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System monitor shuts off.  Computer still runs fine.  Please help!

Posted on 2007-07-31
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Last Modified: 2013-11-10
Here are the machine specs:
Supermicro P4DCE+
Dual 2.4 Ghz XEON cpus
1.5 GB RDRam
256 mb Nvidia Graphics Card
80 GB SATA HD
CD-rw
3 case fans, 2 cpu fans, 1 PS fan, 1 Ram fan, 1 Graphics fan = 8 fans total
Win Xp Pro SP2
AutoCad 2006

You might have figured out where I am going with this thread after I listed all the fans I have.  Well I think I have an overheating issue but I can't find it for the life of me.

How it displays itself is after a while I get multicolored lines all over for the screen and then after about 2 or 3 seconds the monitor goes black.  The computer does not shut off just the monitor.  The light on the monitor turns yellow like it does when it doesn't receive a signal from the video card.  However the computer is still running ( I know this because today I had the internet radio playing and it continued to play even after the monitor shut off).

Day one:
The first thing I did was open the case and use my desk fan to help cool everything.  I initially thought the video card was going bad so I purchased another one.  The problem continued.  

Day two:
My next thought was either the ram or the cpus.  I didn't have any extra ram so I removed one of the cpus and ran it that way.  Well after a couple of hours the machine messed up again so I swapped the cpus and ran the rest of the day with no problems ( I still had my desk blowing into the open case).

Day three:
The computer ran all day and nothing happened (although I did turn the computer off during lunch).  Still had the desk fan blowing into the open case.

Weekened:
Didn't run the computer.  Did research at home.  Read where to tell computer not to reboot on error.

Day four:
After 2 hours the computer messed up again and gave me a blue screen with this info:
Driver_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL
STOP: 0X000000D1 (0X00004497, 0X00000007, 0X00000000, 0XB98B180B)
NV4_mini.sys Address B98B180B base at B96FE000, Date stamp 4269449f

This sounds like a video driver issue but the computer has messed up again and I have never gotten another blue screen, just the multicolored lines all over the screen.

I remembered I had an extra memmory fan so I installed it.

Day five:
The computer ran for 8 hours today before I got the multicolored lines.  I removed the desk fan after I installed the memmory fan.

I am at a loss for what to do next.  Can someone please point me in the right direction?  Offer some good information?

Thank You,
Will
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Question by:whdjr
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LVL 63

Expert Comment

by:SysExpert
ID: 19604277
It could be a faulty motherboard, a bad PS, or RAM.

Have you run memtest from memtest.org ?

Have you run any diagnostics ?

How old is this machine ?

I hope this helps !
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Expert Comment

by:major5012
ID: 19604575
When did this problem first start?  You might want to look at this forum it seems like this issue could be driver related.

http://www.tek-tips.com/viewthread.cfm?qid=308429
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 19607009
first, i would check if the power supply can handle the load :
http://extreme.outervision.com/psucalculator.jsp      
don't forget to add the fans !
this seems to indicate a cpu problem :  >>  I swapped the cpus and ran the rest of the day with no problems
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Author Comment

by:whdjr
ID: 19607905
SysExpert,

It could be a faulty motherboard, a bad PS, or RAM.     Other than physically replacing the items how do you tell if a component is faulty?  That could get expensive.  

Have you run memtest from memtest.org ?     I did run memtest and it did not show anything.

Have you run any diagnostics ?     I don't know what else to run.

How old is this machine ?     About 5 years old.

major5012,
When did this problem first start?     Beginning of last week.

You might want to look at this forum it seems like this issue could be driver related.     That seems to say that the error code could be related to a whole of hardware issues.

nobus,
first, i would check if the power supply can handle the load...     Thanks for the link but I don't want to pay for a calculation unless I seriously think that is the problem.  Which I don't.

this seems to indicate a cpu problem :  >>  I swapped the cpus and ran the rest of the day with no problems     Yes it would seem that, but why does it continue to shut off the monitor?


These are good questions guys and thanks for the thoughts.

Will
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 19607987
>>  Thanks for the link but I don't want to pay for a calculation   <<  you don't have to pay for it !
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Author Comment

by:whdjr
ID: 19609849
Well could you give me a more direct link?  The only calculation I saw you had to pay for.
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Author Comment

by:whdjr
ID: 19609924
My mistake!  I found the proper link after looking more thoroughly.  Will report again after I run the calc.

Thanks.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 19609981
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Author Comment

by:whdjr
ID: 19610010
WOW!!!!!!

I am using 373 watts and my PS is rated at max 370 watts.

We have 3 other systems in the office that are identical without any issuses.  Do you really think power is the issue?

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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 19610610
NO -it is something else !!
if it quacks like duck, wiggles like a duck, and sh** like one, it must be an horse yes?
LOL
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Assisted Solution

by:SysExpert
SysExpert earned 800 total points
ID: 19610774
I would also use temperature monitoring ( MBM or similar ) to check temperatures, and some good diagnostics program.

Your PSU may be borderline and is probably easiest to swap out and test.

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Accepted Solution

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nobus earned 1200 total points
ID: 19614954
so your system is slightly underpowered. You see the results : sometimes it works, sometimes not.
Frankly, i would put in a 450 or 500W PS, and get rid of the fans (it may still run ok on this PS without the fans)
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Author Comment

by:whdjr
ID: 19799180
I sent it to the shop and they said the power supply was low on power.  When they added a new PS with full power it killed the aging motherboard so I had to get a new system.  Thanks for all your comments and suggestions.

Will
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