Another Computer Help Thread

Here are my system stats:

Jetway 867AS Motherboard (Award 6.0 BIOS, VIA VT8333 Chipset)
AMD Athlon XP 1700+ (With Volcano 6cu+ Fan)
1024MB DDRAM PC2100 (512x2)
Riva TNT2 32MB Vid Card
Onboard AC’97 Avance Logic Audio
Linksys WUSB11 USB Wireless Internet Adapter (With Linksys Router on ADSL)
Maxtor 12GB 5400RPM (XP drive)
Western Digital Caviar 80GB
Compaq 8x DVD Drive
Acer 24x12x40 CDRW
Logitech/Microsoft Periphs
Dell 17’’ Flat Panel Monitor
Creative 2.1 Audio
Windows XP Professional Build 2600
Ok, here is the problem. I just installed my new ram, which was an upgrade from 512MB SDRAM. The Jetway mobo supports ddr and sd, so that wasn’t a problem. Booted up fine, no probs. Fast forward to several days later. Computer starts acting odd, with these symptoms:

  • Drammatically slower
  • Sound starts skipping, and jumping
  • XP font is now bold
  • After rebooting, during log on, Windows said I need to reactivate.
  • I chose to do it over the internet after I completely logged on, but it didn’t detect my USB Wireless adapter. This hardware never got removed during the ram installation process.
  • I went to Device Manager to see what the deal was. Device Manager didn’t list ANYTHING. No devices were listed.
  • I checked my network connections. No connections present. Not even that “Make New Connection” Icon
  • I close out of there, and windows tells me that there has been an error with Explorer.exe. So it has to restart the explorer function. Then it tells me that Iexplore.exe isn’t functioning (it wasn’t ever open).
    This is were I am now. I just turned the thing off and haven’t touched it. I am under the opinion that Windows has been corrupted in some form or another. I plan to save all necessary files and do a clean, fresh install.

This is a last ditch effort to see if anyone might have any ideas…

I also posted this at, but who knows, maybe a Doper could help…

You can try a reinstall without formatting. Windows Setup should overwrite the core system files, hopefully fixing the problem. I doubt if your system is stable enough to successfully use any of the repair tools, like System File Checker.

Microsoft will provide unlimited install help and 2 non-install help calls for XP at no cost. (at least for home, not sure about pro) I have called them on many occasions when I have completely frigged up my sys, and I mean completely, and they have always come through. I would just call them before you re-install, it’s probably some corrupt file nested deeply some 18 directories into the registry.

I know just enough to be totally dangerous and completely destructive to my poor comps, and those folks have always baled me out.

Assumtions (based upon my Win9x knowledge):
Virus check performed.
(Some trojans bypass Explorer with a similar sounding .exe.)
Registry scanned and/or backup restored.
(Check msconfig for scanregw.)
Firewall did not report new program accessing network.
( and Shields Up mandantory for all DSL connections.)
Disk throughly scanned for bad sectors.
(Even though IDEs are bullet proof if they last more that sixty days.)
BIOS manually updated with new RAM.
'Net search for Award BIOS problems/updates done.

But at this point you have two choices:

  1. Reinstall OS with new RAM and wait for crash.
    If Crash
    Then possible new RAM problem or HD or GOK (God Only Knows) problem.
    If No crash
    Then virus or GOK (God Only Knows) problem
  2. Reinstall OS with old RAM and wait for crash.
    If Crash
    Then not new RAM problem
    If No crash
    Then possible new RAM problem

Do you feel lucky, huh, do you?
Perform #1 then if crash do #2

Like to play it safe?
Perform #2 then reinstall new RAM and you’ll know for sure if new RAM is problem.