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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi. I have been tearing my hair out in frustration over my computer problems. Its been screwed up for MONTHS, and Ive given up trying to repair the problem myself because every time I tried a fix, it just seemed to make things worse. I built my own comp somewhere around 2009-2010. Here are specs:

Asus P5ND
intel duo core E8500 3.16Ghz
2 x EVGA 8800 Ultra
4(or 8 megs)megs of ram, depending on if Im running v64 or x32 windows.
850 PSU
Creative X-fi fatality soundcard

When I first built the system, it ran GREAT, it played almost any game I threw at it on full blast. That was up until a couple months ago. I dont remember if it happened right after I tried updating to new drivers (nVidia 280, or somewhere around there). I started getting BSODs. When i could get it working, it wouldnt run in SLI, or it would work, but the device manager wouldnt recognize my vid cards (although I still had some video capability, youtube, watching media player, but no games)

The lines look exactly like the ones in this screencap:
http://img535.imageshack.us/img535/2894/safemode2.jpg

which happens to be from this thread:
http://www.techsupportforum.com/forums/f299/bsod-nvlddmkm-sys-error-479216.html

I read through the thread and I tried some of the fixes in there (updating drivers, not using windows update), but I cant get it to work. Ive seen one or two threads that mentioned a module(?) inside the nVidia drivers wasnt updating with the rest of the software, so the computer was getting confused from that, and that would make it buggy.

As of right now, I have no BSODs, but, i have blue vertical lines that are repeating and evenly spaced, 4 lines a couple pixels in width, that are within an inch of space, and then these are in groups spaced an inch apart repeating across the screen (almost exactly like the screencap above). SOmetimes they are blue, sometimes they are red.

I havent played a game on my PC in months, please can anyone help? MOst threads Ive seen just say to replace the vid card, but, I cant afford to do that right now, and I dont think the warranty applies since I bought the cards on ebay. Oh, I had them for about a year before this happened.

Anyway, if anyone can help, or direct me to a thread with a fix, I would appreciate it. The thread I linked was the only one I found with the exact same problem(from the looks of it), and I couldnt really tell if there was an actual solution in the thread. Thanks in advance for any help.
 

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To start with stop using the cards in SLI - SLI can be very buggy.

Next, use your PC normally and if you get issues swap the vid card with the one you have spare. If the same error happens on both then something other than the video cards is probably the cause.

Also - what brand/model PSU do you have?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes, Ive tried all those things you mentioned and the problem still persists, sorry, I should have been clearer on what I have tried. As for not using SLI, are you suggesting to just go to one card, indefinitely? Wouldnt that defeat the purpose of owning dual vid-cards? It reallly never had a problem until Windows 7. I never had a problem with them in Vista, and never encountered anything like this on XP, although I had a different setup then.

Just to be thorough, Ill list the fixes I have tried...

dual cards
switching to one card
alternating the vid cards, one at a time
alternating dual cards, but switching slots.
using one card, and switching slots
rolling back and updating to newest drivers
updating with windows update
updating manually, using driver cleaner in between uninstall/re-install
updating using device manager
reinstalling windows 7
reinstalling windows VISTA

yup, the problem is still there during all this. The weird thing is, I figured once I reinstalled windows, if it was a driver problem, all the software shouldve been wiped and I shouldve been able to start over. I actually just reinstalled Vista last night, and when I tried to update, my computer wouldnt start up after updating the first round of updates. I would D/L all the updates, install them, restart, then it just hangs on the black screen. But the lines are still there, and i havent even tried to reinstall any nVidia drivers, they are just running off the stock Windows generic drivers, I believe (or the one card, anyway). So, just to make sure, right now I am running a single card, not in SLI. That was actually one of the first things I tried, was going to one card and switching them out. Kind of a no-brainer, right? I figured if it only happened on the one card it was a hardware error, but since it happened on both, I figured it was software (or I guess they can BOTH be fried, but I dont even want to think about that)

Oh, and the PSU is a Corsair TX 850
 

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It is very unlikely that both were fried at the same time while your other components remained untouched.

If I were in your situation I would borrow a known good graphics card from another machine and see if the issue still persists with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thats a pretty darn good idea... I wish I had access to one, I wouldve done it already. I think thats the ONLY thing I can do at this point, or maybe check my card(s) on a different machine, but I have neither (different pc or different card). So, there is no utility or anything that can check my cards to test them, sort of like when you test for artifacting on overclocking?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Does anyone have any other suggestions I could try? Im thinking if it was a software problem, it should have gone away when I reinstalled windows, right? I even formatted the drive before installing... Man, I wish I could get this working, I REALLY want to play my games again :(
 

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As it is unlikely that both cards individually have the same problem at the same time (apart from a driver issue which I believe you have eliminated) the problem could well be your motherboard.

If you can't find a known good test card anywhere (any modern desktop graphics card will do - even an ATI one as it's the same interface) then I suggest you go into a computer repair shop. I believe having them locate the exact issue with their spare parts would be cheaper than you replacing parts until you replace the one that is the cause.

If you still wish to DIY, then what I would do is buy one new graphics card.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you, that was a very thorough explanation. I was actually wondering the other day myself if I could just take the graphics cards down and have them tested at a shop. I would like to be able to repair it on my own, as I can't fit any extra repair bills into my budget presently. But, I guess if it comes down to it, Its something Ill have to take care of. The weirdest thing about it is how the problem still persists even through a windows reinstall. Im still running the generic drivers though, Im going to try and download the latest drivers and see what happens. Just to makle sure, off a clean install, when installing the first set of vid drivers, I can just run them and install them over the generic ones, correct? Or do I have to uninstall the generic drivers, safe mode and driver sweeper, then restart and install new drivers. Thanks again for all your help, rev.
 

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Generic vid drivers are a completely different set of drivers to the manufacturers. So yes, you can install the manufacturer's drivers straight away.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey Rev, so I reinstalled the nvidia drivers I downloaded from the EVGA website, it was 280 I believe, and I got this error message. When I restarted it said windows stopped this device because there is a problem, then it said code 43. On the view details of the problem I got this:

Problem Event Name: PnPDeviceProblemCode
Architecture: x64
Hardware Id: PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0194&SUBSYS_046510DE&REV_A2
Setup class GUID: {4d36e968-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318}
PnP problem code: 0000002B
Driver name: nvlddmkm.sys
Driver version: 8.17.12.8562
Driver date: 10-15-2011
OS Version: 6.0.6002.2.2.0.256.1
Locale ID: 1033


Does any of that mean anything to you?
 

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just a question

what is the make and model of the power supply?

850w means nothing if you dont know open the case and have a look there will be a label on it. I have seen crap makes of power supplies marked as 850 but they are actually 750w. Go into the BIOS and post your temps and voltages
 

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Problem Event Name: PnPDeviceProblemCode
Architecture: x64
Hardware Id: PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0194&SUBSYS_046510DE&REV_A2
Setup class GUID: {4d36e968-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318}
PnP problem code: 0000002B
Driver name: nvlddmkm.sys
Driver version: 8.17.12.8562
Driver date: 10-15-2011
OS Version: 6.0.6002.2.2.0.256.1
Locale ID: 1033
The driver listed is the NVIDIA graphics driver. Basically - Windows seems to have reverted itself to the default graphics driver as it believes the NVIDIA driver causes problems. This could still be because of hardware issues.
 

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so I reinstalled the nvidia drivers I downloaded from the EVGA website, it was 280 I believe
Have you tried the standard geforce drivers from the Nvidia website?

Before you do so, make sure you use a program like Driver Sweeper to completely remove the old driver, before you install the new one.

Blue vertical lines, GPU error(?)
Yes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Reviversoft:Nah, I opted out of that plan since everything Ive been reading has been telling me to get the drivers from the specific manufacturers site, bcs they might have added stuff thats specific to their hardware or whatever. I can try to uninstall and reinstall with a wipe. The reason I didnt do that in the first place is because I was working with a clean install of windows.

GBL:Im restarting right now, Ill post those temps in a minute...
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Ok, so, this is all the data from the power page of the bios:

Chassis and CPU Q-control for fans are disabled

Vcore temp - 1.24
3.3v - 3.28
5v - 5.13
12v - 12.22



CPU temp 45
Mobo temp 44

CPU fan 2088 RPM
 

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your 12v is a bit high. can you borrow another psu to try?

cpu temp is a bit high for idle
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
TBH, I bought this PSU about 6-8 months ago when my old one took a ****. I guess I could check and see if its under warranty and try and return it, as for an old psu, like i said, my old one conked out, so I picked this one up. My previous comp was a Dell with a single Nvidia 7800, so I dont think the PSU out of that thing will run this comp. I think its something like a 4-500w psu. So... Yeah, I thought corsair was a semi-decent brand, I had to buy it at best buy since the town i live in is limited when it comes to computer parts. So, it was either corsair or rocketfish, I chose to go with the corsair...

Is there any other utility that i could use to check my temps more accurately, or is the bios as accurate as I can get it?
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Well, I found out if I want to get a new PSU then Ill have to go through the manufacturer. I have the paperwork and packaging so it shouldt be a problem, but, do you think that that voltage reading means the PSU is bad?
 
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