A Year of Starcraft II

Shit Happens

And it always seems to happen to me.

As I got to the end of the second mission, maybe 20 minutes of game time in my first session of Starcraft II, I was presented with a kind of honking noise and white checkers across the screen.  I shut down the computer, let it sit for a bit and restarted.  And at the BIOS splash page I could tell something was wrong.  White lines across even that screen.  I turned it off again and checked everything.  Connections were fine, I even moved the graphics card to another slot.  There’s still something wrong.  Booting up into windows presents a screen with white lines about half an inch long and half an inch apart up and down the screen. They move as I move the cursor around.

Googling gets me these two results: one and two.  And the fact that the GTX 460 I got was an open box leads me to believe I should just return the card and get something else (as one of the posters in the link says his was an intermittent issue that he couldn’t replicate on demand, perhaps that is why my card was returned in the first place).

One option I am going to try, to at least get some game time in, is add some memory to the mac I am on now.  I think this might help me at least play the single player on low settings for a week or two until I can send this card in and get a new card.  I think I can get a hold of the memory tomorrow, so hopefully I will be back playing by then.

As promised, a picture of my horrible cable management on the first iteration of my so far ill fated build is here.

If anyone can point to something else that may be wrong, I will pretty much try anything (I will say that I cannot put it into another computer, as I don’t have another one around to try).

I am now going to watch some Day9 and streams for an hour and a half to at least try to fulfill the first day of my year of Starcraft II.

EDIT:  I was told to find out the temperatures of the computer and the processor cores are at 47, 48, 45 and 41 C respectively.


25 responses to “Shit Happens

  1. James June 9, 2011 at 3:16 am

    That’s unfortunate for you.

    I’m intrigued by this “honking” noise though. Was is from the speakers or from the computer itself?

  2. Widdershiny June 9, 2011 at 3:17 am

    Ah, that’s no good. Looking forward to this, by the way. It’d be great if you could get a stream going.

  3. pkvalagh007 June 9, 2011 at 3:22 am

    Check the temperature of your computer. Go to and download PC Wizard 2010. It has a sketchy name IMO, but is an amazing free program.

  4. Timo T June 9, 2011 at 3:31 am

    Are you certain that your mainboard is isolated from the back of the case? It looks like it is touching the case, but its hard to tell from this angle. But if it was, it wouldn’t start anyway, so disregard that 😀

  5. Jadis June 9, 2011 at 5:37 am

    My video card died and what happened to me is as I would boot the computer, white lines would go across the screen and the computer would crash when loading Windows. Sometimes, it would make it into Windows (but have graphical errors) and would crash pretty quickly upon doing anything. I bought a new video card and it fixed it. I just thought I would share my experience. Also, I’m going to add you as a friend on!

  6. Jadis June 9, 2011 at 5:40 am

    Sorry I wanted to add-on something to my comment.
    It definitely sounds like a video card issue to me! Your CPU temps are fine, and because you tried moving the card and it still glitched … yeah. Exchange it for a new one!

  7. marceuse June 9, 2011 at 6:33 am

    Such a bummer. I feel frustrated for you just reading!

    Incredibly interested in this project, though. +1 to all the wishes of success and fun =)

  8. zssb5tc9 June 9, 2011 at 6:34 am

    Are you sure you vid card is cooling properly. My EVGA GTX 460 was set at a solid 40% fan speed was getting artifacts / lockups a lot. I found and changed the setting to auto adjust and now no issues. It could just be a heat issue. What is the fan setup in that case.

  9. Jonathan Aldrich June 9, 2011 at 6:46 am

    Make sure you document how to do everything as well. What websites you used for tutorials and what programs you used. Link to everything so that we get a good flow of information.

    I am particularly interested in starting a stream so let us know how it goes.

  10. confuseduntheist June 9, 2011 at 7:26 am

    Good to have you here! (confuseduntheist speaking). It does seem like you’ll have to try to exchange the graphics card. The safest way is to borrow a card from another machine or a friend to see if things boot up OK. Hopefully, you purchased from a vendor like newegg or amazon with a great return policy.

    Also, after you’ve learned a bit, I’d be happy to be your practice partner every now and then.


  11. exhuma June 9, 2011 at 7:36 am

    I just came across this post… Welcome to your new hobby. I hope you get everything sorted out with your rig so you can have a nice and smooth play. And I wish you the best of luck with online gaming. It’s challenging. But if you sit through the first few defeats, you watch Day9 # 132, and keep on playing it’s a very rewarding experience 🙂

    From my experience, I found that after about 30-50 online games, the game will have determined your ranking quite well and the games will become more and more interesting from that point on. Before that, I was either steamrolled by the opponent, or, I was steamrolling him/her. Which is not *that* interesting 😉

  12. KjetilV June 9, 2011 at 8:03 am

    What the guy above me said. You need to screw in the “pillars” before you screw the motherboard to the case. See this pic:

    This is to prevent a Short circuit by the metal on the case.

  13. Ghost June 9, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Do you have any other spare video cards you can swap out to test with? Doesn’t have to be anything fancy just something known to work. If you have weird stuff showing up in the bios i think its the Video card. I just had to get mine RMA’ed a few weeks ago.

  14. hansmuff June 9, 2011 at 10:12 am

    The graphics card is toast. Skip open box items, people horribly abuse hardware and then ship it back for RMA. If you have the possibility to return it, do that ASAP.

  15. Willie Versteeg June 9, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    What kind of mac do you have? I do all my starcrafting on my Windows 7 partition of my 3-year-old MacBook Pro with no problems whatsoever (low-mid settings, which really isn’t a big deal). However, I tried running it on my OSX partition and it was unplayable. I have 2.4 GHz processor with 2gb RAM.

  16. buttonsmasher June 10, 2011 at 2:16 am

    I just built the same computer 😛 I guess you got the Newegg deal + Asus GTX 460? I don’t think the item was an open box. But anyways, you plugged the GPU into the wrong PCI E slot. In your picture, it has to be in the above PCI-E slot. You are plugged into the PCI-E x8 Slot not the x16 slot. Dunno if it matters, but see if that helps.

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