Sep 26, 2004
Hi All,

This is my first time posting here. I apologize if this is the wrong forum to post my problems. I need help, as I really have no idea what to do.

A couple days ago, my pc began to crash while playing Doom III. I would get an .exe file error. It wasn't a big deal, just annoying. Then it started to happen with my internet browser, firefox. It began to happen more and more often. I also noticed other games like Battlefield Vietnam seemed to stutter on the menus when they had not before. I also noticed spybot would not boot up. I thought it might be a tempature problem, but the probe I am using reported everything as cool. I opened up the system and found no dust or dirt.

I ran several virus scans, ad aware, scan disc, and a few other apps to clear things up. Everything came back clean. Instead of things getting better, they got worse. The crashes became more and more common, the computer began to reboot when certain applications were brought up (things like cd burning). Later on in the evening I got no sound, and sound card error messages. My PC then rebooted with scan disc starting (without my prompting), and it found a bunch of errors that it supposedly fixed. On the next reboot, I had graphical errors from the start (images moving at a snails pace when I moved them across the screen). I found the graphics drivers were missing from the properties menu (the folder was still listed), and the internet would crash almost immediately. I tried reinstalling the graphics driver, but it would not open.

I decided to back up whatever files I could and reformat. I deleted the old partition on my HD and started a fresh windows install. After reformatting the drive, windows setup began to install. When it got about 33% in, I got an error saying a certain file could not be copied. I took the disc out and cleaned it, then tried again. It worked, but then I got an error a few files later. I had it retry, it worked. Then another error. I kept this process up quite a bit, until it was nearly completed installing. Then at 96% it would not copy a certain file no matter what I did. So, I had it skip installation of that file and another until it was complete (my only option at the time).

Windows OS began to install, and a few minutes in it crashed with the message that windows setup was shutting itself down to protect the pc. I tried again, and the OS installed.

I then installed my motherboard, and internet drivers. While I tried to get sound and graphics drivers up, I kept getting error messages such as "system has recovered from a serious error", "Unknown error" and my favorite "A catastrophic error has occurred". I also noticed I got VERY loud beeping noises coming from my pc when I attempted to install certain files. After several errors I managed to install firefox, however it does not respond when I click on it.

I've got it running, but I know the OS did not install well and I'm getting a bunch of errors. I'm not really quick to reformat my drive yet again without knowing anything different this time, because I'm sure I'll get the same error problems when installing windows.

Since then, I tried a new HD to see if that was the problem. I've had the same exact results.

I've tried to run memory test by burning the iso file to a cd and booting from the cd, but the system does not recognize the file and boots up from the hard drive. I may be doing something wrong here.

Any ideas or advice would be much appreciated. Thank you.


Mar 6, 2004
Strange, I doubt its your cpu or video card, It might be RAM, but doubtfull.. Try taking out compents one by one (Sound card, network card.. that type of thing) and seeing if that helps..

As I sit up in my bed looking at all the stars, I begin to wonder... WHERE THE HECK IS MY ROOF!?


Two most common causes of your problem are bad psu, and failing capacitors. Use mbm5 to keep an eye on your voltage rails. Yuo can leave it running, but set it up to keep a log file. That way you will have the info on volts and temps when your system crashes.
To check your capacitors, look for the small cylinders near your chip. If any of them are bulging, leaking or have tops that are not flat, they are bad, and causing your problem.


Jul 6, 2004
I would also check the hard drive. This could be caused by a failing hard drive. if you can, go to the HD maker's website and download their testing tool and use that to test the drive.