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Screen Hard Freeze During Game Play:

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April 26, 2011 3:24:57 PM

I know this question has been asked to death on here in the past but I can't seem to find certain answer for my situation so forgive me.

Problem -

I'm getting random screen hard freezes only while playing PC games where it freezes and I can do nothing but restart my PC as Alt-Tab or Task Manager are unresponsive but not every one I play freezes. I've noted three-four games that freeze so far that I own. All are graphic intensive. (Borderlands, Red Faction 3, Precursors, X3TC) mostly high to max settings in all. Also, I didn't notice this problem at all until last weekend when I updated with windows updates program (these were security updates for my version of windows and optional updates like new mouse and keyboard drivers, etc..) and I updated my Nvidia 460 GFX graphics card to the latest driver 270 something.

Question - I never uninstall my old drivers meaning when I update my graphic card drivers I just install the newer driver without uninstalling the current driver on my system. Never had a problem before by using this method but I heard it may cause problems or may not. Ned a good graphic card drive removal software suggestion here... thanks.

Situation -

I've never had this problem like this before. In January I rebuilt my PC from ground up and it has been running flawlessly since Febuary 1st 2011. I have a open case meaning the door is all at all times. I have a mid size gaming pc case and pletty of room. I've never checked the cpu or gpu temps as I never had a overheating problem before and Im not sure that's entirely the case now. I need a good free temp monitoring program liink as well. Thanks.

My Specs -

I have a 800 watt PS - I know it's not a power issue.
My CPU is a Quad Core 2 3.00 ghz with a 12 mb catch
4 Gigs of system RAM
Nvidia 460 GHX 1 Gig video card
(lastest driver 270 of April 2011)
Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
April 26, 2011 4:10:56 PM

I bet you good money it's your ram. I have the same issue when i overclock my pc and i forget to reset my timings. Even if you don't overclock, sometimes the ram needs looser timings, because either the bios is setting them up wrong, or some program you have is automaticalyl setting them too tight. For example, i have AMD Overdrive installed, and it causes my ram to reset to timings that are too tight. So, actually, download a memory tester (Memtest86 is really good, and even has programs that run IN windows). Or just download AMD Overdrive, or if you're on an intel CPU, then download some intel overclocking software, and run the stability test, if you're getting errors it's your ram (make sure you don't have an overclock on to make sure it's not the CPU receiving errors)

But before all that, just try a little test, and give your GPU a little more voltage and see if that fixes it, before you go through all the work of testing your ram.

PS: I don't think it's your temps, sinse you've been running it fine for a while, but HW Monitor is a GREAT program that most people use.
http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/hwmonitor.html
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April 26, 2011 5:26:33 PM

"But before all that, just try a little test, and give your GPU a little more voltage and see if that fixes it"

How do you do this... with third party software or can you do it by default through the card or pc?
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April 26, 2011 7:02:10 PM

gijas said:
"But before all that, just try a little test, and give your GPU a little more voltage and see if that fixes it"

How do you do this... with third party software or can you do it by default through the card or pc?

Pretty much ANY third party application will do this. Use MSI Afterburner. You may have to click "settings" or something to ENABLE voltage control. Simple stuff, try it out :p  A little advice, don't MAX the voltage of the card, i'd first try adding 10(mV) (millivolts) then 20, then 30. If after adding 30 extra millivolts doesn't work, then it's not a voltage issue. If you don't know what i'm talking about, just download the program and it will become much more obvious. Don't alter any other over clock settings yet besides the voltage, until you've solved your freezing issue :p  haha

edit: since you apparently have never over clocked your card, than it is probably not this, though try it anyway :p  If not luck, reduce the voltage to what it was before, so you don't have a redundant over voltage hehe
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a b U Graphics card
April 26, 2011 7:15:48 PM

Sounds like a failing power supply to me and since you didn't name it by name I'm gonna go out on a limb and say it's generic and it's more than a few years old. Not to mention a generic 800w psu is in reality usually a 450-500w unit.

I haven't heard any good advice from the above posters, upping your gpu voltage obviously has nothing to do with it since it was running just fine before and it's fairly new. Does not sound like a memory issue to me either unless you recently changed some bios settings or attempted an overclock which may have changed your bios settings for you.

You can use CPUID HW Monitor (google it) to keep tabs on cpu, gpu, video card, hardrive, etc temperatures. It will tell you the hottest it got during your gaming session as well without having to tab out of the game to check it.
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April 26, 2011 7:20:45 PM

geekapproved said:
Sounds like a failing power supply to me and since you didn't name it by name I'm gonna go out on a limb and say it's generic and it's more than a few years old. Not to mention a generic 800w psu is in reality usually a 450-500w unit.

I haven't heard any good advice from the above posters, upping your gpu voltage obviously has nothing to do with it since it was running just fine before and it's fairly new. Does not sound like a memory issue to me either unless you recently changed some bios settings or attempted an overclock which may have changed your bios settings for you.

You can use CPUID HW Monitor (google it) to keep tabs on cpu, gpu, video card, hardrive, etc temperatures. It will tell you the hottest it got during your gaming session as well without having to tab out of the game to check it.

Well i receive the same crashes, hard freezing and i can still close the game. And in my case it's my ram, so it can't too bad of advice. Also i said that i don't think it's a voltage issue after he pointed out that he hasn't over clocked his card. I also already advised that program. Also, i think you're right, it's quite possibly a PSU issue, because PSU's can fail overtime with a system that's stressing the PSU's limit. But 800w? idk.....
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a c 147 U Graphics card
April 26, 2011 7:26:18 PM

The most reliable test is to either put your card in another system or put a similar card in your system.

Yes, it could be your RAM though I'm not sure that would cause a screen freeze but it's worth testing (you can have both problems):
http://www.memtest.org/#downiso

I don't recommend messing around with your voltage. If you have a Warranty, start the RMA process. The company could likely tell you if the screen freezing means it's your video card specifically (probably).

FYI, the GTX560 Ti would be an awesome replacement for that card if need be.
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a b U Graphics card
April 26, 2011 9:23:36 PM

coreydmorton said:
Well i receive the same crashes, hard freezing and i can still close the game. And in my case it's my ram, so it can't too bad of advice. Also i said that i don't think it's a voltage issue after he pointed out that he hasn't over clocked his card. I also already advised that program. Also, i think you're right, it's quite possibly a PSU issue, because PSU's can fail overtime with a system that's stressing the PSU's limit. But 800w? idk.....


He is having hard freezes and has to restart his pc. He didn't say he could even close the game.

Yes psu's can fail at any time. Especially a cheap one. Especially a cheap one marked 800w that's really only 450w and is being pushed too hard.

I never said your advice was bad, I just said I didn't think it was good.
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April 27, 2011 12:33:01 AM

geekapproved said:
Sounds like a failing power supply to me and since you didn't name it by name I'm gonna go out on a limb and say it's generic and it's more than a few years old. Not to mention a generic 800w psu is in reality usually a 450-500w unit.

XION Power Real 800W ATX Power Supply


You can use CPUID HW Monitor (google it) to keep tabs on cpu, gpu, video card, hardrive, etc temperatures. It will tell you the hottest it got during your gaming session as well without having to tab out of the game to check it.


Did this. However, what should my normal vs game cpu temp run on average? How do I record cpu temps during a gaming session? I installed the free version of CPUID
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April 27, 2011 12:38:55 AM

gijas said:
Did this. However, what should my normal vs game cpu temp run on average? How do I record cpu temps during a gaming session? I installed the free version of CPUID

Keep the HW monitor open while you're playing the game, it'll record your MAX temp for all temps. You'll see a column for it :p  So when you quit the game you'll see the highest temperature your cpu rose to.
Also, you check the safety of your temps you'll need to check out what temps your cpu are rated for. Though they shouldn't rise above 60 or 70. But ignore those values and check the intel or amd site for the actual max temps for your specific CPU. If you can't find them, post your CPU here and i'll find the max temperature for you :) 
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a b U Graphics card
April 27, 2011 2:09:12 PM

gijas said:
Did this. However, what should my normal vs game cpu temp run on average? How do I record cpu temps during a gaming session? I installed the free version of CPUID


I just told you in the post you quoted how to check temps, did you even read what you just quoted me as saying? LOL

XION is about as generic as it gets. That's why it only has 1yr warranty. A quality power supply will have a minimum 3yr warranty, the better ones have 5 or 7yr warranties.

How old is that junk?

Here's a review of the PowerReal 700w......errrr 600w unit. lol

They gave it a 5.5 out of 10. This unit doesn't even have PFC. Pretty sad.

http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...


Jonnyguru
Quote:
The Xion Real Power PowerReal 700W needs to be RealRetired, I'd say.


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April 27, 2011 11:42:36 PM

geekapproved said:
I just told you in the post you quoted how to check temps, did you even read what you just quoted me as saying? LOL

XION is about as generic as it gets. That's why it only has 1yr warranty. A quality power supply will have a minimum 3yr warranty, the better ones have 5 or 7yr warranties.

How old is that junk?

Here's a review of the PowerReal 700w......errrr 600w unit. lol

They gave it a 5.5 out of 10. This unit doesn't even have PFC. Pretty sad.

http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...


Jonnyguru
Quote:
The Xion Real Power PowerReal 700W needs to be RealRetired, I'd say.


Yes, but you never told me what the normal temp range should be. I understand some cpu's run hotter than others and that normal. Right now Im getting a range between 41 and 51 C not gaming. I think the highest temp for my cores was around 60 C when gaming of course I have four cores so Im using a value range. My Nvidia GFX 460 temp runs 37 C normal operation and after playing Borderlands for two hours I saw it peak close to 50 C. Not sure if these are good temps or not?

The Xion PSU is about two years old I believe. I bought it from Tiger Direct on sale and just got around to installing it after I rebuilt my PC earlier this year. It may be crap but it looks really cool at night with the blue neon light!
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a b U Graphics card
April 28, 2011 4:14:37 PM

Yeah I bet the sparks are gonna look cool too when they come flying out the back of your pc shrouded in a cloud of smoke. If it's 2 yrs old, it won't be long, just pray it doesn't take out your hardware with it.

Those temps are ok, although 51 at idle is quite high.
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May 14, 2011 7:40:09 PM

Im still getting the hard freezes but not as often. It seems to happen random now where before it was happening often. I reinstalled the newest Nvidia driver preforming a clean install... I think this may have been my problem before since I just installed the driver previously over the old driver but I still get the freezes however after reinstalling the new Nvidia driver I have far less freezes now.
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May 15, 2011 4:46:59 AM

coreydmorton said:
Also, you check the safety of your temps you'll need to check out what temps your cpu are rated for. Though they shouldn't rise above 60 or 70. But ignore those values and check the intel or amd site for the actual max temps for your specific CPU. If you can't find them, post your CPU here and i'll find the max temperature for you :) 





I have a Intel Core 2 Quad CPU Q9650
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