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12-03-08, 06:17 PM   #1
WaldoJeffers
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Graphics go boom?

Hello all

One of the reasons I have been relatively inactive in WoW for the past 6 months is because I have been to stubborn to even attempt to relieve an issue which bugs me. Everywhere I go in the game world, I am accompanied by these wonderful "screen tear" images.



Whilst it makes for interesting gameplay, running around blindly with no direction, It's gone on for too long now :/ This all started after I reformatted my computer in May this year. What would your "plan of attack" be?
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12-03-08, 06:34 PM   #2
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Try updating your drivers first.
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12-03-08, 06:47 PM   #3
Petrah
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What you're seeing is called video artifacting. The first thing you should check is weather or not your video card is overheating. Be sure it's cleared of dustbunnies, and then check the temps. If your card has temp sensors on it, you can read those temps using GPU-Z. Visit the video card manufacturers web site and find out what the normal temps for your card should be.

If your video card checks out fine and is not overheating, the next thing you should be checking is your power supply and make sure your video card is getting enough power.
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12-03-08, 07:45 PM   #4
WaldoJeffers
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Thanks I have updated my graphics driver so far. Not sure what other drivers to update, and how to.
I have checked the inside of the computer, there is a mild layer of dust over everything. I'm not sure how I should get this all off. I will look for a can of compressed air in the shops again. Last time I looked for compressed air I had no luck. Maybe the product is more popular in the US and such, I'm in Australia. I looked at the GPU-Z - The gpu temperature at idle is 63 and when I tried opening WoW to see how the temps were, my screen froze and my speakers sounded like a boat motor
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12-03-08, 08:22 PM   #5
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What is the model of your video card?
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12-03-08, 08:41 PM   #6
Wimpface
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This exact problem happened to me the other day, and my friend. My friend is now stuck with no graphics card, updating drivers haven't helped. He has reformatted his computer but to no avail.

When this happened to me though, i just rebooted my computer and then it worked again.

EDIT: Should probably say, that me and my friend are trying everything mentioned in this thread as soon as he wakes up in the morning
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12-03-08, 08:43 PM   #7
WaldoJeffers
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I have a http://www.sapphiretech.com/us/produ...gpid=168&grp=3

Originally Posted by Wimpface View Post

When this happened to me though, i just rebooted my computer and then it worked again.
Oh you got off lightly! /jealous
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12-03-08, 08:47 PM   #8
Wimpface
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Originally Posted by WaldoJeffers View Post
I have a http://www.sapphiretech.com/us/produ...gpid=168&grp=3



Oh you got off lightly! /jealous
Indeed i did, but since it's my Recruit-A-Friend buddy i didn't since he can't play now.

Anyway, ATI!
My friend is using an ATI graphics card too, and we read something on google answers that it doesn't now have AGP(is that the term?) support. Running DXDiag gave us Not Available on all 3 "sections". Any ideas?
NOTE: I'm using ATI myself. My friend is also using Windows XP SP1.

EDIT:
Image
You see the 3 "sections" i marked with red, they're in swedish so i'm going to translate them.

DirectDraw Acceleration: Activated (Not available for my friend, but worked after the reformation.)
Direct3D Acceleration: Activated (Not available for my friend, but worked after the reformation.)
AGP-Structureacceleration: Activated (not available for my friend, not even after the reformation.)

If you wonder anything, just ask.
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12-04-08, 12:21 AM   #9
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Did you update the drivers from the link you gave to your graphics card ??

Depending on your computer you will need either the XP or Vista drivers (makes sure you get the right bit too either 32 or 64 bit OS)

As also stated It is suggested to clean the inside of the computer. If you find it hard to get compressed air there are other solutions. In the USA we have gas (petro) stations that have tire fill stations. They use compressed air too. Toss in a few coins and you get a few minutes of powerful blowing air ... works well.

Also you could try to re-seat the graphics card. Make sure computer is off. Open the case. Unplug monitor from card. Unscrew card from case. Gently lift card from slot. If it gives you a hard time there is the possibility there is a lock on the slot. It is usually located on the right side (closest side towards the front of the case) A little tab or slide lock may be there. Once you get the card out firmly place it back into the slot. Screw it back down. Plug monitor back in. Give it a try again.

Try updating Windows using Windows Update. Maybe something is needed that you lost when you reinstalled your OS.

If these ideas fail you can try to re-seat the other cards (if any) in your system. Also try re-seating your memory modules (they have lock tabs on the top and bottom) as well.

Finally it could be a faulty/dying card. Does it act up in other games??

Good luck.
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12-04-08, 01:00 AM   #10
Wimpface
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Originally Posted by Sepioth View Post
Did you update the drivers from the link you gave to your graphics card ??

Depending on your computer you will need either the XP or Vista drivers (makes sure you get the right bit too either 32 or 64 bit OS)

As also stated It is suggested to clean the inside of the computer. If you find it hard to get compressed air there are other solutions. In the USA we have gas (petro) stations that have tire fill stations. They use compressed air too. Toss in a few coins and you get a few minutes of powerful blowing air ... works well.

Also you could try to re-seat the graphics card. Make sure computer is off. Open the case. Unplug monitor from card. Unscrew card from case. Gently lift card from slot. If it gives you a hard time there is the possibility there is a lock on the slot. It is usually located on the right side (closest side towards the front of the case) A little tab or slide lock may be there. Once you get the card out firmly place it back into the slot. Screw it back down. Plug monitor back in. Give it a try again.

Try updating Windows using Windows Update. Maybe something is needed that you lost when you reinstalled your OS.

If these ideas fail you can try to re-seat the other cards (if any) in your system. Also try re-seating your memory modules (they have lock tabs on the top and bottom) as well.

Finally it could be a faulty/dying card. Does it act up in other games??

Good luck.
Thanks for this reply, i'll try everything on my friends computer in about 7 hours, could be something with those drivers and special bits.

Furthermore, it acts up in other games.
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12-04-08, 01:44 AM   #11
Petrah
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Originally Posted by WaldoJeffers View Post
Thanks I have updated my graphics driver so far. Not sure what other drivers to update, and how to.
I have checked the inside of the computer, there is a mild layer of dust over everything. I'm not sure how I should get this all off. I will look for a can of compressed air in the shops again. Last time I looked for compressed air I had no luck. Maybe the product is more popular in the US and such, I'm in Australia. I looked at the GPU-Z - The gpu temperature at idle is 63 and when I tried opening WoW to see how the temps were, my screen froze and my speakers sounded like a boat motor

It's good that you've updated your drivers. Yes, see if you can find a can of air somewhere (probably at stores that sell office supplies). You should be able to take the card out and get the dust out of there fairly easy. I checked on the idle temps for your card and they are said to be around 60c, so that's not too bad. And I did read somewhere that the ATI software (if you have that extra stuff installed) should have a log of your temps. Not sure where that would be located though. Keep an eye on those temps when you can.

What power supply do you have?
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12-04-08, 02:43 AM   #12
Psoewish
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If you really can't find any compressed air, most vacuum cleaners have a blow function. Just be careful and keep some distance if you use that.

A very soft brush can do wonders too.
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12-04-08, 02:52 AM   #13
WaldoJeffers
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Did you update the drivers from the link you gave to your graphics card ??
I have gone through a lot of graphics drivers in the past, that sites included. Right now, because on the instructions to uninstall all drivers, I just have the option 2 display driver from http://game.amd.com/us-en/drivers_ca...=xp/radeonx-xp that's all I have.
makes sure you get the right bit too either 32 or 64 bit OS
I know I have xp home, excuse the ignorance, but how do I tell If I have 32 or 64 bit?
Also you could try to re-seat the graphics card
I'll probably blow myself up but i'll try
Try updating Windows using Windows Update
I've tried this in the past, I think I have them all, they used to put up in my icon tray saying I needed to update, they no longer appear.
Finally it could be a faulty/dying card. Does it act up in other games??
I'll try and find a game lying around in my cupboard or something

should have a log of your temps
I will try and find it. This is a rough call but I *think* I have noticed on cold temperatured days that this issue is less frequent.

What power supply do you have?
It's a psu that came with my CoolerMaster CAC-T05 case, I think it is a 460 w. If there is a way to better check this I will have a check
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12-04-08, 02:53 AM   #14
WaldoJeffers
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Originally Posted by Psoewish View Post
If you really can't find any compressed air, most vacuum cleaners have a blow function. Just be careful and keep some distance if you use that.

A very soft brush can do wonders too.
Ok thanks Will test my luck
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12-04-08, 05:07 AM   #15
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When you clean out the insides of your PC, be sure to get the crud that accumulates in your heatsinks. I have had similar issues in the past and it always due to overheating due to dust in the case.

So check the heatsinks and knock out any dust that you find stuck in there. I use a small screwdriver to get between the fins of my heatsinks and a small vacuum cleaner to suck up the stuff that gets dislodged. You may have to remove fans to get your heatsinks.

Also check that your case's fans are not clogged with dust and hair. In particular the front grills that cover those fans. You may have to pop off the front plate of your case. Same with the area around your PSU.

A soft brush, a small vacuum cleaner (the Dustbuster type), a small screwdriver or a chopstick really help in cleaning out your case.

Finally, check that all your fans are working as they should. Sometimes a power lead can get knocked loose or the fan simply dies. Replacing dead fans is a simple task.
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12-04-08, 01:32 PM   #16
Petrah
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Originally Posted by WaldoJeffers View Post
I will try and find it. This is a rough call but I *think* I have noticed on cold temperatured days that this issue is less frequent.

It's a psu that came with my CoolerMaster CAC-T05 case, I think it is a 460 w. If there is a way to better check this I will have a check
If it's a 460w PSU, then you have enough power for the card. I still believe it's a heat issue simply because of the artifacting in the screenshot you provided. Your idle temps are in the safe range, but you still need to check what those temps are running at while your gaming (let GPU-Z run in the background). Take the side of the case off and set a big box fan in front of it. See if you can play for awhile and check those temps.

Artifacting is never a good sign, and you have an old card. It may be less of a headache to invest in a new one, if you're able. Keep in mind though that with a new card you might have to get a new power supply as well.
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12-04-08, 02:09 PM   #17
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Direct X?

Just a thought:

http://www.gamesforwindows.com/en-US...rectX10-a.aspx

In case something got corrupted, try downloading and installing the latest version of Direct X.

The cleaning is a very good idea regardless.
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12-04-08, 03:17 PM   #18
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i have found that this occurs if you alt tab out of wow alot it corrupts some of the files, cant remeber which ones i found it was though.
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12-11-08, 12:40 PM   #19
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I'm sorry that you're having so many problems - I'd like to recommend the following, but before I do so, I just want to state that I in no way want to be held responsible for anything that goes wrong. Please do this at your own risk, although in my opinion it's safe.

Step 0: Clean the inside of your PC like recommended already.

Step 1: Download new drivers from ATI/AMDs site - Direct Download link Save them somewhere that you can find them - I usually put them right there on my desktop.

Also go to HERE and download Driver Sweeper. Direct download link You have to click on I Agree for the download to start though.

After drier sweeper is done installing, go ahead and install it. If asked to restart, say NO.

Step 2: Go to your control panel (Start --> Settings --> Control Panel or Start --> Control Panel) Select Add/Remove Programs. Find the ATI things listed... I believe you'll see one that says ATI Control Panel and maybe some other ones - I don't remember everything.

You can also go here and download cat-uninstaller.exe and run that.

If it asks you to restart say NO

Step 3: Go to your device manager: You can open Device Manager by double-clicking on the System icon in Control Panel, choosing the Hardware tab, and clicking Device Manager.

Step 4: click the little + sign next to Display Adapter, RIGHT click your ATI card and select uninstall - do this for everything related to your card here

Step 5: Close everything and restart

Step 6: During restart while your computer is coming back up quickly and repeatedly press F8 - you should be presented with a screen that asks you several ways to Start Widows - I want you to Select "SAFE MODE"

Step 7: After getting into safe mode, everything will look ugly, that's ok. Run Driver Sweeper and make sure to select ATI. If it finds anything go ahead and get rid of it. These are left over parts of drivers on your system.

Step 8: Restart into normal windows

Step 9: Install the drivers you downloaded in Step 1 from AMD/ATIs website. Follow instructions and restart when asked.

Step 10: Like someone else suggested check out your DirectX by going HERE and downloading and running the file. This is from Microsoft's site and requires a verification of windows before it allows you to download it. Since you're running Windows XP you're only able to use DirectX 9 - DirectX 10 is only for Vista unless you used a hacked version, and that's not recommended unless you're a power user. Restart if asked to.

Step 11: Try WOW - If you still are experiencing the problem - Press ESC while in game and Select the Video option. Then choose Effects and move the slider all the way to the left where it says "Low". Everything will look really ugly, but test it out. If you don't have the problems, increase the bar a little bit, rinse and repeat until you find the problem area. You also might want to try turning down settings having to deal w/ Shadows as they can be pretty tedious on a video card sometimes.

If you're still having the problem, then you might be experiencing a more serious problem.

Hope that helps,
vpr
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12-11-08, 05:02 PM   #20
WaldoJeffers
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Thank you everyone for the help, appreciate it! I have tried all of the advice, (thanks alot vpr for the bump with 11 steps) The problem still occurs unfortunately. All I can say that might be relevant is,
- This problem first occurred the second after I reformatted
- Before I reformatted, I saved the WoW folder from it's directory over 3 dvd disks. After I reformatted, I installed WoW by copying the wow files from these 3 dvd disks back into Program Files.
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