Computer freezes with colored patches

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I have read about a lot of "freezing" problems on this group but
couldn't find a solution to my problem.
My system freezes in less than 30 minutes time. If it runs successfully
for that period, it will run well for the rest of the time. When the
system freezes, colored patches start appearing on the monitor which
after sometime, fill the whole screen.
After that I have to reboot my system. But after pressing the reboot
button, a siren like continuous beep sounds starts coming (does that
indicate something ??) and the computer doesn't reboot. I have to
switch-off the main supply before I can boot it again.

1. I have monitored the CPU and MB temperatures, those are well under
the threshold at the time of freezing.
2. The problem happens with both WinXP and Gentoo Linux.
3. My system configuration - A7N266VM Asus Motheboard, AMD Athlon XP
processor, nVidia GeForce onboard graphics card.
4. Problem occurs even if there are no applications running. Sometimes
at the booting time  before any OS is loaded.

Any solutions/suggestions ?


Re: Computer freezes with colored patches

On 2 Jan 2006 06:43:32 -0800, wrote:

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Failing video card

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Depends on how the board is set up, what faults trigger
this... might be a failing video card?  

You wouldn't happen to have a spare card lying about?

What specific make and model of video card is this?
Have you checked that it's fan is working?
It wouldn't happen to be a Gainward TI4200, would it?

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When it then reboots, are the bios settings correct or does
it revert to defaults, like a lower CPU speed?  If unsure,
try running "CPU-Z" (Google will find it) to check
operational speed.

Also check all available temp and voltage readings, also
check voltage with a multimeter if video card seems ok.

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If the video card has no temp report, try leaving the side
off the case and pointing a desk fan at it... this of course
after checking that it's fan is working (presuming it has
one).  If all else fails, pull out the card and examine it,
checking for discolored areas or bulging capacitors, etc.

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Oops, you don't have a video card.  Google for memtest86+
and run that for a few hours to check the memory.

Try temporarily underclocking the system to 100MHz FSB, see
if that helps any or completely.

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Check power supply fan too.

Re: Computer freezes with colored patches


I totally understand. Here is my advice ... it's pretty long, so take
your time.

1) Freezing is also known as crashing or hanging. It's frustrating. The
computer locks up and the mouse and keyboard do not respond. You may
lose data and you certainly lose time and patience. Typically, you need
to press Ctrl+Alt+Del to see the programs that are running and to try
to close the program that is not responding, or you need to force a
restart. So why does your computer freeze up?

Common causes of freezing:
* Low memory
* Low disk space
* Fragmented disk
* Too many programs open simultaneously
* Low CPU speed
* Corrupt files
* Software bugs
* Overheating - random lockups that start several minutes after you
start up the PC are often the result of the processor cooling fan not
working properly
* Some non-standard applications are suspect with freezing problems
* Memory chip problems
* Virus infection

2) Steps you can take to minimize freezing:

There are many things that you can do to help your computer do what you
want without testing your patience ...

* Do a disk cleanup (cache, temp files, old or unused files, recycle
bin) .. click here for instructions.
* Do not run any more applications at one time than you need to.
* If the freezing happens consistently with one application, uninstall
and reinstall it - files associated with the application may have
become corrupted. Always use Control Panel/ Add Remove programs, or the
uninstall program belonging to the program to uninstall a program.
* If the freezing has been occurring since you installed a new program,
uninstall it.
* Uninstall any programs that you may have downloaded and installed in
the past, but no longer use.
* Get the latest Windows update at
* Get any available patches for your software - go to the
manufacturer's websites to check for patches or updates to your
* Free up resources - click on Run and type "msconfig" in the dialog
box. Next, click on the "Startup" tab. All the programs listed here
with check marks are running in the system memory. To free resources
Windows 98 users may uncheck everything except "System Tray" . Windows
ME users can uncheck everything except ScanRegistry, PCHealth,
*StateMgr and System Tray. Leave your anti-virus software in the
startup as well. You must restart the computer for these changes to
take effect.
* Run ScanDisk (or Check Disk in Windows XP)
* Defragment your disk.

* If you have an older computer and are trying to run multiple
applications, you may need to upgrade your computer... check the system
specifications recommended for the applications you are running to see
if your system is capable of doing what you are asking.

* Obtain the latest drivers for your hardware - go to the web sites of
the hardware manufacturers and get the latest drivers for your video
card, sound card etc

* Redetect your devices - remove the components from the Control Panel,
System, Device Management screen. Reboot the system and let Windows
redetect and add only those devices which are actually on your system.

* Make sure that you have anti-virus software installed. Set it to
automatically update virus definitions, to scan all incoming files, and
to do a full system check at regular intervals.

3) Disk Cleanup :

a) For Windows 98 & 2000
You have probably been downloading programs, creating and deleting
files, and installing new software without thinking about the effect
this has on your disk space. It's probably time to have a clean-up.
Windows 98 and 2000 have a feature that cleans up your disks for you.
It removes temporary files, the recycle bin and other files - giving
you the option to delete or not to delete. It is simple to run.

Do this clean-up as follows:
Start: Programs: Accessories: System Tools: Disk Clean Up

When it opens up, select the C: Drive and start it. It will pop up and
show you about four types of files, each with a check box. Check the
boxes for files you would like deleted and proceed. It should run
through pretty quickly and then you will have more space on your

b) For Win 95

Windows Temporary Files
Firstly, get rid of your Windows Temporary files.

Go to Start> Find> Files & Folders. Then search for "*.tmp" (minus the
quotes). The * allows you to look for any file that has a temporary
file type. If you have done it right, only files that have a .tmp after
them should appear in the search results. Now just click on the first
one, hold shift, use the scroll bar to go all the way to the bottom,
then click on the last one, and press delete.

Secondly, get rid of your Temporary Internet files

Go to the Temporary Internet Files folder in the Windows directory. It
should be next to the Temp folder. There shouldn't be anything in here
that can't be deleted, so you can go ahead and delete the files in this

Thirdly, empty your recycle bin. Right click on the Recycle Bin icon,
select Empty Recycle Bin. Many people have hundreds of files they
"deleted" but they are still taking up space in the Recycle Bin.

4) Run the Disk Defragmenter
Editing and deleting files as you work leaves gaps on data storage
media. Instead of each file being stored in one continuous block, it
ends up in several locations, resulting in inefficient retrieval of
your data. As you add more data to your hard drive, the gaps left by
previous deletions are filled. Your file becomes split, or fragmented.
This will slow down your system - when you try to retrieve a file,
the process is slower than if it was stored in one block. To make your
disk storage more efficient, a process called "defragmenting" is used.

Windows has a built in defragmenter, which is located at:

Start > Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Defragmenter

It is a good idea to run this program once a month. When you run the
defragmenter, close all programs including your screensaver. If
programs are running it can cause data on your hard drive to be changed
which makes the defragmenter start from the beginning... and never

The more frequently you use defrag, the faster it will become.

You should also check out this article:

Hope this helps!

Gary Hendricks

Re: Computer freezes with colored patches

Thanks guys...
It seems like it was a graphics card problem.
I installed the driver for the graphics card from the CD that came
along with the motherboard,
and so far I haven't seen the problem reoccur.

Probably a lot of gaming could have done something nasty to the driver.
Some of the games which I ran used to crash quite frequently.

(I have also done Disk Cleanup etc so probably that helped)


Re: Computer freezes with colored patches

On 3 Jan 2006 00:51:01 -0800, wrote:

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You should consider installing the newest nForce platform
drivers AND Detonator video drivers available from , rather than those really old
original drivers on the CD.

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