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Everything was working fine until yesterday, a video game crashed in the middle of a game. I couldn't restart it because Steam claimed it's still running, so I rebooted. But it didn't start up.

It was stuck at that moment where the screen turns off and back on during boot sequence. This time, it never came back on. Repeated several times and it's always the same. I managed to boot in safe mode and disable video card from Device Manager (I have a second, integrated Intel GPU in this laptop), after which the regular boot completed successfully, but I cannot enable video card now, because when I do, the computer freezes a few seconds later.

Already tried automatic boot repair, system restore (it failed), reinstalling drivers for both GPUs and updating BIOS. I don't know how to proceed with diagnosing the root cause. I'd like to avoid reinstalling OS if possible.

Specs:

  • Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575G-53VG
  • OS: Windows 10 Home 64-bit
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-6200U
  • Integrated GPU: Intel HD Graphics 520
  • Dedicated GPU: NVIDIA GeForce 940MX

Boot log: https://pastebin.com/hJ9heypy

First part is with NVIDIA enabled, hangs up and the log ends with a dozen null bytes. Second part is with NVIDIA disabled, boot completes successfully.

The issue is both at boot (when NVIDIA GPU is turned on during boot) and at runtime (when I enable NVIDIA GPU from Device Manager). Any way to debug the moment the computer hangs up in either scenario?

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    Sounds like your video card is damaged. However, you can always try installing the latest drivers to see if that helps. – I say Reinstate Monica Oct 15 '17 at 22:37
  • @TwistyImpersonator it didn't. Is there a way to diagnose if it's hardware issue for sure without replacing the GPU (which is quite hard to do in laptop)? – Xirdus Oct 15 '17 at 23:01
  • That is difficult. I'd try different driver versions, another OS (live CD), and different settings for your video card. If you consistently experience failures, I would consider that your diagnostic results. – I say Reinstate Monica Oct 16 '17 at 1:21
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Windows 10 64-bit is confirmed unstable Operating System with NVIDIA hardware. The only thing you can do with this situation is to roll down (downgrade) to Windows 32-bit or to Windows 8.1.

I do not know when Microsoft will recognize that their driver infrastructure is faulty.

I have NVIDIA one piece and it just does not run under Win10, incompatible. I tried all versions of drivers, even ones which were made for Win8.1. It seems the fault is not in the drivers, but in Windows driver infrastructure itself. They completely messed up with their driver loading and execution of graphics code.

Framebuffer code is running fine under Win10 though, you can still use Basic Driver supplied with Win10 (software rendering).

PS. As to about your intentions to debug the drivers by yourself, it does not worth. Because all you can check by yourself is mainly memory and framebuffer parts, but the problem is not in those. The problem is buried somewhere in acceleration codes. Debugging closed source driver's acceleration codes does not worth it in any way. Much simpler idea is to simply run basic driver because it offers everything you need from the server point of view. Of cause video games won't be possible unless you somehow install Windows Driver Kit and write new driver with acceleration.

PS2. Writing a driver under Windows Driver Kit does not worth also, because there is no possibility someone can have all technical information. Largest open source video driver Nouveau is mostly built by reverse-engineering, not by following technical documentation. If someone requires to access NVIDIA's GPU, the best possible choice I think is to use Nouveau, because of its fault tolerance and bug free environment accessing GPU's computing power will be more effective. With somewhat lower frame-per-second count it's even possible to run graphics heavy applications on Linux.

Solution summary: 1. Linux only or other version of Windows. 2. Other graphics card (AMD, Intel Xeon Knight's Corner etc).

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