Help determining if Driver or Hardware problem

Good day guys! Like it said in the title, I need help identifying if my problem is Software or Hardware related. :)

After the Nvidia 327.23 Driver update, I've been receiving a "your display driver has crashed and has successful recovered" alerts. happens on the first few minutes of youtube at fullscreen or first few minutes of a video game but only ONCE and its smooth sailing all the way.

A couple of days later the problem became more frequent and made playing games impossible. (surfing and youtube/video players still worked fine.)

Tried reinstalling the driver and even a rollback. It Didn't help so I did basic troubleshooting on my entire PC including a memtest86 on my RAMs.

After the memtest86 showed no errors on my RAMs, I rebooted once more but this time, I never even reach the desktop. The moment I hear the Windows login sound, my screen displays a bright red color and locks up the whole system. (the only way I can go to desktop now was through safe mode) This now happens every reboot.

I then decided on a reformat and clean install of Windows (and Nvidia Driver 327.23). That seems to have done the trick but it seems to have reverted back to the original problem. (getting the display driver crash once and then no problem after that)

Based on what happened, would this point to a faulty hardware or faulty driver? Been looking at the Nvidia forums and seems like most people have problems with the 327.23 release. If it's hardware, could it be the GPU, Mobo or RAM?

My hardware is a 1st Gen i7 setup with an LGA1366 mobo. I've been using it for 4 years with absolutely no problems until now. Max temperatures I get is 74-76 degrees at heavy loads according to FurMark. No component is overclocked except the factory overclock of the GTX670.

Processor: Intel i7 920 D0, Cooled by: Corsair H50 Watercooling
Motherboard: Foxconn BloodRage LGA1366
Graphics Card: Palit GTX670 JetStream 2GB 256-bit
RAM: Patriot Viper Series 6GB (3x2gb) 1600 DDR3
PSU: Corsair HX620Modular Power Supply
OS: Windows Vista Business Edition 64bit
Case: Antec 1200 Gaming Enclosure

Thank you. =)
6 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about determining driver hardware problem
  1. Best answer
    It looks like the GPU has gone south. If you can try another GPU, to isolate the problem. Test your RAM's separately meaning a single stick at a time.

    And to test the MB, take out all the RAM's and start the PC and listen for a beeping sound, if it sounds then its ok, if not than you know the answer.

    But I strongly doubt the GPU. Good luck.
  2. Alright, I will do hardware tests on the RAMs and the mobo today, but as for the GPU, I only have one GPU available. =(
  3. Hello again, I have rolled back to the 320.49 driver and it worked well with no crashes on any game although I did notice random FPS drops in Borderlands 2. What does this mean?
  4. Look I am using 327.23 driver since its out, and never faced a problem with any games. So it could be the driver issue on your side or as I said earlier the GPU is faulty. To isolate the problem try another GPU. And there is no other way to test it. Good luck.
  5. Decided to give 327.23 driver one more chance and everything seems good now, played a good 4 hours of Borderlands 2 with no driver crash and no FPS drops on most game using the same Card. I did the test and RAM was good, GPU was good. Turned out that the installers of the drivers I first downloaded caused some problems. Thank you very much for the help! Was a bit worried I would get a new card. XD
  6. You are welcome.
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