Graphics Card Dead

So I have something dying in my computer, not quite sure what it is and could use some help in tracking down the cause. The problems started maybe a few days ago. I was playing the beta for Fallen Earth and then the game would start to freeze up and the textures would go all multicolor. Well I just attributed this to the fact it was a beta. Then it started to happen more frequently. Also my frame rate would drop down right when I entered a busy town...although that is normal, I have never really had frame rate drops before (but I did have all the settings up). Still not sure it the frame rate drop is related or not. Anyways 2 days ago every time I would load up Fallen Earth it would crash right after character selection when it was loading up the game world. Same things as before, shuttering frame rate and crazy colored textures with lines all over the screen.

I went and installed the new drivers for my card, loaded up the game, and the same thing happened. I then Tried out Left 4 Dead, and a similar scenario. I could play for like a 1sec -30sec then it would freeze up, and display weird colors. So must be an overheating Graphics Card I though. I opened up the case and did a thorough dust cleaning focusing on the Graphics Card. Checked the fan on the GPU and it works fine. Booted back up the comp, and not a single bit of improvement. A few resets, and driver reinstalls later and the problems just gets worse.

Now the posting process has lines all over the screen, as well as the a bunch of other weird things. Windows run fine, well kinda. I can load up firefox, and browse files and do basic function with little noticeable speed difference. Except when scrolling down webpages it skips, instead of a smooth scroll. Windows recognizes the GPU, but says it has a problem starting. I have tried uninstalling the drivers, and reinstalling with no improvement. Also something extremely weird was after I installed the drivers for like a third time, I went to reset and windows told me it needed to shutdown to install updates. So I said ok and windows went through the process of installing updates...dunno what that was. I have XP and it is fully up to date.

I have updated my BIOS, pulled out a stick of memory and booted up running only 1 stick (2 times, once for each stick) as well as changing the slots they sit in. All of which have had 0 effect.

So following is some pictures of the current state of my computer.

Here is my startup screen, the lines and blocks are clear.

After that screen is very weird, where boot information used to be is this.

Followed by another screen of jumbled mess, plus a legible common "Boot CD"...which normally showed up before the problems.

Then one more screen of very random stuff

Then windows loads, and has lines all over the screen. The wallpaper is tiling just from the change in resolution. I normally ran at 1680x1080 but not it will only go up to 1280x

Here is the info windows displays for my Graphics Card

=======My Theories

So looks like a definite problem with the graphics card, however it is not totally broken as my monitor is still hooked up to it and getting a signal. Also as I mentioned before the fan still runs fine on it. The question is why is the graphics card is not working and based on the way my computer is behaving I see two main reasons.

1) The Graphics Card its self is dying.
2) The PSU is dying

Personally I am hoping for the PSU as that is the cheaper one. Still I have no idea why my boot process is showing those weird characters. I did think it might be a virus, but I have ran a scan of my whole harddrive with AVG and picked up nothing. Plus the slow on set of this problem, and its direct link to graphics with windows working fine at a base level points away from a virus.

So yes please help, any ideas of things it might be. I have an older PSU from my last computer but it is only 500W I think, where as my current one is 700W. I thought about switching it out, but I do not think my old one will have enough power to run the 8800GTX. I have a old ATI card, but I am not sure if it will fit in this it draws way less power than the 8800 so it would not be a fair test of the PSU.

6 answers Last reply
More about graphics card dead
  1. Play 'Amazing Grace' at the funeral, it's a good tear jerker.

    This is to be done ONLY after you read the entire thread and you are sure the card is out of warranty.
  2. So you think this is a graphics card problem too?

    i checked that link, it seems like it could be anyone of those. Although the fact I am having problems before windows loads (which is before the drivers load), says that it could be the GPU. Should I try flashing the BIOS of the GPU?
  3. In my experience when a graphics card begins displaying screen anomalies like those, it is the graphics card that is dying. Graphics cards can have long warranties so I would check it out. If you try and fix the card yourself you could try changing all of the electrolytic capacitors.
  4. pjmelect said:
    In my experience when a graphics card begins displaying screen anomalies like those, it is the graphics card that is dying. Graphics cards can have long warranties so I would check it out. If you try and fix the card yourself you could try changing all of the electrolytic capacitors.

    Would it produce the same weird characters that are seen during the POST process, before windows loads? It replaces regular letters with symbols, I did not know a Graphics Card was a part of that?
  5. Yes it would, obviously the memory of the graphics card is being corrupted for some reason.
  6. Hello,

    I would suggest baking your graphics card. You can find out more by searching "Bake a 8800 gtx" in the google. I had the same problem with a 8800gtx belonging to one of my friends. I baked it and it worked again.
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