Blue pattern graphics glitch (no BSOD) that happens anywhere (booting or on Windows)

It’s a graphics glitch so I’ll post here, but I’m not sure if it’s the outcome of some other issue.

Configuration:

It’s a Laptop

GPU:
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060

Temperature while doing menial work: ~45-50 °C
Temperature while playing: ~60 °C (not a resource hog game)

CPU:
Intel i7-7700HQ CPU @ 2.80GHz 2.80GHz

Temperature while doing menial work: ~55 °C
Temperature while playing: ~60-70 °C (not a resource hog game)

RAM:
32 GB
Ran memtest86 for around 5 and half hours (I’ll talk about how this happened)


The issue started while I was doing non processor intensive work. You can see the image below. The error gives the impression of being random. Sometimes it can run for many hours, sometimes it takes 15 minutes to manifest the issue.

The issue is:
  • -A blue pattern graphics glitch (almost always present)
  1. -Black screen (when the blue glitch does not manifest)
  2. -Screeching sound when the sound output is laptop’s audio device
  3. -Freezes
  4. -No BSOD (Blue Screen of Death)
  5. -Happens watching a YouTube video or playing a game or working in anything really
  6. -Takes many hours or a few minutes after booting
  7. -Happens while booting
  8. -Happened while running memtest86 (CPU temp went to 80 °C but dipped down quickly)
  9. -Nothing in events
  10. -It’s like it never happened
  11. -Sometimes Windows suggest some diagnostics after booting (restore/reset, etc)
IMG-20210416-134808.jpg

This image is of when it happened during memtest86 (one if the times I tried running it). The blue pattern happens while booting or while on Windows doing anything.

What I tried:
  • -Changed thermal paste for both CPU and GPU. Used MX-4 from Arctic
  • -Used compressed air to clean the fans, they were a bit dirty tbh
  • -chkdsk - it found issues, and fixed them
    • -After this I could run memtest86 for more than 5 hours, and the computer ran for around 11 hours straight, next day it took 30 mins to glitch again.
  • -sfc /scannow - nothing found
  • -Restore - didn’t help
  • -memtest86 - ran 4 steps for around 5 hours

What I considered but didn’t try:
  • -Resetting the BIOS
  • -Resetting Windows (reinstall)

Weird behavior after the glitch: sometimes when I try to turn it on after it happens, the power supply seems a bit funnicky. It turns on and off for a few times, like a reboot loop state.

What I noticed: If I insist on turning it on after the glitch, it happens more often, while booting, or right away after I login or after a few minutes. If I give it some time it takes a bit longer and Windows does not suggest a restore/reset or other options.

I’ve read that it might be some power supply issue as well, but I don’t have much experience with those issues.

What else should I do? Is there a log somewhere I’m missing?
 

bazz2004

Posts: 1,732   +287
I've seen similar graphics glitches with a failing video chip on my Sony laptop.

Around 2008 there was a class action against NVidia over the 8400/8600M range of chips used in laptops and the Xbox. It was found that there was a manufacturing/design flaw causing them to fail prematurely. I bought a Sony laptop with the graphics chip issue to see if it could be repaired by replacing the chip. I used a specialist company because expensive equipment is needed. The laptop is still working beautifully running W10 but doesn't do any processor intensive work.

Manufacturers are unlikely to make such a disastrous mistake again but the graphics glitches suggest an imminent graphics chip failure. Has the laptop been cleaned regularly is one question to ask? Good luck with pinpointing the problem.
 

Aranarth

Posts: 72   +61
RMA that laptop ASAP if it is under warranty.
If it is not under manufacturers warr. if you bought it with your CC you might have an extended warr as a benefit on every purchase. If you're not sure ask your CC for details.
If it is NOT under any warranty and you're good with fixing laptops see if you can get a replacement main board off of ebay.

If you're not good a swapping parts in laptops then see who is local to you that is.

Typical cost is $100 to $200 for time diagnostics and labor plus parts.
Laptop boards run from $25 up to $300 on ebay.

What you are seeing is video card memory (vram) failure of some kind.
Because it is random I suspect the chips themselves are fine and it is an electrical issue. Either the board is damaged by cracks etc or the chip's solder is not bonded as it should be.

You need to decide if repairing the laptop is worth the time and aggravation.

I have been lucky where I've found a same model laptop with a bad screen on ebay and then repair a broken laptop by swapping the screen, ram, hdd, etc.

Getting a used name brand business laptop from ebay and then upgrading the ram and hdd to a ssd is how I have done many times in the past. Then in the future getting spare parts is dead easy. I've got two lenovo t420's that are actually the result of merging 4 machines and keeping what works recycling what doesn't.
 
Hey guys, that was stupid, is what I can say. I should have tried to remove parts and test them.

I removed one of the RAMs and found out one is faulty. It's a 16gb RAM, but that's a fortunate finding in my mind.

Appreciate the answers.

Case is closed.
 

Kshipper

Posts: 481   +110
TechSpot Elite
Hey guys, that was stupid, is what I can say. I should have tried to remove parts and test them.

I removed one of the RAMs and found out one is faulty. It's a 16gb RAM, but that's a fortunate finding in my mind.

Appreciate the answers.

Case is closed.
You ran memtest for a number of hours and it found zero issues but you removed one of the sticks of ram and all is good now? Amazing =)
 
You ran memtest for a number of hours and it found zero issues but you removed one of the sticks of ram and all is good now? Amazing =)
Right? I was flabbergasted. I assumed it wasn't RAM. I read that it can have at least 4 more steps in memtest than what I ran; I ran 4 steps, the suggested count.

It was an expensive laptop when I bought it, 3 years ago, so I had to try everything.
 

Aranarth

Posts: 72   +61
You might find that after popping the ram back in again it still works fine.
Mechanical connectors really do like to be reseated on occasion.