Random thoughts.... [Tech Edition]

Shawn

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Okay, it definitely has nothing to do with the computer being cool or hot. But it the video drivers definitely do struggle after I punch in my password and hit enter without fail... sometimes it will recover and sometimes it won't, and sometimes it will say the video drivers recovered and sometimes it says nothing.

Aside from the login screen it also seems to frequently have video issues whenever I load up a Flash video in Firefox.

I'm thinking maybe it's the motherboard being problematic since it definitely smells like graphics issues that a new card didn't fix. Oh, and some of you may remember I was complaining about slow POST times about a month ago which resolved itself magically, which might also point to a faulty hard drive?
 

chaos386

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Something you can do to pinpoint the problem is to do each of the following, one step at a time:

  1. Unplug everything from the motherboard except for the bare essentials: GPU, boot drive, kb/mouse, and a single stick of RAM (no 2nd HDD, no disc drive, no printer, etc.). This tests if one of your peripherals is mucking things up, and simplifies the later steps.
  2. Clone your Windows install to another HDD, to see if that's what's failing.
  3. Re-install Windows (to a different HDD if you can, just so you can revert to your old installation easily).
  4. Run memtest overnight. If you find errors, swap what slot you use, to see if it's the RAM or the mobo's slots that's faulty.
  5. Install the latest BIOS for your motherboard and revert it to the default settings. Your current BIOS might be buggy, or one of your settings wonky.
  6. Try the other video card again.
If all of the above fails, then you can pretty safely say it's the motherboard at fault. If you can't be bothered to do all of it, steps #1, 4 and 5 are probably the most essential.
 
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Shawn

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Something you can do to pinpoint the problem is to do each of the following, one step at a time:

  1. Unplug everything from the motherboard except for the bare essentials: GPU, boot drive, kb/mouse, and a single stick of RAM (no 2nd HDD, no disc drive, no printer, etc.). This tests if one of your peripherals is mucking things up, and simplifies the later steps.
  2. Clone your Windows install to another HDD, to see if that's what's failing.
  3. Re-install Windows (to a different HDD if you can, just so you can revert to your old installation easily).
  4. Run memtest overnight. If you find errors, swap what slot you use, to see if it's the RAM or the mobo's slots that's faulty.
  5. Install the latest BIOS for your motherboard and revert it to the default settings. Your current BIOS might be buggy, or one of your settings wonky.
  6. Try the other video card again.
If all of the above fails, then you can pretty safely say it's the motherboard at fault. If you can't be bothered to do all of it, steps #1, 4 and 5 are probably the most essential.
I don't really have any peripherals or non-essential bits in my system, but I'll try the other stuff. Thanks!

The thing is I want a new computer, so I'm not entirely invested in getting this fixed. Still, it's not like I would toss this out so I should probably at least try to repair it. :D
 

rickhamilton620

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The thing is I want a new computer, so I'm not entirely invested in getting this fixed. Still, it's not like I would toss this out so I should probably at least try to repair it. :D
Would you build your own again (sound's like you did??) or buy one? Just wondering. I'd personally love to build one for fun but since I'm so mobile..it would just be a door stop :)
 

Shawn

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Would you build your own again (sound's like you did??) or buy one? Just wondering. I'd personally love to build one for fun but since I'm so mobile..it would just be a door stop :)
That's precisely the thing, I have no idea what type of computer I would get.

My current machine is an HTPC that I built myself. But it seems like HTPCs are almost passe now, what with NAS servers and network-enabled TVs, Roku/Boxee/Google TV/Apple TV type deals and all sorts of stuff that make a full on HTPC seem pointless. Plus, I ended up using the HTPC mostly as a regular desktop with a 20' cable leading to a monitor in another room. Still, I don't have cable so I like the idea of a computer connection to my TV.

I can't decide between a desktop or a laptop either... with a desktop you spend a bunch of money and have something which for the most part you can't take anywhere, meaning when you do go away you'll likely be stuck with a slow netbook or ancient laptop or in my case nothing because I only have the one computer right now. But I want decent specs so the laptop that would fit my needs would be pretty expensive, and I don't travel nearly enough to justify a high-end laptop.

I could go a million different ways. Get a nice Sandy Bridge laptop and have it hooked up to external peripherals when at home, but I find that whole setup unappealing and sort of counter-intuitive. I could build an overkill Sandy Bridge desktop and just forget about the TV (I don't use it much anyway, mostly just watch stuff at my computer desk) but then I'd be left hanging while travelling; I could get a cheap netbook for travel but the slowness and cheap build quality is a downer. Or I could buy a mid-range laptop and build a mid-range desktop but then I'd be stuck using a mid-range machine all the time.

I guess the problem is I want a desktop and a laptop, and possibly a new TV with WiFi. :D
 
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Shawn

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FML AT&T purchased T-Mobile USA...:mad:
Wait, I thought Sprint was going to buy them?

At any rate, this isn't very good news... the mobile situation in the US was already shitty with four carriers so I hate to think what would happen with three carriers (and just one of them GSM).

I personally don't think AT&T is as bad as people make it out to be but overall things suck and a reduction of the competition isn't going to benefit anyone (other than Ma Bell that is).

Does anyone think the DoJ might not be too happy about this deal?
 

smib

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They will pretend to not like it, charge millions of dollars, let it go through, and in time the situation here will worsen even more.
 

rickhamilton620

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That's precisely the thing, I have no idea what type of computer I would get.

My current machine is an HTPC that I built myself. But it seems like HTPCs are almost passe now, what with NAS servers and network-enabled TVs, Roku/Boxee/Google TV/Apple TV type deals and all sorts of stuff that make a full on HTPC seem pointless. Plus, I ended up using the HTPC mostly as a regular desktop with a 20' cable leading to a monitor in another room. Still, I don't have cable so I like the idea of a computer connection to my TV.

I can't decide between a desktop or a laptop either... with a desktop you spend a bunch of money and have something which for the most part you can't take anywhere, meaning when you do go away you'll likely be stuck with a slow netbook or ancient laptop or in my case nothing because I only have the one computer right now. But I want decent specs so the laptop that would fit my needs would be pretty expensive, and I don't travel nearly enough to justify a high-end laptop.

I could go a million different ways. Get a nice Sandy Bridge laptop and have it hooked up to external peripherals when at home, but I find that whole setup unappealing and sort of counter-intuitive. I could build an overkill Sandy Bridge desktop and just forget about the TV (I don't use it much anyway, mostly just watch stuff at my computer desk) but then I'd be left hanging while travelling; I could get a cheap netbook for travel but the slowness and cheap build quality is a downer. Or I could buy a mid-range laptop and build a mid-range desktop but then I'd be stuck using a mid-range machine all the time.

I guess the problem is I want a desktop and a laptop, and possibly a new TV with WiFi. :D
I still think there's a place for a traditional pc in the living room. You'll have easier access to stuff like hulu and they're good websurfing machines. While I haven't played with the dedicated boxes, I really like Windows Media Center.

One idea for you would be to get a laptop equipped with Intel's Wi-Di technology, so you could output the laptop display onto the tv. Sans wires. While prob not great for games it'll let you do video just fine, and you'd have a laptop that's powerful for travel. As far as laptops go...I'm a big Dell Latitude fan, my D630's survived 5 years of college use with flying colors, and the few times I did need them, the business support is great. The new e6420/e6520 don't offer wi-di though I think. It was well worth the premium I paid over a consumer pc.
 

maxtortheone

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PC build complete, but got a 5.9 for my HDD on the Windows test. Meh, I'll probably get a faster one in the future. Also, I can't get the rear speakers to work on my 5.1 system.

 
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thevictor390

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I'm pretty sure anything that can be described as "an HDD" will get a 5.9 on that test ;)
 

smib

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Then they are working. You must have cheetos in your ears or something. Haven't you read the troubleshooting guide in the back of the manual?
 

nsx_23

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Ugh, Firefox 4 is weird to use.

EDIT: After having used it for a while, the new UI isn't too bad. Definitely renders webpages faster.
 
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Clockwerk

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Weird....I bought a little enclosure for an old IDE laptop hard drive and it is showing up in "My Computer" as two drives.... Any thoughts?
 

Clockwerk

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Yeah I just looked in the Drive Manager and they are partitioned...I guess I just need to delete the old partitions?


Edit: I've mended something!

 
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