:
    1. Uninstall the drivers from Add/Remove programs in the Control Panel of Windows.
    2. Restart the computer.
    3. Run Driver Sweeper*, select the drivers that you have uninstalled and click Clean button.
    4. Install the new drivers.

    * For Windows Vista users, please run Driver Sweeper in administrator mode.
    Right mouse click Driver Sweeper shortcut and click Run as administrator.

    To download and install Driver Sweeper, please click HERE. (direct link)
    Save DriverSweeper_1.5.5-setup-[].exe file on the hard disk.
    Run DriverSweeper_1.5.5-setup-[].exe

    Please get back to me once done.
    By the way, many Antiviruses and personal firewalls can cause undesired issues too. So consider removing them fully (to test) This would help too
    I'd even say run CCleaner once all done

    Hear back from you in 3 weeks then :grinthumb :)
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