Computer crashes during games

By Boins ยท 9 replies
Jun 2, 2006
  1. sorry if this has been posted twice there was some kind of error when I was submitting (as if I haven't got enough problems with PC's)

    I dont know exactly whats happening here, but for a while now, whenever I play on any videogames on my PC, after about 5 sometimes 10 minutes, the system completely freezes up and I have to manually reboot.

    I can be playing any game old or new, and eventually the on screen images freezes, then i hear pops and clicks then the screen goes blank.
    this started happening about the same time I bought F.E.A.R

    since then its happened to all of them
    Hitman (the first one)

    I can only assume its videocard related, but could be wrong. i've run DXDIAG and everything checks out, updated the sound and video drivers, but to no avail.

    anyone have any ideas what could be the problem.
    it only happens during games, and at no particular point.
    I've attached a copy of my DXDIAG Report, any help or advice would be much appreciated.


    Attached Files:

  2. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Read the links in my sig for starters. Generally when a 3D game crashes a PC, it's either poor PSU or overheating. It can also be HDD or RAM failures but then these would show up randomly anytime.

    Post back with your system specs, mobo, CPU, video card, PSU and the amps on 12 and 5V rails. You can get the amp info off the PSU label. See the pic example in my sig LABEL. For your other specs you dwnload CPU-Z

  3. Boins

    Boins TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    so before I even got started downloading that program you mentioned, something happened, I was only using the desktop browsing the internet, then the screen went black for a few seconds and came back, everythings gone realy slow and an error message came up

    "VPU Recover has reset your graphics accelerator as it was no longer responding to graphics driver commands"

    then goes on to tell me about sending an error report to ATI.
  4. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    It might be the GPU (video processor unit) overheating. Turn off the PC and remove the grahpics card. Blow out the cooling fan with compressed air (canned air) if you have it. Avoid touching the electronic parts unless you properly ground yourself, even keeping a hand on the case can help ground you.

    Also try to uninstall the video drivers from Device mananger and then the video card itself from the device manager. Then reboot and let windows find the card again automatically. When t asks to install drivers, direct it to the self install ATI driver package.

    You can download Speedfan from download section here to check your system temps and the temp of the video card.

  5. Boins

    Boins TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    so i took out the gpu cleared the fan of dust, put it back in. everything seemed hunky dory, till the f'in problem happened again.

    uninstalled everything as you said, reinstalled and it happened again.
    i'm considering buying a new graphics card. this ones old anyway. but dont want to do it just yet, in case its not the card thats acting up. (tho i'm beginning to suspect its just that)


    here are my specs as requested (sorry it took so long, guess what...the internet keeps going down....i'm considering burning this PC in a field as well)
    AMD Athlon XP 3000+
    Radeon 9600 series

    not sure if you need this lot but
    CHIP TYPE: ATI RADEON 9600 series AGP


    I'll just post a pic of that label.....

    thanks for the help
  6. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    You might try updating the VIA KT400 chipset drivers, but this is a long shot. You can find an update at Soltek website (if they have an update). I think it's either corrupted RAM (try running on just one stick, then the other, if you have more then one stick) or the video card is dieing.
    The system RAM actually gets the video information first and then passes it on to the gfx card for processing. If the RAM is faulty it appear as a faulty video card. You can download memtest86 from this sight and run it for several passes. If all is well then I'd definately suspect a failing gfx card.
    Your PSU appears so be enough for your system, btw.

  7. Boins

    Boins TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    well I just found my old GFX card and took everything ATI off my system and put that back in.
    and its fine
    nothings gone wrong with anything (touch wood)

    thanks for the help tho Kirock, given me some insight into my PSU :)

    I'm on the market for a new GFX
    you got any recomendations?

    just had a quick look and found these two so far

    Tho I'm looking for something with TV out... i like my home theater :p
  8. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Well there is DirectX10 coming next year, which is really a next generation, completely new concept to video card workings, but with that being said here's a list from Tom's Hardware


    I'm sorry but there are just too many choices out there right now to definatively suggest this card over another, unless it's the top card of each (ATI or nVidia).
    Your choice should start with the above guide and card score (fps, etc.). Then ask yourself how much is that worth to me? How long will this card be useful. AND...Does my present system justify buying the best card I can afford? (i.e will the card improve the performance or am I CPU/RAM limited anyway?).

  9. redalertz

    redalertz TS Rookie

    Hey guy's im having the same problem 2 , about an hour or 30 minutes into playing my game suddenly freezes and restarts and it started when i was playing spore a week or so after i bought it it suddenly crashed! pls. help

    my sys. specs:
    -intel core 2 duo 4400 2.0ghz windows xp professional sp2
    -1gig ram
    -intel integrated graphics card 256mb

    games that crashed so far:
    -spore(i thinked wen i patched this game the wierd things started to happen)
    -sims 2
    *both are all on default settings

    this is the first time i encountered this problem so any advice is useful as to the one who posted this whole thread tnx. in advance:)
  10. Boins

    Boins TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    hmm. Been a while since the last poster posted, but hopefully they'll still get this.

    go with what some others have said in this thread, generally when a game crashes like that it can be because your Power Supply isn't adequate enough for your GFX card or other hardware in there and is working in over time.

    to which the suggestion would be to either replace the PSU with something more powerful and better fans in it for more efficient cooling, or (and I'm not sure how advisable this is)

    try unplugging some of your non essential hardware internally to see if this helps alleiviate the problems? (of course only try doing this if you know what you're doing, it's a simple enough task, but can go horribly wrong.)

    Since I had this problem I've changed computers but I do remember that when things like this were happening to me before it was generally an overheating problem caused by a heavy buildup of dust inside the computer, all over the components.

    So I had to very, very carefully remove the CPU heatsink and gently blow and vacuum the dust. This helped immensely, I gave the insides of my computer a general spring clean, clearing the vents and fans of dust and it did help.

    again you have to be so so so careful when doing this, the slightest nudge on the wrong area, or static charge and you've destroyed your computer. So I'd recommend getting help if you dont' feel up to it.

    of course there is also the possibilty that your problems have nothing to do with what I've just posted above, but I found out over the years of owning and maintaining a PC that these are just the pitfalls of being a PC gamer. Oh, and usually it will be the last thing you look at that was causing the problem :)

    Anyway, I hope that this helps you, and anyone else who might have a similar problem.
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