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intel 915 express graphics chipset "stutter"


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#1 MilesAhead

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Posted 04 January 2009 - 03:27 PM

This is weird. I have an HP Pavilion with Intel 915 Express Graphics Chipset and 128 MB Video Ram.
When I launch a program window that has opacity less than 100% (partially transparent) if I see the window client area fill with Black, then paint, when I move that window it will "stutter" instead of being dragged smoothly with the mouse. If the window opens normally, I can drag it with the mouse smoothly.
I have the latest Intel graphics drivers installed direct from the Intel support download page.

It's really strange because there's no way to predict when it will happen. If my video was unable to handle the graphics it would do it all the time. Also there's no correlation to system load. It can do it with only a few programs running or move smoothly with lots of programs running.

Really baffling!!

I'm running XP Professional 32 bit SP 2.

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#2 usasma

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Posted 04 January 2009 - 03:53 PM

If the system is unable to handle the load, it would do it all the time. But, if it's just a matter of load from running programs - then the problem would surface when the combination of running programs caused an issue with the video display.

For example, if another program is occupying your memory - then there won't be enough RAM to continually refresh the view. This would force the refresh onto your pagefile, and the lag from the disk would cause this particular issue.

To prove/refute this, open a whole bunch of stuff and get it working - then try the window movement.
It should stutter for you then.
Then close all the open stuff (to include the stuff in the System Tray by the time) and try the window movement again.
The stutter should stop (or be reduced).

You can view some of this in the Task Manager...Performance tab
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#3 MilesAhead

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Posted 04 January 2009 - 06:05 PM

Thanks for the reply. I've been looking into it a bit more and it seems this graphics chipset uses system ram. But even so, there's no correlation to system load. I can close and open a program 20 times and get that black fill before the window paints. From then on, no matter the system load, dragging that window will stutter. Then I can open that same program even under a heavier system load. No black "foreshadowing" before the window paints, and that window won't stutter no matter what is running on the system. That's what makes it so baffling!! Once it comes up "bad" it runs bad until you open it and get it to come up "good". Never seen anything like it. The only way I can avoid the issue is uncheck "Show window contents while dragging" and that bites!!! There's no way with a Gig of ram and a Pentium 4 processor I should have to drag empty frames around the screen.

Something strange is going on.

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#4 MilesAhead

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Posted 04 January 2009 - 08:13 PM

I looked at the video info provided by the utility for the graphics card. It seems that the minimum video memory is 8 MB, the max is 128 MB but the memory currently is use shows at only 11 MB.
So I need to find out how to configure it to use a guaranteed minimum of some number like maybe 32 MB. At least that seems like something to try first. I downloaded a white paper about all the dynamic configurations and it's clear as Clear Type Fonts!! Maybe somebody on HP forums will know how to set it in the BIOS settings. :thumbsup:

edit: I found the BIOS settings. Seems the only other choice in the 128 MB scenarios results in the minimum and maximum memory both being set to 128 MB. Here's hoping that helps! :flowers:

Edited by MilesAhead, 04 January 2009 - 08:28 PM.

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#5 usasma

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 07:04 PM

If it doesn't, then there's most likely something hogging the VRAM (or not letting it go when it's done). A look at the Processes tab of Task Manager may give some clues.
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#6 MilesAhead

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 10:05 PM

If it doesn't, then there's most likely something hogging the VRAM (or not letting it go when it's done). A look at the Processes tab of Task Manager may give some clues.


I think I'm hosed. I put W7 beta on and it does the same thing. It just doesn't look as bad doing it. :thumbsup: On this chip when you set the BIOS ram options you can set it so the OS doesn't even see the ram. So it's not swapping it out. I think the trouble is the stupid gpu isn't even using a fraction of what it could. Oh well, hopefully before the beta kill date this PC will be put out to the curb anyway. From now on every PC I get will take into account the onboard video ram. I'm not a gamer but at least I want the desktop to be smooth. There are some nice machines coming out but from what I hear you have to wait until July to get a free W7 upgrade. Do they really want to sell these PCs? Jeez!! :flowers:

Edited by MilesAhead, 13 January 2009 - 10:06 PM.

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#7 Platypus

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 03:42 AM

Intel 915 graphics are not very capable. Make sure the system memory is running correctly in dual channel mode, as the video speed is dependent on memory bandwidth.

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#8 MilesAhead

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 09:17 AM

Intel 915 graphics are not very capable. Make sure the system memory is running correctly in dual channel mode, as the video speed is dependent on memory bandwidth.


Yeah, I noticed. I knew when I bought it that it shared system ram but I didn't realize it had no onboard whatsoever. But the machine served its purpose. Came with a decent DVD burner and 10/100 ethernet so what the hell! :thumbsup:

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