Troubleshoot System suddenly freezes, CPU usage is not high, is it a hardware issue with the C drive dropping, or a software issue

RRlight

Level 1
Thread author
May 11, 2024
30
Briefly explain your current issue(s)
all programs froze as if stuck
Steps taken to resolve, but have been unsuccessful
scanned the entire disk with Kaspersky Premium + Emsisoft Emergency Kit, no virus
Your current Antivirus
Kaspersky Premium & Emsisoft Emergency Kit scanner
Hey, I'm not sure if it's a hardware problem or a software problem, so I'm posting here for now.

Laptop: Legion Pro 5 16ARX8
Problem:
Suddenly, all programs froze as if stuck, and no matter how I moved the mouse, the cursor would only occasionally move, as if there was a high delay. Keyboard commands also had a significant delay; ctrl+alt+del took a long time to take effect, and the start menu could only occasionally be opened. The fan was barely spinning, so it seems the CPU load wasn’t high. Some programs could be opened, but it took a particularly long time, and once opened, they were basically unusable, like the task manager, whose performance page stopped updating. After a while (about ten minutes), the desktop (or say the explorer process) disappeared, leaving only the interfaces of the programs that were open. I had to force shutdown by pressing the power button, and after restarting, the problem disappeared.

This has happened a few times before, and I’m not sure why. Now I suspect it might be related to heavy disk read/write activity. This time, it occurred just as OneDrive had resumed syncing files, and what remained were a few large files of several gigabytes each. Strangely, during this period, OneDrive managed to successfully sync all those files (located on the C drive). Previously, it happened while using a virtual machine, but the virtual machine files were on a non-system drive, so I’m not sure if it’s a hardware or software issue.

If it were a virus, after the first occurrence of this problem (a few weeks ago), I scanned the entire disk (C:\ & D:\) with Kaspersky Premium + Emsisoft Emergency Kit scanner, and just last night, I scanned the entire disk with EEK again, with no threats found.
 

Bot

AI-powered Bot
Apr 21, 2016
3,671
It's hard to diagnose without more information, but it could be a hardware issue related to your hard drive, especially if the problem occurs during heavy disk read/write activity. It could also be a software issue, perhaps related to OneDrive, the virtual machine, or even a Windows update. I suggest you check your hard drive health using a tool like CrystalDiskInfo. Also, try observing your system's behavior when OneDrive is syncing or when you're using the virtual machine. If the issue persists, consider doing a clean install of your OS to rule out software issues.
 
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ForgottenSeer 109138

I'd start by opening task manager when this happens, open the processes tab and see which applications are drawing on your CPU the most. Click the CPU column to sort the list by CPU usage.
 
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RRlight

Level 1
Thread author
May 11, 2024
30
I'd start by opening task manager when this happens, open the processes tab and see which applications are drawing on your CPU the most. Click the CPU column to sort the list by CPU usage.
I tried during that period, but didn't work. I normally let the task manager run while working. But under that circumstance task manager just froze (kind of), not updating, and couldn't see anything. Can't sort by CPU usage because the system is freezing, it's really hard to move the cursor to the CPU column of process tab or scroll to check the processes. You never know where the cursor will show up next time and when actually. I went for the performance tab to see the overall usage but as stated above, frozen, no change in the graph during the 20 minutes. I can only infer the CPU usage from the sound of fan.

I got a clip for this, let me try inserting it to the post.
 
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RRlight

Level 1
Thread author
May 11, 2024
30
Also, what about health of the drive? Check with CrystalDiskInfo as bot suggested...
Health seems fine. Please find the SMART attached. The health for C drive dropped to 99% several weeks (1 to 2 month) ago.

Also, it's a bit weird that the system drive power on hour is 1121 hours but the other driver has 3478 hours. I installed the second driver (Westdigital sn570) almost right the moment I started using the laptop.
屏幕截图 2024-05-18 220029.png屏幕截图 2024-05-18 220045.png
 
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ForgottenSeer 109138

Is your OneDrive app up to date? If the application is not up to date it could be issues from bugs/glitches.

Have you checked your Internet connection lately "running speed tests"? It's not uncommon for OneDrive to zap a system when dealing with large/conflicting files. Slow Internet speeds can certainly enhance this. One drive communicates with MS servers and if the Internet is lagging this could cause the application to freeze.


Check your OneDrive settings and limit the upload and download rates if you suspect your Internet is lagging.
 
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RRlight

Level 1
Thread author
May 11, 2024
30
It's not uncommon for OneDrive to zap a system when dealing with large/conflicting files. Slow Internet speeds can certainly enhance this. One drive communicates with MS servers and if the Internet is lagging this could cause the application to freeze.


Check your OneDrive settings and limit the upload and download rates if you suspect your Internet is lagging.
Thanks. I suspect so. I have "TrafficMonitor" (from Github) at my taskbar showing net speed and temperatures. At one point during that freeze, I saw it showing the upload speed of "300 MB/s" (more or less, unfortunately, I didn't take a photo) but the highest my internet could achieve is less than 20MB/s. Probably because I had multiple large files at that time. However, the previous occurrences seem irrelevant with OneDrive as I can recall. For those occurrences, it's more likely because of VMWare Workstation.
 
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Aggravatorx

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Well-known
Jan 30, 2013
207
Maybe this will help i also had problems like this a couple months ago where everything would freeze on me and the mouse would stutter and programs froze and had to do hard reboot a lot of times
racked my brain for a while i tried everything thinking it was hardware problem or memory now i do not know if this will help but what i found out was the cause was fast startup
in windows it does not play well with anything Bluetooth on startup with some hardware especially a mouse i unchecked fast startup in power settings and never had another problem again so perhaps something to try
 
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RRlight

Level 1
Thread author
May 11, 2024
30
Maybe this will help i also had problems like this a couple months ago where everything would freeze on me and the mouse would stutter and programs froze and had to do hard reboot a lot of times
racked my brain for a while i tried everything thinking it was hardware problem or memory now i do not know if this will help but what i found out was the cause was fast startup
in windows it does not play well with anything Bluetooth on startup with some hardware especially a mouse i unchecked fast startup in power settings and never had another problem again so perhaps something to try
Hi welcome, thank you for the reply.

But sorry, doesn't work for me. I turned off Fast Startup long ago since it writes too much to SSD.
 
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brambedkar59

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Apr 16, 2017
1,907
Run CMD prompt as admin with this command
Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
If it says no issue/corruption found, then try "SFC /scannow" in same cmd prompt.
Could be a corruption issue with Windows installation. Reinstalling AV might also be worth a shot.
 
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SpiderWeb

Level 11
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Aug 21, 2020
503
I don't have Windows anymore but I would check Event Viewer > Administrative Events > Errors
Might be a faulty drivers. If it is, I would backup and the System Restore to a point where you remember everything was working.
 
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RRlight

Level 1
Thread author
May 11, 2024
30
Hello all, thank you for helping :)

Someone reminds me it might be a RAM problem. I tried memtest64 and Testmem 5. Memtest 64 crashed once and then blue screen the second time I ran it; Testmem 5, configured by @OllieML, was fine. I ran TM 5 with that cfg twice without any error, just a high temperature of SODIMM (105 ℃). My RAM is a single slot 32 GB 5200MHz DDR5.

The problem described in the post reappeared, although not 100% the same, but at least 90%, during the RAM test. So for now I infer that the problem may come from Memory. Might be some software or bugs that result in a RAM problem, or high temperature on some occasions. I guess it won't be a huge problem since it only occurs 3 or 4 times during the recent 1 to 2 months. I guess I could switch my RAM to 24GB x2 to reduce the temperature for better stability.

Again, many thanks to all of you.
 
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coolname2343423

New Member
May 19, 2024
1
Hey friend! I've made a dummy account here to respond to you as I've had a similar problem occur to me many times. First time something like that happened was with my laptop which had system corruption (which you can most likely spot with CHKDSK (sfc)), the second time it happened was with my pc where i use many vms therefore i had to use a setting in bios called gpu virtulization, which when i updated bios to latest stable was fixed. If none of these seem possible i recomend you to check event viewer>windows logs>application , then **>system. It is quite bloated there with unimportant errors and warnings but if you can timestamp the exact time where the crash occurs you will most likely be able to see the exact reason. I hope these help and off i go to never return.
 
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