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When computer freezes up?

December 20th, 2005, 02:53 PM
I dont know what causes this, but it happens to me occassionally, and is a real pain. Have to reboot and lose anything I have in progress.

I remember a guy at work using a keyboard command that unlocked a frozen screen, but cant remember what it was. I cant find anything that works.

Can anyone share the "secret" with the computer un-savvy?:D

December 20th, 2005, 04:18 PM
If you have Windows XP, the next time it freezes, try pressing the ctrl + alt + delete keys at the same time. Then choose task manager. On the applications tab, you should see all the applications running. Here you can select one and then click end task. Maybe you can determine what is causing it to freeze.

No guarantees. How old is the machine?

Good luck,

December 20th, 2005, 04:31 PM
Yep, the old 3 finger salute of Ctrl - Alt - Delete will work well, however, if your computer is freezing due to a software problem (virus/spyware/rootkit) sometimes Windows won't let you use Task Manager to close the offending program down, in which case I use a freeware program called Process Explorer. If you want further instructions on keeping a spotless pc, pm me. I won't get on my safety and security soapbox here :P

December 20th, 2005, 06:34 PM
Hmm... thanks for the suggestions.. The Ctrl/Alt/Del does take me to Task Manger normally, but not when I have the lock up.
It doesnt respond to any commands.

I do have several anti-spyware systems installed. so I just dont know.
It could be the Mouse, that's what's locking, but this has happened through several different ones.
Or maybe I just need a new system..this one is 5 years old -ancient in computer time:D

December 20th, 2005, 07:09 PM
I have windows xp and have the same problem, it seems if I try to open certain websites the whole thing will freeze. We use windows xp at work and they always freeze. Of course we are updating at the moment. I will be right in the middle of changing things on their account, or taking their payment and the program will either freeze or dissapear altogether, its really frustrating to say sorry my computer just started upgrading so I cant help you right please call back.

December 20th, 2005, 08:10 PM
Sometimes XP (esp the Home ver) is cranky with the 3 finger salute but it still works. You just have to look at the program that is not working and click on it - sometimes you have to click on it several times andfinally, the dialog box asking if you want to send info to MS will show up. Good luck!

December 20th, 2005, 09:28 PM
I hate to get into this, but how much RAM do have in your machine? Software conflicts are generally the reason a computer will lock up, and sometimes because one is hogging all the resources at that particular moment. XP was geared against such an instance, but I find that it still happens, especially in machines with lower RAM. Kinda like the "hey that's MY shovel" argument in the sandbox only everything stands still. On a slight aside, this used to be Ye Olde Blue Screen Of Death in Win 9x machines, just now you don't get the blatant slap in the face lol Also Shamrock, some anti-spyware apps will conflict with each other, meaning if they kick off at a certain time, whammo, you're out of luck. Just a thought (as I kick my cousin's spyware/virus laden brand new dell LOL)

December 21st, 2005, 02:57 PM
Thanks for the tips there, jawert. I dont have much RAM at all - only 128. Definitely need more at some point. As I'm not into gaming or any heavy grahpics laden stuff.. this has sufficed... barely.

I think you might be on to something about the spyware. I have three different ones going. I didnt even put them in, but a tech installed them when I had my puter in for a repair. Maybe I will try unloading one or two... and see how that affects it. I actually have Windows 2000, not the XP.
Its' just a small aggravation, the locking up.. but an aggravation just the same.:)
Thanks again!

December 21st, 2005, 03:39 PM
Spyware is horrible for gobbling resources. Also, check how many programs you have hogging mwmpory when you boot up. Like waht is on your start menu - do you really need all that stuff on the task bar? I have 1 G on i computer and 512 MB on the rest (5 computers - home and office) - and I am not inc my staff's puters here - and the 1 G one works like a charm while the Dell laptop is the worst!!

December 21st, 2005, 04:10 PM
The 2 anti-spyware progs I have are Ad-Aware and Spybot Search and Destroy, both free, both known clean progs :) 128 is the bare minimum these days, tho Win 2K is still a great OS :) I would recommend running an antivirus scan, then clearing your temp folders (open Internet Explorer, go to Tools, then Internet Options, then under General Delete Files and Delete Cookies). This will clear out any temp files that might be causing GPF's (General Page Faults) and locking your machine. If you don't have one of the 2 anti-spyware progs I mentioned, it's worth getting them. They can be found on (sorry if I'm breaking rules here :/) Also, run a defragramentation on your machine at least once a month, though this might take an overnight run the first time if you haven't done it before. Holler if you need a walk through, I'm on AIM a lot so feel free to ping me as well there :)

December 21st, 2005, 04:12 PM
Oh one other thing if you're feeling brave, Cyberkitten's right, if you've got a ton of stuff you a) don't recognize or b) don't use in the bottom right corner of your screen next to the clock, then those are also programs taking up resources, particularly on startup and should be shut down. The easiest way is to right mouse click on an icon and just use whatever option it gives to shut it down.

January 24th, 2006, 09:40 AM can switch to Linux :thumbs up , which is what I use more than 50% of the time. There's no spyware to worry about, no viruses to worry about (because of of those things are made for Windows users).

But if that's a bit to drastic for you, I would recommend adding more RAM. Depending on the frequency of these freezes, it may even be faulty RAM (I had that problem once and kept thinking it was the hard drive and kept trying to fix that only to find out it was the RAM's problem :mad: )