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My aunt gave me her old MacBook Pro, but unfortunately it has a few issues. The main problem is that lines appears after I use it with applications that heavily depend on graphics, but they don't necessarily appear in that window.

I also figured out that these lines appear with the windows, so the cursor goes over the lines, and menus and other windows also overlap them. If I take a screenshot of the window by itself, no lines appear.

It seems obvious to me that this is a driver-related problem. Unfortunately, there are no updates or anything for the driver. At first I tried asking for a solution at Apple's forum, but they were only able to figure out that "something is wrong with the video card".

I checked the MacBook with an Ubuntu disk, and the screen seemed OK.

I've uploaded some photos to my Picasa account to show the symptoms.

Recently, I've also noticed the screen flickering when using applications that need high performance graphics, like games.

Also, the MacBook Pro came with Mac OS X Tiger, but she upgraded it to Leopard (she only brought the Tiger disk with her.)

What can I do with this?

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Do the lines move when you move the windows? Have you tried reinstalling the system (keeping or restoring applications and user profiles) – Daniel Beck Apr 16 '11 at 18:22
As I remember, the lines moves with the windows. I did not tried reinstalling the system, since I don't have this version of installation disk; I have an earlier one. (I'm embarrassed how many spelling mistakes I made. :S) – Adam L. S. Apr 18 '11 at 7:54

If it was a driver issue, everyone with a mac book pro would be having this issue. It could be (however unlikely) that your hard drive is in bad shape and happened to corrupt some portion of the driver. You could check the S.M.A.R.T status of the hard drive if you like.

It sounds more likely to be a heat issue to me. If you remove the bottom panel (eight screws), you can easily check to make sure all the fans work. Also make sure the heat sinks are not clogged with dust.

Maybe try keeping it extra cool with some additional fans blowing across the bottom to see if the issue goes away.

By the way, did you take those screen shots with an external camera or did you use the software on the computer? If they don't show up in print screens, it could be a monitor issue. Perhaps try hooking up a spare monitor?

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Riiight. The system crashed several times, so it is possible, also there seems to be some heating problems as well, and the pads, that hold it away for a little distance from the desk is missing. It is showing up with full screen screen shots, but not on windowed screen shot. I'll try this, and write the results here. This was more helpful, than just "its a video card problem". – Adam L. S. Apr 18 '11 at 7:48

I experienced a similar issue with my old Lenovo Thinkpad. However the lines are from end to end of the monitor and do not cover just a window. They got worse over time and were never visible on a secondary external monitor.
So, I guess in my case this is an aging issue. I hope that this is not the case with your MacBook, but it seems to me quite similar.

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