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Computer crashing for unknown reasons (mostly 3D Usage)

Ok my computer (mostly) randomly stops, waits 10 secconds, blanks the screen, then ati VPU recover kicks in and everything comes back but i'm unable to do anything 3D afterwards.

I have tryed 2 gfx cards ATI radeon 9000 and ATI Radeon 9250. I have tryed various Bios settings and both the offical ati drivers and the Omega ones.

at the moment with the 9000 in i am even unable to play unreal tournament in either directx or opengl

My computer specs are as follows:

Tyan Tiger T230 Motherboard
2 x PIII 1.13ghz
512mb +128 MB Ram
(Currently) Ati Radeon 9000
130gb hd + 320gb hd

Windows XP SP2

Please assist.
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CrashM85
Asked:
CrashM85
1 Solution
 
CallandorCommented:
Did you try running dxdiag in a command window?  You may need to reinstall DirectX.
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CrashM85Author Commented:
i have before the computer crashes it's fine.

No problems found.
DirectDraw test results: All tests were successful.
Direct3D 7 test results: All tests were successful.
Direct3D 8 test results: All tests were successful.
Direct3D 9 test results: All tests were successful.

After is crashes not even direct draw is enabled.

And the computer has been freshly reinstalled recently the problem was on it before the reinstall
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CallandorCommented:
You've changed video cards, so the problem may be in the motherboard or the RAM.  Try running the memory diagnostic program at www.memtest.org and see if it fails - if it does, you have bad RAM.
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CrashM85Author Commented:
done the mem diag recently as i had a faulty chip... the other 2 turned out fine.
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CallandorCommented:
The thing about memtest is that if it passes, that still is not a guarantee that the memory is good - only known working RAM will prove that.  A failure does mean bad RAM was detected.
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CrashM85Author Commented:
well i know it was a fault chip 1 cause mem test came out with 100000 errors after only 2 mins in to the test and after i removed it i was able to install windows again (which i wasnt able to do while the chip was in)
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CallandorCommented:
Did you have a power event or did something else happen that caused the machine to die?
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CrashM85Author Commented:
except for when running 3d programs it seems to happen most when scrolling in programs eg firefox
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CallandorCommented:
What I'm trying to determine is if this machine was working normally at some point and then it stopped working.  What happened to cause this is a clue as to what is wrong with it.
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CrashM85Author Commented:
it was such a long time ago i cannt remeber what it could be that has stoped it from working
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nobusCommented:
check if your power supply can handle the load :  http://extreme.outervision.com/psucalculator.jsp      
also check the cpu temperature after it stops, it can be heating up
i suppose all fans are running normally?
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CrashM85Author Commented:
I think your power supply theory may have merit, i will test it when i get home
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CrashM85Author Commented:
ps. does a powered USB draw any power from the PSU??
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CallandorCommented:
A powered USB device should not draw much at all, but if you exceed the 500mA current limit on a USB port with multiple devices, you can crash the system.  What do you have connected?
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CrashM85Author Commented:
Well i have changed the PSU but i'm gunna have to try changed the gfx card again as i belive that this gfx card (9000) has issues with my motherboard... i will get back to you with the result.

ps. i don't belive that i was exceding the limit i was just looking for ways of reducing the total load.
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CrashM85Author Commented:
Well the intermittent stopping seems to have stopped however i am still unable to play unreal tournament.
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CallandorCommented:
Are you able to play any 3D game, or is it just UT?
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CrashM85Author Commented:
Well i am now able to play UT but not in full screen mode... the game loads in windowed mode and when i try to full screen it (alt+enter) the screen fliskeres and returns to windowed mode
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CallandorCommented:
A Radeon 9000 does not support DirectX 9 - you need a 9500 or better for that.  Try uninstalling DirectX9 and use DirectX 8.1 instead.
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drypzCommented:
Try to lower down your hardware acceleration. Where?
Control Panel>Display>Settings>Advance>Troubleshoot>Hardware Acceleration
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CrashM85Author Commented:
this hasn't been resolved however i belive it to be a mther board problem.
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