Video problem??

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  #1  
Old 01-16-04, 11:49 AM
rchris50
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Video problem??

I have a 600 MHz pentium III computer with 128 MB RAM. It has an AGP video card with 64MB of video RAM. I am running Windows 98 (haven't upgraded because of all the software that I have that I don't know would be compatible with the newer windows system, but that's another question for later).

At various times without any warning and in no particular pattern the monitor goes black and the little green light on the front blinks (just as if the computer were shut off). I am assuming that this is a video card problem. It is very frustrating and has caused me to lose some information at times. It's getting to the point that I hate the computer but I can't afford to replace it right now.

I guess what I want to find out is if this is a video card problem as I suspect or if it could be something else. When the screen goes black the computer seems to keep going but processes such as printing will also stop. Any suggestions will be appreciated.
 
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Old 01-16-04, 03:15 PM
rhaverly
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(1) is your power plugged into a surge protector

(2) make sure the video connector from the monitor is securely into the vga port of the pc --

if it is loose the monitor will go into sleep or no signal mode.

When the monitor is unplugged or shut off -- all process will continue to run, but the reason i asked about the surge was in case it was faulty or getting shut off then other devices like monitor and printer could be turned off.

If it is a faulty video card -- they are pretty easy to install and setup. but you could try replacing drivers from the manufacture
Make sure you don't have refresh rate set to high that your monitor freaks out.
Boot into safe mode and see if it still has problems.
push f8 when booting into windows.

Keep in touch == i want to know if this works.
 
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Old 01-16-04, 04:18 PM
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Well, you said you have lost information. What do you have to do to get it working again? will it randomly come on, or do you have to shut the computer off then turn it back on? Make sure all the connections are tight, both at the computer and at the monitor. Check and make sure all your fans are running,both at the cpu inside, and the power supply fan. You could wiggle the ends of the video cord around, and see if that has any effect. If you have a friend with a computer, you could swap monitors for a day or so, and see if it happens then.
 
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Old 01-16-04, 07:25 PM
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Sounds like the Power Supply is going bad or the computer is just getting old - possibly overheating.

As tae mentioned, make sure all the fans are running properly. Also, make sure the inside of the case is nice and clean - if the heat sinks are clogged with dust and debris, then your CPU could be overheating and shutting down. This doesn't necessarily always shut off the computer - especially on older computers.

It could also be a RAM problem. You need to open the computer up and check all the connections.

Good luck!
 
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Old 01-17-04, 09:18 PM
rchris50
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video problem...

When the monitor goes blank, I have to shut the computer off manually and reboot. I know this isn't a good method of shutting down but it's the only option I have since there is no video. I haven't lost any information that is irreplaceable, but it's very annoying and frustrating. After this happens and I reboot I always run scandisk and it usually finds problems and fixes them (although it doesn't tell me what problems it found and fixed).

Thanks to all for the great information and suggestions. I will try a few when I have a free moment in a couple of days. Meanwhile, if anyone has any other information or suggestions I will appreciate them all.
 
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Old 01-17-04, 11:04 PM
rhaverly
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I still think it could be a too high refresh setting or driver issue.
 
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Old 01-17-04, 11:27 PM
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I didn't read clearly if the computer is crashed out when the screen blanks out. If you play a CD or something, does it keep playing when this happens?

If the CPU crashes due to overheating or whatever, I highly doubt it takes out the video card. The display should still be lit. If refresh rate was wrong, you wouldn't be able to see anything at all, or you'd have a distorted picture.

Your symptoms smell like some energy savings mode is being turned on, or it is enabled to jump into standby/hibernate state if no activity is detected for some finite period of time.
 
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Old 01-17-04, 11:34 PM
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actually, come to think of it, check if your video card isn't running 'damn hot' when it dies. Some of those cards need a bit of airflow. Leave your case open and have a fan blow on it to see if this isn't the case.
 
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