I’ve been having a recurring problem with my desktop recently where random graphical artifacts will appear on the screen. They can appear at any time and I have no way of knowing when they will. They look like this: https://i.imgur.com/IpKAf.jpg (note: this is not my screen, but the pattern is identical to what I see).
Sometimes the computer remains running and I can usually make them go away by restarting my computer. Other times they screen completely freezes up and I have to manually shut the computer down. Oddly, when the screen becomes frozen, I can still hear the sounds and other noises from whatever is going on in the background. For example if I have a YouTube video playing, I can still hear it, and even interact with it normally with my mouse (though the cursor on screen will remain visibly frozen).
Recently, I have noticed that the problem becomes much more likely to occur if I am playing certain games: Warframe, Black Desert Online, and Stellaris specifically. In these cases, the screen will often freeze up shortly after starting the game, whereupon I will be forced to restart. However, I am still capable of playing other games such as League of Legends or DOTA 2 without incident.
I suspect my video card may be to blame. I have already uninstalled and reinstalled all the latest drivers, tried a clean boot in safe mode, ensured the card was properly cooled, and removed all dust from the fans. I purchased the card only a year and a half ago, so I’m not sure why it would be dying on me so soon.
I have included some basic PC specs below.
Microsoft Windows 10 Home OS
Intel Core i5-6600K 3.5GHz 4 cores
16 GB of RAM
AMD Radeon HD 7900 series