Crashing problems, with strange screen effect...

  Maughan 18:43 27 Jan 2005

My PC keeps crashing. I appreciate that a crash could be caused by any number of things, but mine always happens in a similar way and with a very distinctive screen effect.

The PC is 2.5 years old but has uprated RAM (768 MB), is free of viruses and adware, is regularly de-fragged and disk-checked and is otherwise fairly quick, clean and healthy. I am using XP Home (with SP2 installed) with two user accounts in fairly constant use.

When the PC crashes, the screen pixellates, freezes and changes colour. Put another way, it looks like a multicoloured chequerboard has been put over the screen. [Is there anywhere on this forum that I can post a photo of what the screen looks like when it freezes?] I have to re-boot, but it comes back on with the same effect, so I have to immediately turn off and then on again (and then it is fine).

This usually happens (but not always) when using an IE6 window when I have several (7 or 8)windows running (several IE6 windows and various other applications). I don't think it has ever happened when only one or two applications have been open. It happens for both users. It doesn't seem to be due to any unduly high CPU temperatures. I have tried new graphics drivers for my nVIDIA GE Force4 Ti 4200 graphics card, and for a few other components - no improvement. I don't think it is an underperforming PSU, as the voltage supply seems fairly constant. It seems to happen even when CPU usage is low.

Any suggestions as to what the cause (and cure) could be, please...??!!

  curlylad 19:26 27 Jan 2005

What type of monitor is it ? serial number or model number would help plus is it TFT , CRT etc etc ?

  steve0 20:02 27 Jan 2005

Is your card a Gainward geforce ti4200? If so there is a fault on some of these with the capacitors. It causes a chequerboard effect then a complete crash. I sent mine back to Gainward for a replacement, which they did for free. Mine started to go wrong after about 18 months of use. They seem to replace any that have gone wrong, no matter how old they are.

Hope this helps

  septic 20:40 27 Jan 2005

Thank you steve0 I have got a gainward ti4200 and it does just as you say! going to gainward site now to report it. Thanx again
Good luck Maughan!!

  Maughan 10:32 28 Jan 2005

Steve0 - it is indeed that Gainward card. Sounds like the fault you describe is the same as mine (and Septic's). I will write to them today.

The manual/brochure that came with the PC states that there is a 3 year warranty on the card. Good news, coz I bought the PC in October 2003.

Septic - the email address given in the Gainward manual is: [email protected]

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