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Old 22nd January 2002, 20:50   #1
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Note: Old thread revived from Jan 2002 :/

Hello Winamp forum.

This is the first time i post anything in this forum, simply because winamp has never caused me any problems or griefs ever. Until now.
(Good going on making such an excellent mp3 player by the way).

First off, my hardware info.

Intel P3 1ghz.
Asus CUV4X-DLS Motherboard - via694x chipset. (bios flashed to 1014).
(has integrated 100mbit-lan and scsi-controllers).
Windows 2000 Professional - Servicepack 2.
(and all updates from windowsupdate.com)
1gb sdram. (4x256mb chips).

Asus AGP v8200 geforce3 64mb ddr deluxe graphics card.
Creative Soundblaster Live Platinum 5.1.

1 x 10gb scsi drive for windows.

2 x 75gb ide drives.
2 x 100gb ide drives.

Logitech optical desktop (mouse + keyboard).

I have installed the latest via4in1 drivers for the motherboard, all of the latest audio drivers from creative, the latest geforce3 drivers from asus, and pretty much every thing said to be able to help if you experience problems with any of these cards.

My computer is pretty much set up just the way i want it to be, and because i listen to mp3s practically every second i spend in front of my computer this problem is driving me insane.

It took me months before i got anywhere near a "solution", and my windows would in this period randomly freeze up. It didnt seem like it had anything to do with what i was doing at the time, or which programs were running. but when the thing triggered, my
windows would just freeze totally. The only thing that would survive, was mp3 playback. Still playing like nothing happened.

These freeze-ups would happen 1-2 times each day, sometimes more often, sometimes just once a day.

The display froze completely, and the input was dead, but the weird part was that whatever was playing in winamp would keep on going. It didnt make alot of sense to me.

I tried reinstalling Windows2000, reformatting the scsi drive and doing it all from scratch.
I made sure i had the latest drivers for all my hardware, and installed them all properly. I installed all of the servicepacks and windowsupdate.com patches for windows, and everything should be ok software-wise.

I installed the latest ie, and all the programs i normally use. (including winamp).

As soon as i was seeing the light in the end of the tunnel, was pretty much done rebooting the computer for every little thing that required it, and was starting to hope that things would be ok, it froze.

I didnt really find anything that reminded me of this problem on the web, although i found alot of problems here in the winamp.com forums regarding winamp running with creative soundblaster cards. But most of the problems here regarded winamp not functioning properly or playing bad sound or stuff like that. My winamp has always played mp3s perfect.

Other forums i searched, including the via chipset pages, nvidia pages, creative pages and several help forums , seemed to have more problems with stuff like faulty mp3 playback due to incorrect drivers etc, or bluescreens delivering some sort of error message that could be recognised. My problem didnt really sound like any of them..

Then, while searching google, i found a page on ezboard.com, from a person that had a problem that sounded exactly like mine, and his hardware setup also seemed familiar. This page was located at http://pub25.ezboard.com/fcompuforum...cID=693.topic.

If you load that page now, you will find that the post has been deleted.

But this is what that page said in general:

It was a post from this guy that experienced the same totally random windows freeze-ups. As far as i can remember he had a Creative Soundcard and a Nvidia graphics card.

The post was replied by some other guy, that said he also had this problem before, and that the solution was to just uninstall winamp and realplayer, and that this would solve everything, although he had no idea why.

The next reply was from the guy that posted it originally, saying that his computer was now working perfectly, and the freeze-ups had disappeared as soon as he uninstalled winamp.

There was yet another reply from a third guy, saying that he was glad to see other people got this problem resolved as well, as he had experienced the same a while back, and that he also had solved it by uninstalling winamp.

So i tried this, and as promised. the computer stopped freezing up. When i dont have winamp installed, windows doesnt freeze up.

Note: These crashes/freeze-ups occur even when Winamp isnt actually running, it just has to be installed.

Now this would be a happy ending if i was able to find another mp3 player that worked the way i am used to winamp doing, but i cant. Every other mp3 player i find either looks like roadkill or is awkward as hell to use. and the playlist functions of every player i have tried other than winamp pretty much suck.

I still havent found a mp3 player i like anywhere near the way i like winamp, and i basically want to find a way to use winamp, without these freeze-ups occuring.

What's causing this problem?

I have no clue, and i havent been able to find any pages dealing with this particular problem anywhere else (only trace was the ezboard.com forum-post). I was hoping i could get in touch with the guys i had seen posting on the ezboard.com page, but the page there was, like i said, deleted, and i doubt it will magically re-appear.

After it became clear that winamp was the thing that triggered this problem in some way i decided to try the winamp 3 beta.

I had read that this new winamp was coded from scratch
and would be quite different from the earlier winamp versions.

So i downloaded it, installed it, and watched as my computer turned to stone once again. It made just as much sense to me
as the rest of this crappy behavior.

I think the weirdest part is the fact that the crashes have nothing to do with winamp running or not, just being installed is enough. And also, windows doesnt generate any error message of any kind, the eventlog doesnt say anything about the computer crashing.

It doesnt seem like winamp crashes or anything, and i dont know if it is some sort problem with the geforce3 card vs sound blaster live card, that is only triggered by the winamp files in some way.. MP3 playback works fine in every other player than the winamp players.. and i have no hardware conflicts or anything like that.

At the moment i am running freeamp 2.1.0 (www.freeamp.org), but as far as im concerned, it doesnt get close to winamp in ease of use and good looks, and it has a crappy playlist function. (and ugly skins).

So if anyone have any information that could help me how to avoid this problem while still having winamp installed, i would be forever grateful.

Hope someone has anything that could point me in the right direction.



Last edited by tek; 22nd January 2002 at 21:33.
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Old 22nd January 2002, 21:58   #2
DJ Egg
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Sounds pretty whacky to me ?!?!

I don't see how Winamp can be responsible for freezing Windows when it isn't even running. It just doesn't make any sense.
Winamp doesn't install any files anywhere else but in the Winamp dir itself.

Is the Winamp Agent enabled maybe?
If so, try disabling it (Prefs -> Setup -> Agent: uncheck all 3 options)

Also, try installing this update patch: Winamp 2.78 Update
(Updates both out_wave & out_ds plugins to peter's (PP) versions, also updates in_midi.dll & in_wave.dll to new pre v2.79 versions)

Further details: (READ THIS FIRST)

Try switching to DirectSound Output, and change output device to SBLive driver (Prefs -> Plugins -> Output -> DirectSound -> config)

btw, if you haven't done so already, upgrade DirectX to v8.1

Also, if relevant delete any 3rd-party plugins (esp. all gen_*.dll files)

Apart from all that:

From: TSGH -> Useful Links

Troubleshooter Guides:

Basic Uninstall -> Reinstall procedure:

SBLive/Audigy related issues:
http://forums.winamp.com/showthread.php?threadid=49692 (gen_nomad.dll)
http://forums.winamp.com/showthread.php?threadid=50447 (ctmp3.acm)
http://alive.singnet.com.sg/tech/click.htm (clicks+pops)

And if relevant,
uninstall Creative PlayCenter p.o.s., and disable RealPlayer Start Center.

Can't think of much else at the mo . . . unless you've contracted some weird "Anti-Winamp virus" from some rival player
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Old 24th January 2002, 12:26   #3
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Thanks for your reply mr Egg

Although i have spent hours trying out most of the 'common solutions' i have found in these forums before, i gave most of them a shot again. I have no gen_* dll files in winamp, and i havent installed a single extra plugin or anything like that..

After i got your reply here, i thought about the situation again, how the hell would winamp be able to crash my system or cause these freeze-ups when it isnt even running? It seems too weird.

So i went back to winamp.com, and decided to go with a very small winamp installation. I downloaded the Winamp 2.78 Standard installation file, and i unselected everything i did not absolutely need. I mainly went with just the mp3 playback function, no extra cd support or stuff like that, and basically unselected lots of stuff. The installation went ok, and i was set to go. I installed two winamp updates from Peter(?), wa2something.exe and an alternate new directsound output update. Winamp up and running.

I decided not to install any skins either, just in case. The evening went great, and i played mp3s in winamp for a couple of hours while irc'ing and minding my business. And then i closed all applications, including winamp, and went to bed. The next morning the computer was still running smoothly, and i was beginning to get my hopes up. Off to work, came back home in the evening, computer still running. (This was yesterday night), and winamp still worked fine, so i decided to install a nice skin to pretty things up a bit. Still running smoothly along, and there were no problems yesterday night either. Closed down all applications (including winamp), and went to bed. Then came this morning. I woke up, turned on the screen, and saw my screensaver had frozen. Crap.

I have the basic scrolling text screensaver, and it had stopped halfway across the screen. No result from trying keyboard and mouse input..

So i went downstairs to the computer in our living room and decided to try to ping my computer. (my =, other =

I got perfect ping results from when i tried to ping it, really bizarre. I tried to browse the network, and saw my computer there, and i was able to browse all the shared hd's from downstairs, play my mp3's and watch videos, open files etc.. So the computer seems to be running all right.

Next step was to try to remotely control my computer using WinVNC which i installed thinking i might use it to test what might work after my computer winamp-ishly froze up again. I tried to connect to, but no reply. But i didnt get an error either, it just disappeared. I tried 2 more times. But all three connection attemts just kept on running, but neither successfully connected or gave me an error. So i went upstairs, hardbooted my machine, and uninstalled winamp once again. Back to living without winamp?

I dont understant anything about this error, besides the fact that winamp seems to be the application that triggers it. Winamp wasn't running at the time the computer froze up, so that proves the weird but once again. These freeze-ups have never occured when winamp hasnt been installed on the system..

Im not really hoping for a one-answer genious sollution to this anymore, but perhaps someone has had a problem like this before, and have some information that might point me in the right direction.

I have read two things that i was thinking of testing some more, one is irq-related, but it would seem weird that this was some kind of irq conflict when its only triggered by winamp? (I can post a picture of my irq settings when i get home).

And the other is that what happens in some way is that something starts to use 100% of the cpu power, making the computer unable to keep applications alive or something, but just barely allowing it to answer network ping replies and letting a user browse its files..?

Anyone have anything that might help me close in on a solution to this?

- tek
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Old 24th January 2002, 22:35   #4
DJ Egg
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Hmm . . . the plot thickens!

100% cpu

This is usually caused by a dodgy 3rd-party plugin
(eg. gen_mircex.dll or Creative's dodgy gen_nomad.dll)
<Yeah, I know you already said you don't have any gen_*.dll files>

btw, have you ever installed PlayCenter2 (off SBLive CD-ROM) ?

Can you also please confirm that you disabled the winamp agent (as described above). If "maintain file extensions/associations" was checked during setup, then the agent will be enabled.

Other software known to cause 100% cpu conflict with winamp is Webhancer, or other known spyware/adware programs.
Further info:

A screenshot of your winamp\plugins dir might also prove useful.
(first, make sure "hide file extensions.." is not checkmarked & "show all files" is checkmarked in Folder Options -> View tab)

And yeah, sure, a screenshot of irq settings might prove useful too.

Also, make sure you have the latest soundcard drivers and DirectX (8.1)

Hmm . . . screensaver freezing . . . Geforce3 . . .
Maybe relevant?

It could well be a graphics driver-related issue.

All in all, a most weird case!
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Old 24th January 2002, 23:42   #5
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trying different graphicscard.

Plot thickens indeed

I'd just like to say, after spending a couple of weeks reading my way arond these forums for hours, that im really impressed in the effort you guys put into helping the less fortunate people like us Your karmapoint scores must be way off the charts.

But, back to the thick plot.

3rd party plugins, havent had any in ages. And never found any gen* files in my plugin dir. Feel i can rule dodgy 3rd-party plugins out.

I had the playcenter2 program installed for a couple of days when i had to perform some test of .AC3 file playback (Dolby Digital encoded soundfiles), but i uninstalled it right after i had made sure the soundcard was properly setup and able to output a dolby digital from windows2000 so the receiver locked on it correctly. The freezing problem occured both before, while, and after i tried this program, so i feel pretty confident that i can rule that program out as well.

Winamp agent, quite honestly i hate it, and never use it. Im not a big fan of programs lying in the background guarding stuff and 'making life easier' on my computer. If i wanted stuff like that i'd just as well install realplayer or musicmatch or something like that and ruin everything completely. So i can rule winamp agent out as well..

Webhancer, or other known spyware/adware programs: never used. never will.

Seems very likely this might be a graphics driver thing, which probably would make it more of a thing for nvidia to work on than winamp.. But the fact that in only happens with winamp installed still puzzles me.

What i've done now:

Switched the Nvidia Geforce 3 card with the old 3dfx Vodoo3 2000 card from my old computer now living downstairs with my dad, using newest drivers for it, and a fresh installation of winamp 2.78 with all the recommended updates.

Gonna leave it to run like this for a couple of days, and use it as much as possible. If it seems to work ok with this graphics card it most definetly has to be some sort of Nvidia issue. Would still be a little weird though, after all i have tried a variety of drivers for the geforce3 card, as new updates became available..

But for now, Voodoo3 2000, working its magic. Hopefully.
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Old 25th January 2002, 00:17   #6
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I love the Voodoo3dfx card, still use it on my main comp to this day. Although it's a shame they stopped releasing driver updates, but I've never had any problems with it anyway. You're pretty lucky to have one of those as a backup, hehe

Yes, if you checked those Geforce3 links from above, you'll notice that there is a problem with the latest drivers, under certain systems. Apparently, the older drivers fixed the problem.

Hey, I was about to go on to suggesting motherboard driver updates (viatech.com), or maybe even Hard Disk IDE Controller driver update, but hopefully it won't come to this.

edit: oops just noticed from above you've already installed latest via4in1
btw, did the problem start after you installed this, or was it there before?
I've heard a few horror stories re: via chipset AND the 4in1 patch (viapfd.sys)

http://alive.singnet.com.sg/tech/via.htm (Via BIOS fix)

Also, the reason why I was concerned about PlayCenter was because it silently installs gen_nomad.dll in winamp\plugins, so most people won't even know it's there (especially those with "do not show hidden files" enabled). But if you say it ain't there, then that's good enough for me

Anyway, I really hope this fixes things, so let us know how ya get on.
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Old 25th January 2002, 04:10   #7
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major edit in ^last post^
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Old 26th January 2002, 00:09   #8
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Hi again mr egg

Things seem to be running smoothly with the 3dfx voodoo3 2000 card, no crashes yet..

I've just been reading up on all of the latest links you provided regarding the via chipset. I guess im glad i ordered a motherboard with a intel chipset for my new next computer now.

From what i understand, the problems people experience with these VIA chipset vary from person to person, and can result in bad audio playback, bad harddrive performance, and system instability. And i got the feeling that the via pci latency patch might work some magic on both the speed of the ide drives, as well as other problems..

I think im gonna go get my geforce3 card again, and install it, with the latest drivers directly from nvidia (not asus drivers this time), and then im gonna try some of these via patches..

On another matter..

This problem is turning into a major hardware issue, and i see that this might not be exactly what the other users of the winamp.com forum come here to read.. So if the problem has taken a too non-winamp-ishly turn, feel free to delete the post from your forums, or move it or whatever it is that you do

I really appreciate the help and input i have been getting here though

I'll let you know if the via patches and/or new drivers have any effect.
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Old 26th January 2002, 00:49   #9
DJ Egg
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No worries my friend.

Hey, the way I see it is there aren't really any problems with Winamp whatsoever.
I never experience any and I'm pretty sure the vast majority of users don't either.

Through experience, I'd say there's 3 different "problem" categories:

1) Hardware related issues:
Faulty hardware (bad RAM, overclocking/burn-outs, fans, dust, etc)
Missing hardware (eg. no soundcard!)
Bad Windows configs (eg. irq/dma conflicts, missing/disabled codecs, etc),
Poor quality/incompatible drivers,
Below-par sys specs (eg. onboard sound + video, etc),
Win2k/XP bugs (yeah, blame winamp, it can't be windows)

2) Problems caused by poorly written 3rd-party plugins

3) User ignorance/stupidity
eg. unfamiliarity with winamp gui (wrong output plugin enabled, etc)

So, basically, this thread stays put

ps. yes, Intel over VIA any day
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Old 26th January 2002, 01:23   #10
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The end?


Another wild ride trough the via forums.

Latest progress:

1. Removed voodoo 3 card.

2. Went back to geforce3 card, with the drivers i was using from asus. (latest).

3. Installed the PCI Latency Patch v 0.19.
(i downloaded this file from http://www.viahardware.com)
(direct link: http://download.viahardware.com/vlatency_v019.zip)

4. Rebooted.

5. Life goes on..

Hopefully, my computer will now work perfectly thanks to this pci latency patch which tries to correct numerous known issues with the via chipsets..

From the patch FAQ:

1.2 Why do I need this patch? Do I need it at all?

If your computer has any VIA chipset made between 1997 and 2001, and if your computer has any of the following problems, then you might need this driver.
  • Files copied from one IDE hard disk drive to another are corrupted
  • The computer stops ("freezes", "hangs", "locks up"), or makes unusual noises when playing sounds, especially to a Creative-brand sound card
  • The computer stops, or files are corrupted, when copying to or from an IDE DVD, CDROM, or CDRW drive
  • Sounds played by the computer are distorted or have a "crackling" noise, especially sounds from a Creative-brand or Aureal-brand sound card
  • The computer stops when playing 3D graphics or games, especially on an ATI Radeon series video card

The guy that made this patch can be found in the VIA Tweaks forum located at http://bbs.pcstats.com/viahardware/c...s.cfm?catid=19 if anyone is interested..

If this was the end of my computer freeze-ups i guess i'll blame the VIA chipset for all my troubles.
If it continues to lock up, i guess i'll be writing another reply here in the morning '

And as for anyone trying to find an mp3 player to replace winamp: Good luck, i couldnt
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Old 20th May 2004, 22:52   #11
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your king! i had this prob forever, i even believe it murdered my amd2400xp T_T but i returned it and they gave me a amd2600xp tho it had the same prob T_T so i feared for it's life

i haven't crashed in 3 days now

but indeed, as you said earlier, a big problem is finding a player worth getting : / they told me to get dbpoweramp wich is pretty much ok, but i'm missing a looot of features, like the winamp skins, docking to my screen and so on

anyway, i jus wanna say great thx for this, since i couldn't find the prob myself either, nothing in log, just a freezup of everything (wich eventually might kill mah cpu)

*bow* *bow*
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Old 14th June 2004, 23:02   #12
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T_T after 2 weeks of uptime the freezup came back, i first thought it could be the sudden heat, cuz my cpu sometimes went up to 75 degrees, got a zalman cooler that pushes it down to 40-50, and i also bought a new 3d card, but it still freezes up -_- it's nearly impossible to do anything, i have a new mobo of a different brand, a new cpu, 3d card, i got a new ramchip, i'm running win2k and i have a western digital hard disc, anyone got any suggestions please?
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Old 17th June 2004, 16:47   #13
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same problem here, (solution)

i have had similar problems using winamp 5.03, random freezes and lockups, sometimes blue screens, never the same error, i checked and updated every posible thing, hardware and software, no luck. I would never suspect about being winamp the problem. BUT one day i got one of the blue screens pressing the NEXT TRACK button in winamp. So i started using winamp 2.91 and havent had any more preblems since that. Is very strange, and i like 5.x over 2.x, but i dont want more freezes.

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