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Computer broke.... GPU problem or whole computer?

KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular
So here's the situation.
My computer is old as balls now, it's got a Q6600 CPU, an NVidia 8800GT 512mb GPU which has always run a little hot, an old case with the side intake fan not working so well.
Last night I was playing some LoL, and the screen got some green squiggles on it and then froze.

I turned it off, thought it was a normal crash, and went to sleep, as it was late. This morning I turned it on, and during the mobo splash it was a grainy image with some white dots and shit all over it. Also, when it went to the "Which OS do you want to use?" screen it had big green vertical lines under everything. When it went to the "Windows safe mode or normal" screen, same thing. I tried system recovery, which had some green squiggles going through the screen the whole time, claimed to work, and then went back to the same as everything else, I tried booting into Ubuntu and Windows. Ubuntu did a disc check and it seemed like things were fine.

However, it won't go to the OS at all. Once it goes through the choices of which OS, windows does its little blue line across the top "Loading" thing and then doesn't get to the password screen, it's just a black screen. Ubuntu does it's start up and then black screen.

Obviously the solution is to take the GPU out and try booting it and see if it works. The only problem with that is that is that the motherboard only has a VGA output, and when I recently moved, I didn't take the VGA/DVI adapter with me, and I don't have a VGA cable lying around.

So I have a couple questions:
1: Is this obviously one thing or the other? Like is this a classic GPU massive failure but the rest of the computer will survive for a little longer? Or is the whole thing broken and I need to get a new Mobo/GPU/CPU/RAM combo?
2: Is this something that may or may not be the whole computer, and it's best to find somewhere or order a DVI/VGA adapter, or a VGA cable and check the computer without the GPU to make sure before doing anything,
3: Regardless of the rest of the computer it does need a new GPU and I should just get that and see if the rest of the computer works just by putting the new one in and testing it?

4: Will a new GPU even work with my mobo? I assume it will since it's still PCI-ex16, but I know the 8800 was 2.0 and I'm not sure if my mobo is 2.1 I'll try to find what type it is and see if it is.

Khavall on


  • kaliyamakaliyama Left to find less-moderated fora Registered User regular
    Buy an adapter.

  • KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular
    Ok, so ran out and bought a VGA cable because I couldn't find an adapter locally and wanted to know sooner rather than later, and it turns out the motheroards slot is male and not female like I thought and like every other video out I've seen is. So I'm either at ordering an adapter, waiting for it to arrive, seeing if it's the GPU, and then getting the GPU, or just getting a new GPU because I'm about to do a full upgrade anyways.

  • tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    What motherboard do you have? Are you sure it's a VGA port and not a serial port?

    Any pci-e video card works with any pic-e slot, you don't have to match the version numbers.

  • FoomyFoomy Registered User regular
    what your describing is the classic way a 8800 dies, mine went the same way. So did a lot of other forumers, always with the squiggles,dots, or random characters on screen.

    It's basically the solder after a lot of heat/cool cycles begins to crack or loosen up around the chips, if you search on google for a bit you can find a possible solution where you bake the card in your oven to reflow the solder, but it doesn't always work.

    Steam Profile: FoomyFooms
  • DratatooDratatoo Registered User regular
    edited October 2012
    1. As others already suggested, it appears that the GPU is broken. Especially considering the OSes fail to load anything graphic related.

    2. Well, if your PC doesn't exhibit other malfunctions, you can always try the integrated graphic HW. You may have to edit your xorg.conf in Ubuntu or deinstall the drivers in Windows safe mode in order to boot regulary.

    Edit: VGA Cables can be confusing. Normaly the connectors on your graphic card and monitor have holes and are blue colored. It appears you got an VGA extension cable.

    With the Core 2 architecture, you should be able to put any modern Graphic Card in. For a older system I would recommend a midrange GeForce 660 Ti.

    Dratatoo on
  • KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular

    Yeah, got a GTX 560 for under $100, threw it in, and now everything works perfectly. It's beautiful.

    Thanks all

  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    Also, always have old cables and extra cables around ^^

    Steam: Stormwatcher | PSN: Stormwatcher33 | Switch: 5961-4777-3491
  • KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular
    Also, always have old cables and extra cables around ^^

    The reason I didn't was that I recently moved. When I did, I didn't take all the old adapters and cables, especially since it was a big, cross-country move.

    Now I'm back to getting my collection of cables and adapters

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