Video Card Troubleshooting
Signs of Video Card trouble
If you are experiencing any
of the above, then please try the following steps to fix the problem:
- Computer intermittently
locks up when playing 3D games.
- Unable to play certain
- Windows has difficulty
launching in normal mode.
- Small colored dots
splattered across your screen.
- Be sure that the
Monitor is hooked directly to the PC and not by any video extension
- Check the connectors
for any bent or broken pins. Also, check for any other signs of damage.
If any damage exists, replace the affected cable.
- Reinstall or update
your Video driver. You will need to visit the manufactures web site to
obtain the correct driver for your video card.
- Try downloading the
latest version of Direct-X from Microsoft's web site.
- Visit the problem games
web site for any patches that may be available.
- Try re-seating the
- If none of the steps
has helped your video issue, then it is very possible that you have a
bad video card.
do I determine what type of video card I have?
There are several methods of
determining the type of video card in your computer, below are a few of these
The alternative method to the
above recommendation would be to open the computer case and read the
manufacture name on the chipset or the circuit board of the video card or
- Open an MS-DOS prompt. In Windows 95/98 and
Windows NT 4.0 [Click] Start, then Programs, then [Click]
either MS-DOS Prompt or Command Prompt. In Windows 3.x or Windows NT
versions before 4.0 [Double Click] Main group and [Double Click]
the MS-DOS icon.
- In the MS-DOS window that opens, type: Debug
press the [Enter] key.
- A dash should appear on your screen followed by a
flashing cursor. Type: D C000:0010 and press the [Enter]
- A screen of hexadecimal numbers will appear with
the ASCII translation on the far right edge of the screen. The information
will include the identifier for your video card.
- Type: Q and press the [Enter] key to
exit the debug program.
- Type: Exit and press the [Enter] key
to return to the Operating System.
If the Video card does not
have any visual description locate a FCC ID number and use the FCC search
located at the
Federal ID Search Page.
Screen Resolution Won't Stay
Every time I logon to Windows
XP my screen resolution defaults back to a large size and I have to go
manually change it. How can I make this setting stay where I want it?
It sounds like you need to
update your video card drivers or your current drivers have become corrupt.
Try going to your manufactures web site and download the latest drivers or
you can have Windows search for driver updates for you (detailed below). You
can find out who made the video card by going to:
Tools>> Computer Management. Under the System Tools category, click Device
Manager. Click the plus symbol (+) next to the entry titled Display
From here, you can allow
Windows to search for an updated driver for you. Here's how:
- While in Device Manager
and with your Display adapter showing, right-click the display adapter.
- In the resulting
right-click menu, select Update Driver...
- The Hardware Update
Wizard will now provide onscreen instructions for updating your drivers.
Troubleshooting Video problems in Windows XP
Do you often get error messages when trying to play games? Do your videos or
animations work incorrectly? Does your screen flicker? If you are experiencing
any of these problems, then this tip may help you.
Go to Start>> Help and Support. Under Pick a Help Topic, select "Fixing a
- In the left pane, select
"Games, sound, and video problems".
- In the right pane, select "
Games and Multimedia Troubleshooter".
- Click the option that best
describes the problem that you are experiencing, and then click Next.
Repeat this step until your problem is resolved or you have reached the end
of the troubleshooting path. Use the "Back" button to repeat the last step.
You can always start over by clicking the "Start Over" button.