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Old 20th September 2008   #1
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Corrupt Graphics & Crazy Colors in XP


I had a customer come to me with a computer with a bit of spyware on it. They also informed me that the screen was displaying strange colors and was distorted in some places. I removed the spyware, but the display issue remains. It only seems to appear in Windows Explorer, the security centre, and in IE. I have updated the graphics drivers, changed graphics cards from the original AGP card to the onboard card, to a PCI card. I have run sfc /scannow in case any files were out of order. I have swapped out RAM, the power supply, I have even gone as far as to do a clean install of XP SP3 on a new hard drive, all with the same issue.

I am beginning to believe this is a hardware issue, however I am doubting it for the following reasons:
  • The problem only occurs when XP is running
  • The problem only occurs *on specific screens*
  • The BIOS, boot splash screen, etc is normal
  • Running Ultimate Boot CD 4 Windows (Windows PE) everything looks fine
  • Aside from this issue, the system is stable and works great

The machine is a Compaq 3100NX
Any ideas would be greatly appreciated, as I'm running out of ideas. I have posted some screenshots below.

http://img134.imageshack.us/img134/4...ycentreej1.jpg
By ClickRight
http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/3762/image2bg7.jpg
By ClickRight

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Old 21st September 2008   #2
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Does the same thing happen with a different monitor?

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Old 21st September 2008   #3
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My System
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Running Ultimate Boot CD 4 Windows (Windows PE) everything looks fine
So it's either a driver issue, or some other files are damaged.

I would uninstall any video drivers from Windows, so you run with the standard VGA driver. If that clears the issue, you know what it was. Then try reinstalling your video drivers.

If running in standard VGA doesn't solve the problem, try running System File Checker (sfc /scannow from a command prompt).

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Old 21st September 2008   #4
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This issue happens on different monitors as well. I have now reinstalled XP again after I removed the motherboard from the case, and the issue still persists. However, this time while installing XP I received the error "Your system is low on virtual memory" about 10 minutes to the end of the install. This I do not understand as the computer has 512MB of RAM (this is my test memory and it has been used in many other computers and passes memtest in this computer without an issue.)

I believe this must be a CPU or motherboard problem, however bizarre it may seem, it really is the only logical explanation left, unless I'm missing something?

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Old 22nd September 2008   #5
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Originally Posted by ClickRight View Post
However, this time while installing XP I received the error "Your system is low on virtual memory" about 10 minutes to the end of the install.
How much free space is there on the hard drive?

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Old 22nd September 2008   #6
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Originally Posted by Arie View Post
How much free space is there on the hard drive?
About 150GB, it's a 160GB hard drive.

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Old 22nd September 2008   #7
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Check your page file size. Set it to system determined size. I've had the same problem and after I changed my page file size to the system determined size, the problem was gone.

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Old 22nd September 2008   #8
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Originally Posted by GERT View Post
Check your page file size. Set it to system determined size. I've had the same problem and after I changed my page file size to the system determined size, the problem was gone.
This was during installation so there is no option so set the page file size.

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Old 22nd September 2008   #9
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Ok.
Then you have one option, reinstall Windows but, maybe somebody like Arie have a solution....

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Old 22nd September 2008   #10
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Originally Posted by GERT View Post
Ok.
Then you have one option, reinstall Windows but, maybe somebody like Arie have a solution....
I have already reinstalled windows 3 or 4 times after changing hardware.

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Old 22nd September 2008   #11
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Right Click My Computer
Click Properties, Advanced, Performance settings, Advanced and change the Page file size.
If you are on an administrator account it must be possible.

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Old 22nd September 2008   #12
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Originally Posted by GERT View Post
Right Click My Computer
Click Properties, Advanced, Performance settings, Advanced and change the Page file size.
If you are on an administrator account it must be possible.
Please re-read my posts.

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Old 22nd September 2008   #13
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Are you reinstalling Windows when you are booted in Windows??

I have serious doubts if you would see this error message if you do not have Windows running.

So make sure you boot from the Windows CD.

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Old 22nd September 2008   #14
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Originally Posted by Arie View Post
Are you reinstalling Windows when you are booted in Windows??

I have serious doubts if you would see this error message if you do not have Windows running.

So make sure you boot from the Windows CD.
This is when booting from a CD to do the installation. I have tried 2 different XP disks and the original restore CDs.

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Old 22nd September 2008   #15
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I suggest that you "nuke" the partition. Re-partition & reformat the drive, then re-install.

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