I've been reading with interest the recent reports of strangely behaving
computers on this message board because my PC has been acting up also. For
example, I was getting errors attributable to Explorer or the MS Office
shortcut bar would not function or, occasionally, the video would go awry.
Jody's suggestion of running Scandisk and defragging the hard disk seemed to
help initially. Re-starting or re-booting multiple times seemed to clear up
the problems sometimes but even the big red switch had become ineffective
lately. I'm running Win98, Outlook Express 5.0, MSIE5, and NTP4.81 on a
I long suspected the video games my kids load onto this computer may have
been causing my problems. To test this theory, I used Clean Sweep to remove
X-Wing Alliance and Birth of the Federation and StarFleet Command and Star
Trek - Armada and the audio player, Real Player G2. I recovered over one
and a half Gigs of hard disk, the strange behavior has disappeared and my
computer loads multiple applications and responds much more quickly. Many
functions appear to execute instantaneously.
I ordered a new system for the kids and from now on, this machine is
strictly for business (except for Chessmaster).
The lesson here, I think, is that fast action games make direct access to
system resources and they may not be too careful about restoring their hosts
when they exit (especially if they crash). Interactions among
"terminate-and-stay-resident" programs are already touchy enough without
introducing "rogue" programs into their midst.
I'm leaner and faster but not meaner,