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Game freezes in most games

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#1
Google avails me nothing in my diligent search for a solution to this problem.

Since I got my new week-old gaming PC I have been experiencing crippling freezes when I play any PC game except World of Warcraft. I have experienced these freezes in Halo 2 for Windows Vista, Crysis 2 (rare), TES IV Oblivion, Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2, and those are the only games I have played on it so far.

The freezes last 30 seconds to 2 minutes and are of intermittent and seemingly random frequency during gameplay. (4-10 minutes apart)

The first freeze is delayed for maybe 20 minutes after I start my first game up and then persists in its random fashion until I restart the computer.

My CPU sits at 30-40 degrees C during this whole process. It is an AMD Phenom II x4 840 with stock cooler. During the freezes, Task Manager reports that the CPU is almost idle.

My PSU is an adequate 500W Mushkin. It has only one 6-pin connector and my GTX 460 has two slots, so the second slot is connected to an included adapter to convert two molex to a 6-pin.

I strongly suspect that the problem here is related to the PSU or graphics card. I'd really appreciate any input and would be more than happy to answer questions. :nutkick:
 
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#2
I forgot to mention the following:-

-The freezes still display what was happening at the time of the freeze e.g. not a blank screen.

- I cannot alt-tab, control-alt-del or escape in any other fashion, but when I hold control-alt-del during the freeze, when the freeze concludes I am then displayed the [security options?] screen.
 
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#3
could be hard drive access from a background program

When it unfreezes does it carry on from where it froze or does it appear to keep going in the background?
 
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#5
How old is the PSU and what are it's specs?....Link to it if possible.

Try uninstalling the video drivers and reinstall them.

Test your memory with an app like Memtest.

I've seen more system freezes from a bad sound driver than anything else.....you may want to look in that direction as well.

Hope it helps. :)
 
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#6
If it's memory/CPU it would have just crashed, not continued.
If it's GPU it either would have CTD or crashed the system.
It doesn't sound like PSU either because I would expect it to fully lockup from a sudden surge/spike in power.

Based on the above I agree with Cheesy999. Probably something with the HDD and/or background software causing thrashing.
 
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#7
If it's memory/CPU it would have just crashed, not continued.
If it's GPU it either would have CTD or crashed the system.
It doesn't sound like PSU either because I would expect it to fully lockup from a sudden surge/spike in power.

Based on the above I agree with Cheesy999. Probably something with the HDD and/or background software causing thrashing.
launch the task manager and remove everything you don't need from the procceses tab that isn't needed by windows (basicly everything you don't need elevated privileges to get too) as well as disabling your A/V - you'll eventually get it through process of elimination.
 
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#8
This sounds like a failing HDD, though it could potentially also be some failing background program.

I've had something similar, my system would basically lock up for a couple of minutes.
I had this out of games too, however, and it would just lock up with random disk usage.

Things like resource monitor kept refreshing during that time, and reported a very low disk transfer speed, but high utilisation and giant peaks in the disk queue.

Edit: I succesfully RMA-ed my laptop, and they got me a new HDD, because it turned out it was broken.
 
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#9
This sounds like a failing HDD indeed.

I've had something similar, my system would basically lock up for a couple of minutes.
I had this out of games too, however, and it would just lock up with random disk usage.

Things like resource monitor kept refreshing during that time, and reported a very low disk transfer speed, but high utilisation and giant peaks in the disk queue.
Thanks for the input. I gather you guys think it's a HDD problem. I'll run a disk check.
 
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#10
Does your Antivirus check for updates once in awhile? In that case, set the installation of automatic updates on a lower frequency (once a day or so, rather than stuff like "pulse updates") or disable the automatic updating completely (doing it manually instead).
 
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#11
I have deleted and reinstalled my graphics card driver, and installed missing south bridge and sound drivers. I haven't yet run a disk check so I'll test crysis for a half hour and report back. I really appreciate your help guys and gals :)
 
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#12
This could be your anti-virus software. are you running microsoft security essentials by anychance?

try putting the game directories in the exemptions on your anti-virus then try running a game again
 
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#13
are you running a single or 2+ hard drives.

It's a fresh install of windows, and if your on a single hard drive and automatic updates are running it could be the fact your writing and reading 2 sets of data at once.

Wow would be an exception as it is designed to run with it's own updater running and it allows for other programs to be using a hard drive at the same time.

I think like everyone has stated it's a problem with the hard drive, but i don't suspect it's a failing one just yet. Failing hard drives will throw up boot problems and install problems as well. You may as well check it for peace of mind.

Personally i download the service pack for network installs, for windows, then install that immediately after an install. Then i turn off updates in all it's forms. I don't run an anti virus at all. I have a reasonable software firewall, and a hardware firewall on my router. And i can tell when i have a virus as i monitor all programs using task manager from the off. If something new appears then it gets googled. I'm also careful on the net, and don't download anything that i haven't read the comments on... I even kill firefox if something gets round the popup blocker in task manager. Using this method and firefox i've not had a virus in over 7 years, touch wood.


a simple test to see if it's updates is to play with your network cable unplugged. That way automatic updates will be off-line. If the games still freeze then you have to start doing a little program digging to find out whats using what on your system.

Also can you post a system spec and OS spec. TY
 
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#14
are you running a single or 2+ hard drives.

It's a fresh install of windows, and if your on a single hard drive and automatic updates are running it could be the fact your writing and reading 2 sets of data at once.

Wow would be an exception as it is designed to run with it's own updater running and it allows for other programs to be using a hard drive at the same time.

I think like everyone has stated it's a problem with the hard drive, but i don't suspect it's a failing one just yet. Failing hard drives will throw up boot problems and install problems as well. You may as well check it for peace of mind.

Personally i download the service pack for network installs, for windows, then install that immediately after an install. Then i turn off updates in all it's forms. I don't run an anti virus at all. I have a reasonable software firewall, and a hardware firewall on my router. And i can tell when i have a virus as i monitor all programs using task manager from the off. If something new appears then it gets googled. I'm also careful on the net, and don't download anything that i haven't read the comments on... I even kill firefox if something gets round the popup blocker in task manager. Using this method and firefox i've not had a virus in over 7 years, touch wood.


a simple test to see if it's updates is to play with your network cable unplugged. That way automatic updates will be off-line. If the games still freeze then you have to start doing a little program digging to find out whats using what on your system.

Also can you post a system spec and OS spec. TY
I have avira installed...its free and it lets me touch wood everywhere on the internet!