Windows 7 Becomes unresponsive after 15 minutes

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Help and Support' started by Bmkcho127, May 17, 2014.

  1. Bmkcho127

    Bmkcho127 New Member

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    This problem happened a few days ago.I was checking my email on Google Chrome when the browser froze and when I tried to refresh the page , the page became unresponsive.Then when I tried to click off the browser via the taskbar that freezes followed by the desktop.(also, Ctrl + Alt + Del doesn't work when this happens)

    This problem has been persisting for a few days and I don't know what is causing it.However the problem doesn't happen on safe mode.

    Any help would be appreciated.
     
  2. Fixer1234

    Fixer1234 Senior Member

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    The symptoms sound like something is maxing out the CPU. Successive things don't work because there is no processing capacity left for them. To figure out what is the culprit, I would start by loading Task Manager as soon as you boot up and keep it visible on the desktop. Go to the processes tab and click on the CPU column once or twice to get the display sorted on CPU usage with the highest numbers at the top. Typically, the highest usage will be System Idle Process. When your system becomes unresponsive, you are likely to see something else at the top using close to 100%. If it is a Windows process, you may be able to fix it with SFC /scannow. If it is something other than Windows, you may need to reload the offending software. If it always happens in Chrome, check for an add-in problem (start in Chrome in (browser) safe mode and see if the problem disappears; if so, disable all add-ins and then enable them one by one to find the problem).
     
  3. Bmkcho127

    Bmkcho127 New Member

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    Fixer1234, I tired what you suggested but I can't seem to find the culprit because task manager says that nothing is actually maxing out the CPU or using close to 100%.I have tried a couple of tests and that it seems that even when chrome isn't opened , the explorer still becomes unresponsive after a few minutes and this is the same when I open nothing. I tired leaving the desktop when it freezes and left it for a few hours but when i returned it was still in that state.
     
  4. Trouble

    Trouble Noob Whisperer

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    If the problem is not persistent in safe mode as you've stated above then you'll likely need to track down the offending process by performing a clean boot of the OS as described here.
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/929135
     
  5. Fixer1234

    Fixer1234 Senior Member

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    1st question: to know whether the issue is something maxing out the CPU, when you say you don't see it in Task Manager, does Task Manager continue to actively report changes in activity or does it also freeze (but could be freezing before it is able to report the problem)?

    Do you have more than one antivirus program running in the background? That will do it.

    If it is neither of those, it is likely either corrupted software that is sending your computer on a wild goose chase or a hardware problem (probably heat-related). Is the computer fine when you first turn it on and the problems start say 10 minutes to half an hour later?

    Run sfc /scannow from the Start menu Run window, then reboot. If the problem is a corrupted windows file, that will find and correct it. See if the problem disappears. If not:

    Try booting in safe mode and just leave the computer on for an hour or two. Occasionally try to do any activity just to see if the system is frozen. If it freezes, it is either Windows corruption or a hardware problem. If you have run sfc, that leaves hardware.

    If it doesn't freeze, that rules out hardware and the core of the operating system and points to software--either something non-critical from Microsoft that is automatically loaded at bootup or third party software that is normally running on your machine. Repeat the test with a clean boot: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/929135 This loads pretty much everything from Microsoft that is normally loaded, but no third party stuff. Leave the computer on for an hour or two, occasionally trying activity to see if it is frozen.

    If the system freezes, the culprit is one of the Microsoft programs or services that loads in clean boot but not in safe mode. If it doesn't freeze, the problem is one of the non-Microsoft programs that loads in a normal boot.
     
  6. Fixer1234

    Fixer1234 Senior Member

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    Trouble is not only a more careful reader than me, he responded while I was still composing my long answer, which would not have been necessary if I had just read you post better. Yes, I see in your original post that you already tried safe mode and the problem doesn't happen. Trouble went right to the clean boot, so you can pretty much skip my answer. You've got to get up pretty early in the morning to stay ahead of Trouble.
     
    Trouble likes this.
  7. Bmkcho127

    Bmkcho127 New Member

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    I've done the clean boot multiple times and the problem does happen.However i'm having trouble trying to find and locate the Microsoft program that is causing this problem.Also I talked to a friend who said that he had the same problem on his laptop a year ago and the way he fixed it was wiping his hard drive of all things except from the default programs he installed when he first got his laptop.
     
    #7 Bmkcho127, May 27, 2014
    Last edited: May 27, 2014
  8. Fixer1234

    Fixer1234 Senior Member

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    If the problem happens with a clean boot but not when booting in safe mode, the issue is with Microsoft software that loads in a clean boot but not in safe mode. That is likely all default stuff from when you first got your computer. Have you run sfc /scannow now (see earlier post in this thread)? Run it and reboot. If the problem doesn't disappear, we can try a bigger hammer.
     
  9. Trouble

    Trouble Noob Whisperer

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    If you're completely convinced that it is not some third party software application, service or process and all else fails.
    You may want to consider and In Place Upgrade Repair as explained here http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2255099
    As a last resort.... it's not a bad option. Takes a while but has saved me in a couple instances in the past.

    Definitely a "bigger hammer".
     
  10. Fixer1234

    Fixer1234 Senior Member

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    It isn't clear what this does. You need your Windows install DVD and license key. They call it an upgrade, but it sounds like it reinstalls your current version. What is upgraded to what? What is different from just using the DVD alone?
     
  11. Trouble

    Trouble Noob Whisperer

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    They call it an upgrade but it isn't .... actually most people call it an in-place upgrade repair.
    It's a non-destructive way of installing the Windows OS over top of itself and has been around as a means of repairing a broken system for a long time.
    As long as the system will boot you can use this method to repair it.
    Back in the XP days you didn't even need a system that would boot, you could just boot from the Installation media and install XP over top of itself, but ever since Vista the System has to boot and run.

    EDIT: Yes you need the install media as well as your product key. But the nice part is not much changes and I've found that for the most part you don't have to reinstall all your programs, and your data is not at risk.
    Of course I would and do always create a system image backup before performing this technique.
     
    #11 Trouble, May 27, 2014
    Last edited: May 27, 2014
  12. Fixer1234

    Fixer1234 Senior Member

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    How is that different from reinstalling Windows from the DVD?
     
  13. Trouble

    Trouble Noob Whisperer

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    Your system remains pretty much the same..... programs, desktop, etc., etc.
    It is just intended to fix Windows System File corruption that is not fixable by any other method.
     
  14. Fixer1234

    Fixer1234 Senior Member

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    Good to know. Thanks.
     
  15. Bmkcho127

    Bmkcho127 New Member

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    Alright looks like it was a default program that was per-installed was causing the trouble.It looks like it has been fixed so I would like to thank everyone for the help.
     
  16. Trouble

    Trouble Noob Whisperer

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    Good to hear that you have managed to resolve your issue. Thanks for posting back and updating your thread.
    Any specifics as to the actual identity of the "default program"? It might be helpful to others who may have a similar issue.
    Thanks again.
     

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