Possible corrupt NVIDIA Graphics Card

September 1, 2009 at 01:05:44
Specs: Windows XP

Had a new problem with my PC last night. It seems that the graphics card is at fault as artifacts are appearing in the POST startup DOS screens, during Windows XP startup and in Windows itself (see screenshots below). Has anyone experienced similar artifacts and was the graphics card at fault?

Windows Startup screen

Windows Screen

AMD 64 3800 processor (Socket 754)
MSI K8T Neo-FSR/ FIS2R Motherboard
Inno3D 256MB AGPx8 NVidia Inno3D GeForce 6800LE GDDR3 256 Graphics Card

Things I've Tried
I've removed all unneccesary devices and tried alternate monitors, cables (VGA and DVI) and RAM all to no avail. Only leaves the graphics card, processor or motherboard as point of failure.

Things Left to Try
I'm hoping a work colleague will have a spare AGP card which I can try in order to identify if that is the point of failure. If it is then I guess I'll be going shopping! :-) I may also try a fresh Windows install.

Thanks in advance to anyone can share any similar experience or anyone who has any advice for other things for me to try before spending some money.


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September 1, 2009 at 03:25:42
Are the text screens at start up OK. If so, boot into Safe Mode (F6) and see if the video looks OK there. The resolution will be lower.

Your problem could be the card itself or could possibly be the drivers. Try updating the drivers while in Safe Mode with network support.

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September 1, 2009 at 03:43:42
No even DOS text screens at startup are displaying artifacts and they are also still visible when booting into safe mode. I will try updating the drivers although it's proving tricky as the screen isn't always responsive and it's locking up intermittently. Thanks.

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September 1, 2009 at 04:57:02
If you are experiencing issues in the POST screens then drivers are not going to help. Drivers are not even loaded at that point.

About the only thing you can try is to re-seat the card and check any cooling fan on it. If that doesn't help then the card is probably defective.

Try another card if you can borrow one.

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Related Solutions

September 1, 2009 at 05:06:32
Yes that's what I though, as indicated I'm hoping a colleague has a spare card so I will test that. I have already reseated the card and attacked it with a hoover to remove dust etc. Thanks for the help.

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September 1, 2009 at 05:29:10
NEVER use a vacuum cleaner on a computer. Static charges build up in the hose and can kill sensitive electronic components.

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September 1, 2009 at 10:28:10
If you need to remove dust use the canned air for computers (available at most computer and office supply stores). A new graphics card should clear the problem you are having. Most of the time reseating a graphic card is a temporary fix. There are some good prices on better cards with 512mb of VRAM.


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