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Author Topic: Help! My new computer is freezing!  (Read 4431 times)

superboyac

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Help! My new computer is freezing!
« on: February 06, 2009, 11:07:16 AM »
Unfortunately, my new computer is freezing whenever I try installing games.  I never usually play games, but since I have a new computer, I thought I'd try out its capabilities.  I've tried two games so far, Half Life 2 and Unreal 3, and they both freeze (hang) during the install process somewhere.  The whole computer is frozen I can't do anything except hit the reset button on my tower.

Most of the time when I restart after the hang, I get a BSOD.  After rebooting again, everything works fine (unless I try installing again).  I've tried everything:  installing from the original CD, installing from a mounted ISO using daemon, and copying the files to the hard drive and installing.  They all freeze during the installation.

I thought maybe it was Kaspersky.  So one time I exited Kaspersky and immediately after the computer froze again, which is weird, because I've exited Kaspersky before without any problems.  Also, I tried exited Kaspersky later and it was fine.  So it doesn't happen every time.

Personally, I don't think there's anything wrong with the games or Kaspersky.  There's some other problem, possibly hardware related.  I'm running XP.

Now about the BSOD, the driver specified on the screen is "portcls.sys"  After doing some research, this file has something to do with audio drivers, possibly the onboard one that comes with the motherboard.  I don't know what to do about it.

Fortunately, you can see all my computer specs here, if it reveals anything.

40hz

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2009, 11:15:57 AM »
Have you checked Gigabyte's website to see if you're running the latest BIOS and chipset firmware? Boards as new as this sometimes have a spate of updates for the first 6 months or so as the kinks get worked out.

You should be able to disable onboard audio under BIOS setup. Try updating your firmware first. See if you get a clean bootup. Then try disabling onboard audio if the problem persists.

superboyac

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2009, 11:52:14 AM »
Have you checked Gigabyte's website to see if you're running the latest BIOS and chipset firmware? Boards as new as this sometimes have a spate of updates for the first 6 months or so as the kinks get worked out.

You should be able to disable onboard audio under BIOS setup. Try updating your firmware first. See if you get a clean bootup. Then try disabling onboard audio if the problem persists.
Thanks, I'll try that tonight.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2009, 08:17:41 PM »
Check that you have installed the latest motherboard drivers (from the chipset manufacturer rather than the mobo site as they are often not updated much after release). Similarly check you have the latest Graphics and Audio drivers.

In the BIOS disable any unused devices (there are often game ports, midi interfaces, audio and lots more that you are not actually using) and check for any 'performance' settings. If there are high performance settings defaulting 'on' try turning them off (not sure what is in your BIOS - take some photos of the screens and post them here if you are not sure).

Deozaan

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2009, 02:48:37 AM »
When you get a BSOD you should record the STOP code. You usually only need to record the last couple of digits, then google the code for answers.

For example: STOP 0xFC


40hz

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2009, 01:47:13 PM »
So izzu unfroze or whut? :o


BTW: Did a quick Google on this. The problem seems to be  documented on other mobos, so it now appears to be more of a Windows issue than a BIOS/Chipset issue.. MS has a hotfix which may or may not have some bearing on what's going on with you:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/950616

Quote
This problem occurs when a thread of the Portcls.sys file tries to reacquire a spin-lock if an I/O request packet (IRP) is canceled at certain points in its processing. The thread has two locks. Therefore, a deadlock results.

Otherwise, consensus seems to be to disble onboard sound and go with a separate sound card. One example below:

http://www.abxzone.c...rtcls-sys-34588.html
Quote
I'm occasionally getting a BSOD on PORTCLS.SYS which I believe is a WinXP Pro sound system driver. I'm using the onboard sound and WinXP Pro is a fresh install only last weekend. Anyone else hear of this?
« Last Edit: February 07, 2009, 01:55:37 PM by 40hz »

superboyac

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2009, 03:27:17 PM »
Well, here's what's happened so far.  I don't always get a BSOD after the computer hangs, in fact, I get less than half the time.  But if there is a BSOD, there is no STOP code but the portcls.sys file is always there.  I've attached screenshots of the error windows at the bottom.  i don't know what that means.  So I tried some things last night and here's what happened:
--removed one of my sticks of ram.  after that, one of my games installed fine!  I thought that was it and the problem was solved.  But then i tried installing another game, and it hung immediately.  So problem still exists.  Also, just one time, the computer hung when I tried exiting Kaspersky, but I did it again successfully many times.

--I swapped the sticks of ram, didn't help.

--I did a memory test with memtest86+.  I completed 19 passes with no errors.

--If RAM is not the problem, something else is.  i don't know what else to do at this point.

--40hz, those links you mentioned, I think I've also run across them.  The difference with my problem is that the hangs are always happening during the installation.  Once installed, the games work fine.

Screenshots:
Screenshot_20090207132150.png
Screenshot_20090207132159.png
Screenshot_20090207132249.png
Screenshot_20090207132258.png
« Last Edit: February 07, 2009, 03:32:05 PM by superboyac »

mouser

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2009, 03:35:13 PM »
as 40hz says, try disabling the onboard sound chip from bios, see if that cures the problem.

superboyac

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2009, 04:08:56 PM »
as 40hz says, try disabling the onboard sound chip from bios, see if that cures the problem.
I did that one a while back, it didn't work.  I'll try again.

superboyac

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2009, 04:30:49 PM »
nope, that didn't work...unless i should disable it from within windows as well.  I haven't tried that.  I don't think it's that portcls.sys thing because the computer has hung like 10 times in a row now without a blue screen and th event id shows nothing about that portcls.sys.

What I'm going to try now try copying a couple of gigabytes of various sized files from my d drive to my c drive and see if anything happens.  Why it only happens to game isntallations is beyond me.  The only reason i can think of is because game iinstallations are much much bigger than anything else i install.

superboyac

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2009, 04:36:05 PM »
Well, no problem copying files of different sizes manually to the c drive.  I just did 5 GB without a problem.  it's crazy, the computer runs perfectly except for game installations.

I have one more game i can try...i should have nba live 07 here somewhere.

40hz

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2009, 04:59:39 PM »
Sounds like you're running into issues with some antipiracy tech on the game disks.

Do any of the games have patches issued for SP3?

Also, if you have any software on your system that supports mounting ISO images or creating virtual CD drives, try disabling it. A lot of games have real issues with things like Alcohol 120 and similar virtual drive software. They assume you're a pirate if you have them.

mouser

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2009, 05:01:51 PM »
ahhh that is a clever thought 40hz..   it really didnt occur to me that the problem would be some kind of antipiracy thing, but i suppose its possible.

Shades

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2009, 05:11:10 PM »
You have problems with your games and it seems that portcls.sys is not completely innocent regarding your computing troubles.

When installing games it seems likely to me that the installation software checks which version of DirectX has been installed. Are you sure that the version of that software on your system is not corrupted in any way?

Because if that is the problem than I would not be surprised that you will not be able to install any game.

superboyac

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2009, 06:51:37 PM »
hmmm....i did try mounting an iso at one point using dameon
let me try some of these suggestions.

superboyac

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Re: Help! My new computer is freezing!
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2009, 07:25:42 PM »
well, currently, my dvd drive is unusable.  That's the end of this experiment.  I need a new drive.  at least i was able to install the os using it.