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Programs randomly freezing

  johndrew 12:21 18 Sep 2011

Something I have not seen in these Forums or experienced.

In the past three days I have had various programs freeze (Not Responding) for no apparent reason. They include Firefox, Outlook Express and Malwarebytes; this latter during an update, the others during normal use.

The only updates I have done recently are those to update my AV and anti-malware, Microsoft monthly updates and Firefox to 3.6.22.

I have carried out full scans for infections with nothing being found by AVG, Sptbot S&D, Spyware Terminator and Malwarebytes. Additionally the usual MS Removal Tool scan which was carried out during the recent update process showed nothing.

I have seen no similar reports but have no idea of the cause unless it is CMOS battery - but my clock is fine.

Can anyone offer any suggestion as to the cause or has anyone else experience this problem.

Many thanks in anticipation.

  johndrew 12:15 24 Sep 2011

The Temp folder contains 16820KB the vast majority of which is the TWAIN.LOG (16372KB) which I understand is related to my printer and scanner (two separate Epson units) and is needed by them.

The size of the Temp folder doesn't seem overly large to me, what do you think?

  lotvic 12:57 24 Sep 2011

Agree doesn't seem much in there but still can be safely emptied as no program relies on temporary files on a permanent basis. If that is all you have in there you must be already in the habit of emptying it or using a program like Ccleaner.

Did you look at the defrag and see if it recommends that it needs doing?

  johndrew 13:50 24 Sep 2011

Yes, I use Ccleaner fairly regularly - probably weekly. I also run Advanced System Care which has a defragmenter incorporated, as a result the fragmetation of the drive is quite low.

I also pulled the PC apart. Removed and refitted, RAM, graphics cards, power connectors and anything else I could find. Checked all fans for freedom and tried to find any dust but I only cleaned it about 6 months ago and its still quite clean.

When I booted it and tried to get online, Firefox refused to load, but after a reboot it came back.

I have scanned with AVG, Spyware Terminator and Malwarebytes again - nothing found. I also did a HijackThis scan and used the online checker - again clear. As a result I doubt its any malware.

It has to be something that has happened in the past 10 days, either update software conflict or PC hardware glitch but I have no idea where to look.

  johndrew 10:36 25 Sep 2011

A thought has occurred to me overnight. Is it possible for, say, some RAM to be affected by heat during usage and become unstable thus causing this problem?

I should add that I bit the bullet and ran CHKDSK which found no fault.

  v1asco 10:43 25 Sep 2011

If its an hp touchscreen you are using join the club. I have had this intermittent fault for a while and nowe it is in hospital for the second time.13 months old (still in warranty)

  johndrew 12:09 25 Sep 2011


It's a conventional desktop PC with mouse and keyboard wired. Your experience may be of help though.

  johndrew 10:04 27 Sep 2011

^ Any more suggestions, please?

  johndrew 14:27 27 Sep 2011



I have carried out a full CHKDSK on HDDs with no reports of problems; sfc /scannow didn't look at the CD either.

Going back to an earlier post of yours, I read up on MemTest and found it may show errors as a result of timings. I have always (since almost new) had an error show up for memory (when using MemTest) and now wonder if possibly this could all be something to do with this? I should add that other than for a replacement CMOS battery I have not been into BIOS and have changed nothing.

Any thoughts?

  johndrew 14:46 27 Sep 2011

Well if it is memory it is fairly inexpensive to replace; similarly for PSU. I think either may cause this and since I'm pretty certain it's not malware related then hardware must be the cause as it all works fine until one (or sometimes more) programs freeze.

However, given the PC is 6 years old and runs XP Pro, it may be time to cut my losses and think about a new desktop unit. I would need W7 Pro (to run my XP software) with a decent bit of speed for home video. Other than that it would be reliability and price. Any suggestions as to a good, reasonably priced supplier? So many are going out of business these days.

  johndrew 15:16 28 Sep 2011

^ Yes, No?

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