How to Uncover Why Your Windows PC Crashed
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Fatal error: the system has become unbalanced or is busy,” it says. “Enter to go back to Windows or push Control-Alt-Delete to restart your PC. If you do this you will lose every unsaved information in every open application.”
You have immediately been struck by the Blue display of Death. Any person who uses Microsoft Windows will be recognizable with this. What can you do? More significantly, how can you prevent it from happening?
All motherboard is complete with a range of chipset settings that are determined in the factory. A common method to access these settings is to press the F2 or delete button during the first only some seconds of a boot-up.
Once inside the BIOS, huge care should be taken. It is a good quality thought to write down on a piece of paper all the settings that appear on the monitor. That way, if you change something and the PC becomes more unstable, you will know what settings to revert to.
An ordinary BIOS error concerns the CAS latency. This refers to the Ram. Older EDO (unlimited data out) Ram has a CAS latency of 3. Newer SDRAM has a CAS latency of 2. Setting the incorrect figure can cause the Ram to lock up and freeze the computer’s display. Microsoft Windows is improved at allocating IRQ information than any BIOS. If likely set the IRQ information to Auto in the BIOS. This will allow Windows to allocate the IRQ information (make sure the BIOS setting for Plug and Play OS is switched to ‘yes’ to allow Windows to do this.).
Hard Disk Drives
Past few weeks, the information on a hard disk drive starts to become piecemeal or fragmented. It is a good quality thought to defragment the hard disk each week or so, to avoid the disk from causing a screen freeze. Go to
* Start-Programs-Accessories-System Tools-Disk Defragmenter
This will start the process. You will be unable to write data to the hard drive (to save it) while the disk is defragmenting, so it is a good quality thought to schedule the process for a stage of inactivity using the Task Scheduler.
Task Scheduler should be one of the tiny icons on the bottom right of the Windows opening page (the desktop).
Some lockups and screen freezes caused by hard disk troubles can be solved by reducing the read-ahead optimization. This can be accustomed to going to
* Start-Settings-Control Panel-System Icon-Performance-File System-Hard Disk.
Hard disks will slow down and crash if they are too complete. Does housekeeping on your hard drive every few months and free several spaces on it? Open the Windows folder on the C drive and discover the Temporary Internet Files folder. Delete the contents (not the folder) can free a bunch of space.
Clear the Recycle Bin each week to free extra space. Hard disk drives should be scanned each week for errors or bad sectors. Go to
* Start-Programs-Accessories-System Tools-ScanDisk
Otherwise, allocate the Task Scheduler to perform this operation at night when the PC is not in use.
The numeral one cause why Windows crashes is a hardware conflict. All hardware devices communicate to other devices through an interrupt request channel (IRQ). These are theoretical to be unique for every device.
For instance, a printer typically connects internally on IRQ 7. The keyboard typically uses IRQ 1 and the floppy disk drive IRQ 6. Every device will try to control a single IRQ for itself.
If there is a bundle of devices, or if they are not installed correctly, two of them may end up sharing a similar IRQ digit. When the user tries to use both devices at a similar time, a crash can happen. The way to check if your PC has a hardware conflict is through the following direction:
* Start-Settings-Control Panel-System-Device Manager.
Frequently if a device has a difficulty a yellow ‘!’ appears after that to its description in the Device Manager. Highlight PC (in the Device Manager) and push Properties to see the IRQ information used by your PC. If the IRQ digit appears two times, two devices may be using it.
From time to time a device might share an IRQ with something described as ‘IRQ holder for PCI steering’. This can be ignored. The most excellent way to fix this difficulty is to remove the difficulty device and reinstall it.
Sometimes you may have to discover more fresh drivers on the internet to make the device function properly. A good quality resource is www.driverguide.com. If the device is a soundcard or a modem, it can often be fixed by moving it to a dissimilar slot on the motherboard (be alert about opening your PC, as you may cancel the warranty).
When working inside a PC you should switch it off, unplug the mains lead and touch an unpainted metal surface to discharge any static electrical energy.
To be fair to Microsoft, the difficulty with IRQ information is not of its making. It is an inheritance difficulty going back to the first PC designs using the IBM 8086 chip. Primarily there were just eight IRQs. Nowadays there are 16 IRQs in a PC. It is simple to run out of them. There are plans to increase the numeral of IRQs in future designs.
Ram (random-access memory) troubles might bring on the blue screen of death with a note saying Fatal Exception Error. A fatal error indicates serious hardware trouble. Sometimes it may mean a part is damaged and will require replacing.
But a fatal error caused by Ram might be caused by a difference of chips. For instance, mixing 70-nanosecond (70ns) Ram with 60ns Ram will typically force the PC to run the entire Ram at a slower speed. This will often crash the device if the Ram is overworked.
One method around this trouble is to enter the BIOS settings and increase the wait state of the Ram. This can make it more stable. Another method to troubleshoot a suspected Ram trouble is to reorganize the Ram chips on the motherboard or take some of them out. Then try to replicate the circumstances that caused the crash. When handling Ram try not to touch the gold connections, as they can be simply damaged.
Parity error messages also pass on to Ram. Modern Ram chips are each parity (ECC) or non-parity (non-ECC). It is best not to mix the two types, as this can be a cause of difficulty. EMM386 error messages pass on to memory troubles but may not be connected to bad Ram. This could be due to free memory troubles often connected to old Dos-based programmes.
Fatal OE Exceptions and VXD Errors
Fatal OE exception errors and VXD errors are often caused by video card troubles.
These can often be resolved simply by reducing the resolution of the video display. Go to
* Start-Settings-Control Panel-Display-Settings
Here you should slide the display area bar to the left. Capture a look at the color settings on the left of that window. For most desktops, high color 16-bit depth is enough.
If the computer screen freezes or you experience system lockups it might be due to the video card. Make definite it does not have a hardware conflict. Go to
* Start-Settings-Control Panel-System-Device Manager
Here, choose the + beside Display Adapter. A line of content describing your video card should appear. Pick it (make it blue) and press properties. Then select Resources and choose each line in the window. Look for a message that says No Conflicts.
If you have video card hardware conflict, you will notice it here. Be careful at this point and make a message of everything you do in case you make things worse.
The method to resolve a hardware conflict is to uncheck the Use Automatic Settings box and hit the Change Settings button. You are searching for a setting that will show a No Conflicts message.
Another practical way to resolve video troubles is to go to
* Start-Settings-Control Panel-System-Performance-Graphics
Now you should go the Hardware Acceleration slider to the left. As ever, the most ordinary reason for troubles relating to graphics cards is old or faulty drivers (a driver is a small piece of software used by a PC to communicate with a device).
Look up your video card’s manufacturer on the internet and search for the freshest drivers for it.
Often the first sign of a virus disease is volatility. Several viruses erase the boot sector of a hard drive, making it impossible to start. This is why it is a good quality suggestion to create a Windows start-up disk. Go to
* Start-Settings-Control Panel-Add/Remove Programs
Here, look for the Startup Disk tab. Virus defense requires constant attention.
A virus scanner requires a record of virus signatures in order to be able to discover viruses. These signatures are stored in a DAT file. DAT files should be updated weekly from the website of your antivirus software company. An outstanding antivirus programme is McAfee Virus Scan by Network Associates. an extra is Norton Antivirus 2000, prepared by Symantec.
Power Supply Troubles
With all the new construction going on around the country the stable supply of electricity has become disrupted. A power surge or spike can crash a PC as easily as a power cut.
If this has become trouble for you then consider buying an uninterrupted power supply (UPS). This will give you a fresh power supply when there is electricity, and it will give you a few minutes to perform a controlled shutdown in case of a power cut.
It is a good deal if your data are critical because a power cut will cause any unsaved data to be lost.
Central processing units (CPUs) are regularly equipped with fans to keep them cool. If the fan fails or if the CPU gets older it may start to overheat and generate a particular kind of error called a kernel error. This is common trouble in chips that have been overclocked to operate at higher speeds than they are supposed to.
One therapy is to get a bigger recovered fan and install it on top of the CPU. Expert cooling fans/heatsinks are available from the Internet.
CPU troubles can often be fixed by disabling the CPU internal cache in the BIOS. This will make the device run more slowly, but it should also be steadier.
A general cause of PC crash is defective or badly-installed software. Often the trouble can be cured by uninstalling the software and then reinstalling it. Apply Norton Uninstall or Uninstall Shield to remove an application from your system properly. This will also remove references to the programme in the System Registry and leaves the way clear for a fully fresh copy.
The System Registry can be corrupted by older references to obsolete software that your idea was uninstalled. Apply Reg Cleaner by Jouni Vuorio to clean up the System Registry and remove out of date entries. It workings on Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98 SE (Second Edition), Windows Millennium Edition (ME), NT4 and Windows 2000.
Read the information and use it carefully so you don’t do permanent damage to the Registry. If the Registry is scratched you will have to reinstall your operating system.
Often a Windows trouble can be resolved by entering Safe Mode. This can be done during start-up. When you see the note “Starting Windows” push F4. This should take you into Safe Mode.
Safe Mode loads a minimum of drivers. It allows you to find and fix troubles that prevent Windows from loading properly.
At times installing Windows is difficult because of unsuitable BIOS settings. If you receiving SUWIN error messages (Windows setup) during the Windows installation, then try entering the BIOS and disabling the CPU internal cache. Try to disable the Level 2 (L2) cache if that doesn’t work.
Keep in mind to restore all the BIOS settings back to their former settings following installation.
The act of sending a document to print creates a larger file, often called a postscript file. Printers have only a little amount of memory, called a buffer. This can be simply overloaded. Printing a document also uses a significant amount of CPU power. This will also slow down PC performance.
If the printer is trying to print unusual characters, these might not be recognized and can crash the PC. Sometimes printers will not recover from a crash because of uncertainty in the buffer. A superior way to clear the buffer is to unplug the printer for ten seconds. Booting upstart powerless style, also called a cold boot, will restore the printer’s default settings and you may be capable to carry on.
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