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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
MB. Asus A7N8X Delux, mem. 1.5 gig, processor amd 2600 athlon. OS Win XP corporate SP2.

Problem: system boots, task bar pops up then hides and system hangs. When i move cursor to task bar position little hour glass shows busy. I have to do a reset and computer then boots and works fine.

I changed Hard drives, re programed and computer does same thing, I changed again and installed an array with promise raid adapter, computer does same thing.
I thought SYSFADER might be the problem but disabling it did nothing.

Any help out there? Doug J.
 

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You may not have an actual problem.

Do you run an AntiVirus? When booting this will automatically do a quick boot scan, which you want, so it may take awhile. Also, if you have automatic virus definition updates set (and you should) the download/install could take awhile.

First, turn OFF Auto-hide the Taskbar option (Taskbar Properties). You are not seeing if the boot has completed yet.

Try downloading and using Microsoft's Process Explorer (PE). Note red text.

The download is actually a self-running extractor, not an installer. You copy the extracted files to a folder of your choice (I use \Program Files\ProcessExplorer) and make a shortcut to the EXE.

PE will show you exactly what tasks are running on your system. Much better than the Win Task Manager.

Suggest the following settings for PE:

Options menu
  • Always On Top
  • Hide When Minimized
  • Allow Only One Instance
  • CPU History in Tray Icon
View menu
  • Show Processes From All Users
  • Show Fractional CPU
  • Show Lower Pane
Also, View menu, Select Columns, Process Performance tab, set:
  • CPU Usage
  • Threads
  • Handle Count

By the way, the best feature in PE (IMHO) is the [Find] function. When you get those error dialogs that say "whatever.DLL has caused a problem, and..." and you have no idea what to do because Win Task Manager does not list DLLs?

If you leave the error dialog open, you can use PE [Find] to search for whatever.DLL and it will show you what running task called the errant DLL. Much better for troubleshooting.

At work, we have it load at startup (shortcut in Startup folder set to open minimized) and we can easily see when all the boot-tasks are done (low CPU usage) and makes it easier to open PE with the icon in the Tray. I do not suggest this if you're a big PC game player.

I suspect that your boot is NOT actually completed depending on what has to be loaded. PE will show you what is running. WinXP can take quite awhile to actually complete booting even if the hour-glass is NOT showing, aka the cursor is lying and your system is not actually ready to use. After a WinXP boot, you should wait until ALL hard drive action has stopped before doing anything else.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for your input. I'll try all that you suggested. I have tried waiting for over an hour, no luck! When the system decides to do a good boot, which it does sometimes, it boots quite quickly. This system I built about 3 years ago and it has done this from day one.
Thanks again, DRJ [an old retired IT guy]
 
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