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Windows 7 freezing up for minutes at a time, and then resuming as normal RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi guys, I was wondering if anybody could assist me with this problem on my PC, I've been trying to fix it now for nearly two months and I have no specific idea of what's causing it.

    It started two months ago, and the basic description of it would be that mid task (internet browsing, opening one of my audio applications etc) it just seems to freeze up. The mouse cursor can still be moved, but the window I am currently using turns white. I can click other windows but then they will freeze too. Whilst this is happening, my HDD light on my system is constantly illuminated. I've managed to view Resource Manager whilst it happens and it looks like my HDD Activity goes through the roof at this point. Anywhere from five seconds to five minutes later, everything returns to normal, and anything I've started during the 'freeze' will open up. I've noticed I can also hear my hard drive start working a second or two before it comes back to life.

    I've defragged, ran CHKDSK on my drives, ran Seagate diagnostic tools, and no errors have come up. I've ran various Malware and Virus programs, and the system is clean.

    I thought it may be down to RAM (I have 4GB, 2 x 800Mhz DDR2 and 2 x 1066Mhz DDR2) as I have mixed speeds (although both clock in at 800Mhz), so took out the 1066 sticks. This didn't change anything. I played with the BIOS settings for the RAM, changing the voltage to factory specified and the latencies, but no result. I've ran Memtest and received no errors or problems.

    I've updated the BIOS on my system, even going back to previous versions to see if that was the problem. I've changed various BIOS settings which have been recommended over the internet, and still it freezes up.

    I've installed every latest driver for every piece of hardware in my system. One thing I have noticed is that it happens less when I'm not using the internet, but that could just be co-incedence.

    Here are my PC specs:

    Windows 7 Home Premium (64 bit)
    Asus P5Q Premium Motherboard
    Intel Q9650 @ 3.00GHz
    2 x 1GB Corsair XMS2 DDR2 PC6400 800mhz
    2 x 1GB Corsair Dominator DDR2 PC8500 1066mhz
    Main Drive: ST3500620AS ATA 1TB
    Second Drive: WDC WD10EADS-00P8B0 ATA Device 500GB
    NVidia GeForce GTX 260
    M-Audio Delta Audiophile 192
    Belkin Wireless G USB Network Adapter

    If there's anybody who has any ideas of anything new to try, that would be fantastic. Thanks so much in advance!
    Tuesday, July 27, 2010 9:47 PM

Answers

  • Run the cmd prompt with admin rights [1] and type :

    xperf -on PROC_THREAD+LOADER+CSWITCH+FILENAME+FILE_IO+FILE_IO_INIT+DRIVERS -f kernel.etl -stackwalk CSwitch+DiskReadInit+DiskWriteInit+DiskFlushInit+FileCreate+FileCleanup+FileClose+FileRead+FileWrite -BufferSize 1024 -MaxBuffers 1024 -MaxFile 1024 -FileMode Circular

    now wait a minute to capture the data when you have the high Disk usage.

    Next type:

    xperf -d XperfSlowIOcir.etl

    to generate the etl file. Please upload the etl file.

    [1] http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/How-do-I-run-an-application-once-with-a-full-administrator-access-token


    "A programmer is just a tool which converts caffeine into code" CLIP- Stellvertreter http://www.winvistaside.de/
    • Marked as answer by Arthur Xie Friday, August 6, 2010 5:29 AM
    Thursday, July 29, 2010 1:42 PM

All replies

  • Did you see which process creates the HDD access?

    "A programmer is just a tool which converts caffeine into code" CLIP- Stellvertreter http://www.winvistaside.de/
    Tuesday, July 27, 2010 10:57 PM
  • Yeah it doesn't seem to be any one process in particular.

    I installed Moo0 system monitor, and it seems that mid freeze, the HDD I/O flicks every two second between low usage and then red (high) usage, with the HDD Loader process switching between csrss1 and explorer.

     

    Wednesday, July 28, 2010 1:43 PM
  • OK, after 2 months of this problem, I've been tinkering today and it seems to have disappeared. This is what I've done today...

     

    - Turned off hard drive indexing (right click C: drive and untick "Allow Files on this drive to have contents indexed...")

    - Stopped all running NVIDIA processes in task manager.

    - Turned off (disabled) NVIDIA Display Driver service.

     

    Fingers crossed this really has done the trick!

    Wednesday, July 28, 2010 2:40 PM
  • Nope, I was wrong, it's still there. Today have tried switching my C: hard drive to a different SATA port, a different power plug (really clutching at new ideas now!), and have downloaded the Western Digital software to scan my C: (Western Digital drive) for any bad sectors.

    I have monitored my system with Moo0 System Monitor, and since switching the SATA port, now when the HDD seems to freeze up, the process goes from 100% to 0% every two seconds (the freeze itself is still the same), rather than solidly sitting at 100%. Just before the system comes back to life, Moo0 reports that the HDD bottlenecks, it goes red, then suddenly ticks back to life. Totally confused!

    Any other ideas I may have missed?

    Wednesday, July 28, 2010 8:59 PM
  • Hi,

    make a xperf trace [1] when you get the HDD activity. Please upload the XperfSlowIOcir.etl to your SkyDrive [2] and post a link here.

    I'll take a look at it.

    André

    [1] http://blogs.msdn.com/b/ntdebugging/archive/2009/08/17/xperf-to-investigate-slow-i-o-issues.aspx
    [2] http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7itproui/thread/4fc10639-02db-4665-993a-08d865088d65
    "A programmer is just a tool which converts caffeine into code" CLIP- Stellvertreter http://www.winvistaside.de/
    Wednesday, July 28, 2010 9:21 PM
  • Hi there, unfortunately I wont be able to do that as I am on a painfully slow internet connection and downloading a 2gb SDK would not be possible. Are there any alternative programs which could yield similar results?

    Many thanks for your time :)

    Wednesday, July 28, 2010 11:04 PM
  • You don't need to download 2GB.

    In my guide on msfn ( http://www.msfn.org/board/index.php?showtopic=140247 ) I posted a alternative link to the WPT installers. You need to download the Visual Studio 2010 Diagnostic Tool , which is only 100MB.


    "A programmer is just a tool which converts caffeine into code" CLIP- Stellvertreter http://www.winvistaside.de/
    Thursday, July 29, 2010 12:13 AM
  • What is the model of your computer? You may need to download series Windows 7 compatible drivers from Internet and install them. Especially BIOS update, SATA/IDE controller driver and chipset driers.

    This issue can also be caused by software conflictions. You may temporary disable antivirus and see if the issue still occurs.


    Please remember to click “Mark as Answer” on the post that helps you, and to click “Unmark as Answer” if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread. ”

    Thursday, July 29, 2010 8:30 AM
  • My computer was built by myself so no model.

    I have downloaded newest drivers for every component in my computer, also every piece of software and driver available for my motherboard. I have also tried older versions of some drivers to see if the later versions were the problem.

    I have updated my BIOS, and reverted to an older version, and back to new again.

    SATA drivers have been installed, along with newest chipset. I have exhausted pretty much all software possibilities.

    Disabling my antivirus / firewall makes no difference. I've even tried different antivirus software and still the same thing happens.

    I am going crazy with this problem!

    Thursday, July 29, 2010 9:41 AM
  • You don't need to download 2GB.

    In my guide on msfn ( http://www.msfn.org/board/index.php?showtopic=140247 ) I posted a alternative link to the WPT installers. You need to download the Visual Studio 2010 Diagnostic Tool , which is only 100MB.


    "A programmer is just a tool which converts caffeine into code" CLIP- Stellvertreter http://www.winvistaside.de/

    And I thought I was good with computers! Haha!

    Sorry Andre, I downloaded the Windows Performance Toolkit and watched that video but the guy on the video may as well be speaking double dutch, I really don't have a clue where to begin or what I'm supposed to be doing. He doesn't explain the CMD prompt or what I need to write or even what I'm doing so I'm stuck at step 1 really.

    Thursday, July 29, 2010 11:03 AM
  • Run the cmd prompt with admin rights [1] and type :

    xperf -on PROC_THREAD+LOADER+CSWITCH+FILENAME+FILE_IO+FILE_IO_INIT+DRIVERS -f kernel.etl -stackwalk CSwitch+DiskReadInit+DiskWriteInit+DiskFlushInit+FileCreate+FileCleanup+FileClose+FileRead+FileWrite -BufferSize 1024 -MaxBuffers 1024 -MaxFile 1024 -FileMode Circular

    now wait a minute to capture the data when you have the high Disk usage.

    Next type:

    xperf -d XperfSlowIOcir.etl

    to generate the etl file. Please upload the etl file.

    [1] http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/How-do-I-run-an-application-once-with-a-full-administrator-access-token


    "A programmer is just a tool which converts caffeine into code" CLIP- Stellvertreter http://www.winvistaside.de/
    • Marked as answer by Arthur Xie Friday, August 6, 2010 5:29 AM
    Thursday, July 29, 2010 1:42 PM