What's wrong with my computer?
July 14, 2005 3:03 PM   Subscribe

HELP! My computer is having some strange problems that look to be pretty serious! I've got a Presario running XP.

Ok, well first of all, there's at least one clear problem that I can point to:
My audio devices and drivers seem to have completely vanished. When I open "Sounds and Audio Device Properties" It tells me "No Audio Device." All of the options are greyed out. Under no circumstances have I been able to get my computer to produce any sound. Not even the simple beep alert that eminates from the CPU tower. That's problem number one.

Problem two: I tried to perform a system restoration through the Start Menu "Help and Support" option. I select a checkpoint date and hit next. Nothing happens.

Problem three: I've been getting strange stalls and crashes. Thunderbird seems to be the victim of most of them although the stall/crashes seem to strike without reason or warning.

Problem four: Norton seems to freeze/stall during the virus scan. I haven't updated it for a while because I've been reluctant to pay for it. Has something slipped through? I'm pretty careful.

So, I'm trying to reinstall the original sound drivers that shipped with the computer. I'll let you know if that works. Any thoughts or suggestions?
Please help. This machine is still less than a year old.
posted by Jon-o to Technology (5 answers total)
Response by poster: Ok, reinstalling the sound drivers seemed to work. That problem is solved. How about the others?
posted by Jon-o at 3:05 PM on July 14, 2005

reformat, reinstall.
posted by angry modem at 5:17 PM on July 14, 2005

My guess, and it really is a guess, is that you have some bad RAM.

Honestly though, there isn't nearly enough information in your post to workout what the problem is.

Do you have any warranty support options? You might want to backup as much as you can then run the restore CD to put the system back to factory settings, then call support if the problem persists.
posted by krisjohn at 5:19 PM on July 14, 2005

If you're running Norton and you haven't updated it for a while, you're not as careful as you think you are. I'm tipping you've got a virus, and that it's one of the newer ones that knows how to kick Norton in the head.

If I were you, I'd use Add/Remove Programs to uninstall NAV, restart, use Add/Remove again to uninstall NAV leftovers (like Live Update), restart, search my hard drive for folders with "Norton" or "Symantec" in the name and delete those, then install Crap Cleaner and use it to clean all the leftover Symantec crap out of my registry; then I'd install AVG 7.0 Free antivirus and run a full scan. Betcha you find one.

Also, beware of System Restore - the damn thing is the worst false security I can think of. I have seen more damage done by naive use of System Restore than I have ever seen it fix. Personally, I never use it except IMMEDIATELY after installing something that hasn't worked for me, and I ONLY ever go back to the most recent restore point. Certainly, never use it if you've made significant changes to your system (like adding or removing user accounts) since creating the restore point you're thinking of using; it will hose things up totally.
posted by flabdablet at 7:38 PM on July 14, 2005

Oh, yeah: while you're at it, check for spyware and adware.

And if it is bad RAM, Memtest86 will tell you.
posted by flabdablet at 8:20 PM on July 14, 2005

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