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Computer Lock-Up After Internal Changes


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#1
PaulAV

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Here's hoping I didn't miss this somewhere else, but unfortunately, I just don't know what I'm looking for exactly.

Here's my problem: my system (newly acquired on my part, though it's an older system my step-father had lying around) keeps locking up, for no apparent reason. I'm of the general concession that it has something to do with the video card, which I've recently swapped out. I don't know what the old card was, but the new one is an NVIDA Geforce FX 5600 Ultra.

The system was working fine until I changed this component (I changed the RAM too, upgrading from a slow 256MB to a more functional 1GB). I also believe it's the video card because my monitor has been going haywire since the change. One moment it works fine, and then at another it goes to sleep, as if it's not getting any video signal.

The computer has also been locking up randomly since I changed out the card too. I've only received an error once, unfortunately, and it's part of the reason I'm having so many problems figuring this out on my own.

The one time I encountered the error (about a week ago), I was unable to write down what it was (the computer restarted itself, which I found odd), so from memory I recall it was a blue-screen error, giving me something about an nv_40 driver, or some such. I've been unable to determine what that may be, or even if such a thing exists. I also recall something about an "infinite loop" having caused the error, if that helps any.

I've tried to reinstall the graphics driver, checked my internal connections, and made sure nothing was overheating. I've tried to use a different video card (I don't believe it is the same one that was originally being used, but rather another spare of my step-father's. He's using the original card in a different machine) , but the monitor acted as if the computer was giving no signal at all, even on boot-up. The 2nd card could be damaged for some reason, but I'm unsure of this, and have no other cards to experiment with currently.

On a side note, I've personally observed that the computer locking up seems to correspond to the actual functions of the computer, such as loading a program, or using a web-browser or instant messenger. Even scrolling down a page in the web-browser seems to cause the system lock. However, if I leave the computer on it's own, doing nothing but looking at the desktop, it can seem to run for an inordinate period of time without any problems (I've left it on for a 6-7 hour period with no activity, and it hadn't locked when I got back).


So, aside from possibility that the card itself is irreparably damaged, or that the MoBo socket is not receiving as it should, does anyone have any possible reasons for this state? My only other thought is that there may be something wrong with the RAM, but I've never seen RAM affect the video functions in this manner...

My sincerest thanks in advance,
-Paul
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#2
Troy

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You could try running memtest86 just to rule out the new RAM being the culprit. Follow the instructions here, and you can download the program from this link.

Other than that, I would say that all of your video cards have been faulty so far, I seem to remember reading somewhere that those video cards were notorious for problems, but I can't remember where or give you the link so you'll have to research it.

EDIT: Oh and welcome to Geeks to GO! I just noticed it was your first post! There are plenty of knowledgeable people in this forum, so someone else may be able to give you some more insight shortly! :whistling:

Edited by ruthandtroy, 28 July 2007 - 10:41 PM.

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#3
vally

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Welcome to g2g

Try what ruthandtroy posted to test the ram just to be sure.

What make and model is your mother board. If you don't know download everest it is a free program that will give you the specs on your computer.

Have tried more than one driver for the video card?

The computer has also been locking up randomly since I changed out the card too.


Can you explain a bit more what locking up is?
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#4
PaulAV

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Thank you for the warm welcome. I don't usually get around to the tech forums, since I can usually fix things on my own, but this one just baffles me, so I'd hoped to find some help from folks a little more knowledgeable than myself. :blink:

On a side note, I'd like to apologize for my delay in response. On top of these late computer troubles, my DSL has been giving me problems. It's been a wonderful few days of technical problems piling up :whistling:

Once I have a moment (and find myself a floppy) I'll give that memory test a try, and get back to you with the results.

As for your questions vally:

My MoBo is a Gigabyte 7VXRP, as stated in my profile.
I've not actually tried any different video drivers, as the card was working with the latest version (the same one currently installed) on a different platform.
As for locking up...the computer does just that. It locks. No computer functions of any kind. Mouse and keyboard do not work. There is no HDD activity. The computer is, for lack of better terminology, frozen. If that doesn't answer your question, think system overload. The system acts as though it's been bogged down to the point on non-functionality, but, instead of recovering (as systems often do after they sort through all the data requests being sent) the system locks, or freezes, and will no longer do anything at all.

Often this lock is preceded by a quick blank monitor (black-screen/sleep mode) and then a restoration of video to the monitor. After video comes back, the computer freezes, and I'm unable to do anything without do a hard-reboot or hard-shut-down (Tower buttons restart/shut-down), which of course prompts a Windows system check, because it was not properly shut-down.
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#5
PaulAV

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UPDATE:
I let MemTest run for several hours, and it went through a round of 5 complete tests (I stopped it at about 52% through its sixth round). No errors were found.
So, RAM's clean.
Thank you so much for the links ruthandtroy!

I'll look into the reliability of these video cards (I assume you're talking about the FX/5000 series?). I'm half hoping it will tell me something. On the other hand, I hope desperately that I'm wrong about the card being bad. :whistling:

In the meantime, I'm up for any other suggestions you folks can throw my way.
Thanks again!
-Paul
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#6
vally

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Sorry for this late reply.

I have not ben able to locate a newer\different driver then the one on the nvidia sight. Try the card on a different computer if you can and tell if it may be the graphics card.
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