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Computer troubleshooting!

  1. Nov 28, 2003 #1

    Hurkyl

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    One day, when I got home, my computer started developing these symptoms:

    Whenever any sound is sent to the speakers, a layer of static is also sent.

    Icons and images (particularly the mouse cursor and system tray icons) are being distorted with an assortment of cyan and magenta pixels (mostly cyan). While I can't discern a pattern to the pixels, they certainly don't appear like they're totally random.

    Any idea what could be causing this and how to fix it?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 28, 2003 #2

    chroot

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    Sounds like either bad RAM or a bad DMA controller.

    Try running some memory diagnostics on it.

    - Warren
     
  4. Nov 28, 2003 #3

    Hurkyl

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    Does WinXP come with such a tool, or will I have to DL one?


    Another interesting thing I've discovered; Opera displays all images fine (even ones to which I've zoomed), but windows picture viewer messes up the image (with white and dark cyan dots, clustered into lines) when I zoom in.
     
  5. Nov 28, 2003 #4

    Hurkyl

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    Also, most window .wav files are playing normally, only some are staticy.
     
  6. Nov 28, 2003 #5
    You might consider using the Restore feature that comes bundled with winXP.
     
  7. Nov 28, 2003 #6

    dduardo

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    Try formatting. It always seems to fix window's problems.

    Most likely though it is a hardware problem, either with memory or some motherboard issue.
     
  8. Nov 28, 2003 #7
    Good one, dduardo
     
  9. Nov 29, 2003 #8

    Hurkyl

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    In any case, it's probably not hardware?
     
  10. Nov 29, 2003 #9

    dduardo

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    If it isn't a hardware problem, there is always time to switch


    <---------------
     
  11. Nov 29, 2003 #10

    Hurkyl

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    Ok, some joyous problems:

    (a) I was doing something (which I don't remember what it was) that required me to turn off system restore... I forgot to turn it back on. :frown:

    (b) When I bought my computer from CompUSA, it had the WinXP installer already on the harddrive, and I did not get a Windows CD.


    I've been wanting to reformat for a while now, but I've been too lazy to contact CompUSA to get a CD or instructions on what I'd need to do...

    Oh, and I can't switch over to Linux because I am (or at least used to be) an avid game player, so nyah!
     
  12. Nov 29, 2003 #11

    dduardo

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    I really hate how computer manufactures aren't giving a real windows cd anymore with new systems. Crappy good for nothing restore disks. Arrgh

    Hurkyl, here is a tip, do what I do, download a copy.
     
  13. Nov 29, 2003 #12

    Hurkyl

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    Well, I'm poking around on the mysterious D drive where Windows keeps it's restore stuff and other information, and there's a directory called "PRELOAD", and it has some files named "CDx" where x is a number from 0 to 4, and it has a lot of .INP files and some other miscillaneous stuff...

    So I would surmise the stuff I need to reformat / reinstall windows is here, I just don't know how to do it; I haven't found any suggestive .exe or .bat files on this drive yet. :frown:
     
  14. Nov 29, 2003 #13
    Hurkyl,

    On the chance (& it sounds like a fairly good chance) that those CDx files contain everything that came preloaded on your C drive, you should try to burn copies of them onto CDs before you do anything else. Better yet, if that computer is on a LAN, copy them to another computer first, & then put them on CDs.
     
  15. Nov 29, 2003 #14

    Hurkyl

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    Well, the cdx files are small (106 bytes) and just contain a directory name: c:\Master\BOOTDIST\BOOT-XP\PRELOAD\Cx\PRELOAD\Cx

    Given the arrangement of the files, these appear to be indexing information...

    But the rest of the directory is 2 GB of what appears to be archives (datax.inp, base_x.inp)... whatever I do I'll backup this directory first.
     
  16. Nov 29, 2003 #15
    Beyond that, unless you have a manual, or find someone who's familiar with CompUSA sytems, you'll probably have to call or write their tech support for help.

    I haven't seen anything on an HP or Dell system like what you're describing.
     
  17. Dec 5, 2003 #16
    Can you hear any sound at all? or does the static just completely takes control?

    What kind of sound card are you using? have you tried updating the drivers?
     
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