Hardware problem with GeForce4

By Leouz!
Nov 2, 2005
  1. Hello. I have a NVidia GeForce4 MX 440 APG8X which is giving me much trouble. I've looked in many places for answers, tried many things, but nothing, so here I am asking for some help.

    Two days ago, my computer started freezing when playing GTA San Andreas. Later on, it would freeze or even reboot when playing other games also, or even just browsing with Firefox, sometimes even buring boot. It had been at least a week since I didn't do any relevant changes on my system, and I've been using the computer all the time on that week.

    I am convinced it is a hardware related issue because this happens not only on Windows XP, but also on Linux (Ubuntu 5.10 installed on my HD, and also in Kurumin 3.31 booted from live cd). However, I have been wrong before. Secondly, I am convinced this has something to do with the VGA because when I replace it with a ATI Radeon 7200 which I happen to have around, everything works wonderful.

    I turned off the "reboot on crash" option from Windows XP, and I've been given a number of different errors. I took note of 3, the first one happening most often:

    *** Stop: 0x0000000A (0xF94704BC, 0x00000001, 0x00000000, 0x804FD9BD)

    (no name given)
    *** Stop: 0x00000024 (0x001902FA, 0xF89D9478, 0xF89D9178, 0xF83EE908)
    Ntfs.sys - Address F83EE908 base at F83A2000 datestamp 3d6de5c1

    (no name given)
    *** Stop: 0x0000008E (0xC0000005, 0x8051A193, 0xF12B8B1C, 0x00000000)

    On Linux, I got freezes and also a "Kernel panic" once or twice when booting up. Unfortunately, I didn't write down the complete error, but it said something about "sync problem" and "RAMDRIVE". Since I've read problems of this sort can be due to faulty RAM, I've runned Memtest86+ (outside-of-OS-mode) and it's all OK with my memory.

    I thought the VGA was overheating. The cooler had been dead a month ago, and I lubrificated it back then and it started working again, but I suspected it was not very good by now. So, I bought and installed a new one, with a copper heatsink, seems much more powerful than the older one. However, but my problems remain.......

    So, one might say my VGA is simply dead, faulty memory or processor, give up bro, buy a new one... But that's when the strange part comes in -- it works just fine on my brother's PC (from where I took out the Radeon)! I left it running Counter Strike (which is about all that computer can handle) for hours and it's just fine! Used firefox, and all good! How can this be???

    I've checked on NVidia's site the recommended BIOS settings, and all of those options which where present on my BIOS were already set to the recommended state.

    What tests could I perform to better isolate the problem? What could be happenning here? Please, someone give me a light here!!!

    ---------- computer specs:
    Motherboard : Asus A7N8X-X
    Processor : AMD Athlon XP 2400+ (2000 MHz)
    Hard Disk : Seagate Barracuda 7200.7 120 GB
    RAM : 2 slots of 256 MB each (brand kinda unknown, it says "Advance Modules")
    Power source : Channel Well ATX-450
    Disc Drives : AOpen DUW1608/ARR and LG GCE-8525B

    VGA details can be found at this report generated by Everest Home Edition:

    Thank you for your time.

    Leonardo Pignataro
    leopignataro at google's mail
  2. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Hello and welcome to Techspot.

    Go HERE and follow the instructions for testing your ram, and running a disk check.

    If that doesn`t help. Zip 5 or 6 minidumps together and post them here.

    Regards Howard :wave: :wave:
  3. Leouz!

    Leouz! TS Rookie Topic Starter


    Eraser on contacts : Had already done it before
    Taking out the dust : Had already done it before (and it was indeed needed, the CPU cooler had blowed loads of dirt on the direction of the RAM sticks)

    Memtest on RAM stick #1 : 27 passes 0 errors
    Memtest on RAM stick #2 : 16 passes 0 errors
    Memtest on both sticks : 4 passes 0 errors (I'll leave it testing again a little more this night, it takes quite long)

    Note: I used Memtest86+ which comes already as a boot option on Linux Ubuntu (nice, huh?).

    chkdsk /r /f : no errors

    Note: The Kurumin Linux I mentioned, booted from live CD, does not rely on the HD, it hardly touches it (only mounts partitions, nothing more), and I had a freeze on it too, so........ Anyway, I did the test.

    I think this is important: the freezes/blue screens/kernel panics are not quite random. Actually, they usually don't begin if I don't play heavy games. But once they begin, they won't stop, even when booting to other OSes different from the first one where the problems begun.

    Given that behavior, I thought it would be a nice idea to re-create the problem before running all those tests. However, I played GTA for 1:30 or so, and no problems (actually I don't know if I'm happy or mad about that :confused: ).

    So, I think I'd better wait for it to happen again to post the minidumps (or shouldn't I?). For now, I thank you for your attention.

    Leonardo Pignataro
    leopignataro at google's mail
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