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K-L-Waster
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File system stops responding in new build - SOLVED

Wed Dec 13, 2017 9:11 pm

Update: This issue is now solved -- reinstalling Windows did the trick.
--------------

I'm having a major problem with the new build I just put together. I'm hoping someone has seen a similar issue and can suggest how to correct it.

Physically, the system seems to be fine, It posts and boots, and runs well... for ~ 5 minutes.

Then, Windows Explorer goes into Never-Never Land.

When this happens I can't get to the file system, the Start menu, Task Manager, etc. and eventually other applications that are already running become unresponsive as well. However, during this time the mouse pointer continues working, I can move windows around the screen, and if there are any animations running (like install / uninstall spinners) they continue running pretty much indefinitely - if there is a time counter it will continue counting too.

I cannot restart the system when it gets like this, so have to use the reset button or the power button.

This doesn't really sound like a hardware problem -- if it was a bad component or something not properly seated I would expect a hard hang or crash. Being able to move windows and the mouse pointer seems to indicate that the core hardware isn't failing.

Now, I didn't reinstall Windows, which may very well be the cause of the problem. It's possible that some of the applications, services, or drivers from the previous build don't like their new home. I was hoping to avoid having to reinstall and set up everything again since I am continuing to use the same storage devices.

Another thing that strongly suggests it is a software issue is if I do a Clean Boot the problem does not happen. It only happens when I do a normal boot. I'm currently trying to figure out which software is causing the problem, but no luck so far.

The new components are an 8700K, Asus ROG Strix z370 Gaming E, and 16 GB G-Skill Trident DDR4 3200. The rest of the components are the same as the Main in my signature.

Any suggestions welcome.
Last edited by K-L-Waster on Fri Dec 15, 2017 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Main System: i7-8700K, ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E, 16 GB DDR4 3200 RAM, MSI GTX 1080 TI, 1 TB CRUCIAL MX500, Corsair 550D

HTPC: I5-4460, ASUS H97M-E, 8 GB RAM, GTX 970, CRUCIAL 256GB MX100, SILVERSTONE GD09B
 
just brew it!
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Wed Dec 13, 2017 10:02 pm

Sounds like time for a Windows reinstall to me...
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Flying Fox
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Wed Dec 13, 2017 10:31 pm

It does sound like Windows problem, in particular drivers (should probably have sysprep'ed the OS before moving over to the new setup).

Moved the thread to the Windows forum. /mod
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Duct Tape Dude
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Wed Dec 13, 2017 10:41 pm

I've had similar issues when a drive wasn't responding properly. Took a look in CrystalDiskMark and found the SATA interface speeds (that's right, the bus speed, not even measuring the actual throughput) were dropping from 6Gbps to 3Gbps to 1.5Gbps. Eventually the system would stutter and freeze to a halt.

I ended up replacing the SATA cable and the problem hasn't shown since.
 
KingLear
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Wed Dec 13, 2017 10:51 pm

The first thing I would do is get a Linux boot CD (or put it on a flash drive). Boot that and play around with to see if it works OK. If it crashes I would assume there is a hardware problem. If it runs fine then zero in on Windows.
 
DancinJack
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Wed Dec 13, 2017 10:58 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Sounds like time for a Windows reinstall to me...


this.

/thread
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K-L-Waster
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 6:58 am

DancinJack wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
Sounds like time for a Windows reinstall to me...


this.

/thread


I'm inclined to agree at this point, so that's the plan for the day.

Thanks for the feedback, everyone.
Main System: i7-8700K, ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E, 16 GB DDR4 3200 RAM, MSI GTX 1080 TI, 1 TB CRUCIAL MX500, Corsair 550D

HTPC: I5-4460, ASUS H97M-E, 8 GB RAM, GTX 970, CRUCIAL 256GB MX100, SILVERSTONE GD09B
 
Aether
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 7:56 am

Duct Tape Dude wrote:
I've had similar issues when a drive wasn't responding properly. Took a look in CrystalDiskMark and found the SATA interface speeds (that's right, the bus speed, not even measuring the actual throughput) were dropping from 6Gbps to 3Gbps to 1.5Gbps. Eventually the system would stutter and freeze to a halt.

I ended up replacing the SATA cable and the problem hasn't shown since.


OP, I think it would be worth spending a few minutes re-seating your SATA cable(s) before you reinstall Window in case you have an issue like Duct Tape Dude.
 
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 8:31 am

This seems more like a temperature/overheat problem, i.e. maybe the processor heat sink needs some love. I would do a reinstall of the heatsink and make sure you have the right amount of thermal paste. Too much is just as bad as too little.

Do a clean boot and run something like Prime and see if you have the same lockup issue.
 
K-L-Waster
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 10:00 am

I've been able to make some progress by using the Clean Boot settings to disable some startup apps and services. By the looks of things, there were some ASUS utilities that were still on the system from when I installed the z97 motherboard a few years ago. I think they were having trouble running with the new motherboard. Once I disabled those while leaving the rest of the startup apps services enabled, it will run for extended periods without hanging.

The most logical thing to do would be to uninstall those -- however, they don't want to uninstall, even in safe mode. Seems some of the installer files have gone AWOL in the past 3.5 years and the uninstall doesn't know what to do.

Given that disabling ASUS software clears the issue up, I'm more confident that this is not a hardware issue (whew!). But it also reinforces that it is probably time for a spring cleaning (or holiday season cleaning I suppose....)

roncat wrote:
This seems more like a temperature/overheat problem, i.e. maybe the processor heat sink needs some love.


I was thinking that at first, but when it was hanging the system hadn't been under enough load to generate much heat (literally startup, start a browser or an installer, that sort of thing). Also, since disabling the ASUS software I have been able to run PC-Mark and TimeSpy Extreme without running into any problems.
Main System: i7-8700K, ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E, 16 GB DDR4 3200 RAM, MSI GTX 1080 TI, 1 TB CRUCIAL MX500, Corsair 550D

HTPC: I5-4460, ASUS H97M-E, 8 GB RAM, GTX 970, CRUCIAL 256GB MX100, SILVERSTONE GD09B
 
Ethyriel
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:21 am

If you can find the applications in HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall and HKLM\Software\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall, you can try using the uninstall strings from those keys.
 
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:21 pm

I'd recommend simply deleting the files/folders for the problem apps from Safe Mode, they can't load if they aren't there.

Taking a step back, a clean Windows install is likely the best long-term solution. Just make sure to save everything in the %system%\User folder tree in multiple places first.
 
freebird
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 1:26 pm

K-L-Waster wrote:
I'm having a major problem with the new build I just put together. I'm hoping someone has seen a similar issue and can suggest how to correct it.

Physically, the system seems to be fine, It posts and boots, and runs well... for ~ 5 minutes.

Then, Windows Explorer goes into Never-Never Land.

When this happens I can't get to the file system, the Start menu, Task Manager, etc. and eventually other applications that are already running become unresponsive as well. However, during this time the mouse pointer continues working, I can move windows around the screen, and if there are any animations running (like install / uninstall spinners) they continue running pretty much indefinitely - if there is a time counter it will continue counting too.

I cannot restart the system when it gets like this, so have to use the reset button or the power button.

This doesn't really sound like a hardware problem -- if it was a bad component or something not properly seated I would expect a hard hang or crash. Being able to move windows and the mouse pointer seems to indicate that the core hardware isn't failing.

Now, I didn't reinstall Windows, which may very well be the cause of the problem. It's possible that some of the applications, services, or drivers from the previous build don't like their new home. I was hoping to avoid having to reinstall and set up everything again since I am continuing to use the same storage devices.

Another thing that strongly suggests it is a software issue is if I do a Clean Boot the problem does not happen. It only happens when I do a normal boot. I'm currently trying to figure out which software is causing the problem, but no luck so far.

The new components are an 8700K, Asus ROG Strix z370 Gaming E, and 16 GB G-Skill Trident DDR4 3200. The rest of the components are the same as the Main in my signature.

Any suggestions welcome.


You didn't say if you are using an SSD, HDD or which OS version. I had a similar problem installing Windows 10 on an older system (990FX chipset with an Phenom II 1090T). I was using an old 500GB HD, I had lying around and unfortunately I used an older Win10 install DVD. I had similar issues you encountered. I heard the HD buzzing (read/write) alot while it was "frozen". Found after a reboot that a couple minutes after boot the Desktop explorer would stop responding like you mention. While the PC was still responding, I opened up Resource Monitor and viewed DIsk Activity. It was constantly pegged at 100%, but must have been reading writing small chunks of Random Requests because it was only doing 3-5MB/sec most of the time (does about 80-90MB Seq. Read/Write). I BELIEVE it was due to MS/Windows 10 downloading patches and upgrading to the latest version. I decided to let it sit for a day or two, I forget exactly how long, but now it seems to run pretty well. I also disabled the SuperFetch service since it REALLY bogged down the system and loaded the HDD for several minutes after booting. This build is used for mining only.
 
Duct Tape Dude
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 6:22 pm

K-L-Waster wrote:
I was thinking that at first, but when it was hanging the system hadn't been under enough load to generate much heat (literally startup, start a browser or an installer, that sort of thing). Also, since disabling the ASUS software I have been able to run PC-Mark and TimeSpy Extreme without running into any problems.

Ok but consider this other time I had a freezing system:

Symptoms:
-Random freezing
-Happens usually under light load, sometimes at idle, rarely under load (usually right at the start of a benchmark or not at all)
-Never happens at startup, only after a few minutes or hours
-Rarely happens overnight

The fix was to add a fan pointing to the base of the CPU.

The cause was some overheating VRMs or something on the motherboard, all due to poor airflow and rising temps when the system was slightly stressed. It generated some heat but not enough to keep CPU temps up, so while VRMs began cooking the case fans stayed at idle. During load, the CPU would actually heat up, and the VRMs would too, but the case fans would kick in and generate enough airflow to cool everything down.

You're not careful, hotspots that you don't typically monitor can be more of a problem at low load than high load. Hotter components of course mean lesser performance or stability, so just make sure you're always dispersing heat--even on parts that don't have readable temp sensors.
 
K-L-Waster
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Thu Dec 14, 2017 7:30 pm

Duct Tape Dude wrote:
Ok but consider this other time I had a freezing system:

Symptoms:
-Random freezing
-Happens usually under light load, sometimes at idle, rarely under load (usually right at the start of a benchmark or not at all)
-Never happens at startup, only after a few minutes or hours
-Rarely happens overnight

The fix was to add a fan pointing to the base of the CPU.


I've actually done something similar to that today -- I added a pair of fans at the top feeding air in, one of which has air passing directly over the VRM heatsink. Hopefully that fan will prevent the VRMs from heating up.
Main System: i7-8700K, ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E, 16 GB DDR4 3200 RAM, MSI GTX 1080 TI, 1 TB CRUCIAL MX500, Corsair 550D

HTPC: I5-4460, ASUS H97M-E, 8 GB RAM, GTX 970, CRUCIAL 256GB MX100, SILVERSTONE GD09B
 
K-L-Waster
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Re: File system stops responding in new build

Fri Dec 15, 2017 4:09 pm

As an update to this, I have completed the Windows reinstall and everything so far has been working without any recurrence of the issue. I still have some tweaks to do to get the system perfectly tuned, but I am confident the original issue is now solved.

Thanks for all the suggestions everyone. One of the reasons I like this site so much is how helpful and knowledgeable the community is.
Main System: i7-8700K, ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E, 16 GB DDR4 3200 RAM, MSI GTX 1080 TI, 1 TB CRUCIAL MX500, Corsair 550D

HTPC: I5-4460, ASUS H97M-E, 8 GB RAM, GTX 970, CRUCIAL 256GB MX100, SILVERSTONE GD09B
 
Duct Tape Dude
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Re: File system stops responding in new build - SOLVED

Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:51 am

Great to hear it was just Windows after all! Typical, I guess. Hope it all stays stable for you.

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