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Safe Mode Display

Discussion in 'Nvidia' started by Buffalo, Apr 29, 2012.

  1. Buffalo

    Buffalo Guest

    I am using Win2KProSp4 and a GeForce AGP 7600GT vid card and when I go into
    Safe Mode, the display is tattered, torn up and I cannot really read the
    letters on the Icons. When I move the mouse pointer, it cause tearing etc. I
    did not have this problem before I installed this card.
    I have reinstalled the vid drivers (very difficult because the tearing etc
    in Normal mode is the same after I uninstall the vid drivers and reboot)
    with the latest from Nvidea and also Omegaman's drivers.
    I uninstalled the previous drivers, rebooted and than installed the drivers
    again.
    My old vid card was an ATI Radeon 8500 AGP and it did not cause the above
    tearing etc when the drivers were removed. It seemed to have a basic VGA
    driver that took over then.
    I guess my question is that I wonder if there should be a default VGA driver
    that would let that card work after I uninstall the videp drivers.
    Thanks,
    Buffalo
     
    Buffalo, Apr 29, 2012
    #1
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  2. Buffalo

    Frank Guest

    I used to have the same symptoms a few years ago only I was using a
    Nvidia Geforce2 MX AGP. The problem would occur from time to time when I
    booted up my pc, and the tearing was present in Safe and Normal modes.
    Even trying to reload the AGP drivers didn't fix it. The only way I
    could restore to a normal display was to re-install Windows 2k (sp4). My
    pc then worked ok for a while then the problem would eventually return
    when the pc was booted. In the end I managed to track down rhe cause,
    and it was down to the chipset drivers supplied by Dell for my Dell pc.
    My solution was not to install these but to let Windows 2k generic
    drivers take care of the chipset. I'vs had no repeat of the problem since.
     
    Frank, Apr 29, 2012
    #2
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  3. Buffalo

    Buffalo Guest

    Interesting. I just reinstalled my agp drivers from ECS with no difference.
    (EliteGroup mb K7s5a ver 3.1)
    What specific mb drivers did Win2K install? Interesting that a reinstall of
    Win2kSP4 fixed it for awhile. Was that a fresh (clean) install, or just an
    install over the top?
    I may just reinstall all my MB drivers.
    I can't seem to find the Standard PCI VGA Display Drivers.inf file on my
    computer. When I uninstall my vid drivers and reboot, the display is so
    corrupted with incomplete objects and tearing, when I moved the mouse
    pointer, that I had a hard time installing the vid drivers again. I finally
    got it down to a point where I knew what to do and what to click on to
    complete the install, even though I couldn't read what was happening. The
    biggest problem was that the install would stop because there was a screen
    behind the install screen that stated the drivers were not certified and
    asked if I wanted to install them anyways. Since I couldn't see it, I
    couldn't get the drivers installed. Later, I knew it was there and worked
    around it.

    Thanks for you input.

    Buffalo
     
    Buffalo, Apr 29, 2012
    #3
  4. Buffalo

    Paul Guest

    As I understand it, each video card is supposed to support some standard
    output modes. When no custom video driver is available, the OS uses its own VESA
    video driver, to make the video card work as a frame buffer. (If that driver
    did not exist, you wouldn't have a video display during the stages of OS
    installation.) You'd suspect that driver was being used, when colors are
    stuck at 16 colors, and display resolution is 800x600 or 640x480
    (i.e. a pretty low res).

    There are two parts to drivers. There is the video card driver for the
    card. But there is also the motherboard chipset AGP driver, which
    declares the protocols it's supposed to support. On one of my Intel
    boards, you could change the AGP slot, between PCI protocol, or full
    AGP protocol, just by changing the driver used from the chipset drivers.

    Some chipset AGP drivers, also include a control panel for AGP in the
    OS, where you can set a couple things. Again, this is manufacturer
    specific, and needs to be researched first. For Intel, the settings
    would be in the BIOS, rather than being a poorly written app for
    the OS later.

    Some chipsets have problems with their AGP performance. The video card
    manufacturers know this, and they have a "quirks" list in the video card
    driver, such that they won't use AGP speed settings known to cause problems.
    For example, if the AGP interface won't run properly at 4x, the driver
    may choose to run at 1x. The ATI driver in particular, has "SMARTGart", which
    overrides your BIOS AGP speed setting, and does it's own speed setting. This
    may cause the ATI card display to flash briefly during POST. Once the
    driver is happy with the speed it has determined (or the quirks have told it
    to use), it won't try a higher speed until you use the SMARTGart control panel.
    The first release of SMARTGart was a disaster (caused crashes), but after
    three or four attempts to get it right, it finally worked respectably.

    I'm not aware of NVidia doing the same thing. It's possible the AGP
    setting in the BIOS, is in control for NVidia.

    And then, you need to trace down the particulars for your motherboard chipset,
    to see if it had any issues.

    Towards the end of the AGP era, the last chipsets made finally had AGP
    electrical interfaces, that properly implemented signaling. In the middle
    of the AGP era, some chipset makers struggled to get their AGP slots
    to run fast enough. And the marginal operation is what annoyed a lot of
    users. If you use a board like the K7S5A, you'd want to Google around,
    to see if the chipset ever caused a problem or not. I don't see any
    mention of a problem here, but perhaps there's a better guide somewhere
    else.

    http://k7s5amotherboardforum.yuku.com/forum/viewtopic/id/888

    Paul
     
    Paul, Apr 30, 2012
    #4
  5. Buffalo

    Frank Guest

    There's a whole load of chipset drivers for all machines up to 2003 that
    Win2k covers If you look at machine.inf file (under WINNT) they are
    listed in there. Eg I have an Intel chipset 850 in my machine. The
    actual reference to my chipset driver is listed in the registry under
    HKLM/SYSTEM/ComtrolSet002/Enum/PCI/VEN&8086_DEV....where one of the
    devices listed is described as an Intel(R) 82801BA/BAM SMBus Controller
    - 2443, which I know correctly identifies my Intel 850 chipset. So my mb
    is automatically covered by Win2k, but then my machine is 10 years old.
    You shouldn't have to worry about thr 'inf' file for VGA as its driver
    is supplied by bootvid.dll which automatically supplies the VGA You
    don't have to uninstall Nvidia drivers as only the dll file is loaded
    and not the Vvidia drivers. It's the same file for Win2k in 'Safe' or
    even 'VGA' mode on the F8 menu when you boot. The fact that even VGA is
    corrupted suggests a chipset problem or a problem card, but before
    cosidering the latter....

    I suggest doing a fresh re-install (partition and format) using ECS
    drivers to start with. Make sure the correct chipset driver is the first
    one you you install after Win2k sps installs. Hopefully that will fix
    the problem. When you've installed all the basic drivers, ie sound,
    video, do a backup of your system state (NTBackup. That's saved me many
    a time when the odd problem comes along
     
    Frank, May 1, 2012
    #5
  6. Buffalo

    Buffalo Guest

    My present system is a dual boot system, Win98SE-Win2k SP4.

    Thanks for that advice Frank, but I'm afraid formating and doing a fresh
    clean install of Win2kSP4 is way too much work with all the updates and
    reinstalling all of my programs.
    It may well fix the problem I'm having, but I will just put up with the
    minor inconvenience that I now have (as long as I don't need to install new
    vid drivers or go into Safe mode). :(
    I also have two of those cards (7600GT) and both have the same problem.
    Haven't tried older Nvidea drivers though.
    I also reinstalled the ECS AGP drivers and changed the refresh rate of my
    LCD monitor from 75Hz to 60Hz with no difference with the problem.
    I also just installed the Nvidea 94.24 drivers over the Omega drivers.
    Slight change in color, but the same problem.

    Probably a corrupt or missing file somewhere in my Win2k OS. Win 2k is very
    stable but I believe I will be building a new PC with Win7 before next
    winter. :)

    Any suggestions? I do like playing Q3 online and some of the older games
    like Half-Life, Doom3, Unreal Tournament, Halo, etc.

    Thanks,
    Buffalo
     
    Buffalo, May 2, 2012
    #6
  7. Buffalo

    Mohan Guest

    Not sure if this would work:

    In the normal mode, under Display properties change the resolution to
    800?600 temporarily (safe mode default)

    Click Advanced/Adapter/ Click List all modes.. and select a [resolution
    + refresh rate + color mode setting] for that particular resolution
    (note down the original setting before changing to revert back later).

    Click OK and Restart to safe mode for any improvement. You can always
    add this to the list of not workable if it fails!

    I think it is possible to apply higher resolution and color mode for
    safe mode though never tried.
     
    Mohan, May 4, 2012
    #7
  8. Buffalo

    Paul Guest

    For Win2K, there really aren't all that many updates. You have your
    initial Win2K install, then install SP4 service pack. I have a
    slipstreamed CD I made, so when reinstalling, I'm already at
    Win2K SP4. (I made mine with Autostreamer.)

    Then there's the Update Rollup, which is like a miniature
    service pack. And that's about it. Since they no longer
    support Windows Update for Win2K, I don't think you
    can do anything from that point of view.

    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/...F28B324C662&displaylang=en&displaylang=en

    You'd still need some DirectX installs for the games, but the
    games sometimes do that for you, during installation.

    If you have backup software, you could always back up your
    current setup, and try a clean install and see how it goes.
    If it isn't looking any better, then you can restore
    what you've currently got installed.

    Paul
     
    Paul, May 4, 2012
    #8
  9. Buffalo

    Buffalo Guest

    Yep, I have a backup to an external HDD.
    But, I only have one HDD in my PC and it is a dual boot 98se-win2k system
    and I would really hate to screw it up.
    I am not familar enough with doing a complete deletion and format of just
    one partition to justify possibly screwing up my whole system.
    There has to be a solid reason why I am having these problems. I think it
    either has to be an OS problem or a video driver problem.

    Thanks again,
    Buffalo
     
    Buffalo, May 4, 2012
    #9
  10. Buffalo

    Sid Elbow Guest

    Respectfully, Buffalo ... just an observation, if you have that little
    confidence in your backup/restore process then you really don't have a
    reliable backup system. It would be worth addressing that as soon as you
    can, quite apart from your other problems.

    I have many OS partitions on many machines, all backed up (though
    perhaps not as up-to-date as they should be in some cases). I wouldn't
    think twice about wiping a partition for a re-install with a view to a
    possible later restore.
     
    Sid Elbow, May 5, 2012
    #10
  11. Buffalo

    Buffalo Guest

    You're probably right. I have never restored anything off an external USB
    HDD, but I once used my Ghost image to restore my C: partition and it worked
    like a charm. Course, it was on a partition on the same HDD.
    At least now I have it backed up on an external USB HDD.
    I'm glad you reminded my to look up on how to use that backup. Damn, I may
    need it sooner than I think.

    Thanks again,
    Buffalo

    PS: I don't think I am the only person in the world that has that problem
    with the AGP GeForce 7600GT 256MB vid card and Win2000ProSP4.
     
    Buffalo, May 5, 2012
    #11
  12. Buffalo

    Paul Guest

    I've had problems on Win2K before, but it was because I didn't remove
    the old drivers, before installing new ones. The machine had a Matrox
    card at one time, an ATI, and finally an NVidia, and the drivers were
    a mess. In particular, an inspection showed after Add/Remove of ATI
    driver, there were still ATI files in the system. What eventually happened,
    is I could no longer get accelerated video to work (no gaming), no matter
    what I did with drivers. I had to reload the OS and start from scratch.
    Worked fine after that. Moral of the story was - need "much hygiene"
    with regard to video card drivers. I even tried all the available
    "driver cleaners" at the time (like ones stored on guru3d). I couldn't
    figure out, what exactly was broken.

    Paul
     
    Paul, May 5, 2012
    #12
  13. Buffalo

    Buffalo Guest

    I did have ATI drivers before this card (8500LE) and I did uninstall and
    also used an ATI driver cleaner and a search for anything ATI, in files and
    in the Registry.
    I think you're probably correct that something is amiss in my Win2K system.
    I don't believe that I will do a clean install of my OS since my backup was
    made after the problem started and I have a lot of programs I would have to
    reinstall if I did it,
    Thanks again for your thoughtful input.
    Buffalo
    PS: If you can think of something else, let me know.
    PPS:It is extremely difficult to install new (different) drivers as the
    display gets so corrupted when I remove the previous drivers and reboot.The
    display tears so bad when I move the mouse pointer that it is almost like
    doing it blindly and from memory.
    It didn't do that when I uninstalled the ATI drivers and rebooted to install
    the GeForce drivers the first time.
     
    Buffalo, May 5, 2012
    #13
  14. Buffalo

    Sid Elbow Guest

    Risky ... if that HD dies everything's gone. If you are backing up on
    the same machine, at least use a second HD.

    Yes, that's what I do and I do it with a Ghost DOS boot disc (mini-cd).
    On some machines, the BIOS USB driver won't work with my version of
    Ghost so I have to force Ghost to use its own but that works well
    enough. I also use Ghost's "check image file" on each backup after I
    make it - wouldn't want to need to restore it and find that it's junk!
     
    Sid Elbow, May 5, 2012
    #14
  15. Buffalo

    Sid Elbow Guest

    That's a common viewpoint and obviously it's your call but it can be
    very rewarding to bite the bullet and most people who do so are glad
    they did. I don't think it's an option that should be dismissed lightly.

    It does need a bit of forethought and planning-ahead such as:

    - gather all required drivers (latest versions)

    - review your apps and determine which ones you want to keep (I'd be
    surprised if you didn't find that half of them were unnecessary)

    - prioritise the remaining apps into stuff that has to be installed
    immediately; those that can be installed over a few days; those that can
    be installed "as required".

    - if you can, put all of the drivers and apps onto a single cd/dvd (that
    really helps).

    You'll probably lose the system for a day or so but when you finish
    you'll have a "new" system - much cleaner and "perkier" than before.

    Another possibility if you have the room is to create another partition
    and do the fresh install in that while keeping the working original in a
    multi-boot system.

    Does my bias show? :)

    (Sorry - probably teaching my grandmother to suck eggs).
     
    Sid Elbow, May 5, 2012
    #15
  16. Buffalo

    Buffalo Guest

    If I do go through the trouble of formatting and a clean install, I believe
    I will just install XP Home
    instead of Win2KProSP4. Then, if that is successful, I may well just get rid
    of my 98SE and change partition sizes.
    Thanks again,
    Buffalo
     
    Buffalo, May 6, 2012
    #16
  17. Buffalo

    Frank Guest

    The thing is the amount of time you've already spent trying to fix this
    you could have done a clean install and reloaded all your essential
    progs, You can always make the job a lot eadier in future if you keep a
    copy of all your 'prog install exe' files you download from in a single
    folder (eg Downloads). Then it's just a matter of systematically going
    through each one to restore your software. Of course if you have a few
    hundred plus downloaded progs, it's going to take a while, but you don't
    have to do it all at once.
     
    Frank, May 10, 2012
    #17
  18. Buffalo

    Robert Miles Guest

    I have sufficient room to create another partition, but no instructions
    for how to do it when it requires first shrinking the C: partition.

    Using 64-bit Windows Vista.
     
    Robert Miles, May 26, 2012
    #18
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