Video card problem?

Just had both of my screens blink to black for a fraction of a second. It did so twice over about five minutes. Exhaust temperature from the fans is cool. Any thoughts on figuring out what’s going on?

(The PC has been reliable for a while otherwise).

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8 Responses to Video card problem?

  1. Y. says:

    I wonder too. My GPU’s been doing that for ages. But not just a fraction of a second, usually they go blank for a second.

    Curiously, why I notice it happening several times a week, so far it hasn’t happened while I was using GPU intensive fullscreen applications.

  2. Amiable Dorsai says:

    Pop open the computer case and look to see if the video card (and, likely, everything else) is full of dust. The fans can’t cool things that are wrapped in blankets. I know this from sad experience.

  3. terrapod says:

    Oleg, make sure some program in the background is not updating, like your virus protection or such. That would account for it happening a few times. If it persists then I would check the video side to see if there is a loose connection to the monitor. Also, if you are using a bus mounted video card (not the on board type) check that it is OK. Easiest way is to swap board with another video card. Lastly, if your computer shares memory for video use, check how much memory you are using for your program that is running at the time you see the dropouts and how much the system wants to reserve for video use. They you could also have a failing power supply.

  4. guy says:

    Did you check the event log? If your vid card did a reset it should show up in the system log.

    I have one computer with a cheaper graphics card that when windows throws up a security verification(This program wishes to do such and such, yes/no sort of thing) the screen will go black for just a second.

    • Sigivald says:

      That happens on computers with non-cheap cards, too.

      Something architectural about how UAC elevation works in Windows, I think, to prevent any naughty software from faking a reply or lying about the request to the user, I expect.

  5. HSR47 says:

    The two things I would check first are the cable connections at both ends, the event log for the video card. It’s possible that its either a bad connection, or a driver crash.

    It’s also possible that it is related to power management settings.

    I’d start by making sure you have good connection with the video cable (plug/unplug it fully about 6 times, then screw down), then check the event log for the video card driver and the system, then make sure that the power management is set to high-performance 24/7.

  6. Tango says:

    This can be caused by a few things. The first that came to mind is a crashing video card. This usually takes about 3 seconds to correct itself and you’ll be no worse for wear.

    The other, much more…. “ugly” is a PC that’s changing its video settings. Changing resolutions, changing color depth (32-bit to 16-bit or something similar). Anything you notice about the colors or resolution when this happens? For me, this usually happens when I log in remotely via LogMeIn or VNC. Both of these applications are programs used to run a PC remotely. There are more applications for this purpose, those are just two of the most popular. Install anything similar recently? Run a malware scan when you’re able. I think the possibility of this is only REALLY remote, but it’s definitely a possibility. Go. Check it out.

    I second the suggestion of looking at your Event Viewer.

    The problem is most likely *NOT* related to your monitors as it happens to both at the same time. That tells me it’s being controlled by the video card or the computer itself.

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