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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm not sure which section to put this in since I'm not sure where the problem is coming from. I've chosen this section since I've only noticed it while gaming.

My problem is that I'll be playing a game and every few minutes or so the video will freeze for a second and then continue like the game had paused. Not a terrible problem since the games I've been playing are FFX-2 and Planet Coaster, but if I played an FPS or a platfomer I'd probably lose my mind. I noticed the issue about 3 or 4 days ago.

I've got an i5-3570K at stock clocks with 16GB of memory, a GTX 1060 3GB that is about 10 months old, a 4TB drive that my games live on that's 3 months old, and an SSD that's a few years old that hasn't had more than just my OS on it. The OS is Windows 10. I've tried looking at Task Manager and I see my GPU's 3D drop around when that happens, but nothing else seems to coincide. I haven't noticed anything in Resource Monitor either. A quick look around Event Viewer didn't show anything interesting, but it's been a while since I've really used that so I could have been looking in area or for the wrong signs. I tried updating my graphics driver to no avail. I even ran FurMark and saw no issues at all for a 5 minute default setting run followed by 10 minutes at 1920x1080 with 8xMSAA followed by 8:30 of the 1080 on full screen.

The only real changes I've made recently were downloading, but not yet playing, FFXV and Sleeping Dogs through Steam. Which would surprise me if they had any affect. I considered a system restore, but the most recent is the 23rd and it looks like I'd have to re-download FFXV, which is 75 GB, so I'd prefer not doing that.

Anybody have an idea about where to look next or what I may have missed? I feel like I'm spinning my wheels at this point.

Edit: I ran Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool, which found nothing. Also, the GPU drop seems to coincide with a CPU drop. Like my computer spends a second or two doing nothing.
 

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Probably some DPC latency or possible hardware issues that are often near impossible to figure out unless you have spare parts and tons of time especially if such stutter is random and in long intervals. Running applications from HDD can also cause this kind of waiting and stutter, loading texture from HDD, R.I.P.
If both CPU and GPU drop it is some delay/waiting.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Nope. Just straight into the mobo slot.

Probably some DPC latency or possible hardware issues that are often near impossible to figure out unless you have spare parts and tons of time especially if such stutter is random and in long intervals. Running applications from HDD can also cause this kind of waiting and stutter, loading texture from HDD, R.I.P.
If both CPU and GPU drop it is some delay/waiting.
I'm really hoping it isn't hardware. I had a similar issue late last year where my old HDD would suddenly have a huge spike causing a similar issue and sometimes not even register as being installed which caused all sorts of fun and is why I have a new 4TB drive. If it is hardware I'll probably have to replace my 4 year old mobo and start an avalanche of me buying new parts because the shinny new mobo will get lonely without a shinny new CPU to keep it company. Since we all know how hard it is to not upgrade to a new socket when this kind of thing happens.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
To follow up: I eventually reinstalled Windows and things seems to be working again. No clue as to what in particular was the issue. It had been a while since my last re-install so I'm guessing something randomly kicked the bucket on me. I tried the system restore, but that did nothing. I remembered at some point that system restore only meant I'd lose the install of my stuff instead of the full game. Still had some issues after, but much quicker then a full re-download.
 

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Re-installing windows fixing it means it was a driver issue. Would of been able to figure it out measuring the DPC latency.
 

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changes I've made recently were downloading, but not yet playing, FFXV
I don't know if it is still an issue, but if you're curious, the problem was this. Apparently Steam was running some mini download in the background that kept validating the pre-load of that game every 5 minutes. Tons of people were complaining about the same thing on another forum I read.
 
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