|If the card works fine with the complete installation of the drivers and associated software on the CD that came with it, there is nothing wrong with it.|
"bought a new video card, Sapphire 4850. Drivers didn't work."
If you mean the ones on the CD, did you you use the default complete driver related install? Calatayst requires a .Net Framework version. Check out the newegg site's user reviews for the Sapphire 4850 for possible mentions about your problem.
I'll be installing that same card in a few days.
Your main chipset drivers must be loaded in order to make sure Windows has what it needs to support your video and its drivers.
Whenever you load Windows from a regular Windows CD (or DVD) from scratch, after Setup is finished you must load the drivers for the mboard, particularly the main chipset drivers, in order for Windows to have the proper drivers for and information about your mboard hardware, including it's AGP or PCI-E, ACPI, and hard drive controller support. If you have a generic system and have the CD that came with the mboard, all the necessary drivers are on it. If you load drivers from the web, brand name system builders and mboard makers often DO NOT have the main chipset drivers listed in the downloads for your model - in that case you must go to the maker of the main chipset's web site, get the drivers, and load them.
The ATI display drivers are matched to a certain Catalyst version. The display drivers are updated more often than the Catalyst version, so updated display drivers MIGHT work fine with an existing Catalyst version, but they might NOT. You may have problems if you use newer or older display driver versions with an existing version of Catalyst, or visa versa - that is probably a common reason people have problems with Catalyst.
If you want to update drivers, or use different drivers than on the CD, un-install all your video related ATI stuff listed in Add/Remove programs, get the display drivers and the Catalyst version that goes with them from the ATI site - the default top download on the ATI site is an all in one download that has both.
After you have un-installed all your video related ATI stuff in Add/Remove programs, after you reboot, if Windows finds the video chipset while booting and does not find the drivers for it, DO NOT point Windows to where the drivers are at that point - Cancel that, and continue on to the desktop. (The drivers and associated software WILL NOT install properly if you do that - that situtaion is not unique to ATI software - most video software, that is not built into Windows, will not install properly at that point).
Then, whether or not Windows installed video drivers automatically, go to Device Manager and look at the Display Adapters listings - if anything other than VGA something is listed, un-install it (them), but DO NOT reboot the computer.
Then install the drivers and associated software for the card, from the CD, or by using the download(s) you got from the ATI site.
Catalyst requires you install a .Net Framework version in order for it to work properly. The CD that came with the card has a .Net Framework version that is the one required by the Calatyst version that is on the CD, and if your system does not have that version installed, the CD installation will install it.
.Net Framework versions are independant of one another. Installing a higher numbered version does not update or eliminate the need for a lower version. Different programs may require different versions of it - you may have other programs that require other versions than Catalyst is using.
The ATI site does not include a .Net Framework version in the video downloads, but it mentions which .Net Framework version you need in the Release notes or the ReadMe file for the Catalyst version.
If you already have the required .Net Framework version, it is listed in Add/Remove Programs. It is not un-installed when you use the " Un-install ATI software" or similar entry listed there.
If you download individual downloads for more than one component of the ATI software, which you can do instead of downloading the all in one installation one, they MUST be installed in the right order, or you WILL have problems.
See the link to the Installation directions on the same page you get the drivers. (It mentions you needing a .Net Framework version for Catalyst, but the version mentioned my be lower than the version in the Release notes or ReadMe file for the Catalyst version you download.)
If you like, you can use a Control Panel like ATI used to use before Catalyst came out, instead of Catalyst - it does not require a .Net Framework version. ATI does not offer the option of a Control Panel anymore, but third party Omega Radeon drivers come with one.
The Omega Radeon drivers are fully approved of by ATI, but not supported by ATI - support is on the Omega Radeon web site - the drivers download includes a Control Panel that can do all or nearly all the things Catalyst can do.
"I'm 100% the memory is fine"
Are you SURE? Have you run a memory test?
Please state which specific ram modules you are using - the ID string or part number on the module(s).
This mboard has one of the oldest AM2+ chipsets and bioses. For all AM2 and AM2+ mboards, the memory controller is built into the cpu and that's what the ram must be primarily compatible with, but
- this older bios may not handle more recently available ram properly with default bios settings.
- some ram does not strictly follow the JEDEC standards most bioses use, and the bios may not auto set settings for it properly.
Make sure the ram timings stated in the bios are the same as those on/for the modules, or slower (higher numbers), and the ram voltage is the same as that on/for the modules.
If they are not right, you will have to tweak the bios settings manually.
A common thing that can happen with ram, even ram that worked fine previously, is the ram has, or has developed, a poor connection in it's slot(s).
This usually happens a long time after the ram was installed, but it can happen with new ram, or after moving the computer case from one place to another, and I've had even new modules that needed to have their contacts cleaned.
See response 2 in this - try cleaning the contacts on the ram modules, and making sure the modules are properly seated:
If you do a ram test, do that AFTER having tried cleaning the contacts and making sure the ram is seated properly - otherwise any errors found may be FALSE.
If you want to try a memory diagnostic utility that takes a lot less time to run a full pass than memtest86 does, this one is pretty good - Microsoft's
Windows Memory Diagnostic:
It can be toggled to do a standard or a more comprehensive set of tests - use the default 6 test one first - if it passes one pass of that, use the latter one. A few of the tests in the latter set are intentionally slower.