How to fix a PC when it freezes up?

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Is your PC re-booting itself after it begins to load? Or maybe it locks up (hangs up) making its all accessories like mouse, keyboards unresponsive and applications hang. Sometimes, you may even get a Blue screen spontaneously, while working making you to restart it manually which again lands you in the same screen. All these are the signs of indicating that your PC is freezing up. It is of extreme annoying situation when your PC freezes at the mid of your important work.  If your computer freezes regularly, then it is advisable to fix it at the earliest before it causes a serious issue.

To fix your PC, you need to identify the cause behind this freezing and troubleshoot accordingly. The most common factors are incompatible hardware or software applications, low disk space, too many programs running at PC startup, virus and spyware issues etc. Each of these can be solved by different ways. Some of the common causes and solution to fix them yourself you are as listed below:

1. Check for Virus or spyware infection:

Even virus infection or spyware attack is also a major cause for your PC freezing. Hence, first install the anti-virus software and get some spyware tools, scan the entire thoroughly and remove the potential threats. Keep updating the software to prevent it in future.

2. Registry file corruption

Sometimes, when you install, update or uninstall programs on your OS, your registry file will be loaded with some junk and corrupt data commonly referred as clutter. This may be incompatible with your OS and also slows down your PC.

The only solution for this is to clean the registry.  Registry cleaner is the best way to get away from this clutter; this frees up the memory of your system to run smoother and faster and also repairs system errors.

3. Low hard disk space:

Some programs need large amount of memory run smoothly. If there is no sufficient space on the hard disk then, your PC will freeze. In such cases cleanup your disk by removing some unwanted software and if possible compress your files. Also, clear all the temporary files on your PC to do this follow: Click Start > Type %temp% > Select and Delete files.

4. File fragmentation:

If the files are fragmented, it takes huge amount of time to search and locate each components of the file when you access a file. This makes your system slow and in turn freezes. The best way to get rid of this is to defragment your hard drive. You can achieve this by running Disk Defragmenter located in Start Menu > Programs > Accessories > System Tools, to optimize data placement on the hard disk for increased performance and reliability.

5. Hard drive issues:

Overheating crashed hard drives all leads to freezing up of your PC. In order to get rid of over hating make sure your fans are working properly and there is no dirt accumulation on these fans. check for your hard drive errors as follows: right-click on the disk C: icon in "My Computer", select the "Tools" tab, check all check boxes in the "Check disk options" field, and press the "Check now" button.

6. Damaged OS files or outdated OS and Drivers:

Some of the common reasons for locking up of your PC are outdated OS or drivers, hence, always keep updating your OS and drives or re-install it if necessary. One other reason is due to missing or damaged OS files. Repairing the OS replaces these important files without removing any other personal files form the system. In Windows 7 and Vista, it is referred as Startup Repair and in Windows XP it is Repair Installation.

These are the common factors and situations that will make your PC freeze up and the simple ways that could fix your PC. Yes, these steps help you to fix your hanged PCs by yourself, but they also come with their own disadvantages. As you could see each of these steps deal with hard drives, OS, disk clean up.  A small mistake can lead you to huge data loss situations, which is the most unbearable situation.

Also, while cleaning the disk and running virus scan will land you in data loss scenarios in one or the other way. But, these are the only ways to fix your PC when it freezes up. You cannot fix your PC without these. Hence, while doing these always be cautious and careful. In case, even if you lose your data use Remo Recover tool to recover files from your hard drive.

About the Author: Tony Landry

Tony Landry is a Web Content Editor at Remo Software. He loves to write, edit, and manage content for users trying to troubleshoot and fix problems on Windows, Outlook, storage drives, and Cloud storage networks. With an aptitude that transcends writing, Tony is recognized as a Microsoft Outlook, Word, and PowerPoint expert. His comprehensive solutions…

16 thoughts on “How to fix a PC when it freezes up?

  1. I have been reformatting and reinstalling operating systems for all the computers I have owned over the past 20 years, in order to fix PC freezing problem. I have noticed that how you restore the operating system depends on the brand of computer and whether you bought it factory installed or built it piece by piece yourself. I noticed that the way you restore your OS varies from HP computers to Dell and any other brand. I like when I am given factory restore CD’s.

  2. I have definitely had each of these problems in one form or another over the many years I have owned personal computers. I have not much experience with MAC, but I have owned computers with just about every Microsoft OS. Today, I use Windows 8, after having stayed with XP pro for a long time. I did so because I usually resist upgrading to the latest OS because they are not only unstable, but a target for hackers.

  3. Thank you so much for this information, our computer in the office at home is always freezing up and it makes my husband so mad he starts throwing things. You have a great post here and I hope that you keep it up to date because it is going to be helpful to many people out there like me. I am going to save your site to my favorites so I can return later.

  4. Thank you for posting this information I was having a problem with this just this morning and when I finally got the computer back up and started searching for fixes to the problem I ran across this. You have been a big help and again I thank you for the work that you have put into this. Keep it up you have no idea how helpful it was.

  5. This is very helpful I have had this problem before and knowing how to fix it would be a great thing to know. You have done great work on this post and I am looking forward to trying this. My son is going to school to fix computers and I might be able to keep up with him if I keep learning things like this. Keep up the great work.

  6. Thank you so much for the work you have done here, I hate it when your computer freezes up and you realize that it is the anti virus software that you have on the computer that is causing it to do it. Thank you for posting this I am going to save your site because I think I can get more information from your site that I can use in the near future.

  7. I had a similar problem with my Dell Inspirion over this past weekend. Fortunately for me, I just bought this laptop in December. So it is under warranty until the end of this year. I simply called technical support, and they walked me through the diagnostics and I resented to the system defaults in the bios setup menu. It worked like a charm. But I worry what may happen once my warranty expires at the end of this year.

  8. My friend was telling me about all these blog post that could help me with my computer problems so I made sure to check them out and they were right this was very helpful. Before I did your fix my computer was freezing up all the time and it was very frustrating. Thank you for posting this information it has been a huge help and I hope you will continue.

  9. What is it that causes the computer to freeze up? I don’t understand why it does it but now that I have the information and techniques to fix it that will help. I just want to figure out why it does it so that I can stop it from happening instead of fixing it all the time. Keep up the good work though this was very educational.

  10. My computer is freezing but i dont find this as a normal freeze. Some weeks ago when i play World of War Craft my computer randomly freezes after 30 min to 10 hours after i open game and start playing and all i see is a still picture of the last frame. There is no warning or symptoms showing “oh here comes the freeze” even the sound is also gone instantly. It is a weird thing.

  11. Oh yea, I had only recently experienced my computer freezing and I had tried to forget about the whole ordeal. Even though I got it resolved relatively quick (within a day), it is such a helpless feeling when you cannot do anything because your computer is unresponsive.

  12. I know this was supposed to help us fix our computers on our own when it freezes but I just simply call my son and have him fix it right now and I think he likes it that way because it makes him feel special. This was a great article though and I’ll keep these tips in mind for next time if he isn’t available. Keep up the good work you obviously know your stuff.

  13. I’ve tried to figure this out but the issue is escaping me so I’ve come for some possible help or ideas as to what the problem is. My computer will randomly start locking up on me while im on the web, listening to music, watching movies…whatever. It will completely freeze up for 5 to 30 seconds, mouse won’t move cant type anything and if there is sound (music/movie) I get this weird echo (ie. robot sound).

  14. I used to get so mad when my computer would freeze up that I would throw things at it and sometimes come to throwing it, until I read this post a few days ago and now I can fix the problem when it happens with out getting angry. I did learn to save things I am working on periodically through the process so that I don’t lose it if it does freeze up.

  15. This was happening a lot to my computer and it wasn’t an easy fix like you mentioned here but it was a little more difficult and I had to have a IT person come out and remove some viruses that I had that kept locking things up. And did you know that Norton’s will slow your computer down and sometimes even cause it to freeze as well?

  16. I have noticed that when my computer freezes up like you are talking about if I shut of the firewall or the norton’s antivirus it will come back on and work great. Is that a virus or is something wrong with my computer period? You have a lot of advice here but if you wouldn’t mind answering just this quick question I would appreciate it.

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