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dannybuntu 04-20-2008 09:44 PM

Please Kindly Assist with Debian Crash/Freeze Troubleshooting
My sister's computer runs a Debian Etch Installation dualbooted with XP which has been working great for a month now. Recently she has been experiencing random crashes that occur from running any kind of application in Debian and/or Windows. There are no error messages just a freeze of the whole GUI and cursor.

-GUI and programs freeze
-Windows MBR got corrupted, prior to that, it automatically restarts

-All steps done via Debian
-Rebooted with hard reset, issue persists, corrupted Windows Partition (Now unbootable)
-Tried CTRL + ALT+ F1, = NOT WORK

**Please forgive me for the lack of information: I will attach them as they are requested since I do not know where to start, ie. which log file, which hardware info is required.

**Please specify which log file is required. Thanks

bigrigdriver 04-20-2008 11:40 PM

Since the problems occur in both windows and Linux, it's probably not a software problem. More likely it's hardware related, such as a memory chip or cpu going bad.

Most installation cds and livecds I've seen have a utility called memtest86 (it should be in the menu when the cd begins to load). It should be run before the system is loaded from cd so that RAM is not in use during the test. It can tell you if there is a problem with a memory chip.

Also, there is an application called stress ( which can test RAM memory, cpu, and hard drive for problems.

dannybuntu 04-21-2008 11:16 PM

Thank you so much for replying. You are correct in saying that it is not software related, for now we can't even access the BIOS. The monitor is just showing "NO INPUT"

Anyway, that is intermittent sometimes we could get to the GRUB menu, if I am lucky I would use the tools you described. Thank you so much!

thveillon 04-22-2008 02:11 PM

Would be a VERY good idea to backup everything you have on this machine, it's going the way that leads to the trash can... at least for some of the components.

dannybuntu 04-22-2008 09:25 PM

Yeah definitely, unfortunately, my sister kept her mp3 files on one of the partitions. I am suspecting the motherboard, but I am not doing anything yet for cost reasons. I just recently got her to use Linux and she likes it. But now she is back on her xp laptop. Well, hardware is hardware. If it's broke - there's only one thing I can do - buy (if i have the money...):)

DragonSlayer48DX 04-23-2008 05:22 PM


Originally Posted by dannybuntu (Post 3129685)
Well, hardware is hardware.

True, but most manufacturers make very reliable components. Not saying something didn't just break, but in my own experience, most of the time something caused the malfunction, such as a fried CPU cooling fan with monitors disabled, or a dirty MB.

The only time I fried a CPU (and I've used some very old equipment, BTW), it started as simple drive r/w errors and quickly progressed to what you've described. It finally died while I was trying to salvage data. I realized afterwards what went wrong. Now, that's the first thing I check when anything goes awry, and many, many times, that was the only problem.

Hope this helps.


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