I use my desktop for trading for a living so this is VERY VERY important. I trade across 3 monitors, normally in this config:
-CRT + LCD --> ATI 7500 Radeon (PCI slot)
-LCD --> ATI 8500DV all-in-wonder (AGP slot)
Everything was fine until all of a sudden my computer locked up, always on the screen that the AGP card controlled. I would reboot over & over until it worked. Then it would work for a while, but if I left it alone for a while, it would lock up again. I thought ultimately it was a windows issue or AGP driver issue (but I've been using this comp for 5 years w/ no problems).
But then when I turned my computer on, it actually gave me gibberish on the screen (think colorful random ASCII symbols/letters blinking on/off & filling the whole screen) right after it ran the boot memory test. So it therefore was a hardware issue & had nothing to do with windows. Obviously something has gone 'bad' in my PC.
So figuring it was a problem w/ the video card in the AGP slot since it always occurred that screen, I bought a replacement ATI 8500DV for $70 from ATI. And of course, it worked beautifully the first time I booted, but I just turned it on this morning and the same s--t is happening again.
However, when I remove the AGP card entirely, and only use my ATI 7500 + the 2 screens, my computer works 100% fine, no problems at all. I would imagine if it were a bad power supply, memory, or anything else, that my comp. would be quirky regardless of the AGP card, but it's not. So.....
-So does this mean that the motherboard AGP slot has gone bad?
-My power supply doesn't feed the AGP card directly, only the motherboard. Is it possible for a single slot on a mb to go bad like that?
-Is there any way to test this? Or is there any utility that will run some tests on my hardware and figure out which is bad?
Yup, that's what I figured and have been reading up (it's been 5 years) on all the latest stuff. For my purposes, I've come up with this so far, I still need to figure out which fans, power supply, and case to get (in that order):
MB: Asus P5Q-E
CPU: Intel Q9550
GPU: 2 x Sapphire ATI 3650's (I use 3 monitors for trading)
Mem: 2x2gb Corsair XMS2 DHX DDR2 800 (the ones w/ the large heatsinks on them)
Hd: 2 x WD640gb
Power Supply: TBD (probably 650w though)
Case: TBD (after picking all components, will pick case to fit them all)
I'll go to the cooling forum and ask about the fans now.