Sign in to follow this  
shpladoink

my computron is spazzing D:

Recommended Posts

Last night I awoke to find that my computer had restarted itself, and recovered from a "serious error." I was downloading a torrent, but I think that's the only thing that was running at the time.

It restarted itself again just now, after I printed an image in photoshop. Same "serious error recovery" message. I'm running a virus scan, but no previous virus scans have caught anything. I know this is all rather vague information, but I have nothing to go by to find the problem. Any ideas of where to start?

Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It could be any number of things

Likely faulty ram, or your video card overloading. I've never had bad RAM, but my S3 Savage2000 would overload and reboot the computer, even it it wasn't really anything graphics-related. I tried using BitTorrent 3.2something on my 233 MHz Pentium II, and that would kill my computer after a few MB. When it started back up, Windows attributed the problem to my S3 card and its shitty drivers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well this machine is only about 6 months old, but I was having some video card issues a few months back. Or at least I'm pretty sure it was the video card. Sometimes I would just stop getting video output to the monitor, but things like music continued to play. No video-intensive applications were running then either. At that point I would have to restart it, but I don't remember it ever restarting itself before now.

All of the temperatures seem reasonable, although the cpu temp monitor has always been a bit off, telling me that it's running at 11ºc.

Windows doesn't seem to like telling me what is wrong when things like this happen :\

I tried looking at the error dump files or whatever, but it's all gibberish to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That serious error message never tells anybody anything.

From your description, it sounds like a bad power supply, bad vid card, spyware, or numerous other things.

ie need more specifics

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That serious error message never tells anybody anything.

From your description, it sounds like a bad power supply, bad vid card, spyware, or numerous other things.

ie need more specifics

Hey, I'd love to have more specifics too! I checked out Plumber's link (that sounds like a joint problem...) and found none of the files that microsoft suggests might be a problem.

I'm running adaware and spybot to see if those pull anything. Symantec caught nothing as usual. It may be some hardware problem as several of you are suggesting :[

edit: and now it is telling me that my wifi connection is gone, but IT IS NOT TRUE BECAUSE I AM POSTING ON THE INTERNET

unless it is MAGICAL INTERNET DUN DUN DUN

seriously there is some shit going on in this computer and i want to figure it out >:[

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One big tip: Windows XP doesn't bluescreen by default, but restarts and tells you about the serious error it saw and did nothing about.

You can enable BSoDs again though, and it's quite easy.

Right-click My Computer > Properties > Advanced > Settings button under Startup and Recovery > Uncheck Automatically Restart under System Failure.

Wait for it to happen again, and pay close attention to the following items:

1) The STOPcode itself(Usually in the form 0x000000XX)

2) The error message displayed in ALL_CAPS_WITH_UNDERSCORES

3) Filenames being mentioned

Using these three things, you can usually identify the issue at hand, the cause, and the possible solution.

http://support.microsoft.com/search/?adv=1 should help you search, otherwise there's Google. Search for the STOPcode, don't include all the other stuff. You'll most likely get several pages of KB articles, and you can use the rest of the info for filtering.

And if all else fails there's Google. It often helps to search for the STOPcode in the form 0xXX instead of 0x000000XX though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
did the error only happen once?

It happened a few times the week I got the computer, then it went a few months without any serious issues. They have come back now apparently, though I haven't again seen the "no screen" problem yet.

Thanks Smoke, I changed that setting. I guess we'll see what happens next time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, I am back :[

The bluescreen showed up as soon as I started my computer this time. Well, within 5 minutes. "An attempt was made to write to read-only memory."

The error message traced the problem to vsdatant.sys, which is a component of ZoneAlarm. I usually turn this off because it has been causing other non-system-crashing errors before, but I haven't uninstalled it for some reason. I'm about to do that now, as soon as my file backup dvd finishes burning (just in case).

I got the numbers from the BSoD, as well as the error signature once I restarted. I can post those numbers if anyone thinks they can help me with it, but since it says it's narrowed the problem down to a file, I'll try uninstalling ZA first and see if that takes care of things for now.

edit 1: ...okay I uninstalled ZA, but now my Symantec antivirus "can't find the scan engine". Something fucked up my antivirus, which leads me to believe that something else is also causing a problem. What to do?

edit 2: uninstalled, then reinstalled antivirus software. seems to be running okay now. I'll post if I get the restart errors again. Thanks for the help, guys.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like the least hassle way would be a reformat.

Seriously, ditch ZoneAlarm and Norton. They cause more problems than they solve, and also cause a lot of scaremongering.

Get AVG and use only the windows firewall. Thats all I have ever used.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Get the fuck away from Norton. It is a enormous system hog, and it caused me nothing but trouble for the short time i used it.

Go find NOD32. It has a free trial that lasts a good while, and I have a crack if you want it. It is also very light on system resources.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, I got rid of ZA and am using Windows Firewall and a reinstalled Norton. I'd try the antivirus software you suggested, but symantec hasn't caused any problems for my system prior to this, and I don't think it was the cause of this problem. I don't want to risk letting any other issues arise by experimenting with new antivirus stuff at least until I get this figured out.

Anyway, I got a different BSoD this time, which is DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL

I did a quick search, and a few existing threads talked about it being a possible overheating or RAM problem. Again, my system is running at a decent temperature as far as I know, but then I noticed that these system errors only seem to occur when I've got Bittorrent open and downloading things. This leads me to believe that Bittorrent is doing things in memory that it should not be doing. At the time of this last crash, I also had Photoshop open, so it was probably using a decent amount of RAM.

One of the threads suggested http://www.memtest86.com/ to check the memory for problems, so I'll probably do that tomorrow and see what it comes up with. I think my ram just doesn't like bittorrent.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Get AVG and use only the windows firewall.

Yeah, though screw the Windows Firewall, that will only annoy you.

Also, does your computer give you any beep code, because if it does you can look that up? Sounds retarded, but I fixed a few comps that way.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yeah, though screw the Windows Firewall, that will only annoy you.

Also, does your computer give you any beep code, because if it does you can look that up? Sounds retarded, but I fixed a few comps that way.

I remember it beeping twice upon startup after an error a while ago, but otherwise no. It usually starts up fine after the system errors. The only change is in some programs that claim that my "system configuration" has changed after the error, so they need to be re-activated with the serial number. Which is annoying.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How to diagnose bad RAM

Does your computer emit endless beeps during bootup? Does your PC crash for no apparent reason at random intervals? Or you get blue screens of death with errors such as IRQL_Less_or_Not_Equal? If so, then it is very likely that there is a problem with your computers memory (RAM).

Common symptoms of bad ram

There are many indicators of bad memory, but the most common ones are:

* Computer not booting at all, beeping endlessly. When this happens all you can do is replace the RAM by trying another stick. You wont be able to use any ram diagnostic software in this instance.

* Distorted graphics on the screen. However it is possible this can be video card related.

* Blue screens of death during the installation of Windows XP or Windows 2000. This is an obvious sign of faulty RAM.

* Crashes or blue screens during normal operation of the system (emails, web surfing etc.)

* Crashes during memory intensive tasks such as using Photoshop, playing 3d games etc..

Your ram is toast.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
How to diagnose bad RAM

Does your computer emit endless beeps during bootup? Does your PC crash for no apparent reason at random intervals? Or you get blue screens of death with errors such as IRQL_Less_or_Not_Equal? If so, then it is very likely that there is a problem with your computers memory (RAM).

Common symptoms of bad ram

There are many indicators of bad memory, but the most common ones are:

* Computer not booting at all, beeping endlessly. When this happens all you can do is replace the RAM by trying another stick. You wont be able to use any ram diagnostic software in this instance.

* Distorted graphics on the screen. However it is possible this can be video card related.

* Blue screens of death during the installation of Windows XP or Windows 2000. This is an obvious sign of faulty RAM.

* Crashes or blue screens during normal operation of the system (emails, web surfing etc.)

* Crashes during memory intensive tasks such as using Photoshop, playing 3d games etc..

Your ram is toast.

Yeah, that is what I was guessing. Last few comps I diagnosed using beep code had ram problems. See if you can find the manual for your motherboard (online or off) and see what the beep code says about two beeps. Also try replacing the ram (hopefully you have some extra or somebody to borrow some from).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

as i said, i haven't had the two beep problem in months, though, so that would be irrelevant.

and i seem to have narrowed the restart errors down to bitcomet. i left the machine on last night while downloading torrents, and i woke up to a black screen that would not come back to life. then, when i restarted, i couldn't click my profile from the initial windows screen. a second restart brought it back to normal, but i had to re-initialize photoshop again. what a pizzain in the bizzutt.

also i don't know exactly how to use that memtest program, despite reading the documentationisms. how exactly does it work, and can i boot it from a cd instead of a floppy, which i do not have?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, there should be bootable ISOs downloadable at the memtest86 site. They're not that big, take maybe a couple seconds to burn to a CD and run automatically on boot.

A full test takes about half an hour.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just as a warning: I had a similar problem with my own computer a year ago. It seemed like it was the RAM, since it showed all the symptoms of bad RAM. I even ran memtest, which said the RAM was bad. However, it wasn't the RAM, the RAM was fine. Turns out that the motherboard itself was going bad. When the motherboard goes bad, it can exhibit the symptoms of other hardware issues. Just wanted to throw that out there. Test the RAM first, see if it comes up as bad. If it does, replace it. If that doesn't work, my guess would be you either have a bad power supply or a bad motherboard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this