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Graphics Card Freezing - No clue why

Posted on 2001-06-14
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Last Modified: 2013-11-10
Hello, I hope someone out there is smart enough to know what the problem is. I have written Creative a couple of times, but haven't got any answers. I'll be forever thankful dor any help I can get here :-)

The problem described below occurs with both Win98 and WinME.

This is my configuration:

AMD CPU Thunderbird 1100 Socket A
ABIT ATX KT7 Socket A KT133
3D Blaster GeForce2 Ultra AGP NT9x 64MB
CREATIVE PC-DVD ENCORE 12X INFRA RET.
Creative SB Live! Platinum 5.1 Ret.
Creative Speaker DTT 2500 Digi. 5+1 Ret.
256MB PC133 SDRAM 3,3V ORIG ACER
YEONGYANG Miditower YY-5381 ATX 300W K7
Teac CD-RW 12x/10x/32x IDE CD-W512EK
TEAC FLOPPY 3.5" 1.44MB OEM
Nokia 19" 446PRO TCO99 Flat AG 6 220 kr
IBM OEM Deskstar 75GXP 46,1GB 7200RP IDE
MS Internet Keyboard Pro PS2/USB Swe
MS Intellimouse Explorer PS2\USB Optical
MS Strategic Commander (USB installed)

The problem I'm having started right away after I bought the computer (the computer company put it toghether for me). The graphic card freezes and all I can do is to turn the computer off and start over. Sometimes it it freezes with a clamor from the computer, and sometimes its quiet.
I haven't had any other problems with it.

When I had just a few programs installed it almost only frooze while playing games. Age of Empires II was the only game that made it freeze in the middle of the game. With other games (like Baldur Gate 2) it only freezes when entering a meny (1 out of 10 times) or shutting it down (2 out of 3 times). Now (with WinME) with more programs it freezes a lot more often, and also while the toolbar are loading down to the right. It seems like sudden moves with the mouse during loading freezes. I think that my newly installed "Zonealarm Firewall" has made it worse.

OK. I've tried 3 different drivers to my GeForce Card. I've installed different drivers for the Mothercard. New USB driver, new DirectX. I've tried with both Win98 and WinME. New everything. That's why I think it's a hardwareproblem.

I'm just little above idiot when it comes to hardware, so I don't have so many good guesses. The only problem I had while installing all the hardware was a conflict with the IRQ 5. Two devices wanted to use that one. I solved it by choosing that one of the devices shared with the printer connection.

Thanks in advance!
Robert Thorgren
Stockholm, Sweden.


















 
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Question by:Drob
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by:Nenadic
ID: 6190636
Which device do you have as sharing a print connection?
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Accepted Solution

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kahlean earned 200 total points
ID: 6190643
there might be couple of things that cause this problem

1. Overheating to both the processor and your grpahic card. AMD has this heat issue as well as you GEForce grahic card. The only solution is to get a cooling fan for your cpu. For your graphic card, you can manually modify the heat sink and add an external cooling fan on top of it. This will help a lot.

2. Overclock CPU. You have to check out from your vendor to find out from this.

3. Power supply. Weak power supply might cause probelm to devices like GEForce which takes up quite high voltage. Even though you mention that it is a 300W power supply, but the voltage to the agp slot might not be good enough. you can know the voltage spec of the power supply form the label on top of it.

4. Download the latestdriver from Nvidia. If i am not mistaken, the latest driver is detonator 6.50

5. There might be conflict with other device. Try to remove other devices like you modem and soundcard.

6. Fault ram might be another problem. Try to swap ram as well.

Well this are my suggestion. Happy trying
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Author Comment

by:Drob
ID: 6191307
As I said, I'm not any good with hardware, but I'll try the things I can handle and then let someone (those I bought it from) help me with the "hard" things.

Nenadic:
I will check when I get home which device is sharing with the printer.

Kahlean:
1. Sounds like it could be the problem. Yesterday I restarted over and over again and it frooze right after everything was loaded in the toolbar. It sounds logical that it was because the card still was too hot. I bet it doesn't do that when I start it now when I get home.

But on the other hand, why does the card often freeze when exiting a game and not while playing (except AOE then)? Or maybe that is logical...? Does some games make the card hotter then other?

2. I don't think that the CPU is overclocked.
3. I'll have to check that.
4. I downloaded the latest driver from Creatives site. I can try with Nvidia's as well if they're different.
5. I'll check.
6. I'll try.


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Expert Comment

by:rayt333
ID: 6193350
As soon as your computer boots up, hit (Ctrl,Alt,Delete) and copy that list down and post here, this could be a software conflict. I noticed one device you mentioned as being installed that causes many problems with other programs (MS Intellimouse Explorer PS2\USB Optical)

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Expert Comment

by:kahlean
ID: 6193526
Drob, go to this site to get the review on your card at www.3dchipset.com . THis might help you alot
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Expert Comment

by:rayt333
ID: 6193659
kahlean
3DChipset.com     is    Closed


                  We had to close 3DChipset.com due to a person or persons who
                  have nothing better to do then launch DDoS attacks at us. Our host
                  dropped us like a bad habit. As of now we took 3DC offline and are
                  working on a new revision. We have a possible new host in the
                  works and hopefully that turns out very well.

                  3DChipset is not leaving. This can happen to anyone. It is amazing
                  to know that running a small script can crush a website.

                  If the hacker or hackers have enough balls to contact us and be real
                  men or ladies depending on their life style ;) can explain to us why?
                  usucceded@yahoo.com.

                  We should be back up in running at the end of next month early
                  August. But until then. I suggest changing your bookmarks for the
                  mean time to Gamers-Ammo or 3dxtreme.org until we resurface
                  again.

                  Staff at 3DC
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by:kahlean
ID: 6193761
thanks there rayt333. Indeed i love this site very much. Great review and latest update from them. But best part of it, leak driver from Nvidia.......

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Author Comment

by:Drob
ID: 6194259
Hello again,
I'm really impressed with all the answers I get here. Thanks to all of you!

Nenadic:
Its "Creative SB16 Emulation" that is sharing IRQ 7 with the printer. "Allow LPT interupt sharing" is crossed.
I inactivated the printer (unchecked "allow..") and tried again, but it wasn't any change. The GeForce card had IRQ 10, and was alone with that one.

And the computer didn't freeze now when I started it after beeing at work. So maybe it is a heat issue? But as I said earlier, that doesn't make sence sometimes since it freezes while exiting games and other programs (not in my ears anyway).

Kahlean:
I installed the newest driver from Nvidia. It was 12.41 I believe, only 9 days old. Now it says "Nokia 446 pro on GeForce 2 Ultra" instead of "Nokia 446 pro on GE0040" in the display settings. I did that right before I left for work, so I haven't tried if it did any difference. But I suspect it won't ;)

I'm thinking on trying your suggestion that it could be a heat issue. "For your graphic card, you can manually modify the heat sink ..." I'll try to get instructions in how to do this at some computer store. Do you think it would help to try to put the card so it get a "clear" spot in the computer? I think it's pretty close to the soundcard as it is now, but I'm not sure. I'll check that.

Rayt333:
"As soon as your computer boot up"...when is that exactly? :-) (on WinME).
I tried in different locations and it either restarted again, or I got 4 different choises in how to start (normal, ..., ..., confirm every line) or else if I did it very late I got up the usual window that you get if you do the same thing "inside" Windows. BUT, I'll try with another Mouse and see if that's the problem...and maybe there's a new driver on MS if that turnes out to be it.

Thanks again for your help! I'll come back and tell you how things went...

Drob



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Expert Comment

by:Joentje
ID: 6194561
hmmm, two things you should try
-force the geforce into AGP2x or AGP1x
-use liveware 2.0 instead of 3.0
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Expert Comment

by:kahlean
ID: 6195312
try to move your soundcard to a diffrent pci to allow more room for your graphic card. I think those cooling fan for GEForce is easy to find nowadays, i remember the day when i would fix a cpu cooler on top on the heastsink by fitting screws in betwenn those lanes in the heatsink. In fact you have nothing to lose in fitting the cooling fan. Alot of people will do this for better stability. Another thing is that if you are those overclocker, you definately need this. This can de done using your detonator driver. For you info, nvidia card is good for overclocking.

I would suggest that you download the reference driver from nvidia, to be on the safe side. If i ma not msitaken the lastest version is detonator 6.50. THe driver you have downloaded is the reference driver from other manufacturer that uses geforce chipset as well. But this is only a beta driver, which haven really prove the stability. so i think for debugg problem use the reference driver. point to www.nvidia.com

okay what rayt333 suggested is that after booting into windows where you can see your desktop, press <Ctrl> + <Alt> + <Del>. this will bring up the close program menu. You will be able to see a list of application. The reason why rayt333 says this is that there might be conflict between the driver and other program. so give us a detail of the program that is running.

Another i think that i would suggest is that try to download the game patches as well. This patches might be very useful in fixing some issue.

I have encounter a pc wihch has similar problem like yours. But it uses a 3D Blaster Savage 4. The system hangs not only in game but also while using the windows. I have tried to change the cpu, memeory , graphic  card, reove all devices, update bios as well as driver and even changing mobo, but none of this helps. Finally, i realsie that the power supply is the culprit. After getting a new power supply, everything is fine. As i said even though it state that it is a 300 W poer supply, i might not live up to it specs. THe voltage to the devices like your graphic card is very important as well. But this will be your final resort if all the ways that all the experts have suggested doesnt work.

So hope to hear good news from you and happy trying. This will indeed a good expereince for you and the rest of us.

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by:rayt333
ID: 6196134
kahlean
Thanks for explaining the (Ctrl,Alt,Delete) to Drob, that was exactly what I was wanting to see.

Drob
Only hit the (Ctrl,Alt,Delete) once or it will reboot the computer
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Expert Comment

by:pmuhlhause
ID: 6196368
Hi Drob,
you didn"t mention a modem. is there one?  SB live works best if you reserve IRQ5 for it in bios(for SB16 emulation). it uses (2) irqs.  The AGP port for your video card shares an irq with pci1. PCI 1 should be empty, for cooling and to prevent sharing of video IRQ.  good luck.. if all else fails, try http://www.viahardware.com for a comprehensive rundown of options on the motherboard and assocated peripherals.  Pete
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by:rayt333
ID: 6196726
Just for the sake of troubleshooting this, go to START, then RUN, type MSCONFIG and hit OK, now click on the startup tab, uncheck everything except "Systray" and click apply, it will ask you to reboot, say yes and let it restart, now see what problems you have with the video card.

Note: some of your programs and drivers are not going to be loading at boot, the bigest thing is the MS mouse and the MS Internet keyboard, use a  workaround for the time being to see if your video works without freezing, if so then go back into MSCONFIG and recheck each item (one at a time) and reboot and check again, this should let you find if there is something loading at bootup is causing your freeze up.  

Keep us informed on your progress
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Author Comment

by:Drob
ID: 6197437
The list from Ctrl, Alt, Del (and I know hitting it twice will restart the computer ;):

EAX
Explorer
Zapro
Rcenter
Osdmenu
Rcman
Msmsgs
Daemon14
Mediadet
Lucomserver
Poproxy
Navapw32
Point32
Systray
Mdm
Ahqtb
Speedkey

I have had the computer without a modem, with a 56 kb modem and now a ADSL modem. The same problem with all the alternatives.

-force the geforce into AGP2x or AGP1x
-use liveware 2.0 instead of 3.0

How do I do this?

I'll try the rest tomorrow. Thanks for the new suggestions.
Drob


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Expert Comment

by:kahlean
ID: 6197547
okay try to end task all the program from the list execpt the explorer and systray. run the games and see how it work. Yoiu sure have plenty of application runnig on the background,


REgards
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Expert Comment

by:Joentje
ID: 6197578
liveware 2.0 should be on the driver disk of you sblive
force agp 2x or 1x, you can do this using nvmax (www.nvmax.com)
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Author Comment

by:Drob
ID: 6198202
Hi guys,

1. I don't think its a heat issue anymore. When I started the computer for the first time today it frooze when I was moving the mousepointer while loading the toolbar. I couldn't be hot then, and it wasn't hot in the room either.

I have another thing to tell you. Sometimes (a long time since now) the computer just don't start at all. The display show "No signal" after a while. It seems like the cpu doesn't wanna start, so I always open the box and tuck all the cables in the corner cause it seems like they do so the fan don't start. That always help. I don't think thats related, but I thought you shuold know everything.

2. It didn't help to start with no programs at all. No change whatsoever.

3. Rayt333: I also tried with a regular mouse, first with the same driver which didn't work, and then with a generic driver. First I thought that helped cause I could get AOE (Age of Empires) to freeze when I was clicking to get to the meny, and going between menues which always freeze the computer. I tried for 5 minutes and really thought that was the thing. I even closed the game and then rebooted and restarted again. I picked another saved game and this time it frooze the second time I clicked to the meny. Damn! Rebooted and restarted again and loaded the first game. This time it frooze right away when I got to the menu.

4. I've been thinking on what you said about power supply Kahlean and I don't think that could be it. To me it sound illogical that it would require more power to go to a meny in a game or while moving the mouse during startup. I've played DVD movies for hours with the sorround sound system (it's the 3500 by the way, not 2500), and never had any problems with that.

5. Kahlean, the 6.50 driver was the one I had before I tried the Beta one. Before that one I had 6.34. I checked in my download folder and that was the name of them.

It seems like it's easier to freeze the computer after it has froozen once. Note that it freezes almost only while going between menues in game, closing games (or WinDVD) or right after booting. Only a couple of times it has froozen while playing a game, and that was in AOE, and that happend after playing for about 45 minutes. As I said, if it freezes onces it seems to freeze more. As I told you above, the other day it frooze after booting 7 times in a row, so I gave up and gave the computer a rest for a couple of hours. Then it started fine.

After all this trying my VERY unproffesional guess is that going between menues or moving the mouse while booting the toolbar causes a conflict in the Graphics Card. I don't think that it is the driver. My collegue at work has exactly them same configuration as me (we bought it together through work, in Sweden they let you buy a homecomputer taxfree through work) and he has never had this problem, not with Win98 or WinMe.

I think the problem has something to do with the IRQ or some other kind of settings in the Bios.

I guess the only things left in all your suggestions is to try AGP2x and the liveware 2.0 theory, and Pmuhllhause's theory. I look into that, but I think it's a little over my head :-)

A friend of mine suggested to install Win200 instead. Do you think that will help any?

Otherwise I don't know what to do...feels a little hopeless now :-)

Best wishes,
Robert Thorgren
aka Drob





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by:rayt333
ID: 6198364
Did you try "unchecking" everything in MSCONFIG (except Systray and test it?

Or as kahlean suggested use the "end task" option from the Close Program window?  Remember if you reboot though these programs will start again, if you plan on rebooting several times then your best bet is to use the MSCONFIG way to stop these programs loading at boot.
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by:kahlean
ID: 6199050
drob, if the conflict issue doesnt help, consider about the power supply, i might help though. I guess that is the final thing you can do

Regards
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by:kahlean
ID: 6199051
remember forcing your agp to 2x or 1x, you might lose up some performance just incase. But check out from your mobo is it does support 4x or not.
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Author Comment

by:Drob
ID: 6199488

Yes I tried that Rayt333. No change... ;(

Thanks for all your help! I'll try the things left, and if that doesn't help try Win2000 - and if that doesn't help I'll give back the computer to the store so they can check the power supply.

Thanks again all of you, it's really awesome how Internet works huh? Getting help from the other side of the world ;-)

If anyone needs help with a webconcept or to go through a site, mail me at robert@moonwalk.se.

// robert

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Author Comment

by:Drob
ID: 6199495
This is the first time I've used experts-exchange, and I was really impressed. Even though I haven't solved my problem yet I sure got tons of clues...

Thanks to Kahlean, Rayt333, Nenadic and the other trying to help me out. I'll recommend this site to my collegues and friends.

Best wishes,
Robert Thorgren
Project Manager/CD - Moonwalk Sthlm
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by:kahlean
ID: 6199565
btw drob is your problem solve?
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by:kahlean
ID: 6199571
btw drob, rayt333 should get the credits as well as rayt333 has contributed also
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by:rayt333
ID: 6199898
Nice working with you kahlean and I will look forward to the next time.
:>)
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