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HELP!? System Hangs At Windows Splash Screen.

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by Miracus, Nov 28, 2009.

  1. Miracus

    Miracus New Member

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    Hi Guys,

    To cut a long story short, I built a PC for a friend and it runs fine when it actually boots though! All the parts are compatible and brand new but from day one after setup the system has giving the following symptoms:

    Symtoms & Actions taken:

    * Inconsistent hangs during Windows XP splash screen:

    - 80% of the time system hangs on cold startup (after 6-12 hours switched off).
    - 20% of the time system boots on cold startup (very unpredictable).
    - If system hangs, Blue loading bar passes roughly 6-8 times before stopping dead.
    - HDD stops loading and reboot is the only option.
    - The system can hang anywhere from 2 to 8 times upon cold boot before working.
    - Usually the system will continue to reboot and run fine once Windows has loaded.
    - Sometimes it boots fine without a hitch from cold.

    * Computer can work fine for a day or two with absolutely no problems making it extremely hard to troubleshoot:

    - Booting into Safemode and Diagnostics mode with minimal drivers seemed to work.
    But due to the length of time in which the problem can stay dormant it proved
    Difficult to tell.
    - Attempted a fresh install of Windows 7 64bit on an empty HDD with nothing
    installed and problem still persisted [Indicating a possible hardware fault].

    * Bootlogging the problem:
    - If system hangs, it hangs after loading the file "Mup.sys".
    - Google searches indicate that the file following "Mup.sys" is an AGP file.

    * Troubleshooting GPU:
    - Removed current GPU, Galaxy Low Power Geforce 9600 GT 512mb.
    - Replaced with Galaxy Geforce GTS 250 1GB.
    - System worked flawlessly for more than a dozen reboots and half dozen cold boots.
    - Reinstalled original GPU, system still worked flawlessly for over a day and a half
    again with over a dozen reboots and half dozen cold boots. ???? *Scratches Head*
    - On the morning of the second day without issues the first 3 cold boots locked up.
    - Before the 4th reboot I swapped to the GTS 250 again and Windows booted fine.
    - I switched the PC off and swapped back to the 9600 GT, STILL WORKED FINE!
    - Hair starts to pile up at my feet!!!
    - 9600 GT is still installed and system is running fine still.

    * Mobo Bios research:
    - In a last resort, I checked for possible Motherboard Bios updates. The latest bios
    available claims to fix "capture card display abnormal when install the PCI
    Express VGA".
    - Have yet to install the Bios because of the risk.

    Could this fix possibly be the answer to all my frustration?!

    The Computers Specs are below (do not confuse with my signature specs)

    MOBO: Foxconn P45A-S Socket 775
    CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E7500 2.93Ghz
    MEM: 4GB (2x2GB) Corsair CM2X2048-6400C5DHX (CL 5-5-5-18)
    GPU: Galaxy Low Power Geforce 9600 GT 512MB DDR3 256bit (Drivers Forceware 195.62)
    HDD: Western Digital Caviar Green SataII 500GB - WD5000AADS
    PSU: Cooler Master 460W M.No: RS0-460-PCAR-A3

    Any help would be HUGELY appreciated!!!

    ||
    ||
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    \/ These are my specs not the computer in question.
  2. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    the fact that it has issues with cold boots more than warm boots suggests power supply.

    The second most likely would be RAM (incorrectly set timings and voltages, or bad ram) - but that would normally crash the PC randomly after it had booted. Since it works fine after its booted, PSU goes back to #1 spot.

    looking down and seeing a cooler master as the PSU reinforces that opinion - they're cheap crap.


    I suggest replacing the PSU first of all.
    eidairaman1 says thanks.
  3. eidairaman1

    eidairaman1

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    Get a Corsair, Pc Power and Cooling, Antec, or Enermax Powersupply. Take ESD Precaution and then try Reseating all plug in boards, connectors, and ram. Reset the Bios by using the CMOS/Jumper or remove the battery (Read the manual on how to perform the procedure)
  4. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    corsair always gets my vote for PSU - a 400W corsair would be far superior to that 460W cooler master

    (its like comparing cars based on horsepower, wattage is only one of many factors when it comes to PSU's)
  5. Miracus

    Miracus New Member

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    I thought that too but how does it explain the more power hungry GPU (GTS 250 - requiring a 6-pin VGA power plug) running fine without any hitches and the less consuming 9600GT Low Power GPU (requiring no power plugs) crapping out.

    I will check the power supply just to cover my bases but it just doesn't add up. If it was the power supply I'd be more likely to see symptoms such as the computer locking up, on screen artifacts, loss of display or restarting under load bearing tasks as appose to booting problems.

    I had a faulty PSU on my Fiance's computer not long ago and those were the very symptoms, not to mention a very high pitched squeal too.

    I just got back from an afternoon out and cold booted it again with the 9600GT installed and it Hung me, I switched to the GTS 250 again and it booted straight away, 2nd time its done that.

    Now i'm going to leave the GTS 250 installed whilst switched off for a few hours and cold boot it later to see if I get a first time hang with it.

    I appreciate your advice guys.
  6. eidairaman1

    eidairaman1

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    ok the card you have may be junk then, either which way the 250 is the equiv to the 9800 series.
  7. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    because the PSU has more than one rail, and the load may be spread differently between the rails with the second card.

    if only the first rail was weak/overloaded, using a card that takes less power from the PCI-E slot and more from the 6 pin connector, could actually solve the problem.


    PSU is about the only thing that makes sense actually. ram, CPU, MB, HDD - all these cause random lockups and crashes. PSU's are the only things that CAN cause problems at boot, and not later
    due to how the capacitors work, they have a 'happy' temperature range - too hot OR too cold, and they give worse voltages - if its borderline to begin with, being cold from a cold boot could be enough to push it over the edge, but once its warmed up its fine.
    Miracus says thanks.
  8. Miracus

    Miracus New Member

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    I thought I might wait it out and see what results I got and I think it's fair to say that you nailed it on the head with your quote above about the 6-pin taking power strain off the PCI-E slot. I've had both cards swapped for over two weeks now and absolutely no issues have occurred.

    I believe your right cos the 9600 Low power GPU must sap just that little bit more (bit too much) from the PCI-E slot than that of the GT250 6-pin GPU, it's the only thing that makes sense.

    Thanks

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