Thread: System problems

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2003

    Question System problems

    My sister is having problems with the computer that is used mostly by her. The computer video keeps cuting out and then the whole system stops function. From what I have deduced the problem is being caused by the video card, which I think might be over heating for some reason. I ran some test with Norton Diagnostics and when I tried to run the video test the system crashes. Also the system is more likle to crash when room tempeture is higher than 74* F, and if when it is warm if one resets the computer right afyer the computer has crashed, it will sometimes give a beep code and not boot. I am wondering if my presumption is correct, that the video card is failing, or if there is something else worng with the computer that I am not thinking of. And by the way, here are most of the specs. on the computer that my sister uses.

    OS - WINDOWS 98se
    CPU - Pentium 200MHz
    VIDEO CARD - Voodoo 3 3000 16Mb(PCI)
    SOUND CARD - ASound Gold(ISA)
    NETWORK CARD - Netgear (Don't rember the version but it's PCI)
    INTERNAL MODEM - 56k V.90 (Don't rember brand but it's ISA)
    RAM - 96 Mb EDO
    HARD DRIVES - A 1Gb and a 1.5Gb (I think that they are both WD Caviar)


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Hmm it just happens at random? I've had video card problems in the past where I'd be playing a game and I would get horrible blue screen errors. But random errors like that "might" be cause of overheating I guess, I really do not know for sure.

    I have experienced general overheating not video card specific overheating, and the symptoms were quite similiar. At 65 or more Celsius random restarts occured. Then after providing better cooling the error stopped.

    As a test, you could always take the case off and put a house fan and blow air right onto the video card and leave it like that for a few days. If the errors stop, then you know it is a cooling problem, if it does not stop, then it has nothing to do with cooling. This is what I did to figure out if my random restarts were due to excessive heat, should be no different for the video card. Goodluck.
    Last edited by SourceCode; 05-07-2003 at 07:35 PM.

  3. #3
    Registered User Xei's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    If you boot the system and the screen is blank and you get a POST code then the VID card is likely the issue. Either the VID card is not responding to the POST, or it returned an error. You should ensure that the card is seated properly, make sure that the PCI slot is clean, and that there is not any dust on the card. If you still experience problems due to overheating then I suggest placing a slot fan under the graphic card. If that doesn't work then try another VID card, and if that doesn't work then take it in to a professional who has a POST Card who can actually figure out where the problem is if they can reproduce the error.
    "What are you after - the vague post of the week award?" - Salem
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  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2003

    RE: vid card crashing

    *Are there any problems in Device Manager with the Display Adaper (yellow exclamation points), or conflicts?
    *Are all of the latest "Updates" installed from Microsoft?
    *Is the monitor plugged in securely?
    * Did you try lowering the screen resolution?
    Im assuming you can boot to Safe Mode- just long enough to
    lower it perhaps?
    * Do you have the latest display driver installed?
    * Have you uninstalled/reinstalled the vid driver- removing it both
    from Add/Remove Programs AND Device Manager?
    * Have you tried to run the Automatic Skip Driver utility
    (From the RUN box type ASD) to see if any device drivers
    did NOT load in the last boot?
    * When you get the "beep code" have you looked at the BIOS
    manufacturers web site to see what the code means? Is it
    one longggg beep, or a long and then a short etc?
    * Do you get any text error codes (that include a number) at boot
    * If you are shadowing the vid ROM in the BIOS try disabling it
    * Have you updated DirectX- I think 9a is out- just type dxdiag
    at the RUN box to see what version is installed
    * Do you have the latest Chipset drivers installed (the Chipset on
    the mobo)?

    Hope this offers some help,
    good luck


  5. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    My sister has not had many problems with the video card of late, due to a couple factors. Now yes the computer has crashed once or twice, since my original post, but for the most part it has been fairly stable.

    Reasons for computer not crashing:
    1 = The temperature has not gone above 75 *F (24 *C), while the computer is running.
    2 = I went and installed the over-clocking driver for the 3dfx video cards and under-clocked the VPU by 32% of its preset speed.
    3 = No graphics intensive programs have been run on the computer for a few weeks.

    I have a copy of the error beep codes, ready for the next time that the computer crashes the way that it has done in the past, but I don't think that I will have weather hot enough for the video card to overheat until Sunday. Also worthy of noting, I did a test using a chemistry thermometer, to see how hot the VPU was running while windows, was operating, by putting the thermometer up against the heat-sink. (My sister has installed the latest drivers and Windows says that there are no problems with the system.) When I put the bulb of thermometer up against the heat-sink, I discovered that only running windows 98, and Norton system works on a screen resolution of 800x600 32 bit, that the temperature of the VPU was 140 *F (60 *C). Now in my opinion this is a little to hot for the VPU, especially since my mother is set to turn off if the CPU goes over 140 *F (60 *C).

    OS - Microsoft Windows XP Pro
    CPU - AMD Athlon XP 2600+
    Mother Board - Abit KV7
    RAM - 512 Mb DDR (333)

    Microsoft Visual Studio Pro. 6.0
    MSDN July 2001

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