Endless blue shutdown screens...

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Col Dee
Joined: Dec 31 2002


I've been running XP-Pro for about 18 months now with almost no complaints at all.

However about 4 weeks ago the computer started crashing with a blue error screen. There would be some advice from Microsoft, one line of technical details (something a bit like "STOP: 000F0000000") and then the words "Beginning dump of physical memory" and a countup from 0 to 100, at which point the system would restart. Sometimes the words "IRQ_L less or not equal" would be at the very top of this screen.

This was occurring about two or three times a week. Then I went on holiday for 2 weeks. I got back last night.

The computer seemed to be working fine (albeit quite slowly) for about half an hour. I was doing some fairly light work - MusicMatch was converting an audio CD to mp3 whilst I opened Fruityloops 4. I called up a vst and the computer crashed with the blue error screen.

I quickly pressed the reset button and the system began to restart. It got to the XP-Pro bootup part where the little blue bar is moving across the screen, and then just started looping at this point. I reset again, and again, and again.

Eventually after leaving the computer switched for a while, I switched on and it fully loaded up XP-Pro, but crashed again as soon as I moved the mouse.

I noticed that, initially, the system was more apt to load up fully if the two removable hard drives were taken out. But still it would crash pretty soon after booting. But eventually, whether the hard disks were in or out also made no difference.

I reinstalled XP-Pro twice, but this made no difference.

The system got less and less reliable, and for the last ten hours it has never got passed the XP-Pro bootup bit with the blue bar moving across the screen. If I leave it doing that, the screen turns black after about ten minutes and nothing further happens.

Before the system became effectively useless, I ran a virus check which found no viruses.

I tweaked the mobo Bios a bit. It was in Turbo mode so I changed that to normal. I also disabled caching on both CPUs. None of this made any difference.

I don't think it is a heat issue since I have removed one of computer's side panels and placed a small fan next to it, and that made no difference.

When the blue shutdown screen comes up, the line of technical details sometimes starts with "win32k.sys" and I noticed it once start with "atapi.sys". It usually then goes to a line of zeroes and hyphens with an occasional "F".

Any help in resolving this would be very greatly appreciated. I'm at a loss.

It's a 266mhz PC with an Asus A7M266-D mobo, with dual Athlon MP 2200 processors. 2ghz of ECC Registered RAM. Power supply is a Q-TEC 550w. The soundcard is the Creative Audigy 2 Platinum. The graphics card is a Sapphire Radeon 9000Pro. Up until about 2 months ago there was a Pinnacle DV500 capture card installed, but I removed it because it was incompatible with XP-Pro. There is a Sony DRU-510a DVD burner fitted.

All the above was posted on another forum and somebody suggested the fault was with the native XP drivers for the Creative Audigy soundcard. So I've removed it, and now the computer starts up and Windows XP-Pro boots up fine. But everything, including the bootup, happens extremely slowly. Task Manager says the CPUs are constantly running at more than 50%. Clearly the problem is still there and although the system hasn't crashed since I removed the soundcard, I am sure that if I dared to open Fruityloops, it would crash.

Help would be gratefully appreciated.

I couldn't possibly think of a witty signature.

Joined: Apr 22 1999

I have the same motherboard as you. It sounds like you should remove some of the memory modules and test the system with less modules in to see if you have a dodgy memory stick.
What Bios are you running, have you tried the Beta 3 version, also consider the AMD & AGP driver versions.
Let me know if you find the solution.