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Out of the Blue

Here's a question for those of you more technically apt than myself, which includes my grandma, but I forgot to bring this up at brunch yesterday.

I've been trying to run Battlefield 2 in piggish 1600x1200 on my bust-out retail super-duper 6800 Ultra-OC video card. The card itself seems perfectly capable of running at such high resolution, but I have been getting unexplainable Blue Screen of Death errors in Windows XP with an infinite loop in the NV_DISP driver. The problem does not seem to occur at lower resolutions, but at 16X12 it is intermittent, but inevitable, often preceded by flashes of texture corruption. After a go-through with tech support I cleaned out the old drivers with driver cleaner, reinstalled the latest 77.72 FORCEWARE drivers, and confirmed that if the card's absurdly high 120 degree centigrade heat alarm was not being set off, the problem was probably not thermal.

I then tried again, with the same result.

The BSoD included a message to the effect that the problem was likely with either the driver or the card, so I called back tech support, and was told that it was possible that this was a problem with the application itself. I was then told that in order to demonstrate that the card itself was defective, I was in for the nightmarish prospect of repeatedly reproducing the problem after, a) reinstalling the game, b) using a different 3D app, and c) repeating (a) and (b) on a second machine altogether. Now if that's the process I really must go through to determine the problem, then fair enough, but a Google search on NV_DISP infinite loop errors seems to indicate that this is a problem that's been mysteriously plaguing NVIDIA users for literally years now, and troubleshooting tips range from the useful, like testing your RAM (seven passes by memtest 86 says this wasn't the problem), to the worthless (almost every time someone asks this on a forum he is inundated with driver rollback suggestions, but this has happened with three different driver revisions now), to the spooky (I don't think the most desperate or reckless of users would implement all the different registry hacks I've seen suggested to address this). The one bit of video card related voodoo I still plan I trying here is backing off the AGP speed from 8X to 4X, which worked for me on a different problem once before.

So anyway, my question is simply this (I bet you had almost forgotten by now that I started off promising a question here). Before I embark on the lengthy path set out for me by Mr. Tech Support: is his assertion that the BSoD could be cause by the game code itself is accurate? I know that misbehaving apps are not supposed to be able to crash the system (which to my recollection was genuinely true for my in several years of running Win2K Professional), but I also know that just because something is not supposed to happen, doesn't mean it is impossible (I remember seeing proof-of-concept BSoD code for WinNT that was all of three lines).

So... no application-triggered BSoDs in WinXP... fact, or fiction?

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71. Re: No subject Jul 18, 2005, 10:21 gravity
I'm telling ya.. this BSoD bs is the very reason I switched from nVidia to ATi about a year ago..

I was a die-hard nVidia supporter for.. gosh.. probably 6-7 years if I'm thinking correctly. Yeah, back in '98 it seems was when the TNT/Riva series was 'en vogue,' yes?

Anyway, after experiencing all sorts of BSoD problems, starting with Win 98 (*note: all ME users should know their OS was the true 'fault').. but then remaining even into latter NT-based OS platforms. Didn't make any sense.

Blue - try getting your system down to a minimum load.. ie: no more than 12-15 processes running. Disable all that nVidia driver crapola and I'm almost 100% certain that you'll discover its a driver issue.

While I totally agree with everyone else's troubleshooting - memory load, heat, etc. I can't emphasize enough that nVidia has stopped putting out both quality hardware AND software in recent years. I stopped buying.. you should too. :,,(

- gravity

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