Does this sound like a hardware problem or a driver issue?

Stuff that don´t fit in the other categories.
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Stavros
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Does this sound like a hardware problem or a driver issue?

Post by Stavros »

Well, I can install my games without problems, but I can't play the damn things. I can run Windoze in 2D mode with no problems. I've tried the latest and I tried the drivers dated before that, but I still get problems. The difference between these problems is that in WoW I got one BSOD which told me that the issue was with nv4_disp.dll and now everytime we just get auto restart without a BSOD (and I did turn off Autorestart in My Computer > Properties > Auto restart).

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Post by Stavros »

This is definitely weird. While surfin the "intarweb" my screen just went black like I had tried to enter a game and then froze. I'm begining to think I have a bad video card.

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Post by DNR »

you were saying you had a thunderstorm recently, video cards can take hits from power surges. Try reinstalling the drivers, check and make sure the card didn't pop out.

anyways.

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Post by Stavros »

Get this, it's been raining every day and it's 7 PM as I"m typing this and it looks like it should be 8:30 (i.e. it's dark).

During every thunderstorm in the past week, I've turned off my computer, turned off the PSU, turned off the surge protector and unplugged the surge protector (yea, I know it's extreme, but we had a computer fry on us during a thunder storm, and this is a huge investment for a bum with no job. I have tried several different drivers, but I'll try another driver when the weather looks less threatening.

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Post by bad_brain »

hmm...well, if you´re able to reboot without any waiting time (this would point to a temperature problem) it may be the graphics card...if you still have guarantee on it get a new one, if not use a spare one or buy the cheapest 32mb-one you can get (10 bucks should be enough) for testing. hardware problems can lead to weird errors (like my DVD drive which, when plugged in, freezes the system when installing XP), so all you can do is to try out.. :wink:

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Post by Stavros »

As a matter of fact the temperature has been pretty high (low 40's...45 degrees C is the highest I saw after it rebooted from playing a game). When I took it to the computer shop the guy ran a Burn-in Test and the temps have been higher it could also be attributed to because I'm using a stock Heatsink Fan (which is naturally horrible). I don't know if he replaced the good Thermal Paste with some crappy stuff because before I took it to the shop I had like 35 C CPU temps.

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Post by LaBlueGirl »

Especially if you can play in 2D mode.

Your graphics card probably can't handle the games especially, and it doesn't help it has to deal with that as well as your day to day stuff.

If updating the drivers doesn't work, I suggest a new viedo card if you still want to be able to play your games like you want.

Your graphics card can also sqeeze RAM and have it taken away from other programs. Esp if you are trying to run a "complex" game.

Linux/Unix "easily" allocates swap space. Swap space is an area in your computer that houses the virtual memory.
Windows just takes the files it needs from your drives (I believe).
Every program you run takes up a certain amount of virtual memory. Once all the v.mem has been allocated, you can't start running new progs and your existing ones will malfunction.
Swap space allows you still still work with other progs b/c the v.mem "space" absorbs some of the data, altho your progs may run a bit slower.

Your graphics card may be using too much virtual mem (common in Windows) causing crashes, page fauls, ect etc.
So you can get a new, "better" graphics card so you aren't sucking memory. Which would be a good idea.
And if you still aren't happy with performance, create some swap space.

Just my .02 cents lol
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Post by DNR »

hey man, sorry about your sick machine, we all feel for you.

1. Swap and boot is the way we used to 'repair' servers back in my last job making rackmounts. You have to swap the graphics card, and other cards ONE at a TIME. You can also unplug the other drives, like DVD/CDROM to eliminate them as culprits. Intermitten problems are VERY hard to detect because they are hard to repeat. You eventually do a rebuild or even send it back to the customer until the intermitten bug pops up again..
2. Heat sink gel should not be 'reused' if that lazy tech pulled off the fan and put it back on with out removing the old glue and replacing it, that could be a problem. Mr.FuckupTech might have also shocked your box with ESD, electrostatic discharge.

3. Some bugs are app related, did you install any software prior? a bad uninstall might also fux you over.
4. Unplugging the surge protector is a very good idea - Unknown to the public, surge protectors do not protect from nearby lightening strikes. The best surge protector to get is one that has a built in power storage, like a back-up power supply. If you get the expensive one that separates the power from incoming lines to the supply going to the machines - like the computer feeds off a battery, while the back-up power/surge protector deals with the variable incoming power from the plugs.
Also admire your mother nature's power - a very close lightening strike is like having an EMP weapon go off, it can travel through the AIR and fry circuits regardless of a surge protector..

"We are all gathered here today to bury this computer, may God bless its chipset.."

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Post by Stavros »

Whoops, rookie mistake not mentioning my computer specs.

CPU-AMD Opteron 146 (stock HSF, thinking about upgrading the HSF)
RAM- 2 GB G.Skill (not that we're comparing RAM brands)
GPU-nVidia 7800GT (in November the 7800GTX was the top dog, and this is the "neutered" version, so I don't think the GPU can't handle it)

About games, previously I've been able to play Call of Duty 2 (which if you don't know is a very graphically intensive game) and Battlefield 2 (which needs 2 GB of RAM to run with no lag).

I'm going to call EVGA (the brand of vid card it is) and see if I can get a swap or something.

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