for the pc experts out there...

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by shawsinio, Jul 5, 2006.

  1. shawsinio macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 29, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    hi all,

    i know this isnt strictly a windows on the mac question, but i didnt quite know where else to put it! (mods feel free to move me!)

    on my pc at home, (Windows XP, Packard Bell, iextreme, athlon xp) whenever i turn it on, and log into any of my accounts, the screen constantly flashes on and off, the little light on the monitor changes from green to amber (as if its on standby).

    it gradually gets less and less frequent as i use the pc, and wont flash at all if i boot it up, leave it for a good 30-40 mins and come back to it. often, the flashes occur in time with a mouse click, but often they seem utterly random.

    is this a sign that my screen is on the blink, or is it a graphics problem? the weirdest part is that it just stops after a while, so its as if it sorts itself out somehow...

    i would really appreciate any advice you could give me, this problem is driving me INSANE!!!

    cheers

    shawsinio
     
  2. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #2
    Jeeze.. Windows questions..

    You need to narrow down the culprits. Try another monitor. If it still happens, then it's hardware on the PC. Go from there.
     
  3. shawsinio thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 29, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    ok, ill have a play around and try and narrow things down, thanks for the sound advice
     
  4. topicolo macrumors 68000

    topicolo

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2002
    Location:
    Ottawa, ON
    #4
    You should also try uninstalling your current graphics card driver and updating to the newest version. If that doesn't work, try to borrow another graphics card and test with that instead.
     
  5. Killyp macrumors 68040

    Killyp

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    #5
    When did it start doing this? There are a few possible causes:

    Direct X is playing up (very frequent)
    The graphics card is dodgy
    Some piece of software (such as direct x) is causing the graphics card to constantly 'refresh' it's settings.

    I'd try rolling back Direct X and then push it back up to Direct X 9...

    Ask if you don't know how... ;)
     
  6. The Senator macrumors regular

    The Senator

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
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    Virginia
    #6
    check your sleep options, make sure you dont have it to automatically put the monitor to sleep
     
  7. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #7
    DirectX? Seriously? Why would it work fine after it "heats up" then?

    IMO, it's not likely to be software related. It's likely a monitor & or graphics card going bad. The monitor is the easiest to test. Drag your computer to a friend's house and test there, or borrow their monitor.

    "Borrowing" a graphics card is much more difficult.

    IMO, once the field has been narrowed (and you're 100% sure it's not hardware related), THEN you start futzing with software and the plethora of drivers and foolishness that comes standard with every PC.
     
  8. shawsinio thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 29, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #8
    im going to hopefully borrow a monitor from work and test it tomorrow night, and will post back here to let you know how i get on!

    if it is still happening , i will look at direct x, and may have to pm you killy to find out what to do!

    thanks alot for all your replies, its awesome to be part of such a helpful forum willing to lend a hand and pick their brains for other members, thanks!:D
     
  9. EvilDoc macrumors 6502a

    EvilDoc

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  10. longmover macrumors member

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    Apr 24, 2006
    Location:
    Wales, UK
    #10
    I'd say it's the monitor on the way out. Try dropping the resolution/refresh rate, see if that makes any difference.
     
  11. Chrispy macrumors 68020

    Chrispy

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2004
    Location:
    Avon, IN
    #11
    My bet is on the monitor.. especially if it is a CRT. Those things can develop a mind of their own. If not the monitor, try a different graphics card (if you can).
     
  12. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
    #12
    If its a CRT I bet its the monitor. Those things die all the time. It school where I work we have 75 computers and we go through a CRT every month, if not more often. They all die in different ways. Sometimes they flicker, sometimes they start getting funny lines and then one day don't turn on. Sometimes they may popping sounds then turn off. This sounds like a monitor on its way out(if its a CRT) but still try a different monitor to be sure.;)
     
  13. shawsinio thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 29, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    no, its not a crt (you mean one with a huge back on it right?). its a flat screen a packard bell one that came with the pc when we bought it.

    i wanted to try a diff monitor tonight but havnt managed to get one from work, what i did do though, was turn on the pc, but leave the screen off, then turn the screen on after the pc had been on a while (which is when the screen normally calms down). the screen was fine, no flashing, blinking or anything! the comp had obviously 'warmed-up' but the screen was 'cold', if it was a prob with the screen as its turned on, surely it would have given me a prob regardless of whether the comp had been on a while or not...

    this makes me think its a hardware prob, graphics card? how can i check this?

    thanks for all your repies so far, much appreciated

    p.s. the monitor is maybe 3 years old, had it since we bought the pc
     
  14. Chrispy macrumors 68020

    Chrispy

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2004
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    Avon, IN
    #14
    Have you installed any new graphics drivers recently? If so, try reverting back to the old set.
     
  15. shawsinio thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 29, 2006
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    UK
    #15
    i dont think i have, unless its done it itself, how can i revert back to old drivers?
     
  16. shawsinio thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 29, 2006
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    UK
    #16
    sorry todrag up an old thread, but im still having issues with my pc monitor!well, i say issues, it actually doesnt work at the moment so its kinda a big issue!

    sooo, ill update you, have tested the monitor using another laptop, and the monitor is absolutley fine. basically ehat happens is my pc powers on but the screen stays black all the time, it doesnt even flash anymore. the screen has power and is plugged into all the right ports etc.i thought the prob may be that the graphics card is screwed, so have bought and fitted a new one, but am having no success, screen still stays black when i turn on the pc...my cousin said it could be something to do with the BIOS, could this be a possibility, if so, how do i access this with no screen and what would i have to do?

    thanks for all your replies guys!
     
  17. ReanimationLP macrumors 68030

    ReanimationLP

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2005
    Location:
    On the moon.
    #17
    Its a Packed with Hell PC isnt it?

    Nuff said. >.> We chased em out of the US market due to using shoddy parts and odd shapes, that made it impossible to fix.

    Anyhoo, its probably your graphics card. If its integrated, thats even worse. >.>'

    Your mainboard is probably cooked. Could always try to reset the BIOS settings (Normally with a jumper or pulling the little battery out while its off and unplugged for a little bit)
     
  18. bloodycape macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #18
    How is that worse integrated graphics? As long as he has a free pci, or agp slot he can put any graphics car he desires.
     
  19. shawsinio thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 29, 2006
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    UK
    #19
    ok, so ill try resetting the BIOS, but which one is the battery? nothing seems obvious t me inside this pc....
     
  20. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    #20
    Should be a round watch battery, maybe an inch in diameter somewhere on the mainboard. Make sure the computer is unplugged from the wall, and remove the internal battery for about 1-2 minutes. Stick it back in, and plug the computer in. Then turn it on.
     
  21. n8236 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2006
    #21
    I would also go thru w/ the usual diagnostic steps:

    1) Remove video card drivers, reinstall.
    2) Test the monitor w/ another machine.
    3) Test the video card w/ another machine.

    I would suspect it's the monitor more than anything else because if it was the video card, you would see artifacts and messed up random graphics show up. My old Sony monitor started to do what you described. It sometimes would be normal and many other times flicker to a darker and discolored shade on its own on in a random basis. It's possible it could be the video card if you had it overclocked.
     
  22. shawsinio thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 29, 2006
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    UK
    #22
    well, me and my cousin had another look at it last night, and have narrowed it down to either, another duff video card, a bad video slot, a problem with the power suply (the main fan doesnt work), or he motherboard is gone. am gunna try a pci card to test the slots, use a power suply from another machine to test that aswell. ill let you know how we get on! tnks for all you advice!

    ps. we know the scree works as it works perfectly on my sisters lappy....
     
  23. lewion macrumors regular

    lewion

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    Kalmthout
    #23
    Try a windows forum will ya?
     
  24. mjstew33 macrumors 601

    mjstew33

    Joined:
    May 29, 2005
    Location:
    Illinois
    #24
    :rolleyes:

    How good is this machine? I mean.. depending on the specs, it might not even be worth it.
     
  25. shawsinio thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 29, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #25
    good news! were just gunna get a 17" iMac instead, excellent!

    just cant be bothered rescuing the machine anymore, so will get an enclosure, copy the photos from the hd onto the new one. much simple...but more expensive....
     

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