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Computer stops and is not responding

  1. Dec 31, 2013 #1
    sth is wrong with my computer.when i start it after a few minutes everything stops, mouse pointer turns into a turning blue circle, folder and icon disappears from desktop. I am using some old version softwares ,for example matlab 2008, with windows 8.Is it related with old version softwares.might my old laptop break down because of old softwares? but I can start task manager. can I chase the issue from there? I have understood that the issue is related with chrome, when I use internet explorer everything is ok. but this is how a strange problem.might it be related with a virüs?
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 31, 2013 #2
    It sounds like explorer.exe is crashing. Explorer is the UI and when it crashes, all the icons/folders, taskbar disappear.
    I would try booting up in safemode first and checking if the issue occurs there as well. This will help narrow down if the problem is simply a 3rd party application causing the problem or something that's more integrated into the system.

    Here's a link to the windows website that shows you how to boot into safemode in windows 8
  4. Dec 31, 2013 #3
    You can probably restart explorer.exe by using new task option in task manager by typing explorer.exe and hitting enter for short term relief.
    I would do a full pc scan and if all fails a system restore but I am a n00b so there might be a better way out.
  5. Dec 31, 2013 #4


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    It's not clear from your post if you are using an old computer or a newer system. I get that you are using Win 8 with older software, but what about the hardware specs for your computer? Did Win 8 come with this system, or was it added later? Have you kept up with Win 8 updates? Has this problem always occurred, or did it start after you added some software to your system? Have you added any new hardware?
  6. Jan 10, 2014 #5
    I am using a new computer with amd a10 processor,8 gb ram and a dual graphics card.Is it clear now and I have found the source of the issue.it happens when I run chorome browser. everything is ok with explorer browser.
  7. Jan 10, 2014 #6
    what is UI?
  8. Jan 10, 2014 #7


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    UI = user interface
  9. Jan 10, 2014 #8
    UI means User Interface. Explorer.exe is the file that runs your desktop (this is NOT Internet Explorer, thats a different program), the task bar, the start button, etc. When you click on things, you're using explorer.exe
    When Explorer.exe crashes, most of the things you interact with on a computer disappear, like how your desktop disappears.

    Since your issue is with chrome, the first thing i would try is to uninstall chrome from your computer (Control Panel>Programs & Features>Uninstall A program)
    Reboot the computer, then use internet explorer to download chrome and install it again. After that test and see if the problem still occurs.
  10. Jan 10, 2014 #9
    I thought this idea and did.At first everything was ok but then the problem started again with
    chrome.and there are also problems with int explorer browser.For example first it doesnt working well while working with mails and second it is responding very late.when I clicked back button to go back google browser went back to web page I am trying to leave.I am clicking back successively then browser go very back then I click forward until I come back to google results.the second problem is when I pressed back sometimes nothing change.I go very back for example it is written on the browser as bing.com but the page is from physicsforums.com.Then I tried mozilla but it has problems too.I think I must reinstall windows.But If the problem is related with a virus and if the virus is hiding in my external drives they will ooze to my computer again.
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2014
  11. Jan 10, 2014 #10
    I would first try to see how the computer behaves in safemode to see if it's another program. Given the symptoms you have described, i would be leaning towards and add on/toolbar of some kind or just too many programs in your startup routine.
    Follow the steps listed here to log into safemode with networking and see if the problems still occur.

    When you're in safemode with networking, run Internet Explorer with no Add ons
    Use Method 3

    This should basically turn off the vast majority of the programs not required to operate the computer and also run Internet explorer without any potential addons that could break it. If the system works correctly, then we know that the problem is some extra program/addon and those are generally easy to solve.
    If the problem still occurs then we may be dealing with an infection or some deeper OS issue.

    Once you do the above, it will give us a better idea of exactly what the problem is and we'll be able to advise you on what to do next.
  12. Jan 17, 2014 #11
    what type of full system scan? Is it an antivirus scan? and what is noob?
  13. Jan 17, 2014 #12


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    You can also look up the meaning of words with google.

    Try it: google 'noob'.
  14. Jan 17, 2014 #13

    I started windows with safe mode and see that all of my programs except maple12(an 2008 program) was working.google chrome was giving the same problem but it was easy to close it and turn to desktop,in the normal mode I wouldnt go back to desktop after running chrome.then I started safe mode with networking and saw that internet explorer wasnt working but in this mode maple 12 was running well.then after running internet explorer all icons disappeared and desktop crashed.this showed that there was a problem with explorer as well.when I tried to restart windows I encountered with a black screen.there was nothing but only a mouse cursor.I could moving it.after a few trying windows o.s never came back to normal.then I had to choose refresh option.windows removed all programs.now there is not any problem but I know that I will encounter this problem in the futuresome of programs I installed installed their tools bars.might the problem be related with these tools bar?.now how should I preceed?
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2014
  15. Jan 17, 2014 #14
    how can I understand which add-on is breaking down my system?
  16. Jan 20, 2014 #15
    Okay. Since the issue is occurring with IE in safemode, I think it may have to do with an addon/toolbar. I would suggest we start off by disabling all the toolbars in IE and going from there.
    Reboot the computer to safemode w/networking.
    Then follow these steps
    make sure you select the option "delete personal settings" when you reset IE

    Google chrome doesn't quite have an equivalent to resetting defaults but you can test to see how the browser behaves with no addons by running it in incognito mode

    Do both in safemode w/networking and let us know how the system behaves. Im leaning towards some 3rd party application/addon being the problem here.

    Also, I would like you to go through the programs & features list on your computer and uninstall anything with the name "toolbar" and "search" on it.
  17. Apr 25, 2014 #16
    Even if you consider yourself "a noob" I'd like to suggest that whenever you install any new software you choose "Advanced" install so you can disallow such intrusive, and often malware-ridden, addons like toolbars. It really isn't difficult if you have even a modest understanding of your drive(s) and directories/folders ie- where things should go.

    If you only have one big "C:" drive your options and choices are considerably reduced, since, unless you have a reason to put it elsewhere, the default of "C:/Program Files" is fine for applications. You will likely be surprised at how few options there are even in Advanced but you will stop much Malware before it even begins.

    It is not really wise to depend on MS's built in security tools. The firewall is not good and Windows Defender is weak at best. It is best to get a less than well-known firewall but if it's your first, Zone Alarm isn't too bad and lots better than the built in one. Malwarebytes, even the free version, is very good and basically every Windows user should have it and run it at least weekly. Windows has improved from XP days as far as Malware goes but it is a never ending battle and it's just good digital hygiene to keep things clean.

    Malware needn't frighten anyone but it is a huge annoyance that by the sheer amount of resources they can use up or corrupt, they can turn a stable, responsive system into a hodge-podge mess that feels like you're wading through molasses, not to mention the many networking issues they can cause.

    This may not be why you're having this specific set of problems but before you can sort that out you need to be working in a known clean environment so you're not dealing with so many unknown variables. It will be well worth your time and any learning curve to get clean.
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