Monday, July 23, 2007

NVIDIA BSOD Strikes My Desktop Down

It's not often that I want to use my desktop PC at home, but I needed the 19" screen tonight. When I turned to it, it was frozen, so I rebooted it. Windows XP was moving rather sluggishly, and the monitor kept alternating between goring black and showing me a far more intensely-colored desktop than I recalled. Finally,I received the nv4_disp Blue Screen of Death and had to reboot again.

I had an idea of what to do next, but I decided to use my UMPC to search on the message while waiting for my disk check to complete. Within minutes, I'd found a blog post from someone who'd experienced the same issue last year, but with an NVIDIA FX 5200; I had an NVIDIA GeForce MX4000. While I worked toward a resolution on my PC, I scanned through all the comments left by people who'd read Jason's post; for some, updating the drivers was enough; quite a few others had blown capacitors and had to acquire new graphics cards. I'd hoped that I would be a member of the former group, but installation of the latest drivers didn't help. With a heavy heart, I opened my PC case and peered inside. The purple capacitors looked ok from that angle. I decided to be thorough and actually pull the card out for inspection. Though I was to see that the swelling was slight, I'd seen enough blown motherboard capacitors in the past three years to leave me with little doubt: my video card was bad, bad, bad.

One of the reasons I even bother with a desktop PC anymore is gaming, otherwise I should have been happy to use the HP's on-board graphics. Alas, I will be shopping for a replacement for the NVIDIA dud this week, no easy task when I have one of those small desktop PCs.

Ahh well, I did want to move up to a card with 256 megabytes of memory. looks like I'll have my arm twisted chance.



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