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Please help me fix my graphics drivers.

#1TheIntangibleFatManPosted 1/5/2014 8:36:32 PM
I have an old HD4850 which had been putting along well enough. This morning I tried to play Bioshock Infinite, and Steam recommended that I update my drivers to Catalyst 13.9, so I did. Immediately after upgrading, my computer began crashing. Randomly, HDMI video cuts out, the fan ramps up to max speed, and the computer just sits there until I manually power it off.

I went into safe mode, uninstalled the new drivers, then reinstalled them, but the problem persisted.

I did a system restore to revert back to the previously working drivers, which stopped the crashing. Unfortunately, this caused new problems. Games would run fine for a while; however, the system would eventually BSOD. I ran a stress test and found that the fan speed for my card was no longer ramping up with temperature. The fan would simply spin at the idle speed while the GPU temperature rose up towards 90C.

When I went to adjust the fan profile, catalyst control center had renamed itself AMD Fusion and no longer had any controls for the GPU. This appears to be a common problem without a reliable fix, so I installed MSI Afterburner and set up a fan profile. This let the fans spin up and kept in game temperatures down around 55C; however, a new problem showed up. Randomly while running games, the graphics drivers would crash. The game would give an error and close and Windows would say, "Display driver stopped responding...".

I didn't know what else to do at this point, so I reinstalled Windows and tried the latest (13.9) drivers again. Immediately after rebooting the initial problem resurfaced. Video cut out and the fan ramped up to max speed until I shut the computer off.

I have no idea what to do now. Any help will be appreciated.
why wasn't SOPA passed?
i wish it had so that this board wouldn't exist - PrinceOfFallout
#2JKatarnPosted 1/5/2014 8:47:48 PM
From the fact that re-installing drivers didn't do much to solve your problems, it sounds like your card may be on its way out. If you could, I'd recommend trying to install it in a different machine with fresh drivers, if the issue persists it's likely the card. Is your PSU giving the card the power it needs?
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#3TheIntangibleFatMan(Topic Creator)Posted 1/5/2014 9:03:17 PM
I assume it is; I've had the computer in more or less the same form since 2009. It's this one:

Unfortunately, I don't have another computer to put it in; everything else in my house is a laptop. Is there another way to test it?

If the card is dying, is there a ~$100-150 card I could throw in with my current computer that would still be worthwhile for a new build in a year or so? I was planning on rebuilding at the end of the year anyway to keep up with rising requirements for console ports as the new consoles gain traction.
why wasn't SOPA passed?
i wish it had so that this board wouldn't exist - PrinceOfFallout