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Blue screen of death "NMI: Parity Check / Memory Parity Error"

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December 26, 2009 3:15:56 AM

I apologize for posting this in the homebuilt systems section, but it didn't seem appropriate to the systems or graphic cards section either as this is much more geared towards technical help.

I started having computer problems tonight and I'm not sure how to resolve them or pinpoint the problem.

I'd been on the computer for maybe 1-1.5 hours when I started getting some wierd graphical glitches while playing World of Warcraft. The game would freeze for a second and then I'd get a lot of wierd false colors (mostly green and red overlays) and icons suddenly appeared midscreen in distorted fashion. Things returned to normal the first couple of times, but then my system locked up. I was able to log back in, but 15 minutes later, the same thing happened. On my third attempt, I got the blue screen of death with the following error:

Hardware malfunction
Call your hardware vendor for support
NMI: Parity Check / Memory Parity Error
The system has halted

After that, any time I tried to run WoW, I'd get those false colors overlaid on the login screen and the system would freeze (and was unresponsive to ctrl-alt-del, requiring a hard restart). Normal web browsing worked fine, although scrolling seemed choppy and slower than usual. After a couple of restarts, I started seeing a dot pattern over the Windows loading screen.

I Googled the error message and got very vague reports. Based on their recommendations, I ran a quick memory check using Windows Memory Diagnostic, which reported no errors on the first pass of the extended tests (I'm using 2 1MB DIMMS, if it matters). I also went in and removed the CPU heatsink cover and blew all the dust out of it with compressed air in case it was a heating problem. After leaving the computer off for an hour, the glitches on the Windows login screen were gone, but I had the same issue once I tried running WoW again.

I had somewhat similar graphical issues less than a year ago (finally devolving into large green blocks over the Windows loading screen), which went away when I replaced my graphics card. The graphics card is less than a year old (BFG nVidia 9800 GT, factory overclocked) and didn't seem especially warm (I installed a second exhaust fan right near the card after the last one went belly up). Is there any way that I can test the card to see if it's the problem? Are there other issues that may cause this error (Google links suggested just about anything, including the motherboard, could be the source of the problem).

Any help would be extremely appreciated.
December 26, 2009 3:44:56 AM

Just an update. After another hour or so of letting the computer cool down, I fired it up again. Again, no glitching on the loading screen and I had no graphical issues running a 5 minute HD Youtube video. After that, I decided to try running Dragon's Age to see if I had any similar problems. I didn't get any graphic glitches, but I had several slight pauses through the loading graphics. After resuming my game, I got another blue screen of death:

A problem has been detected and windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer.
The problem seems to be caused by the following file: nv4_disp
If this is the first time you've seen this Stop error screen, restart your computer. If this screen appears again, follow these steps:
The device driver got stuck in an infinite loop. This usually indicates problem with the device itself or with the device driver programming the hardware incorrectly.
Please check with your hardware device vendor for any driver updates
Technical information:
*** STOP: 0x000000EA (0x882ECA78, 0x885DDA20, 0xBA4EBCBC, 0x00000001)
nv4_disp


I restarted the computer (booted normally), ran DA again, and got the wierd color overlays I'd seen in WoW and the system froze.

Does this suggest the video card is at fault? And if so, why would I be burning through two video cards in as many years?
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December 28, 2009 10:44:54 PM

Sounds to me like the memory on the graphics card may be throwing the error. Prolly a good idea to replace the graphics card and make sure that it is staying cool enuf.
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 28, 2009 11:19:06 PM

bigfysh3 said:
Sounds to me like the memory on the graphics card may be throwing the error. Prolly a good idea to replace the graphics card and make sure that it is staying cool enuf.


+1

Try to uninstall the GPU drivers and go back in and see if it still shows the lines and dots

Also try and post your dump file from the BOSD on the windows 7 forum see if someone can read it.

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a b B Homebuilt system
December 28, 2009 11:23:17 PM

cchadwick said:
Just an update. After another hour or so of letting the computer cool down, I fired it up again. Again, no glitching on the loading screen and I had no graphical issues running a 5 minute HD Youtube video. After that, I decided to try running Dragon's Age to see if I had any similar problems. I didn't get any graphic glitches, but I had several slight pauses through the loading graphics. After resuming my game, I got another blue screen of death:

A problem has been detected and windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer.
The problem seems to be caused by the following file: nv4_disp
If this is the first time you've seen this Stop error screen, restart your computer. If this screen appears again, follow these steps:
The device driver got stuck in an infinite loop. This usually indicates problem with the device itself or with the device driver programming the hardware incorrectly.
Please check with your hardware device vendor for any driver updates
Technical information:
*** STOP: 0x000000EA (0x882ECA78, 0x885DDA20, 0xBA4EBCBC, 0x00000001)
nv4_disp


I restarted the computer (booted normally), ran DA again, and got the wierd color overlays I'd seen in WoW and the system froze.

Does this suggest the video card is at fault? And if so, why would I be burning through two video cards in as many years?





( Does this suggest the video card is at fault? And if so, why would I be burning through two video cards in as many years?[/quotemsg] )

Post your system spec

Your PSU might be the problem as to why your burning up GPUs SPIKES ect can cause damage to the parts

Also some parts can last years other fail @ differnt times ( I hade HDD last 5 + years others dont last a year

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December 29, 2009 1:44:57 AM

Sounds like a video card issues and what I do is buy aftermarket compound thermal paste and replace the thermal paste that is on the GPU with aftermarket types. Sounds like a over heat maybe but I can be wrong then again the driver should be the issue here.

Make sure that you do have a videcard with a heatsink that is in contact with the memory on the card.
These type of cards work better for better cooling.

If you don't have one that is on contact with the memory then always but VGA cooling heatsink for the memory. They do help.
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Anonymous
a b B Homebuilt system
July 21, 2010 6:42:47 AM

Hi cchadwick,
I have the same symptoms when playing WoW (BSOD with parity check, and also sometimes BSOD with the nv4_disp error). This is on a laptop with an nVidia 8800M GTX and Win XP Prof.

I have read in other forums that drivers may be the cause for this.

Could you please give an update as to whether your problem was caused by faulty hardware or by a driver problem ?

Thanks,
Andy
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 21, 2010 6:53:36 AM

Also, what you can do that may help, get a pci slot cooler fan.

Maybe something similar to this one

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mount it under your video card, that way if the card is putting off heat, hopefully this can exhaust some of that out the back of the case. I've got a similar one, and my 9600gt seems to stay in the 40-50 degree celcius range. I think the fan on the card only runs at like 20% too. Also, if you get another card, I think xfx has a good warranty on their cards.
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