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Win7/HP: Video stalls every few seconds, no video after format


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8 replies to this topic

#1 thisnameissoclever

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 06:28 PM

-I will attempt to be as specific as possible regarding my two (presumably related) issues.
-I should note that I am an escallation technical support agent (in the US) for a major software security company, and I have evaluated my system. I can say with a great deal of certainty that this is not a threat.
-I personally believe this to be an issue with my video card, which I would normally diagnose using a clean OS with the same card to see if I can replicate the issue with a completely clean and healthy system, as far as software goes. Shortly, I will explain why I am unable to do that.
-I would also like to note that I have a Norton Ghost image on a separate hard drive, with one week's worth of images.

-Some time ago, my computer began.... "stalling" for a fraction of a second, every few seconds, if I played a game like TF2, or if I watched a video in a high-quality player such as Hulu.
-This began shortly after upgrading to Windows 7 from Vista, but not so shortly afterward that I would be comfortable calling that the definite issue.
-I would normally rule 7 out of the issue by attempting to replicate the issue on a clean upgrade system, but again, I am unable to do that for reasons which will become clear shortly.
-The issue manifests itself in a strange and irritating way. Sometimes it occurs, sometimes it does not. If I watch a video for more than 10-15 minutes, it usually begins happening (leading me to conclude it's likely a hardware issue, possibly cooling-related, with the video card). When it begins happening, if the on-screen character is saying a sentence, it would sound like "Now-w-w-w is the time for all goo-oo-oo-oo-d men to come to the aid-d-d of their c-c-c-c-country". Similarly, it stutterswhile playing video games.
-In my attempts to isolate this issue, and rule out software issues, I took a Ghost image of my system, and formated it using the manufacturer (HP) provided copy of Windows Vista, which came with my computer tower and monitor (and no, the hardware has not been changed since purchase. It's a relatively new computer.)
-After the initial file copy and OS restoration process, it boots the OS and performs another file copy (supplimentary recovery? perhaps OEM drivers and software...) - This process takes over an 2 hours, probably over 3.
-At some point following that recovery process, the computer reboots. At that point, I can see only a black screen.

--The screen is not black, and unlit - The monitor does not go to sleep mode, as if there was no input. There's input, it's simply black.
--I have a dual-monitor setup, but I've tried reformatting and reinstalling with only one monitor connected, and saw no improvement. The monitor that was connected in my single monitor setup is not the primary monitor as in my dual monitor setup (ruling out monitor issues).

-The strangest thing of all: If, after reformatting, I boot to safe mode, I can see everything just fine. I, however, get the message that installation of Windows cannot complete in safe mode, and it reboots me in normal mode after clicking OK. At which point, I can't see anything.
-Additionally, I can hear the HDD cycle up when I do things like CTRL+SHIFT+ESC on the black screen, indicating that there is an OS there... I just can't see it.
-I can see everything up to the "loading" bar in Vista with the logo. After that, there's just blackness.


I don't really care which issue I get figured out.
If I can fix the stuttering video issue, I won't need to format. If I can format, that'll probably fix the video issue.

--Oh, one more thing - I should be clear, the video doesn't stutter while browsing the net, sending email, etc.


-I have contacted HP and spent many hours on the phone (some of which time was spent with a gentleman whom, after I explained that I couldn't see anything and the monitor was black, he gave me several troubleshooting steps to do (beginning with "click on the start menu") - After 5 minutes of that, I replied: "nope, that didn't fix it. Probably would be more help if I could SEE MY SCREEN though. How about a level 2 tech?" - to which he replied: "click".
-HP tells me I ship the computer to them to repair (I'd say it's 50/50 it'll even GET repaired, and even that will take 3 weeks) - I cannot be without my computer for so long. HP support is useless.

I know it's a long-shot, but... anyone got any ideas?

If the music is loud enough, we won't hear the world falling apart.


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#2 thisnameissoclever

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Posted 16 January 2010 - 07:47 PM

I wonder if pumps are inappropriate here.
dɯnq

If the music is loud enough, we won't hear the world falling apart.


#3 thisnameissoclever

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Posted 18 January 2010 - 03:10 PM

mk
bump

If the music is loud enough, we won't hear the world falling apart.


#4 groovicus

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Posted 18 January 2010 - 03:40 PM

We don't now anything about system memory, how full the hard disk is, etc. Your issues are incredibly generic.

In no particular order:
Your hard drive does not have adequate swap file space
hard drive is failing
You do not have enough memory
You have malware
Some other process is consuming system resources

#5 thisnameissoclever

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Posted 18 January 2010 - 03:48 PM

Assume all those things are check and go.
It's essentially a brand new system, 4 gb of ram, quad core processor which is NOT being fully consumed by any process at the time of these errors, and the same is true of the ram.
I do not have malware, as I stated above.
The hard drive has over 200 gb of available space.

If the music is loud enough, we won't hear the world falling apart.


#6 certifiednerd

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 09:19 AM

as far as your black screen in normal mode, i could be several things.

- your screen resolution is outside the capabilities of your monitor. in that case use f8 and boot to low resolution mode. if you get display, then adjust your display settings to the proper resolution for your monitors

- bad video driver. check your devise manager in safe mode, if it appears to be proper try uninstalling the drivers and reinstalling them

- bad video card. with the previous issues you have this sound like the most likely case. basically when your booting to safe mode your using generic drivers for everything, but booting to normal mode your now using the card properly, if with the proper driver it has no display, then you've got a bad video card

- test with a known good video card, if after installing a new video card still the same issue, youve got a bad motherboard

and if none of that takes care of the issue, toss it out the window....

#7 thisnameissoclever

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 09:33 AM

as far as your black screen in normal mode, i could be several things.

- your screen resolution is outside the capabilities of your monitor. in that case use f8 and boot to low resolution mode. if you get display, then adjust your display settings to the proper resolution for your monitors


That would mean that the default resolution after a system restore is outside the range of a brand new 22" LCD monitor (as well as another brand new 19" lcd monitor). You're right, in that it works in safe mode, which backs your theory, but that just doesn't make sense to me - not that that means HP wouldn't do it.

- bad video driver. check your devise manager in safe mode, if it appears to be proper try uninstalling the drivers and reinstalling them

Unfortunately, as I said above, I am unable to get past the initial desktop screen in safe mode. it gives me an error before loading any icons, that setup cannot complete in safe mode and my system must be rebooted. Upon accepting this prompt, it reboots.

- bad video card. with the previous issues you have this sound like the most likely case. basically when your booting to safe mode your using generic drivers for everything, but booting to normal mode your now using the card properly, if with the proper driver it has no display, then you've got a bad video card

I'm really hoping this is not the case because HP is, shall we say, less than helpful in this matter.

- test with a known good video card, if after installing a new video card still the same issue, youve got a bad motherboard

The on-board video card doesn't work either - but I don't know if I'd call it a motherboard issue. It just doesn't make sense. The computer runs fine before I do a system restore.

and if none of that takes care of the issue, toss it out the window....

Best advice yet.

If the music is loud enough, we won't hear the world falling apart.


#8 thisnameissoclever

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 04:36 PM

So no help then. Damnit, I wish HP would just give me my money back without me being without a computer for a week.

If the music is loud enough, we won't hear the world falling apart.


#9 boxaccounts

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 09:46 PM

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