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Pc freezes at desktop

After a complete reformat and restoring PC to factory condition now it boots to the desktop then freezes. The mouse works for a second or two then everything just stops and I can't even get the 3 finger salute to work - I have to switch off using the tower button. I disconnected all power etc and left the pc overnight, next morning everything was fine - no freeze ups. After switching it off for a few hours and then rebooting, I was back to square one!!! Any help much appreciated. Thanks.

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  • 6 more comments 
  • LIMAD Apr 27, 2008


  • LIMAD Apr 27, 2008

    Hi - after the reformat etc I loaded the disc with the drivers/utilities and SOME files were loaded. I had an idea that it might be a driver problem, so I tried again - this time I got the 'recovery folder not found ... please restore your system etc' ha! so now I'm in the middle of doing the whole thing again!!!! With regard to your other comments, I didn't notice anything unusual with the actual running sound of the PC although I have opened it and removed about 4 tons of muck - don't panic, I did use an ESD wristband and mat and compressed air (yep, no large vacuum cleaners for me). I will see what happens with this new re-load and if I am still freezing is it possible that i could have a problem with the processor fan? overheating etc???

  • LIMAD Apr 27, 2008

    sorry - did I rate your help in the wrong place??? All of your advice has been much appreciated.

  • LIMAD Apr 27, 2008

    Hi again - I did the reformat/restore and it has frozen again. When I inserted the utilities/drivers disk nothing happened - the drive whizzed a bit then stopped. NOTHING was loaded (as far as I am aware) and I am stuck! When I put the U/D disk in another PC it showed the files but when I looked at it on the non-working PC, I can't see any files - what's that all about - am I missing the blindingly obvious somewhere???? Unless you can sort me out, I will try your latest advice - open up and observe the CPU fan - what a way to spend a sunday evening!

    By the way, I was VERY careful during the cleaning process and I didn't touch anything inside the PC - this thing lives in my son's bedroom, so. as regards the grime, say no more!!!! Many thanks again for taking the time to help.

  • LIMAD Apr 27, 2008

    Hi - I don't think that I shorted anything because it was freezing BEFORE I attacked the grime! At this point, I am leaning towards either the driver problem OR the CPU fan - neither being an instant fix! Do you have any suggestions as to why the utility disk doesn't generate anything? I was going to open the PC tonight but I think I'll leave the whole problem for now and have another go tomorrow evening after work - I think my brain has reached 'shorted' level.

    Regarding the rating - I wasn't sure if I was supposed to rate after each suggestion - all of your comments have been appreciated and I am sure that I have not finished picking your brains yet!

  • randyjameshu Nov 25, 2008

    my presario keeps freezing what can i do to stop that once and for all?

  • Mark Kessler May 11, 2010

    After reformatting, did you reinstall all of the drivers for your system? Many times the original setup disk contains all of the necessary drivers, but it is good practice to make sure by checking the device manager. If you notice an item that has a yellow question mark next to it in the device manager, this means that the driver is not installed.

    Right-click on 'My Computer', select 'Properties', select 'Hardware' tab, then click on 'Device Manager' if running XP.

    Also, be sure and check that the Display adaptor is installed, If a display adaptor is not installed on your computer, and you have onboard graphics, the adaptor will be omitted from the list. This can sometimes cause computer freezing issues, or even problems where the computer does not boot at all.

    When your computer is running, have you noticed that it has gotten quieter?


    Before reformatting, was your computer making any unusually loud humming noises that would suggest a cooling fan was going bad?

  • Mark Kessler May 11, 2010

    Was this problem occuring before you reformatted?


2 Answers

Am still plugging away! a friend gave me a systemrestoreCD - well, i didn't last long using that although it did examine my HD and everything was fine. I still think I am missing something from the set up - are all the desktop icons supposed to appear after reformatting/restoring the system? I know I sound thick, but have patience please!

Posted on Apr 30, 2008

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I would definitely make sure all of the drivers are loaded before you continue troubleshooting hardware possibilities.

It is possible that the fan is not functioning, you can troubleshoot that by leaving the case open while you power on your system. The cpu fan does not run constantly, it only runs when it needs to, so you may have to watch for awhile, run some programs to make it hot. Also watch the case fan and the power supply fan, all of which are very important for maintaining the internal environment.

In the future, clean the inside of your case more frequently, using the same methods you have already demonstrated. Even while using an esd wrist strap, the threat of ESD discharge is not completely resolved, so you still need to handle the components and motherboard with care.

Posted on Apr 27, 2008

  • 1 more comment 
  • Mark Kessler Apr 27, 2008

    I hate to say it at this point, aside from checking the cooling fans, it is possible, during the removal of the grime inside the computer something may have shorted out. The events you are describing seem to get increasingly worse the more you use the system, this can indicate a motherboard that has succumbed to ESD.

    It may boot properly for awhile, but during prolonged use you will notice a significant decrease in system performance.

    In regards to your rating, it really does not matter when or if you rate my solutions. All I ask is that IF you do rate me, wait until I have exhausted all of my resources before rating me unsaticfactorily. Some people rate after the first solution is posted, but sometimes it takes 3 or 4 different sessions before the root of the problem is discovered.

  • Mark Kessler Apr 28, 2008

    When you open the case, make sure the data cables are plugged in securely to the back of the cd rom and hard drive, also that they are securely plugged into the motherboard. Also, check to make sure the power cables are plugged in securely to the back of the drives. While you were cleaning out the inside, one of these may have worked loose.

    I am still concerned that we haven't narrowed the problem down yet. Computer freezing can occur with any number of different problems, such as:

    insufficient cooling

    Loose data cables

    Damaged sector on the hard drive

    Cpu going bad

    Power supply not supplying enough power to system board

    Insufficient memory or memory chip going bad

    As you can see it can be quite a drawn out process finding the true problem. We'll keep plugging away though.

  • Mark Kessler May 06, 2008

    Actually, most icons are added after the fact, usually by you. If you install a program, such as antivirus or office program, icons may show on the desktop after installation of the program. The icon you should see on the desktop and reinstalling is the Recycle bin.


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