VPU Recover randomly occurs on Acer M420 with onboard radeon

Posted on 2009-04-17
Last Modified: 2013-11-09
I have an Acer M420, with onboard Radeon graphics, XP Pro SP3, 1GB memory.
It randomly gives a VPU recovery, blanking the screen and then carrying on as if nothing was wrong. I have updated the Catalyst driver.
The odd thing is that the pc will run some days for hours with no problems, then on another day it will repeatedly give the VPU recover error.
It often seems to be just after loading ie7 but other times it can happen when the pc is apparently idle. I don't run any games or 3d apps, so don't seem to have anything which would stress the graphics chip.
Any ideas to diagnose tjis greatly appreciated

Question by:BrianUK
    LVL 26

    Assisted Solution

    Idea 1
    Check for bad capacitors on motherboard and in power supply.

    Idea 2
    Backup to SP2 and see if problem goes away.

    Author Comment

    thanks for the suggestions.
    I have made progress of sorts. MB looks ok btw.
    I have regressed the ati driver from 8.591 to 8.473.
    Since then no more VPU recovery... I have so far had one BSOD in module ati2dvag with a stop EA.
    (0x84bc7478, 0x84e01220, 0xf78d3cbc, 0x00000001)
    This convinces me it is a driver problem, maybe a conflict with ACER e software and AVG.
    LVL 26

    Assisted Solution

    Go to System Devices in My Computer > Properties > Hardware, and locate the option, PCI standard PCI-to-PCI bridge.
    This might be named something else but similar...
    Right click, and select the update driver option.
    Manually search and install the PCI standard PCI-to-PCI bridge.

    Author Comment

    Ok here is the latest post for this question...
    Firstly, thanks to PCBONEZ for the ideas. It could have been a motherboard h/w problem; I am fairly sure it isn't as all seems ok in safe mode.
           So I have focused on drivers and installed s/w.
    I have resintalled the standard drivers (like the PCI to PCI bridge, which seems to have 4 entries on ths MB). With the problem being so random it is hard to know if this helped, but it didn't cure it.

    So what has helped...
    I have removed all the ATi catalyst software and also the ACER e software and logitech webcam software.
    I am in the process of reinstalling drivers for the chipset, video and HD audio (all on board) and will see if the PC becomes stable...
    If it does I will re-install the logitech webcam.
    I strongly suspect the ACER e software pre-installed has caused some problems (has some useful backup software but also seems to want to 'improve' my windows pc experience... which it doesn't)
    Another suspect is AVG 8 free. This has been suspected as having a problem with ACER eLock, documented on another thread.  I have removed ACER eLock and left AVG as AVG seems ok on other PCs I have.

    If all this fails, I will do a clean reinstall of XP, minus all the ACER software.


    Author Comment

    latest update.
    I carefully removed all trace of ati software, from program files, windows/system32, windows/system32/drivers and the registry.
    I removed all the ACER e software except eRecovery and eSettings
    I removed all the Logitech software for the webcam
    I removed the Realtek software and drivers for the on board sound.
    on reboot I canceled the windows install for the HD sound, and ran the latest full Catalyst 9.4 package.
    This includes 8.600.0.0 video driver.  I rebooted.
    All seemed ok, so nI installed the latest RealTek sound driver package 2.22, and rebooted.
    All seemed ok still.... I used IE7 extensively which previously had randomly caused the errors.
    I ran a full eRecovery system backup... This is where I will recover to, should it all go wrong later.
    I installed some xp and ie7 security updates, and rebooted.
    The next step will put back the logitech web cam software.... watch this space
    LVL 26

    Assisted Solution

    PCI-to-PCI bridge is part of your chipset.
    It links other chips or other parts of you chipset to the PCI BUS.
    I read something that suggested that on yours one of those things is the on-board graphics chip.

    You might check for an AGP-to-PCI bridge and try the same trick.
    I'm not sure, but, I don't think you'll have one.
    I think the AGP is really PCI on that but I could be wrong.

    Accepted Solution

    Thanks PCBonez,
    I seemed to have everything ok... till I installed the Logitech webcam...
    Then I got an ati2dvag stop EA BSOD...

    I have admittted defeat and am now part way through a clean install of XP.
    I have XP SP3, all the previous drivers I was using AND the logitech Webcam... all working... no random ati errors or BSOD.

    I guess we will never know what combination of updates, drivers and bad luck caused the original problem...
    My advice if you get this... look to reinstall XP  or migrate to Linux

    This problem can be closed as unresolved.


    Expert Comment

    ati2dvag stop EA BSOD

    Have been having this problem on many new installations lately. Most often when using MS Office Excel.  Also it has appeared on some older installations after many years, like it's tied into some update that was recently added.

    Video cards include ATI Radeon HD 3600 Series and 5450 Series amoung others. Some provided by ASUS.  

    After reading hundreds of posts with people guessing at what the problem might be or how to fix it, updating drivers, directx etc, the only solution I've found is to disable hardware accleration  and sometimes combine write.

    Fortunately this has been mostly for businuss installations, as after turning off hardware acceleration, a lot of the games won't work.

    Right click on desk top / Properties / Settings / Advanced / Troubleshoot

    If anyone has any other information, I would really appreciate it, and please don't tell me to the check the capacitors.

    - Al

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