Video Card problem - Your advice?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by Capp, May 16, 2007.

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  1. Capp

    Capp Registered Member

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    Hey guys,
    Something interesting.

    I have a nVidia GeForce3 video card that I have been running with no problems since 2001. I have not updated or re-installed the video driver's since I installed. Yesterday, I get home from work and see a "no signal found" message on the monitor. It won't go away and the monitor is plugged in just fine. I do a soft-reboot and it comes back up and makes it to the desktop. I check the event viewer and it says that the nVidia driver got stuck in a loop and it could be an indicator of a hardware or software problem. Then it does it again, so I reboot into safe mode. I checked nVidia's website and grab the most recent driver update for my card and install it with no problems.

    After Windows finishes loading and it gets to the login screen, it goes back to what it was doing before "No signal found".

    I can boot to safe mode just fine and have no problems with the video. I checked the device manager and it isn't showing any problems and it will work for hours just fine in safe mode.

    So, my question is....with the info provided above, does anyone think this is a slowly failing graphics card or do you think something hosed my video driver? Any ideas on anything to try too?
     
  2. Rico

    Rico Registered Member

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    Hi Capp,

    Crazy 1's & 0's! Is the graphics card running hot? Hmmm! That's probably not helpful. Is it an AGP card? Did you take it out & try reseating it? Does the MB have its own onboard video, & does this have the same problem. Safe mode, bypasses the nVidia driver, so my guess is the new nvidia driver has not been trashed. Do you have an alternate video card to try?

    Good Luck & Take Care
    Rico
     
  3. Capp

    Capp Registered Member

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    Hey Rico,
    I Haven't cracked the case yet to reseat the card or see if its running hot. Its kind of a pain to get to it, so I was saving that for last. The MB does not have onboard video, thats the first thing I checked. I know safe mode bypasses the nvidia driver. I was wondering if anybody thinks the original driver got trashed since I didn't udpate it or anything when this started happening. I do not have another video card to try yet.

    I am still trying to rule out hardware right now, which is why I am asking for advice before I worry about replacing the dang'd card :)

    BTW....in case I forgot to mention it, this system was built from scratch by me in 2001.
     
  4. Rico

    Rico Registered Member

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    Hi Capp,

    So did you try the latest/greatest driver from nvidia? Also SIW & Everest can take your systems temp. Should it be running hot take two asprins & call me in the AM.

    Good Luck & most importantly Take Care
    Rico
     
  5. JimIT

    JimIT Registered Member

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    Hi Andy,

    First thing I'd do is delete the card and let plug and pray re-find it and reinstall w/a new driver. If that didn't work, I'd pull that card and put it in another box and try to reinstall the driver. Not too sure about the heat thing. If it runs fine in SM, it doesn't sound like a heat problem, but it's worth checking.

    As mentioned, if it's AGP, might have a bad slot on the MB. If it's PCI, you might try another slot and see if that fixes it.

    We need to grab a cheesburger at Al's soon. See ya. :D
     
  6. Capp

    Capp Registered Member

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    Thanks for the tips.

    I checked the system temp in the bios and everything seems to be ok. I have 5 fans running, so it should be fine, but I'll check again. I have the most recent driver from nvidia installed as well.

    It is AGP. I'll try the delete and let PnP give it a shot to see if it fixes it.

    @Jim...yes we do, sometime real soon :)
     
  7. Firecat

    Firecat Registered Member

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    Hm...no signal received? The first thing that comes to my mind is whether your monitor is connected via DVI or the D-Sub (i.e. Analog). CRT or LCD?

    The problem is that the later NVIDIA drivers have some bad tendency to mess with the monitor's EDID, which can cause such problems. If there are 2 monitor connectors on your graphics card, try changing the connector, as it could be a problem with the connector on the graphics card.

    I doubt it really is a problem with the card itself, because had that been the case, your Windows screen would be all garbled up, you will see strange dots, you may hear occasional beeps, etc. ;)
    Since you can run things just fine in safe mode, that makes it more driver or connector related. Try an older driver, it may work better in such cases. :)
     
  8. Capp

    Capp Registered Member

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    I tried a few things and so far, it seems to be working.

    I took apart the case and cleaned out the system, to make sure the dust wasn't causing any heat issues. I realized that my graphics card has its own cooling fan built in so I know its not overheating, plus the card felt cool to the touch.

    I reseated the card just to make sure it hadn't been the vicitim of "chip creap".

    I started it back up and all seemed well, but in the middle of surfing the net, it dropped the signal again. So I rebooted into safe mode and deleted it from the Device Manager. Then I rebooted and let Windows detect it and assign a driver. It assigned an older driver that had been used in 01 when I built it.

    As of this morning, it is still working fine.

    I am using a LCD monitor, but I also tried a standard CRT just to make sure...same problem. It does have an analog and digital connection, but that didn't change anything either.

    If I have any more problems, I'll post again to see what to do next.

    Thanks you guys for the help.
     
  9. Capp

    Capp Registered Member

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    Alright. I think the card is going out.

    It ran fine all day long with no hiccups or anything. Then, when it was just sitting there, it kicked back to the "No signal found". I notice a slight rattle sound coming from inside the case. So, I opened it up and followed the sound. The little fan that is built into the Video Card is what's making all the noise and the card was really hot.

    I checked the internal temp of my entire case and it was normal and all other fans are spinning right along.

    I rebooted into VGA mode and it was working fine, but as soon as I changed the resolution off of default, it kicked it back.

    Does this sound like hardware to anyone else?

    Thanks
     
  10. WSFuser

    WSFuser Registered Member

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    You could try replacing the heatsink/fan on the video card.
     
  11. JimIT

    JimIT Registered Member

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    Yes. I think it's time to cut bait. :doubt:

    One last test if you want, Andy: Pop it out and put it in another pc and let it run a while. If it continues puking, then you'll know it's definitely bad and not a MB issue.
     
  12. Capp

    Capp Registered Member

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    Thanks Jim,
    I had considered doing that but thought I would get some feedback before I started dissassembling and moving hardware.
    Take care :)
     
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