View Full Version : Green Dots

02-07-04, 09:41 PM
For no apparent reason, my screen has begun to spring little green dots on my screen. For example while I'm playing a game, a few scattered pixels will turn green for half a second and revert back to their old color. When I'm in my paint program, I move the mouse and the black area will randomly get green dots but when I zoom back out/in they disappear. I have an Albatron GeForce 4 Ti 4200 and a Hitachi CRT monitor on Win XP. I tried the following drivers (that have all worked in the past) and got the dots on every one: 41.09, <added>45.23</added>, 52.14, and 53.03, along with 60hz and 85hz refresh rates. It appears to be a driver problem because when there weren't any drivers installed the dots did not appear. Nothing is overclocked. Any ideas?

<added>I swapped out my memory with known good memory and the dots still appeared.</added>

02-07-04, 09:53 PM
I suspect the card, but you might try some of the better drivers for this card such as 43.03, 45.23, and 52.16.

02-07-04, 11:27 PM
Originally posted by Rytr
I suspect the card, but you might try some of the better drivers for this card such as 43.03, 45.23, and 52.16.

Yeah, it could be the drivers but I doubt it. There is a chance this is an early sign the memory is going bad, but really it could be anything. Best of luck fixing your problem.

02-09-04, 08:58 AM
those green dots are almost always a sign of memory issues. Overclocked out of spec, etc. You claim no overclocking, but look around and make sure some tweak or another hasn't overclocked you. It could be heat related so make sure your vid card fan is working, and make sure heatsinks are making contact, etc.


edit: realised I didn't specify graphics memory issues, rather than system memory.


02-09-04, 09:34 AM
How long have you had your card? Is your PC on the floor? I recently was reading a thread somewhere where another guy was suddenly starting to get artifacts and couldn't figure it out 'til some people talked him into opening his case and looking at the card. It turns out there was a nice, warm little blanket of dust covering it and causing it to overheat and artifact even though he wasn't overclocking.

I'd recomend you open your case and blow any dust off your card and make sure all your case fans are working. Your problem looks heat related to me. :)

02-09-04, 01:47 PM
As far as I can see nothing has/is tweaking my card. The heatsink and fan are perfectly seated on the gpu and there isn't any dust in there. I (now) think it is the card because I put into a different machine with the same results. I've had this card for a little under a year.

02-09-04, 03:25 PM
try underclocking the memory

if artifacts dissapear then its the memory is the problem

I had an old mx400 that had artifacts even in 2d with stock frequencies.

I lowered the clocks and it works ok. I only use it now to test pcs I repair.

02-09-04, 04:11 PM
I also get these dots. However they only appear in 2D apps. I see them on the desktop and I see them in my pain programs as well. Mine has done it since day one I bought the card. I also have a GF4 TI4200. Mine also does this with the memory timings set to just about everthing.

Since it doesn't do it in 3D games...and doesn't do it all the time on the desktop I have just lived with it. Also, I have not been able to take a screengrab of the dots appearing no matter how much I try. This leads me to believe that the dots are only on the main view and not actually being produced on the screen. If I refresh the desktop..they go away.

Also, my dots are blue....not green as yours appear to be.

My card is an Asus brand if that is of interest. :confused:

02-14-04, 07:57 AM
I was getting the exact same dots with my PNY FX 5900 ultra. Couldn't figure out what to do for the longest time. Then I decided to turn off Hardware Acceleration in the Advanced Display Settings in the Control Panel. The dots no longer appeared ... then did a search on google on 'hardware acceleration video card dots' or something like that. One tech hit came up mentioned if the dots disappeared when the Hardware Acceleration was turned off, the problem was NOT the video card.

I downloaded the DX9 exe and reinstalled it over again. I also made sure nothing was touching the monitor wiring, moved wireless devices away from the monitor, installed 53.03 (was using 53.06), degaussed the monitor, and did a few other things and rebooted everything a couple of times. At first I did not see much change, when going into Morrowind I still noticed the dots (blue) on dark backdrops. Then after a couple a hours doing other stuff on the computer and getting back in I noticed fewer. The next day when I went in the dots totally disappeared.

I really don't know what caused it, but triple check just to make sure it's something else besides your video card. Also, whatever changes you make don't expect immediate results. For me it seems it was a gradual transition back to normal, could take hours or a day or so once you've found the issue.

BTW Forgot to mention, a few days before I checked the video card heatsink for dust and stuff. Noticed some of the screws on the video card heatsink were loose, so retightened but saw no immediate results from this.


02-16-04, 11:20 AM
I have an Asus Geforce4 Ti4200. I had this exact same problem.

I bought the card new in retail box. I had it for several months when suddenly, I noticed green pixels in my games. I would also see random green or pink pixels on the Windows desktop. At first I just assumed it was a driver issue. I had recently upgraded to the 52.16 drivers, so I tried using the previous 45.33 version. I still had the dots. The killer was when I went into my computer's BIOS and there were "blocks" randomly scattered.

I touched the card while this was happening and neither the card or heatsink were overly warm. The memory chips as well seemed to be cool enough. There was no obvious dust anywhere on the card.

I sent the card in under warranty and received a new card. I have had it for a few weeks now with no issues.

02-16-04, 05:35 PM
The green/blue/white/anycolor dots appearing are generally video-memory related. The 'hardware acceleration trick' in my opinion only shows that the card cannot run in full HW acceleration even in 2D and you prolly haven't noticed the artefacts in games yet because the whole screen was moving etc...
When my ti4200 started its long agony, it only showed some random 'noise' in 2D (mainly black pixels appearing in red). I guess there were artifacts in 3D too, but I had not noticed them yet. Then the dots became more and more noticeable and in two weeks the card was dead.
Bewaaare the green dots...


02-16-04, 05:37 PM
...or blue, pink, red, black, etc. :(

02-20-04, 10:33 PM
I had this problem a lot after a system memory change. I am almost positive it is corrupt system memory. try and see how fragmented your hard drive is too. I bought this new stick of 512 DDR ram, and put it in. weeks after having it in I noticed the dots while playing videos and looking at web images. sooner or later i couldn't install a lot of my games because intalls would become corrupt. confused I put back in my SDR ram and all my problems went away (with major performance decrease)... My dad wanted me to put the ram in his computer just to see if it'll work so the stick of ram didn't go to waste. so I did. everything was fine. but sooner or later, his hard drive was completely fragmented. pure red on the defrag screen. and after defragging it to all blue... 2 hours later it'd become all red again. took out the ram, everything back to normal... so in conclusion...

play around with the system ram.

btw I never overclocked anything..

02-20-04, 10:56 PM
It can be caused by system memory being bad. But, the easy check for system memory is a test application such as memtest86 which will reveal your problem right away. Still, most of the time the problem is coming from the video card memory indicating a too high of an overclock or, as mrsabidji alluded to, the card is dying.