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[Solved] Freezes & BSODs Even After fresh Windows Install

RandomLee

Distinguished Member
Hello folks,

I’m having some PC issues and was hoping someone could help me fix them!

Last Friday I swapped an Asus HD 6770 for Gigabyte HD 7850. It seemed to work ok in Windows but crashed / froze in all games, benchmarks and when playing HD video. It would either crash to a black screen, or a green screen with dark green vertical lines. I tested it with the last 5 driver versions inc betas but had the same problems each time.

So since nothing else had been changed, I concluded that the new GPU was at fault and RMA’d it on Wednesday. I then put the HD 6770 back in, uninstalled 13.3 ATI drivers and then re-installed 13.1 or whatever the last non-beta was.

So after reverting everything back to how it was, I still get random freezes and BSODs when doing basic stuff like using Firefox, or even when the PC is idle, not just under 3D load as before.

I tried System Restore, Windows Repair, everything... but all with no luck so last night I re-installed Windows with nothing but mobo drivers and Firefox but the problem still persists! After anything from a few minutes to a couple of hours it will still freeze and either just hang on a unresponsive desktop, or a black screen where I can still move the mouse but nothing else.

I’ve ran Memtest86+, Chkdsk, and sf /scannow, all of which passed with no reported errors. Temps never get too high either.

It has only froze twice since re-installing Windows (once when trying to install Chrome and another randomly), but it didn’t BSOD so unfortunately no minidumps available to analyse at the moment. I may have a few minidumps from the previous Windows install, but I’ll have to wait until later to check as I’m now at work (in zombie mode after being up until 4am trying to sort this damn PC!).

Last thing I did was put the GPU in the other PCI-E socket, swapped the RAM into different sockets and tested all cables and connections. There has been no crashes or BSODs since then but it I’m still thinking something hardware-related isn’t right. I plan on running Intel Driver Update Utility when I get home, although Device Manager tells me all drivers are up to date.

The most frustrating thing is the has PC worked perfectly for over a year until I swapped out the GPU last week!

I know it’s hard to say without any dumps to analyse but does anyone have any idea what might be causing all this? Hope I haven’t fried my mobo!

Here are my system details:

Win 7 x64 SP1
Gigabyte Z68AP-D3 F2
i5 2500K
Arctic 7 Pro
Kingston HyperX Blu 8GB 1600MHz DDR3
Antec TruePower 550W
Asus HD 6770
Crucial M4 64GB SSD (OS drive)
Samsung F3 1TB HDD (media)
WD 160GB (programs)
BD-ROM
DVD-RW

Thanks!
 
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AndyStella

Established Member
Have you tried not only reseating the memory (RAM) but swapping it? Usually that is more the case than anything else. Try swapping it out even for a smaller amount and test it thoroughly (Not playing games but run a couple of applications, firefox about 10 tabs open) and see what happens.

Andy
 

RandomLee

Distinguished Member
Have you tried not only reseating the memory (RAM) but swapping it? Usually that is more the case than anything else. Try swapping it out even for a smaller amount and test it thoroughly (Not playing games but run a couple of applications, firefox about 10 tabs open) and see what happens.

Andy

I have tested both modules in different slots, but not individually as Memtest86+ had only just finished when I left for work this morning. As a pair they had no errors after 6 passes but I will test individual modules after work.

If it was just a case of buying either new RAM / mobo / PSU then I could live with that! I just don't want to throw cash at parts that aren't broken. Makes me wish I had a back-up rig for testing!
 

SamF

Established Member
If it has only happened since the GPU swapout, then that is the most logical place to start.

Make sure you have downloaded the most recent drivers direct from the ASUS website and not from the disk supplied.

Failing that, I would suggest it may be a memory issue and do as suggested above, even reducing to a single stick and swapping from one slot to the other.
 

AndyStella

Established Member
It just strikes me as weird, how the GPU would work, then after having another one in the PC it doesn't work, it could well be the GPU and the best thing would be to test the system witout a GPU in, and use on board graphics.
 

RandomLee

Distinguished Member
If it has only happened since the GPU swapout, then that is the most logical place to start.

Make sure you have downloaded the most recent drivers direct from the ASUS website and not from the disk supplied.

Failing that, I would suggest it may be a memory issue and do as suggested above, even reducing to a single stick and swapping from one slot to the other.

It just strikes me as weird, how the GPU would work, then after having another one in the PC it doesn't work, it could well be the GPU and the best thing would be to test the system witout a GPU in, and use on board graphics.

Yes, very strange that the PC worked fine with the 6770, but now it doesn't. Is it likely that a problem with one GPU (the returned 7850) could have caused problem with the 6770 that survived a re-install of Windows?

As for drivers, I tend to only use the ones from AMD website, or via Windows update. Never used the disk as they're always out of date by the time you buy the card! I'll try direct from Asus too thouugh.

I didn't think to check using onboard video, so will test that tonight too.

I've also ordered a Thermaltake Dr Power II Universal ATX Power Supply Tester (as recommended by Razor in the PC Gaming section), to at least rule out the PSU.

So, my plan of attack is as follows:

Memtest each RAM stick separately
Test on-board video
Run Intel Driver Update Utility
Run Driver Verifyer
I'll also test the mobo with only my OS drive connected.

EDIT: I'm tempted to order this and see if it really is the RAM at fault:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Kingston-Hy...ref=lh_ni_t?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE
 
Last edited:

AndyStella

Established Member
Yes, very strange that the PC worked fine with the 6770, but now it doesn't. Is it likely that a problem with one GPU (the returned 7850) could have caused problem with the 6770 that survived a re-install of Windows?

This could be an issue, but only if when you were swapping the GPU's you were a bit rough and damaged the motherboard or RAM (depending on how tightly compact your components are). There again, it could be an issue with the current GPU, it may have been damaged when replaced, and you have just had bad luck with 2 damaged GPU's (doubtful but I've seen stranger things happen!) but definitely check each stick of RAM and check to see if it freezes or BSOD's using on board graphics.

Andy
 

next010

Distinguished Member
Sounds like the PSU to me if the GPU itself wasn't defective.

The fact that system was crashing during windows install rules out drivers being part of the problem, Windows doesn't use AMD display drivers during this phase.

Leave everything in the bios at auto settings no manual memory settings or mild overclocks, overvolts etc.
 

RandomLee

Distinguished Member
Looks like it might be fixed :)

Got home from work yesterday and had a few BSODs and upon Googling one of them noticed a thread where someone had similar issues and was using a Crucial M4 SSD, like myself. Now I remember when I got it I had to update the firmware as once they'd reached 5400hrs use they were causing BSODs. So I downloaded the latest version and updated mine. PC has been running for around 18hrs now with no problems.... touch wood. Strange how that seems to have been the issue. I must have corrupted it some how when messing around with the graphics cards, and then the problem stuck even after the clean install of Windows. Anyway, I'm glad it seems to be sorted!

I'll still test the PSU later as the tester arrived earlier, and I'll keep the extra 8GB RAM too.

Thanks for the help folks :thumbsup:
 

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