31 Replies Latest reply on Jan 18, 2009 8:46 AM by Mortimer IOU Branched to a new discussion.

    How to get help quickly on Windows problems with hangs, system errors, crashes, BSOD's etc.

    Harm Millaard Level 7
      The most frustrating issues one can encounter are hangs, BSOD's (blue screens of death), system errors and other cases of seemingly random erros that require rebooting, restarting or similar actions, only to be confronted with the next hang, BSOD or system crash.

      These errors are often difficult to locate, due to the large variety of systems, components and driver or software versions in use. This is often further aggravated by sheer lack of expertise, understanding of what needs to communicated in order for others to help solve the issue at hand. And that list is very long.

      So, in order to make it a bit simpler for the average user who encounters these problems, follow the following steps when posting a problem:

      1. Clearly describe the main problem in the topic, but be brief. Not so brief as to only say: "Help!" or "URGENT" or another meaningless statement but get to the point, like: "PP crashes on opening, requiring a reboot" or "Using DL the system hangs upon return to PP". You get the point.

      2. Briefly describe your hardware, software, OS and versions in use, including disk setup, video card and driver versions, etc.

      3. Describe source material, including codec (not AVI, which is not a codec), project settings and other relevant info.

      4. Describe as accurately as possible what you did, what steps you took, what happened at what moment and what you did to try to resolve it.

      5. Go to Start/Run, type in DXDIAG, enter and save all information to a TXT file. Include a link to that file in your post.

      6. Go to Start/Run, type in MSINFO32 (or similar for 64 bit OS), enter and save the results as a .NFO file. Include a link to that file in your post.

      7. Download Process Explorer , and either post a screen shot or a link to the results.

      8. Make a screen shot of the results of SpeedFan and include that in your post.

      When you perform these basic steps, you avoid endless questions about your system and people may be able to help you faster.

      If you feel up to it, take a look at The Case of the Unexplained to start your own troubleshooting.

      Hope this helps to post more meaningful questions and get an answer much quicker.