Why Does Your Computer Freeze and How Can You Stop It From Happening?


Quick Answer

A computer may freeze because of hardware failure, insufficient memory and problematic software. Identify the cause and apply the appropriate fix to prevent the computer from freezing further. If problems persist, have a technician perform a full diagnostic, reinstall the operating system or replace any irreparable hardware.

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Full Answer

When a hardware component malfunctions, the computer freezes its operations to avoid data loss or further damage. The fix to hardware problems depends on the extent of damage. Simpler issues like overheating may only require regular maintenance such as cleaning out dust, lubricating cooling fans and applying thermal paste on the heat sink.

Memory problems occur when a program uses up too much memory and leaves only a small remainder for other programs. Memory diagnostic tools are available to find which applications and processes are hogging the memory. Once found, these applications and processes must be uninstalled or disabled along with other unnecessary software. Defragmenting the hard drive regularly is also recommended. Increasing the RAM generally reduces the chances of memory-related freezing problems.

Software problems that cause computers to freeze encompass many things, such as viruses, outdated software, incompatible drivers and damaged or missing system files. Install an antimalware program to get rid of viruses that cause the computer's performance to slow down. Check online for software updates to fix bugs and compatibility issues of applications and drivers. Operating systems also have utilities to repair system files or restore the system to its last known working configuration.

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