Windows 10: "Windows has stopped responding" Solved

  1.    12 Jan 2017 #1

    "Windows has stopped responding"

    Hello everyone.

    I am new to this forum and English is not my native language so apologies in advance if I am hard to understand.

    I have a problem with my computer that I simply can not understand and I am completely stumped as to what might cause this.

    Caution, long post.

    The problem started 4 days ago and I had not installed any updates or any other programs at all.

    Twice I had left my PC on to do other things and when I came back, windows did not recognise any commands. I clicked start and nothing happened, the button is graphically depressed, but it stays there without opening anything. Same thing happens with everything else I clicked.

    At one point both screens went black and removed all icons save for the taskbar and a small pop up appeared telling me that "Windows is not responding" No matter if I click accept or cancel it just stays there and I have to hold powerbutton to restart the pc. ALT+F4 had no effect, neither did alt+tab+del No other keyboard shortcuts worked either.

    - I tried to repair windows but no problems was found.
    - I tried to roll back but unfortunately there wasn't anything to roll back to.
    - I ran chkdsk with admin privs showed no errors.
    - Then I ran windows memory diagnostic tool with no faults. I took out one stick of RAM and ran the tool again, then swapped the RAM sticks and ran it again also without any faults.
    - I ran Samsung Magician on my 840 EVO SSD without any degradation in read/write speeds. SSD life pro shows my drive health is excellent (8 years and 10 months remaining) and Crystaldiskinfo also shows 100% health.

    I had the same fault appear when I had a single stick of RAM installed, swapped it for other RAM stick and got the same fault again.

    - I ran sfc /scannow as admin and Windows resource protection did not find any integrity violations.

    Then I decided just to reinstall windows and that whole installation was a complete mess for some reason.

    Some examples: Origin will not launch at all, when I restarted windows I would randomly be logged out of everything and some settings was reverted to defauilt and even G-force experience did not launch. (Something went wrong, try again)

    At that point I was fed up so I simply did another fresh install of windows. NOTE: On both installs I format the partition that has windows, then I remove both partitions creates a new one to which I install Windows.

    This time I installed a different version of Windows 10 pro (I mean from another USB) and this time windows is working perfectly. But, I still get the random freezes of "Windows is not responding" and then I have to hold powerbutton to turn off the PC.

    Now I am the end of my capabilities and I throw in the towel. I need your help and any and all suggestions are welcome and I am willing to try anything and everything.

    Can it be something with my second HDD? Could that cause some kind of problems simply by being plugged in? I have not accesed any of the files on the drive though if that makes a difference.

    Thank you in advance.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2. Posts : 8,187
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Build 1803
       13 Jan 2017 #2

    Came across your posting and did some looking. Seems to be a lot of Windows 10 freezing and not a lot of "this definitely caused it".

    I read plenty of articles and it appears you've covered a lot of ground already. I think it was on reddit there is a very large piece, again with lots of did this and that.

    A couple of articles that caught my attention were around overclocking, C States and Intel IRST drivers.

    I see you tried to Roll back which I assume you mean you tried a System Restore and no restore points were available. Correct? Have you since turned them back on.

    If you go to Windows updates and look at history, see if any drivers were updated. Mine shows a nVidia adapter on one machine. If you find one or more, around this time I would suggest rolling them back. Then you need to disable Windows helping you with drivers. Lets first see if you find any.

    Are you over clocking either MB or graphics? Can you stop for testing purposes.

    One article said you should go into BIOS and disable C-states as these are just power saving modes. This falls in line with your comment you came back and commands were not accepted.

    Next thing was this happens to a lot of people with SSD's. Great, like nobody has one of those. It talks to Intel's IRST drivers. Worth seeing if your are up to date. If so and I know this sounds crazy, maybe roll them back a version.

    You asked can a second HDD cause issues, yes. There was a thread in the last two weeks where someones HDD was causing him grief. If you scanned and looked at it with Crystal Disk and it reports healthy I doubt it is root cause.

    I think the key here is slow but sure to truly identify culprit unless you know have to induce problem on demand.

    Obviously you are already documenting what you did so keep the records going so you can undo. Have you read your manual re BIOS settings just to be sure. (Why they would just start fours days ago is reason enough to discount BIOS as issue but it is the foundation.)

    Hopefully others will join thread. Good luck. Post back what you find.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    15 Jan 2017 #3

    Thank you for your post.

    To make a long story short, I think (hope) I found the issue. When I was changing DIMM modules I noticed that my graphics card was EXTREMELY hot. So I opened GPU-Z and it was at 80C while idling at the desktop so I took it out, cleaned it and reapplied thermalpaste and popped it back in. But it was still at 80C and only at 49% fanspeed.

    I downloaded EVGA precision X to manually set a fancurve and since then I haven't had windows freeze on me.

    So; might be a defective GPU of all things. I've reached out to EVGA support so I hope they can tell me what is going on. I will update this thread when I hear anything.

    Edit: Well it just froze again. Might still be the GPU though. I will try to swap the GPU and then then the PSU if that does not work.
    Last edited by Lurifax; 15 Jan 2017 at 17:12.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    17 Jan 2017 #4

    Update: I borrowed a gpu from work and my computer has been idling at desktop and random lightwork for 12 hours without a lock up. I am in contact with EVGA to RMA my card. The card is defective no matter what, so I will start with that.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    19 Jan 2017 #5

    Well, the GPU is being RMA'ed now but I still have the same issue.

    I've completely dismantled my PC taken out everything and is now running the same MB and CPU combo with stock cooler, new hdd, new ram, new gpu and new psu.

    If the problem persists then I have isolated it to either MB or CPU.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6. Posts : 8,187
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Build 1803
       19 Jan 2017 #6

    I mentioned C states in BIOS, please confirm they are off. You will find a tutorial On Driver Verify. May be worth running and see if it drives out issues. There are some cautions as it does make your machine work.

    I would also chased down IRST driver. Sounds like you have some gear around. Maybe clean install on HDD as a test.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    19 Jan 2017 #7

    I found the issue.

    I am participating in the Avira antivirus beta program and the latest build was the problem. I have uninstalled it and the PC has been running perfectly without a lock up for 16 hours now.

    Thank you for your advice, it has been a learning experience.

    (GPU is still defective, sending it to RMA next week)
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8. Posts : 8,187
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Build 1803
       20 Jan 2017 #8

    Thanks for posting back. Others will benefit.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


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