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I have a Sony VAIO VGN-AR61MR laptop with an NVIDIA 8400M GT video card.

It has Windows 7 (originally Windows Vista was installed)

Few weeks ago video acceleration stopped to work. Its video is recognized as VGA. When I install NVIDIA drivers downloaded from NVIDIA website it tells me there is no compatible hardware.

Install NVidia driver

Device Manager

enter image description here

All 3D apps stopped to work. I tried many things except a Windows re-install. It would be hard to get all software installed back.

UPDATE

I was able to install driver from Sony UK website. There is Vista 32-bit and it worked on Windows 7 32-bit as well. It improved the performance but I am still willing to install original NVIDIA drivers. They do not install with the same error.

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did you try to do that automatic driver update, and not that manual selection atleast once? –  Sickest Sep 22 '13 at 18:51
    
Yes. It was first what I did. –  Max Sep 22 '13 at 18:54
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how old is this laptop? –  Sickest Sep 22 '13 at 18:56
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@Max You said you've tried other driver versions. The one on the screenshot is fairly old. Have you tried version 327.23? –  happy_soil Sep 22 '13 at 19:00
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Check the BIOS if it sees the video card. If it doesn't, then chances are that it's malfunctioned like @Sickest said. –  happy_soil Sep 23 '13 at 9:00

3 Answers 3

up vote 2 down vote accepted

IF you see blue lines not blue screen. Then it is common problem with with VAIO laptops with NVIDIA video.

You have to re-place GPU or re-weld, re-ball it.

There is a number of vendors on eBay who offer such service

http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_odkw=VAIO+re-balling&_osacat=0&_from=R40&_trksid=p2045573.m570.l1313.TR0.TRC0.H0.XVGN-AR61MR+reballing&_nkw=VGN-AR61MR+reballing&_sacat=0

Read about problem that GPU. One vendor on ebay had a nice photo with micrscope. It showed GPU legs. They are not weld well enough and most of these models are onverheating and burning legs.

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I'm pretty sure your video card hardware has malfunctioned, if you've tried a number of drivers and the laptop being that old. Video card driver don't just randomly disappear like that.

you could try to find a nvidia driver cleaner, where it finds any scattered files or drivers and removes them, then try installing again, but i doubt that's going to work.

your last resort is to reinstall windows and see if maybe windows is corrupted somehow. or revert to an older system resort point if you have that activated.

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That's no hardware issue or malfunction. The hardware simply isn't supported by the reference drivers. –  Mario May 4 at 7:51

You can't use the official/reference drivers since those notebooks aren't supported. This is no hardware issue or malfunction.

From the official driver notes under "Additional Information" (emphasis mine):

Exceptions:

  1. Notebooks supporting Hybrid Power technology are not supported (NVIDIA Optimus technology is supported).
  2. The following Sony VAIO notebooks are included in the Verde notebook program: Sony VAIO F Series with NVIDIA GeForce 310M, GeForce GT 330M, GeForce GT 425M, GeForce GT 520M or GeForce GT 540M. Other Sony VAIO notebooks are not included (please contact Sony for driver support).
  3. Fujitsu notebooks are not included (Fujitsu Siemens notebooks are included).
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