Blue Screen errors, now video card not being recognized

For the last two days, my system has been periodically freezing and rebooting, and upon reboot Windows has reported it as a Blue Screen error. After having this happen several times today, I tried several things in the following order:

-- checked temperatures of CPU/GPU -- everything looked normal
-- memory check using built-in Windows utility -- no problems found
-- ran check disk tool on the OS drive -- no problems found
-- ran boot-time antivirus scan with Avast. System was unusually noisy during this time, and GPU fans seemed to be continuously running during the scan, which seemed odd to me. Upon booting into windows, I found that Windows could no longer find my GPU.
-- ran System Restore to go back about a week. Didn't solve the problem, and when I tried to undo the restore, it failed to do so. Can't get GeForce Experience to boot up anymore either.

At this point, I'm not sure what I should do to fix things, and I'm starting to get increasingly anxious about this :( Any suggestions on how to proceed from here would be most welcome. At this point, I'm wondering whether I should be considering a complete reinstall of my OS.

Some background info:
-- I built this computer last November (first-time builder). Haven't had any issues like this until the last few days.
-- I did update my GPU drivers late last week (~Thursday maybe?), and again today for Witcher 3's new drivers. Maybe that first update didn't install correctly, and has been causing problems?
-- blue screen errors occurred sometimes while playing games, but also sometimes just when watching youtube

My system specs are below:
CPU: Intel Core i5-4690 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler
Motherboard: Asus Z97-A ATX LGA1150 Motherboard
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 250GB 2.5" Solid State Drive
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 970 4GB STRIX Video Card
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case
Power Supply: SeaSonic M12II 750W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-14 DVD/CD Writer
Wireless Network Adapter: TP-Link TL-WDN4800 802.11a/b/g/n PCI-Express x1 Wi-Fi Adapter

Again, any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
10 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about blue screen errors video card recognized
  1. With a Blue Screen error you should have got an error message eg

    See if you can run the PC on integrated graphics.
  2. i7Baby said:
    With a Blue Screen error you should have got an error message eg

    See if you can run the PC on integrated graphics.

    So I actually never did get to see a "blue screen", so to speak. But when Windows reboots, and says something along the lines of "Windows has recovered from an unexpected shut down", showing details gives the following:
    Problem signature:
    Problem Event Name: BlueScreen
    OS Version: 6.1.7601.
    Locale ID: 1033

    Additional information about the problem:
    BCCode: 116
    BCP1: FFFFFA800CE764E0
    BCP2: FFFFF8800623881C
    BCP3: FFFFFFFFC000009A
    BCP4: 0000000000000004
    OS Version: 6_1_7601
    Service Pack: 1_0
    Product: 256_1

    Files that help describe the problem:

    Read our privacy statement online:

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    As for running on integrated graphics, so far I've had the machine running without an issue since I started this thread. That being said though, I don't know how to reliably trigger the issue, so it's hard to say whether integrated graphics avoids the error. I'll try running youtube for a while and see if that breaks it.
  3. Best answer
    See if helps - update drivers and check your graphics card's setting in CCC/nVidia Control Panel - to see they at at defaults.
  4. i7Baby said:
    See if helps - update drivers and check your graphics card's setting in CCC/nVidia Control Panel - to see they at at defaults.

    I was just about to try reinstalling the graphics card drivers as you suggested, but I decided to do the windows update first (due to the system restore, I had some updates to catch up on).

    For whatever reason, after doing this, my system is recognizing the GPU again, and by the looks of it, it has my drivers from last week. I'm going to try updating the drivers to the most recent version via GeForce Experience and see how things run. Will post back here with my findings after I've tested things for a bit.
  5. So far, no problems -- things look promising! Thanks so much for the help! I'll post again tonight to confirm whether things are still working.
  6. Fingers crossed.
  7. Computer's been running all day without any problems, both under normal usage as well as heavy gaming sessions. So looks like the problem most likely resulted from an unseen error when my drivers updated last week.

    Thanks again for the help!
  8. Cheers
  9. Bad news -- after working fine all day, it's shut down on me twice now with the same problem as before.

    Some additional information now though. The first time it shut down, my game suddenly had a massive drop in framerate, and then shortly after shut down. Upon reboot, Windows was once again not recognizing the gpu. Restarted machine, still no gpu. Turned off the computer and switched off the power on the back, left it alone for five minutes, then turned it on -- after this the computer recognized the gpu again.

    Second time it shut down, there was no framerate drop. Just went to black screen, made a buzzing noise from the speakers, and shut down. Windows still recognized the gpu after this one.

    UPDATE: computer just shut down again after trying to start firefox. Windows is missing GPU again.

    UPDATE 2: based on the evidence so far, I think we're right about the gpu being the issue, since I only seem to have problems when that's running. Really need to get some sleep tonight, but in the morning I'm thinking that I might try uninstalling the gpu drivers and reinstalling, rather than the system restore + driver update I tried last night. Right now, the machine is not recognizing the gpu, so I'll leave it like that for now and see whether it shut itself down by the time I wake up.
  10. Ended up uninstalling the drivers with DDU and doing a clean installation of the drivers. Had some issues with the installer not recognizing the card at first, but fixed this by opening up the case and removing + reinserting the card back into the pcie slot. So far, things are running fine -- cautiously optimistic that I've fixed the problems :)
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