Computers can freeze at random for many reasons. For example, you might be working on a program, and suddenly, your PC freezes or stops working.
Again, though, the chances are less. It could have happened at some point. In any case, when it does happen, you must be ready.
When your computer freezes, all that you have been working on will be lost.
So, it’s essential to save your work. Now, the question is, what is the reason for your computer freezing? Why does it happen? More importantly, what should you do when your PC freezes?
Why Do Computers Freeze?
Computers freeze for various reasons. Sometimes, it could be due to errors in the drivers or the OS. It could also be because your PC does not have enough RAM, and you are running too many tasks at once.
Still other times, it could be a problem with the BIOS or hardware. Likewise, here are some common reasons your computer keeps freezing frequently.
1. You are Running Too Many Background Processes
One of the most common reasons your computer keeps freezing may be that you have too many background processes or programs.
Note that every process or program you run on your machine consumes resources, such as the RAM or CPU.
So, if your computer is freezing because you have too many apps or processes running in the background, it could mean that it doesn’t have enough power or resources to run them.
2. Your PC Doesn’t Have Enough RAM
Another reason your computer is freezing could be that it doesn’t have enough RAM to run intensive applications or processes.
If your computer has less RAM and runs too many games or resource-intensive applications, it may freeze randomly, or slow down because it’s using pagefile on the HDD or SSD versus the RAM.
3. Changes in the BIOS Settings
Although not common, the chances are that the BIOS settings could have changed.
Changes in the BIOS settings could also cause your computer to freeze. When that happens, make sure that you carefully undo the changes by accessing the BIOS.
4. Corrupt System Files
Another common reason your computer is freezing at random could also be corrupt system files.
At times, it could even be due to deleted files essential to Windows. In that case, you may need to repair those files or restore them using suitable tools.
5. Software or Driver Errors
Some software products that you may have installed could be prone to errors, and they may be causing your computer to freeze.
One of the primary reasons for this is that such products may gain unauthorized access to specific Windows resources, which they shouldn’t, under normal circumstances.
Your computer might also be using too many resources when, ideally, it cannot handle them, and that could have caused it to freeze.
Similarly, other reasons your computer is freezing could be bugs in several software programs installed on your system or outdated or corrupt drivers.
If your PC is overheating, then too, it could freeze.
So, when working with resource-intensive applications, make sure that you check your PC’s temperature. If it is higher than usual, try closing some programs.
7. Errors in External Device
Sometimes, if you have plugged-in external devices, such as a USB flash drive, or a keyboard, or a mouse, that is corrupt, then too, it could cause your PC to freeze at random.
So, these are some common reasons your computer keeps freezing. As this is a common issue, you have plenty of ways to fix it.
What to Do When Your Computer Freezes?
Sometimes, the issue persists not with your drivers or external devices but with the software applications you are using, such as the browser. So, it is essential to check for errors in them.
1. Check Your Browser
If your computer is not freezing at random but is getting stuck at a specific website or several such websites, you should check your browser. However, you won’t be able to solve the problem without going deeper.
All browsers, including Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge, come with an in-built task manager. You can access this in-built task manager by pressing Shift + Esc. So, for example, if you are running Firefox, you may need to head to the menu, hover on ‘More,’ and select ‘Task Manager.’
By accessing your browser’s task manager, you will know what processes are causing it to freeze and possibly, end them.
2. Check Your Reliability Monitor
If you can still figure the problem out, you can check your computer’s ‘Reliability Monitor.’ To access the Reliability Monitor:
a. Click on ‘Start’ and type ‘Control Panel’ into the search field.
b. Open ‘Control Panel’ and find and click on ‘System and Security.’
c. Then, click on ‘Security and Maintenance’ to find the ‘Reliability Monitor.’
Once you open this tool, you should see a graph of your PC’s reliability with respect to time and usage. You can also find logs for updates, crashes, and other such issues.
Look for errors in the graph at the time your computer froze. You can also choose to view technical details or check the Microsoft database for solutions to the problem.
Similarly, you can go on to the Internet and search for the error and the solution.
The graph also tells you what caused the error. For example, if a Windows update caused the error related to your computer freezing, you can find and roll back that update or restore your system to a point before the error occurred.
3. Check Your Drivers
In most cases, a ‘System Restore’ should fix the error. However, if it doesn’t, you can always check for corrupt or missing drivers.
You should do this, especially if you have bought a new computer for which you have recently installed drivers, chances are, you could have installed the wrong ones.
4. Check Your RAM and Hard Drives
Sometimes, your computer could also freeze due to errors or failures in the RAM stick.
So, run tests on the RAM using a suitable software tool. Similarly, if the problem is occurring due to faults in your hard drive, you should check for those as well.
5. Restart Your PC
One of the most straightforward fixes that you can implement if your PC is freezing at random is to restart it.
However, if that doesn’t solve the issue, you may need to do a hard reset by pressing and holding the power button.
6. Stop Resource-Hungry Programs and Processes
Programs and processes that consume lots of resources can also cause the computer to freeze at random as it would not have enough to run other applications.
So, you can check for and eliminate a few resource-intensive programs or processes by doing the following.
a. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to access the Task Manager.
b. Under ‘Processes,’ find those processes that are eating away into your computer’s resources, and select ‘End Process.’
By pressing ‘End Process,’ you can kill those resource-hungry processes and see if that fixes the problem.
7. Check for Malware
Your PC could be freezing at random due to glitches because of malware. So, check for and eliminate malware, if present, using a suitable antivirus or antimalware program.
So, these are some fixes that you can try implementing if your computer is freezing at random.
Is Freezing Bad for Your PC?
You can ascertain that there is something wrong with your computer if it is freezing at random. However, the problem could also be application or process-specific if it is freezing every time you open an application.
Your PC freezing at random could also indicate RAM, CPU, or even power supply problems.
So, make sure that you check for errors in the hardware components and the software.
How To Prevent Your Computer From Freezing?
To prevent your PC from freezing, you must ensure that all the hardware components and the software programs and processes are intact.
You can use a troubleshooting tool to check for faults in the hardware.
Likewise, you can use a suitable program to check for errors in various software applications.
1. Troubleshoot Software
To prevent your computer from freezing at random, you must ensure that all the software applications are running the way they should.
On the Windows operating system, you can use the in-built troubleshooting tool to find and eliminate errors in the drivers and other such software applications.
2. Troubleshoot Hardware Components
If your computer is freezing at random in the ‘Normal’ mode, you could try entering Safe Mode and see if the problem persists. In the ‘Safe Mode’ too, if you find that your computer is freezing, there might be something wrong with the hardware.
So, you should check all the components, including the CPU, RAM, and power supply, and find and fix problems in each.
If your computer is frequently freezing, there could be hardware components, software applications, or both. However, you can always check for and resolve the issue using any method that you find suitable, as most of these should help you get rid of it.
Alternatively, you could also search for other techniques and implement them and see the results for yourself.
Martha Davis is a computer hardware specialist who works extensively in designing and manufacturing hardware devices, researching advanced computer technology. She built GadgetGangster.com as a platform to share her insight on computers and PC assembly with the web. Currently, she is carrying out her research on Robotics and Computer Vision and working privately to deliver services. Martha makes sure that readers of GadgetGangster.com master the basics of setting up computer components like motherboard, CPUs, and GPUs through the informative articles that she writes.