My PC Freezes why?  or some just say it runs too slow now or only sometimes?         
 Prevention?

This topic  is not about the internet slow   (if your web connections are slow or sublan all messed up, that is a whole other topic)  But do try Ethernet wired first, and at least 4 Browsers.

Freeze may just be the CPU is 99%  overloaded  as seen next.
Click 3 keys at once at any freeze, Control +Alt +Delete, and run the Task manager (TM) acts dead ? then the OS is corrupted in some way for sure or overheating PC.
If wired keyboard is dead, run the TM if the keyboard or mouse is dead run the TM to see if the PC is really and truely stalled or  dead. (use  ONLY USB wired keyboard, no battery powered wireless keyboard  bluetooth toys now)
There are first the issues of , is the freeze  caused by local use of PC only or only using the internet, or both?
There are only 3 failure modes, 1: -Bad Hardware (2:-over overheated) 3:-Bad Software (or infected) The other top HW failure is bad HDD, and fails S.M.A.R.T testing.
Does only IE11 or Edge or Chrome, Firefox-v69+  browers at slow, or all 4 fail? (IE11 is in the doomed box now , avoid IE11 many banks now ban IE11)
Ever try to use Ethernet connections?  This can cure many porblems just that alone a $10 cable sold at Walmart, can do magic. (yes, wifi does suck and can be random, move the  PC near the router)
 
If only WiFI is slow use wired Ethernet , even for just testing . (no need to guess why wifi sucks?) ( I use a free program called InSSIDER.exe to see if my wifi channels are dead or weak or jammed. Try it and be amazed)


The first thing to prove (means testing) is to prove is it hardware or software.
We do tests to find out which is bad first hardware or software and is super easy to do.
The first step is to make sure you are using at least a real WIRED USB keyboard, not wireless blue tooth keyboards. (for at least all testing)
Many times it is SOFTWARE caused   from infections or loading infected APPLICATION programs (apps) or loading bad drivers, for sure bad drivers on the GPU chip /card tops my list of at risk.
Is the room you are in over 96F then all PCs made overheat, all CPU  go slower too hot and then halt if way too hot near 90C , THIS IS by pure logic inside the INTEL INSIDE CPU. (and now newer GPU do this too.)
Any time PC freezes, I run HWinfo32.exe free and see if the CPU is overneating 50C is par, 90C or near vary bad.
Most PC's  made the fans speed up when too hot this is normal (fans) but if the fans and heatsinks are packed in lint  that be bad. (we clear our PC every year, do you?)
Both the CPU and the BIOS in PCs slow down the processors and increase fan speed, to save its own bacon.  Your job is to not let it overheat, and that is service job, do the cleaning first.

Overheated?. (we clean it first)

First prove hardware is not bad.

To prove these facts, "  is software caused" is easy: ? 
  1. Step one is always, prove that it is NOT HARWARE Failing.  (what I do is boot the PC to my Linux live media and see if Linux run all day and not freeze)
  2. At the Freeze do these tests:
  3. Does the wired USB  keyboard, cap's key finger toggled, cause the CAPS lock LED blink at each toggle  , if not dead the OS is working, if is dead the USB port is dead.. (unless sleep is set wrong)
  4. Is the left windows key left dead.?  yes, then the OS is dead. 
  5. If the keyboard responds above, we do the infamous 3 fingered salute Control + Alt +Del below next.
  6. The blue screen POPS, and you pick Task manager If the blue screen is dead, then OS is dead !, if the blue screen works ok, but taskmanger fails to show up that means the OS is dead.(  infected OS kernel)
  7. If the  Task manager  below works ok, at the freeze?,  we look at processes tab and CPU clicked next , does it look like this below? or CPU shows 99%  overloaded?  or  out of memory 99% or both?
  8. Does the (control panel +) Device Manager bleed errors or show , unknowns, red or yellow marks, or device not working errors?  DUH? wrong driver loaded or missing.
  9. If sleep mode (or its nasty cousins) are failing, learn to put the PC in presentation mode, for like using a projector, and if that works you learned it just one more PC with bad SLEEP and bad drivers.
  10. Run the microsoft  SFC and DISM yet?  (this checks for OS corruption)
  11. Try to run a large set of  A/V tests, anti-virus tests and malware scans, google how to do that , even online scans work.
  12. In Control panel + programs & features, remove all those applications that you do not need or suspect, or those loaded just before the FREEZE.
  13. If all this still  fails?, reload Windows 10-64bit v1903+ fresh from Microsoft. (have Ethernet connected with a cable first for fastest and best updates during the load)
  14. If the PC is stable now, consider loading now missing APPS 1 per week and if one causes STALLS and freezing , remove it. (what ever it is , it is NO GOOD upgrade to something better! or gee a better source.)
  15. One good way to test this PC for this problem is to put in a new SSD, even  a used $20 - 128GB SSD and load windows fresh and see if it runs ok now, if yes, the old hdd is bad or old OS is corrupted, all for a whooping $20)


THE 3 FINGERED Salute ! "control+alt+del"  key and click task manager, nothing is more important to finding freezes, the results found here all things seen.
See that startup  tab below,?   open that and disable all things inside, not marked windows. ( a PC might have in there, many funky (or worse) update engines from many apps or worse) Disable them , most of them.)
(speaking of which in the startup tab below turn off all those nasty update engines, like Adobe and Google and well lots)
PCs can  simply freeze doing any update,  the fact is you need to find out who is updating,  Windows or Adobe junk or any other junk in th startup box. (processes will tell you that, who is doing the overload)

If  Microsoft is doing W10 updates? this may kill your PC dead (radomly) then , diskconnect the internet from your PC, (eithernet or wifi put into  air plane mode) if PC runs perfect, learn to control the insane windows updates.
 

CPU load is 8% here, at idle , 1 to 5% is typical, with no browsers open and PC not doing updates.  99% is wrong, if stalls there, look for high numbers in the top row below.
If you see a process jump real high and not expected by you, then that is wrong. (sure  running a huge game can slow the PC here) The below example is W10 just sitting at desktop.

Learn now that some programs can have a memory leak (bad coding) and will cause memory to run fully out and will cause the PC to run super super super slow.(like slug)
Next up the Performance tab:
If the below stalls when freeze happens (this below is scan loop and must not stall) if does stall, that means the CPU is overloaded, or overheating, or if disk I/O goes nuts?
This page here is super important to check. 
Best if you think wifi is slowing the PC down (bad drivers) connect the Ethernet CAT-5/6 cable up. That is what I have below.


Learn that you can even keep a TM Window open as you do OTHER things and if the PC freezes, click the above Window already open on the desktop, if you can , you may see what is the freeze culprit.
If the above windows will not allow you to switch focus to it that means the CPU kernal is dead (forzen dead now)
End TM and next is Win updates:


Windows PITA updates, endless and  very intrusive (but V1903 has  snooze option I like)
Click settings then  click update , if updates are running now (loading) sure the PC will be busy, I delay mine. (using Group Policy editor)
Mine is stalled on purpose; that way PC does not freeze
No matter way gain control of windows update or it can drive you mad.

HOW TO PROVE HARDWARE IS BAD:
Steps I take: USB keyboard no wireless keyboards allowed for testing !!!
To prove not  do this. (before the freeze or freeze expected soon)
Run this app HWINFO32.exe free, then  see why CPU or GPU is overheating,   all PCs slow down or stall overheated, every one does.  GPU-z is also a good tool to watch GPU temps.

  1. Run full HDD smart tests, using crystaldiskinfo.exe free, if bad it is bad replace it and reload the OS from scratch.  (or run Linux demo media and run DISKTEST)
  2. Run the Linux DEMO live test boot media and if the PC runs all day on Linux test demo media 99% of your hardware is good. (HDD can be bad see above)
  3. Run Windows PE 7 or 10 BOOT Live media and then run #1 above. Crystaldiskinfo. ( C6 parameter(bad) is key and must be 0)
  4. Remove current HDD 0 or SSD 0 boot drive and then insert a spare HDD or SSD that is good and load Win 10 fresh from microsoft, if the PC runs perfect you now the HW is good, and that old HDD is bad see step 1.
  5. Run full memory tests? (ask your OEM how, my Dell,  (power on hammer F12 key pick ePSA tests then memory and the full HDD testing)



Freeze caused by Sleep /hiberate or hibridpleep mode?. (so easy to test just turn all junk off ) Keep in mind that if your SW drivers in device manager are bad, speep will fail, making the below fail too. Drivers must match your PC and OS.
On the left task bar click start and in the search box type:,   PresentationSettings.exe  and check the top box. (microsoft keeps moving this feature, and on laptops you use Windows Mobility Center typed in same run box)
or at microsoft.com find how to enable KIOSK mode.
or by hand and tedious do the check marks seen below:
In control panel click Power Options then create power plan , HIGH performance, click  never, two times, and   create then name it nosleep, or as you like.
These are  the bits to flip. (if only to test the PC or you like it like this , your call)


Bad drivers can in fact cause a PC to  stick on sleep ,but  a temporary cure is here, the long hard reset.
A good PC hitting any key will wake the PC, but not with bad drivers
I good PC in deeper sleep called hibernate , will take a full minute to wake up, for sure longer than speed.
Warning , most PC have many different chips inside, even same model PC, those are called OPTIONS, and if you load the wrong driver not matching it to your exact device, you will fail. (PnP does this for you but can mess up too) PnP =  plug and play (pray?)
Disable sleep 100% and see of the freeze ends. (after fresh OEM drivers loaded)


Prevention:
  • Stop clicking attachments in EMAIL, stop clicking links inside EMAIL or better at your Email provider,  click no attachments allowed and unchecked HTML format and pick Text only EMAIL. 
  • Stop downloading APPS, from non authoritative web sites, use only the OEM drivers or those from Microsoft. ( a new video card say from Asus ? well use only their driver)
  • If you must download any APP, program or SW driver test it with online live VIRUSTOTAL.com first (I also malwarebytes scan them too.)
  • Do not load Drivers not from your PC makers OEM site, or fail to let Microsoft do its job with Plug and Play, only  (PnP)   That means keep the internet cables working so it can do its job.
  • Excepting VIDEO CARDS for sure gaming cards, from NVidia.com and AMD/ ATI.com and Intel.com but only if needed due to above line failing.
  • Please stop downloading Billy Bob_drivers_from_hell_666.com  loaded to your eyeballs now, with VIRUS/malware.  Learn to not use google to find endless viruses loaded drivers. Only  use OEM or MS drivers , ok?
  • Stay the hell off Torrent sites.  and off naked_tart.com
  • Keep your startup  folders lean, do not let 50 apps put 50 update engines  there, just disable them. (click that STARTUP tab  in  task manager.)
  • Learn to run a VM , with your w10 image that is clean,  so that every day is fresh and clean.  (no better way exists until Windows runs in ROM.)  < the only true cure, for WINDOWS.
  • Run full PC diagnostics, Run Smart tests on the hard drive , for sure every year or at signs of slow.
  • Replace wireless mouse and keyboard batteries, or stop using them and use USB wired devices. (same)
  • Clean the lint out of fans/vents and heatsinks.
  • Move the PC from the garage 96F+ (or closet or attic) to the basement at 70F and magic happens. No more overheating.
Learn that windows is like sponge, drug down the road, and gets nasty dirty. or like dirty socks, need changing often.(diapers)?
Reload windows fresh. (hint even on test SSD drive, so 2 things are  fresh)
Or let  any PC repair shop do this, avoid names of shops with word geek in the name. (unless pockets super deep)

version 4.  07-1-2019