I’ve been having this terrible problem for a little while and just managed to get a picture of ‘dead screen’ for the first time and I am posting it to seek help.
Randomly, at irregular intervals (typically once a week), while working on something (it’s been different things every time) my computer will just suddenly go dead – the screen turns to exactly the picture below (the lines flicker a little bit), it hangs there for a few seconds and then restarts.
Obviously this is extremely frustrating and I want to try to stop it.
I’ve searched numerous postings with similar keywords but nothing exactly the same as mine.
Does anyone have any idea what might be the cause of this?
I would post all my system settings and installed programs but the list is long and I don’t know how much relevance each item would be. If you’d like to know something specific, please comment and I’ll let you know whatever you need.
C:\Users\Imray>systeminfo Host Name: Imray OS Name: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional OS Version: 6.1.7600 N/A Build 7600 OS Manufacturer: Microsoft Corporation OS Configuration: Standalone Workstation OS Build Type: Multiprocessor Free Registered Owner: Imray - Owner Registered Organization: Product ID: 00371-152-9333854-85895 Original Install Date: 06/09/1999, 5:45:21 PM System Boot Time: 22/03/2013, 8:58:18 AM System Manufacturer: Gateway System Model: DX4840 System Type: x64-based PC Processor(s): 1 Processor(s) Installed. : Intel64 Family 6 Model 37 Stepping 2 GenuineIntel ~3201 Mhz BIOS Version: American Megatrends Inc. P01-A3 , 17/05/2010 Windows Directory: C:\Windows System Directory: C:\Windows\system32 Boot Device: \Device\HarddiskVolume2 System Locale: en-us;English (United States) Input Locale: en-us;English (United States) Time Zone: (UTC-05:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada) Total Physical Memory: 6,135 MB Available Physical Memory: 3,632 MB Virtual Memory: Max Size: 12,268 MB Virtual Memory: Available: 8,114 MB Virtual Memory: In Use: 4,154 MB Page File Location(s): C:\pagefile.sys Domain: WORKGROUP Logon Server: \\Imray-OWNER Hotfix(s): 4 Hotfix(s) Installed. : KB971033 : KB958559 : KB977206 : KB981889 Network Card(s): 2 NIC(s) Installed. : 802.11n Wireless PCI Express Card LAN Adapter Connection Name: Wireless Network Connection DHCP Enabled: Yes DHCP Server: 192.168.2.1 IP address(es) : 192.168.2.13 : fe80::1df1:5399:6890:91f6 : Microsoft Virtual WiFi Miniport Adapter Connection Name: Wireless Network Connection 2 DHCP Enabled: Yes DHCP Server: N/A IP address(es)
Graphics Card Specs
Name ATI Radeon HD 5570 PNP Device ID PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_68D9&SUBSYS_E142174B&REV_00\4&18A4B35E&0&0008 Adapter Type ATI display adapter (0x68D9), ATI Technologies Inc. compatible Adapter Description ATI Radeon HD 5570 Adapter RAM 1.00 GB (1,073,741,824 bytes) Installed Drivers atiu9p64 aticfx64 aticfx64 atiu9pag aticfx32 aticfx32 atiumd64 atidxx64 atidxx64 atiumdag atidxx32 atidxx32 atiumdva atiumd6a atitmm64 Driver Version 8.700.0.0 INF File oem1.inf (ati2mtag_Evergreen section) Color Planes Not Available Color Table Entries 4294967296 Resolution 1920 x 1080 x 59 hertz Bits/Pixel 32 Memory Address 0xD0000000-0xDFFFFFFF Memory Address 0xFBDE0000-0xFBDFFFFF I/O Port 0x0000D000-0x0000DFFF IRQ Channel IRQ 4294967293 I/O Port 0x000003B0-0x000003BB I/O Port 0x000003C0-0x000003DF Memory Address 0xA0000-0xBFFFF Driver c:\windows\system32\drivers\atikmpag.sys (126.96.36.19995, 181.00 KB (185,344 bytes), 06/09/1999 5:59 PM)
Most likely your graphics card has died. Typical cause for this is blown capacitors. Open up your computer case, take graphics card out and take a closer look at capacitors. If they look like these:
then it will be pretty obvious – just throw it away immediately and go to store to buy a replacement card.
Possible causes in order of probability:
Graphics card failure as @mvp mentions. It could be bad capacitors, it overheating (check for a dead or dust clogged fan), it not connected securely, or has sustained other damage somehow. This is assuming you have a discrete graphics card.
Try updating graphics card drivers.
If you do have a discrete graphics card, run the system and see if the problem comes back just running off the integrated graphics. If it doesn’t you know it’s a problem with the card (or possibly PCI-E slot).
While your motherboard is open check for bad (bulging) capacitors – any present could cause this issue, particularly if you’ve noticed other weird things like your system being inexplicably slow or not powering on reliably. If your system is dusty, clean it and see if that makes a difference.
I’d check for bad RAM next. If you have 2 or more modules, put 1 in at a time and see if the issue recurs. Furmark3d is a good free utility (I’m sure there are others) to stress your graphics hardware.
Your power supply may not be providing reliable power to your system. Try swapping it with another and see if the issue persists.
You may have another piece of failing hardware that’s causing an issue. Remove any other expansion cards in your system and see if the issue persists. You could also try disabling any onboard hardware in the BIOS (Ethernet ports, etc.) and see if that helps, but that’s unlikely to make a difference (if it does, replace the motherboard).
Update the BIOS.
Unlikely, but the CPU could be an issue. Try swapping it if you have a spare part around.
Replace the motherboard.
I know you said random but, is there any link at all? Is it after a certain period of time, when a type of process is being run (videos/music), types of application (games) to see if something is triggering it.
Assuming it is random, I suggest:
Updating all your drivers including the chipset, graphic and audio drivers!
Checking your RAM chips. If you have more than 1, take them all out but 1, and ensure it’s seated properly. Try the different slots.
Make sure it’s not overheating and well ventilated!
Borrow or buy another graphic card (if you don’t have one inbuilt)
On reboot, see if Event Log shows any details
Use a program like Who’s Crashed to see if it logs the crash
Make sure the hard drive is ok with a SMART tool (Acronis Disk Monitor is free)
It is surely a problem with your graphics card. My 9400 GT does this when overclocked beyond capacity. Your system is fine. My question is that does it run at all? Meaning, the welcome screen and desktop is displayed? If so, then there is a problem with the three clocks ( GPU , Memory and Shader ). It is possible that the GPU is frayed. Use ATI Catalyst Control Center or an overclock program to downclock the three clocks. If not… then your capacitors are blown. I would consider replacement. I hope that’s it.
Sounds like your computer graphics/monitor driver is corrupted. I think if you recover your windows or fresh install, I hope your problem will solved.