Graphics/display problem

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by crustlord, Sep 29, 2009.

  1. crustlord macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    #1
    Hi, first timer here! I'm wondering if anyone can be of assistance. My display on my mac's gone weird. I've attached a snapshot of the screen. Here's a breakdown of the symptoms:

    * Firstly, it just happened out of the blue the other night, the screen saver was doing it's thing and when I returned to the computer this is what I saw.
    * It's slightly intermittent, but the weirdness is present 98% of the time.

    Visually -

    * It affects the mouse
    * It affects the dock
    * It affects any pop ups e.g. the "do you want to quit or save and quit" pop ups.
    * It affects my photos in iphoto
    * It affects the artwork in iTunes, but nothing else
    * It affects the bar across the top of the screen
    * It doesn't affect photoshop
    * It doesn't affect the internet display
    * It doesn't affect Pro Tools

    Apart from that, so far, everything functions as normal.
    Here's my machine stats:

    OS X v10.4.11
    Machine Name: iMac G5
    Machine Model: PowerMac8,2
    CPU Type: PowerPC G5 (3.1)
    Number Of CPUs: 1
    CPU Speed: 2 GHz
    L2 Cache (per CPU): 512 KB
    Memory: 1.5 GB
    Bus Speed: 667 MHz
    Boot ROM Version: 5.2.5f1

    ATI Radeon 9600:

    Chipset Model: ATY,RV351
    Type: Display
    Bus: AGP
    Slot: AGP
    VRAM (Total): 128 MB
    Vendor: ATI (0x1002)
    Device ID: 0x4150
    Revision ID: 0x0000
    ROM Revision: 113-xxxxx-117
    Displays:
    iMac:
    Display Type: LCD
    Resolution: 1440 x 900
    Depth: 32-bit Color
    Built-In: Yes
    Core Image: Supported
    Main Display: Yes
    Mirror: Off
    Online: Yes
    Quartz Extreme: Supported

    Thank you and kindest regards,

    Andy.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #2
    Is it persistent or intermittent? If it's persistent, does the problem follow you to a new user account?
     
  3. crustlord thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    #3
    Hi Blue Revolution, thanks for taking an interest in my case.
    I followed your instructions and logged out and logged in to another user's account and then back again - and for a while I thought that those actions fixed the problem as the screen returned to normal for about 20 minutes. I then left the computer for a half hour and came back to find that the screen saver had kicked in again. So I moved my mouse which brought me back to the desktop again, only this time the problem was back. I then logged out and into another account and the problem was still there!
    Yes, the problem is persistant, it's there for most of the time that the computer is on, only very rarely will it return to normal.
    Any ideas? Thanks again.
    Andy.
     
  4. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #4
    Okay, I suggest that you:

    1) Make or update a backup of your important files. (This isn't strictly necessary but always good practice.)
    2) Insert your computer's system restore disks.
    3) Reboot, holding the C key from when the startup chime sounds until the  logo appears.
    4) Run through the installer, selecting "Archive & install" with "Preserve users and network settings" checked. This will keep your files and settings intact.
    5) Run Software Update several times, until it informs you that the system is up-to-date.

    Hopefully this will clear up your problem. If not, we can take more extreme measures, but it's possible that you're looking at a hardware problem that would cost more money to fix than your computer is worth. Fair warning.
     
  5. crustlord thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    #5
    Thank you Blue Revolution. I'll root out the disc and let you know how I get on - much appreciated!
     
  6. crustlord thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    #6
    Hi Blue Revolution,
    I re-installed and updated as you suggested and again, it worked for a few minutes at the start, but now it's back again :(
     
  7. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #7
    In that case, try backing up again, and this time running erase & install. You won't be able to simply continue as before this time, but it's your last option before writing it off as a hardware problem and possibly having to scrap the computer altogether.
     
  8. crustlord thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    #8
    Ok, I'll do that and let you know how it goes. Won't get a chance to do it today, but I'll let you know when I do. Thanks again for taking the time out to help me. I owe you! :)
     
  9. crustlord thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    #9
    Hi BlueRevolution,

    Sorry, I've been away for a few weeks there, but I've followed your instructions and backed my HD up (using Silver Keeper) onto an empty external drive, reinstalled selecting "erase and install" but no improvement.
    Now, I've been trying to reboot using the external hard drive because I'm trying to import the iTunes library settings and iCal data as I never saved it previous to the reinstall. Now I rebooted holding down the apple, alt, shift and delete key and what came up was a "safe boot" and my user account. Now I'm emailing you from this mode and everything seems to be back to normal from a graphics viewpoint, all except the mouse which still has that small square grid thingy attached to it. So I wonder if that will help you any further in diagnosing my Mac's problem?
    Thanks again,

    Andy.
     
  10. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #10
    In that case, I'd say it's likely a graphics card/logic board problem. You'll have to have someone look at it.
     
  11. crustlord thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    #11
    Thank you Blue Revolution, thanks for taking the time out to assist me. Much appreciated! Andy.
     
  12. crustlord thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    #12
    I just "hoovered" the vents in the computer and what do you know?! The problem is fixed - no more graphics problems - crystal clear!

    Thanks again for all your help...:)
     
  13. LPZ macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    #13
    That's why it was OK for the first 20 minutes; it took a bit of time before the heat became a problem.
     

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