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Very odd problems and quirks with new system

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February 18, 2012 6:26:09 AM

I'm having some very odd issues with my computer and don't know which component is causing the issue. Please help ;) 

Here's my build: (no overclocking)
mainboard: MSI p67a-g43 (B3)
cpu: intel 2500k
ram: i've tried 2 x 4GB sticks kingston hyperx and 2 x 4GB sticks of g.skill ripjaws at different times and problems occur with either of them
psu: cooler master GX 650 watt
graphics: xfx radeon 5850 1GB (fan in center of card)
hard drives: Intel 320 (80 GB) SSD as the boot (but the primary problem occurred before this upgrade)
1.5 TB seagate barracuda and a 1 TB seagate.
asus blu ray burner
sony dvd burner
sound blaster extreme music sound card
2 200mm fans
2 120mm fans
haf 912 case


Here is my main problem: the screen flickers every so often in windows. But when i play a game such as starcraft 2, i sometimes get a full gray screen of vertical lines. Sometimes the lines are blue. I can sometimes stop this by alt+tab and go back in, but it might do it again. It doesn't ruin every game, just sometimes. And when I alt tab, an alert in the system tray will say that the ati graphics driver had stopped responding but has been recovered. But sometimes it will just freeze in the gray/blue screen and restart itself, or I would need to restart manually. It happens more when i have the graphics settings on high, and less often when graphics are set low in game. It also seems to happen less often when my two platter hard drives are unplugged which makes me think it's somehow related to power draw which makes me wonder if it's a power supply issue, but 650 watt should be more than enough to handle that setup, but can they be faulty like that?

secondary problem: sometimes when i turn on my computer after it's been off for 12+ hours the BIOS will not POST so nothing activates and it just sits there on, but no picture or active keyboard/mouse. Sometimes it will POST but then freeze in the windows loading screen. But after a restart or two, it will start up fine. (this cycle happens every cold boot...)

tertiary problem: when I have to force shut down by holding the power button down, it will all turn off, but after 3-5 seconds the computer will automatically power back on. Also, even if I turn off by cutting the power, it will still make a clicking sound after the 3-5 seconds as it tries to power on but can't. Any idea how to stop that and make it act like a normal computer?

additional info:
the graphics card is sometimes warm to the touch even when the computer is off. I tried checking with the graphics card manufacturer and they think it's ram. But since i've tried two sets of ram I doubt it. So I kind of think it might be my mainboard since it doesn't post sometimes. But then it might be my power supply because things seem to get worse the more power i draw from the system. Any advice from all you experts out there would be most appreciated. Thank you,
Matt
a c 273 ) Power supply
February 18, 2012 2:56:45 PM

Did you install your drives with AHCI enabled in BIOS?
How to after you've already installed OS.
1. Startup "Regedit
2. Open HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE / SYSTEM / CurrentControlset / Services
3. Open msahci
4. In the right field left click on "start" and go to Modify
5. In the value Data field enter "0" and click "ok"
6. exit "Regedit"
7. Reboot Rig and enter BIOS (hold "Delete" key while Booting

In your BIOS select "Integrated Peripherals" and OnChip PATA/SATA Devices. Now change SATA Mode to AHCI from IDE.
You now boot into windows 7, the OS will recognize AHCI and install the devices. Now the system needs one more reboot.
February 18, 2012 3:18:44 PM

Crapper Master makes some really Craptastic PSUs, or rather rebadges some bad ones. Id start there. If it isnt there, it sounds like VRAM is corrupted.
Related resources
February 18, 2012 6:56:07 PM

davcon said:
Did you install your drives with AHCI enabled in BIOS?
How to after you've already installed OS.
1. Startup "Regedit
2. Open HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE / SYSTEM / CurrentControlset / Services
3. Open msahci
4. In the right field left click on "start" and go to Modify
5. In the value Data field enter "0" and click "ok"
6. exit "Regedit"
7. Reboot Rig and enter BIOS (hold "Delete" key while Booting

In your BIOS select "Integrated Peripherals" and OnChip PATA/SATA Devices. Now change SATA Mode to AHCI from IDE.
You now boot into windows 7, the OS will recognize AHCI and install the devices. Now the system needs one more reboot.


I went to where you suggested in regedit but it was already set to 0. When I bought the SSD, I changed the sata mode to AHCI in bios before formatting/installing the OS on the SSD. My secondary issue with the sometimes not POSTing at startup did start after I installed the SSD and upgraded the mainboard's BIOS to the most current version using MSI's Live update program. I've also tried reseting the CMOS and then switching the BIOS settings back to what they should be such as AHCI w/hotplugging enabled. Do you think my two storage platter hard drives should somehow be modified to function better in an AHCI environment? Since they were used in IDE mode before getting my SSD?

Thanks for your suggestions, please keep them coming :)  Thanks again!
February 18, 2012 7:00:16 PM

vrumor said:
Crapper Master makes some really Craptastic PSUs, or rather rebadges some bad ones. Id start there. If it isnt there, it sounds like VRAM is corrupted.


That's too bad. So you think a bad PSU can cause the mainboard not to post at cold boot? And my graphics card might not be getting enought and or clean enough power? Also, the GX 650 power supply was from before their latest remake of the series. Bought it in May 2011 from: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Do you think there's a point in pursuing warranty replacement? Or just buy a different one from another brand like XFX or seasonic? Thanks for your suggestion!
February 18, 2012 7:04:13 PM

vrumor said:
Crapper Master makes some really Craptastic PSUs, or rather rebadges some bad ones. Id start there. If it isnt there, it sounds like VRAM is corrupted.


If VRAM is corrupted, would that be a radeon 5850 warranty return issue? Or is VRAM on the MOBO?
a b ) Power supply
February 20, 2012 9:11:11 AM

praet0ria said:
If VRAM is corrupted, would that be a radeon 5850 warranty return issue? Or is VRAM on the MOBO?

You could run Furmark to stress that gpu.It is a good way to detect if your gpu is the problem.
a c 273 ) Power supply
February 20, 2012 4:23:16 PM

praet0ria said:
I went to where you suggested in regedit but it was already set to 0. When I bought the SSD, I changed the sata mode to AHCI in bios before formatting/installing the OS on the SSD. My secondary issue with the sometimes not POSTing at startup did start after I installed the SSD and upgraded the mainboard's BIOS to the most current version using MSI's Live update program. I've also tried reseting the CMOS and then switching the BIOS settings back to what they should be such as AHCI w/hotplugging enabled. Do you think my two storage platter hard drives should somehow be modified to function better in an AHCI environment? Since they were used in IDE mode before getting my SSD?

Thanks for your suggestions, please keep them coming :)  Thanks again!

Your mechanical drives will function better if you have installed Intel Rapid Storage drivers.
Memtest86+= test one stick at a time
http://www.memtest.org/
Burn ISO to disc
F12 = boot from cd/dvd
Test each stick for at least 30min
Dump CCC install manager in add/remove
http://phyxion.net/item/driver-sweeper.html
Run DS in safemode first time
Check AMD display
Analyze and clean
Reboot in normal mode
Download and install latest CCC from AMD site
install as Admin

The CM GX650 psu is a low quality power supply.
Personally i'd replace it sooner then later!
Good luck:) 
February 21, 2012 5:34:41 AM

Great, I've burned the memtest CD and will give that a shot tomorrow along with the other recommendations. In the meantime I'm also putting in an order for a new PSU and was thinking about going overboard with either a seasonic x750, kingwin lzp-650, or xfx xxx edition 650. Would mainly like to eliminate PSU as a possible issue. Any recommendations?
February 21, 2012 5:35:47 AM

ghnader hsmithot said:
You could run Furmark to stress that gpu.It is a good way to detect if your gpu is the problem.


So is VRAM physically on the GPU hardware?
February 21, 2012 5:36:35 AM

callumparker666 said:
hit it with a hammer


Well I've considered throwing it out the window, but the hammer idea has promise...
February 21, 2012 5:42:16 AM

Yes VRAM is on the card. Cant be replaced, would have to RMA if still under warranty or replace it.
February 23, 2012 1:00:07 AM

davcon said:
Your mechanical drives will function better if you have installed Intel Rapid Storage drivers.
Memtest86+= test one stick at a time
http://www.memtest.org/
Burn ISO to disc
F12 = boot from cd/dvd
Test each stick for at least 30min
Dump CCC install manager in add/remove
http://phyxion.net/item/driver-sweeper.html
Run DS in safemode first time
Check AMD display
Analyze and clean
Reboot in normal mode
Download and install latest CCC from AMD site
install as Admin

The CM GX650 psu is a low quality power supply.
Personally i'd replace it sooner then later!
Good luck:) 


Okay, so I've upgraded my power supply to an XFX Core 650w bronze which is made by Seasonic I believe. I also just started the memtest and within a split second of the test starting the screen flickered a few times and then went black. I pressed the spacebar and the screen shows that the test is progressing, but then the screen starts to flicker again and then goes black. I press the spacebar again and it flickers a few times and then stays on the blue test screen and is going through the test. This would seem to eliminate both the power supply and the memory as possible culprits.

I will try the driver sweeper next, but I am sure that when I installed the current win 7 ultimate on my new SSD, the latest AMD display driver only was installed fresh. I have found the going with the entire CCC suite makes my system more unstable. So I guess I'm starting to lean to a mobo or gpu problem. what an odd set of issues. Oh and with the new PSU my system still auto-starts itself a few seconds after shutting it down by holding down the power button. The only difference is with the last PSU there was an audible "click" when it turned itself back on. Now the click is gone, but it still just starts itself back up for the hell of it.

The hammer is sounding better and better... Thanks for your help! :) 
February 23, 2012 3:45:06 AM

vrumor said:
Yes VRAM is on the card. Cant be replaced, would have to RMA if still under warranty or replace it.


Thanks, I've updated a support ticket with the manufacturer to see if they'll send a new one for the VRAM issue. I'll see what they have to say.
So you think the GPU's VRAM would also stop my computer from POSTing from a cold boot? (first boot of the day) It takes like 3-7 restarts before the computer will actually POST, and this happens only on the first boot of the day. This started after I updated my motherboard's BIOS to the latest version through their liveupdate utility. I've also tried clearing CMOS and dropping the BIOS back to older versions but now it always starts like this. Maybe it's a VRAM issue and a motherboard issue. One big happy family.
March 8, 2012 4:08:57 AM

So now I've RMA'ed the video card and XFX has advised that it is fully functional. Today I just RMA'ed my motherboard, oh joy!!! I'll be sure to update the forum if that is all it took.

If the motherboard isn't the problem, then I will basically give up... The hammer will have won the day.
April 4, 2012 8:15:34 PM

Okay, I RMA'ed both the motherboard and video card. MSI provided a refurbished motherboard as a replacement and XFX stated that they could not find an issue with the video card. So I put it all together and ran starcraft 2. Everything seemed fine while playing a game for a few minutes, but then the same screen flicker followed by the gray screen/vertical lines happened. When I alt+tabbed out the little box in the system tray popped out saying my ati drivers stopped responding but were recovered. I just installed the newest ATI display driver, so now I'm basically back to square 1....

Does anyone have any ideas? What could possibly be the issue? Just a random conflict between the motherboard and video card? Should I buy a new video card just to test it with the system?

Thanks for any advice that you may have.

Sincerely,
Matt
!