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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    In the last 2 or three weeks, I've been having trouble with graphics acting up on XP. What's happening is after awhile on the computer, my browser starts acting funny. Right-click menus disappear or are only half there. Web pages will look kind of funny. So, I close the browser (Firefox). But it doesn't end there. Many of letters underneath my desktop shortcut icons are now by this time blurry. The Start Menu button is there but the word Start is blurred. When I click it, the word Start disappears.

    At first, I tried reinstalling my graphics card drivers (it's a Nvidia GeForce 9400GT). No dice. Everything is fine on that end. What I have noticed is that the fan on my powers supply unit is making a buzzing noise... as if the bearing is wearing out. Is my computer overheating the graphics card which in turn is affecting things like I described above? Or is it something else.

    Also, I've done a malware and virus scan. All good on that end.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I would look into the possibility of your PSU failing and or your Graphics card.
    Unplug all PSU & motherboard connections and reseat them ensuring they are snug and fitted. Take antistatic precautions at all times.
    Maybe disconnect a few things like a secondary hard drive and the CD/DVD drive and attempt to recreate the anomaly.
    If your motherboard has onboard graphics, remove the 9400GT card and the above and attempt to recreate the anomaly.
    Idealy, replacing the PSU with a spare you have lying around would confirm or refute this easily. Unfortunately not many folks
    have a spare PSU to shove into their systems for this troubleshooting purpose. Troubleshoot by means of least invasive measures>>to most invasive measures first
    when the etiology is uncertain.

    Overheating can be verified by visiting the hardware section of your bios for temperature and fan speed information, that's if your
    bios has this hardware monitoring capability. Run the system for a while, then boot to bios to check temps.
    Otherwise there are free temperature monitoring apps you can download that are sufficient.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

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  3. #3
    New Lounger
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    Ok, I was thinking it would be one of those two but I wasn't sure.

    a few minutes ago, I opened Windows Explorer and when I clicked on a folder, it opened and the sidebar looked a bit funny, color-wise. Then I got a pop-up dialog that said The application failed to initialize properly (0xc000012d)

    Don't know if that helps in further diagnosis. Been Googling it and it seems to not really be one thing specifically as far as I can tell.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    A lesser invasive measure you could try would be to uninstall your video card's driver (Nvidia GeForce 9400GT) and reinstall a newer or known non corrupt one fresh from the manufacturer's website. [replace and update the video card driver]

    Does your motherboard offer onboard graphics support?
    A look through your motherboard's specs or a visit to your bios should answer that question.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
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    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

  5. #5
    New Lounger
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    I already tried that (your first suggestion).

    Second question... I don't know.
    Again, my PSU fan is making a buzzing sound. I'm thinking what you said earlier might be the problem. PSU is going bad.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    A faulty fan in a PSU will necessitate a PSU replacement soon.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

  7. #7
    New Lounger
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    I'm going to run my computer into the shop tomorrow. I'll post a reply as to what was found so that others who may come across this thread will have something to go by if they have the same problem.

  8. #8
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    I've had all sorts of problems with PC fans seizing up: CPU and video cards failing, PC mysteriously freezing or re-booting. The groaning sound is typical of a fan that's on its way out due to a dry bearing. If you look in your box, the fan will probably be moving very slowly, if at all. It may just be dust in the works: give it a good suck with a vacuum cleaner (careful you don't suck any bits off the mother board!).

    Fans with dry bearings can often be revived by removing the fan, peeling the little tin patch off the end of the bearing, putting 1 drop of sewing machine oil on the bearing, spinning the fan by hand to work the oil in, then sticking the tin patch back on (if you're lucky!) and re-fitting.

    This has worked for me several times and revitalizes the fan for another year or so...

    Eventually, though, you'll have to replace the fan: they are fairly cheap at computer component stores.

    One of my pet whinges is that PC manufacturers use cheap and grotty 'sleeve bearing' fans in their boxes when a good roller- or needle-bearing fan costs only a few pence more... (Like the ones they use in servers!)

  9. #9
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    [quote name='Ken Redman' date='2010-12-02 02:28' timestamp='1291274936' post='869610']
    I've had all sorts of problems with PC fans seizing up: CPU and video cards failing, PC mysteriously freezing or re-booting. The groaning sound is typical of a fan that's on its way out due to a dry bearing. If you look in your box, the fan will probably be moving very slowly, if at all. It may just be dust in the works: give it a good suck with a vacuum cleaner (careful you don't suck any bits off the mother board!).

    With all due repect and I may be a little over cautious, but wouldn't applying a vacuum to the motherboard and other circuitry cause unsafe ESD (static electricity) to build up and cause possibly damage? Or are you just refering to the PSU itself?

  10. #10
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    This seems to be identical to a problem I had, at about the same time. I called in a technician who, as had I, suspected a hardware fault. But, eventually, he traced it to a particularly virulent virus. Unfortunately, I do not know its name but I suggest you check this angle again. Have you tried using Malwarebytes? Or one of the on-line scans recommended by Fred Langa in the Newsletter of 1 December: McAfee (Security Scan Plus), Trend Micro (HouseCall), Symantec (Security Scan), and ESET (Online Scanner).

  11. #11
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    There's a lot of BS talked about static. Generally, friction-generated static is not a problem with a properly assembled PC: It's mostly a danger to disconnected boards and components. I've frequently used a vacuum cleaner to clean inside PCs and never had any static damage from it. I have occasionally tried to suck leads and things up but you just need to be careful! If you think a 1200W domestic cleaner is a bit excessive, buy yourself a small hand-held cleaner. I tend to turn the wick down (I've got a variable-speed cleaner) open the bypass vent on the hose and use the small brush fitting...

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