Need some computer help

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by berklee46, Jul 15, 2003.

  1. berklee46

    berklee46 Supporting Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    I'm hoping someone can give me a hand before I resort to packing up my machine and having Gateway look at it for god knows how long...

    This problem just started yesterday and I'm not sure why. My computer seems to getting hung up for some reason. No matter what program I'm trying to run (including the screen saver), it locks up for about 5-10 seconds, then resumes for about 30 seconds, then gets hung up again, etc. It was working fine when I left for work and was screwed up when I came home. Nobody else used the machine during that time, although my cable modem was connected the whole time.

    I've tried running Scandisk and the other "fix" programs that I have, but no luck. It almost seems like some *huge* program is running in the background and is sucking up all the power, but nothing new is running and I've tried CTRL-ALT-DELETE and ended programs from that menu, but still no luck in correcting this. I haven't installed any new programs lately or opened any strange mail.

    Any ideas/suggestions would be *greatly* appreciated, either here or privately via e-mail. (It's gotten hung up several times just typing this message!)

  2. I don't suppose you have another OS you could try, just to see if it does it with both?

    It sounds more like a hardware problem to me - processor or motherboard related. Possibly overheating, but this is only my opinion. There are guys here who know more than I do who might be able to offer a better insight.


  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    What OS are you using? What components, ram, cpu etc.

    Maybe it's just time for a clean reinstall.
  4. Gotta be windows...note the desperate CTRL_ALT_DELETE reference :D
  5. berklee46

    berklee46 Supporting Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    I'm no computer expert, but luckily, I've got my Gateway receipt with all the info ;)

    -Windows Millenium Edition
    -60 GB Hard Drive
    -256 MB RAM
    -1300 MHz w/ Performance Enhancing Cache Memory

    I've had the machine for a little over 2 years and no major problems like this happened before. A couple weeks ago, I was getting an error message "Unable to write to C Drive" but that seemed to correct itself after running Scandisk & Defragmenter.
  6. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Yeah, I noticed, but there are differences.
    My XP runs super stable. I never have to use those keys.

    Kick out Me, it blows.

    Or at least do a clean reinstall.
    Me, like 98, becomes unstable over time.

    What cards are in there?
    What software is installed and running in the background. Any USB gear?
  7. If you're feeling brave, open up the case and make sure that all of the cables are plugged tightly where they're supposed to be. I had a similar problem with my old P133, and when I opened up the case I noticed that the hard drive was just barely connected. I plugged it in all the way and it's been working fine ever since.

    Stay away from the power supply btw, and make sure to turn off the computer and power strip before opening up the case.
  8. unharmed

    unharmed Iron Fishes

    May 19, 2003
    London, England
    Your machine is suffering from bit-rot. A WindowsME box running for over 2 years without a re-install? Toast it.<BR>JMX is absolutley correct: ME blows. Your system should run XP without any hassles.
  9. Murf


    Mar 28, 2001
    This is a bitch to solve usually as it could be hardware OR software related.

    Was the system working before you added a new piece of hardware, installed a new driver, or application? simply reinstall the previous version of the driver and see what happens. This may apply if you experience similar problems after installing a new application. Go into Control Panel / Add/Remove Program and uninstall the offending application.

    Games are particularly problematic.

    Defragment your hard drive.

    Try increasing virtual memory(swap/paging file).

    Make sure you've no IRQ conflicts.

    The main cause of hardware lock up problems is usually system memory or motherboard(obviously)..try replacing memory.

    Get win2000 or XP, in fairness I've found win2000 to be an incredibly stable os, (I havent used XP long enough to say the same).
  10. berklee46

    berklee46 Supporting Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    Thanks for all the replies guy. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to read them until today - when I got my computer back!
    Turns out the hard drive crapped the bed and had to be replaced. I don't know what ruined it, but I'm glad to have a new one and have everything covered under Gateway's warranty.
    They re-installed Windows ME, since that's what I originally had when I bought the machine in 2001. Are you saying I should upgrade to XP?
  11. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    I think you should. Windows ME will forever be known as one of the most suckiest OS's ever made. (People had trouble with the whole "self-repair" feature) As JMX says, XP is superstable. I've been running XP for about 8 months now and haven't had any real problems. (Had to do a clean install about a month ago) While working as an IT tech, I rarley ever came across a problem that was OS based when dealing with XP.