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Every once in a while my screen flashes and the toolbar and all windows have the old school border around them. the tool bar goes back to the old beige windows look and them i lose all audio. Once i restart it goes back to normal but does it every few days. I'm running windows xp on a 5 year old dell. Any input would be greatly appreciated thank you.

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Last Post by efd1172
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I've never seen this problem before, so I'm not sure how to help. I'd think it was infection, but if that was the case, I would think a reboot would not restore settings. It almost sounds like Windows is trying to free up resources for other uses by disabling advanced GUI features as needed. The thing is, I don't think there's anything in Windows that even DOES that. At least, not that I've found.

Could you tell me what your computer consists of? I'm referring to processor and memory, specifically. Also, what version of XP are you using? Is Service Pack 2 installed? You can find these out by right-clicking on My Computer and selecting Properties. The Windows version will be listed near the top and the hardware will be listed, after a few seconds, towards the bottom.

No promises that I'll figure it out without actually getting my hands on it, but I'll try.

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I'm running xp version 2002 with sp 2 and it is a 1.70 gig processor with 256 of ram. I dont have this problem every day maybe once or twice a week and as soon as i reboot its fine. i've done scans with
spybot, ad-aware, and avast anti-virus and they have all come up clean. it is not a major problem just an inconvience but i would like to fix it if possible. thanks again for any help you can give

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Well, first of all, your memory is a bit low for an XP machine. I realize that was about standard for XP release, but 512MB is almost necessary now to be sure you're able to run everything you want without running over. Many systems are using between 200-400MB from boot just with all the little utilities and things running in the background (like your IS suite, messenger services, etc). If you have a little cash handy, I'd say grab an extra 512MB stick (probably DDR PC3200). Not saying this will fix your problem, but it certainly couldn't hurt.

If you're unsure if you need it, just open the task manager (Ctrl+Alt+Del ONCE, or the safer Ctrl+Shift+Esc -> same thing, basically), click on the Performance tab, and look at the PF Usage number (listed in MB). If that number is higher than your physical memory, you're running slow. Try doing this while you've got whatever programs you normally use running. This will give you an indication as to what your memory usage is actually like when actively using the system. Check it again when the GUI freaks out again to see if it's any higher.

Once again, this may not solve the problem, but it's worth a shot. Let me know what you come up with!

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efd1172, did you ever get your problem resolved? If so, please let me know what happened and mark the thread as "solved" (there's a link below the last post). If not, please let me know what you tried so I can try again.

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I'm going to up the memory and see if the helps. I just havent had the time with the holiday mess going on. Sometime next week I'll go get the 512 and see if that helps, i checked the page file usage and it was at like 291 so that may well be the problem. thank you for your help, I will update this after i get the memory.

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Hey, no sweat. I understand. I just wanted to make sure things were progressing. I look forward to hearing how it goes once things settle down.

Have a happy holiday!

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sometime this week we shall see if that fixes the problem if nothing else it will be a faster pc

Have a safe and happy holiday!!!

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