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Solved: display pixelated when booting to linux (? not into Windows)

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by 3dogs4me, Jan 19, 2011.

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  1. 3dogs4me

    3dogs4me Thread Starter

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    Hi - I am new so am hoping I am in the correct place.

    I am starting to work for a call center from home.
    I log into their network by booting from a DVD.
    Once I am in, my display is all colorful pixels and I can barely make out display.
    Their technician suggested 3 things
    1 - update my drivers. I am hardware scared, so I went to the mfg website and followed their how-to video ... it looked like I had the same drivers when I checked the properties. (uninstalled from add/remove programs anything to do with ATI and installed from their site) - nothing changed. So I surfed some more and paid for Driver Detective - nothing changed (except a smack to my credit card).
    2 - I was asked what color my monitor cable was and I advised blue - they said that was VGA and I should change to DVI ... I don't have a clue why really and they are a bit expensive to "test" to see if that is the issue
    3- was told that the ATI Radion 1100 series was compatible with their DVD (or a BFG 6200 le 256 mb pci ?) - I have 3200 series - don't exactly know what that means, but I can't find such a thing at Staples ... if I order one, again a bit expensive to "test" to see if that is the issue

    I live in the middle of nowhere Nova Scotia & anything I purchase has to be shipped in - not many options available to me and when I ask folks, I just don't understand the answer, and if i have to install haardware I am pretty scared. The only experience I have in opening the case is to clean any dust out

    I am GUESSING that it is booting to Linux, I really don't know

    Would anyone be able to guide me better?
    I put my computer specs in when I registered, but I have a ATI Radeon HD 3200 Graphics card

    thanks
     
  2. 3dogs4me

    3dogs4me Thread Starter

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    Me again with all of my specs:
    Tech Support Guy System Info Utility version 1.0.0.1
    OS Version: Microsoft® Windows Vista™ Home Premium , Service Pack 2, 32 bit
    Processor: AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 6000+, x64 Family 15 Model 67 Stepping 3
    Processor Count: 2
    RAM: 2814 Mb
    Graphics Card: ATI Radeon HD 3200 Graphics , 256 Mb
    Hard Drives: C: Total - 145094 MB, Free - 91832 MB; D: Total - 145141 MB, Free - 85974 MB;
    Motherboard: Acer, RS780HVF, ,
    Antivirus: Microsoft Security Essentials, Updated and Enabled

    -------------------------
    would it be cheaper to buy a new monitor? it is the monitor that is the issue do you think?
     
  3. leroys1000

    leroys1000 Banned

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    Which linux distribution are you using?
    Loading drivers is not really useful for a live disribution as it resets
    every time you restart the computer.
     
  4. 3dogs4me

    3dogs4me Thread Starter

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    I am not sure what you mean by linux distribution

    Maybe if I set the scenario it may explain itself (?)

    I put the DVD to boot (instead of going to Windows) - it takes me to a screen to log in - then I am on their system ... that is all I know. I only know of the word Linux because I saw it flashing by while it was loading up

    I just got back from Staples, hauling in my whole system.
    I do not have a connection port (?) for a DVI so that gets that out of the way.

    I was told that a compatible graphics card to the DVD was ATI Radeon 1100 series, and the technician told me that was over 5 years old and I wouldn't be able to get one (said that mine was better) - he also didn't know if that card would be compatible with my Acer - I tried contacting Acer to find out and they won't tell me unless I pay $99. for tech support - found nothing listed on their site to help

    So I have been trying to find an old driver for the card I have - no luck their either.

    I am just at a loss. The help desk that I am connecting to will go no further that making sure I can sign onto their network and are quite firm about this. I have no idea what is on the DVD and of course it is proprietary so I couldn't take it with me for tech support.


    I just wanna cry
     
  5. leroys1000

    leroys1000 Banned

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    A distribution is the version of linux.
    There are a lot of different ones like suse,ubuntu,knoppix and so on.
    Hard to try to help without knowing.
    Might watch as the computer boots and see if it displays options
    at the bottom of the screen.
    If it shows a key to press to run in vga mode,try pressing that key.
     
  6. 3dogs4me

    3dogs4me Thread Starter

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    I was able to catch Linux ubuntu 2.6.24
    ... does that help?

    (didn't see an option for vga mode)

    thanks
    :)
     
  7. leroys1000

    leroys1000 Banned

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    Might try tapping F4 as the disk is booting and see if you
    get an option for safe display mode to select.
    Don't know if that will work if they customized that ubuntu disk.
    Your ati 3200 graphics is onboard video on the motherboard.
    Shouldn't be causing problems,but you never know.
    From what little I can find on that motherboard,it does have
    a pci exprees X16 slot,so maybe installing something like a radeon 2400
    or something similar would help.
    That should run OK with the built in ATI or radeon driver.
    There should be a model number on the back of the computer tower.
    Can you post that?
    You want to make sure to get the right size card.
    Some are standard atx size for regular cases and some are low profile for
    slim cases.
     
  8. 3dogs4me

    3dogs4me Thread Starter

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    Hi again, and thanks for your patience

    The model number on the sticker reads: AspireM3200
    just below number on the sticker reads: AM3200-ED600A 2008/04/15

    When this disc loads there are options to go into Safe Mode and a couple of other options (kernel?) ... but no matter which option I choose the resulting display is the same. It is definitely a customized disc.

    when you say that my 3200 graphics is onboard video on the motherboard - does that mean that I can't change it? Does this mean that there isn't a "card"? (sorry very hardware ignorant)

    I spoke to the company's tech support again today.
    Tech Support told me that I do NOT want a high end graphics card and that mine is probably too much for the DVD.

    I can see the modules that load, but it is kind of like running windows for "performance" and everything is jagged and kind of choppy. Their Tech Support said that this may degrade further as I go along, so I have until Tuesday to resolve or I get booted out of class until I get it resolved.

    ----------------------
    When I run this site System Info tool, I get the following (if this helps):

    Tech Support Guy System Info Utility version 1.0.0.1
    OS Version: Microsoft® Windows Vista™ Home Premium , Service Pack 2, 32 bit
    Processor: AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 6000+, x64 Family 15 Model 67 Stepping 3
    Processor Count: 2
    RAM: 2814 Mb
    Graphics Card: ATI Radeon HD 3200 Graphics , 256 Mb
    Hard Drives: C: Total - 145094 MB, Free - 91810 MB; D: Total - 145141 MB, Free - 86111 MB;
    Motherboard: Acer, RS780HVF, ,
    Antivirus: Microsoft Security Essentials, Updated and Enabled
     
  9. 3dogs4me

    3dogs4me Thread Starter

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    I have another question ... if I purchase another computer, what "text' do I look for to ensure that I have the appropriate display end result. There are a few sales on at Staples, but I am unsure what to look for in specifications (again hardware illiterate)

    thanks
     
  10. leroys1000

    leroys1000 Banned

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    You shouldn't need a new computer to run that disk.
    It looks like your case is a full width ATX case,so you will
    want a full size video card,not a low profile one.
    I suggested a radeon 2400 series because it is an older series card,
    but is still supported by the built in ubuntu radeon driver.
    The 3200 is built into the motherboard,but there is a X16 pci
    express expansion slot to add a dedicated video card.
    If you can get stuff from ebay,then this could do the trick.
    It is less than $20 to find out.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ATI-RADEON-HD-2400-PRO-256MB-DDR2-VIDEO-CARD-PCI-E-X16-/180614427588?pt=PCC_Video_TV_Cards&hash=item2a0d7573c4
    It has low power requirements,so a power supply upgrade shouldn't be needed.

    If you can't do ebay,what other sites do you have available
    to order from at you location?
    Staples is a bit expensive.
     
  11. 3dogs4me

    3dogs4me Thread Starter

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    Thanks for all of your help leroys1000
    I did find that part on ebay, and was about to order when I was lucky enough to find a pc tech near me. This was a surprise due to the middle-of-nowhere area I leave in :)
    He was really good to me. He tried several old & new graphics cards but nothing would work. He tried the DVD on a few of his machines, one just 2 weeks old, and the dvd worked perfectly on every machine but mine.
    After much huff & puff, and considering other issues I have with this machine (ie I have to run start up repair every 2nd time I turn it on - many times get other errors as well), I have decided to have a new computer built for me. He also has a suspicion that my hard drive is failing, and I just don't have the time nor money to test this and test that. software? hardware? motherboard? There is just too much it & miss stuff going on to waste anymore time on it.
    So - thanks for all of your efforts. I am going to back this thing up and wait for its replacement.
    Lesson learned Acer = blah.
    Yet another of my computers for the donation pile :)

    yes staples is expensive! and the tech was kind of wiggy :/
     
  12. leroys1000

    leroys1000 Banned

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    Glad you found someone that could do some tests for you without
    having to buy parts.
     
  13. 3dogs4me

    3dogs4me Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2011
    Messages:
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    other than the dvd boot-graphics issue, and start up problems, this machine is okay I guess.
    I have found someone to donate it to ... my husband :)
    I am really excited about my new computer coming!
    Thanks leroys1000 for popping in here to try & help me.
     
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