This is a long thread so i could be gathering info improperly but here goes:
It appears that this is an nVidia card that is having an issue on an HP system. Most if not all HP systems I've experienced have onboard graphics can we revert to this through Bios or perhaps by booting with a monitor plugged into the integrated VGA port in order to get into windows and roll back this offending driver.
Also I'm not seeing anywhere that the OP mentioned an Nvidia update so perhaps this isn't a driver issue but a failed piece of physical hardware?
Thanks to both [Yes, I did have all the updates I knew of.!]. I thought I'd let you know the state of play, also in case it helps anyone else...
I researched the problem more after the last postings and discovered that it is indeed a huge problem and far more wide ranging than I first found: apparently, all NVIDIA GeForce 84 and 86 graphics cards are faulty (I have an 8400 GS). Several manufacturers have been caught out with these and have got into negotiations with NVIDIA, eg. HP, Dell, Sony. If you have an HP Slimline PC (I don't), you can have a FREE replacement if yours goes wrong within 12 months after the warranty expires, uptil December 31st 2009. You can get driver updates now BUT - and it's a big BUT - the driver is there to speed up the fan rate to stop the card overheating and so now those with this update have fans working virtually constantly and full speed - with all that precipitates - and which also keeps the cards going until they're out of warranty....!
To solve my problem, at least for now, I have removed the card all together and am currently just using the inbuilt VGA graphics adapter, and all is working fine - and for normal stuff and iPlayer type use, the quality of graphics is fine (I've not bothered to try a game). The 8400GS card is now a bottom of the range card costing ~Ã‚Â£27 but now comes with a three year warranty(!) (it was Ã‚Â£200 and the high end of the mid range cards when I bought it 18 mths ago, but, as we all know, technology moves on at a huge pace). SO, I'm codging on whether just to buy a new 8400 for less than Ã‚Â£30 knowing that if it does fail I'll be covered for 3 years - by which time my PC will be nearly 5 years old - [but will the fan speed cause unwanted repercussions], or to buy a better one? I do play games but of the Riven/Tunguska/Broken Sword type, not the kill 'em blood and guts type games , so I don't need a mega performance one.
If anyone's got any recommendations on a new card for my setup, I'd be pleased to hear..
HP Pavilion a6250.uk Desktop PC Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium 32 Service Pack 2
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
Intel Viiv; Intel G33 express chipset
Standard: 3 GB; Memory type: DDR2-SDRAM; Memory slots: 4 DIMM sockets
SATA 3G; 500 GB; 7200 rpm
If you are not getting any solution for your problem on your own then it doesn't mean your computer is unusable. you can consult to some Repair center. In present scenario there are many online computer service available that can diagnose and repair virtually any problem you are experiencing.
Now that would best started in a new thread really,... to save confusion...
As to the subject you mentioned CJC, I remember the articles at the time it was happening..
First Nvidia wouldn't admit there was a problem and then it became apparent that the 'bumps' on the bottom of the graphics chip were cracking.These are used to connect the chip to the substrate... This was happening in laptops far more because of their high heat cycle. A pc is only switched on or off a couple of times a day if that, where as a laptop is continually being switched on or off.. This constant heating and cooling played havoc with the batch of chips you mentioned (basically the 8400 series). One fix was a bios download which altered the fan speed but this just used up the battery more... Eventually, the truth was out and so was the compensation...
If your really after a new card, the 4850 would probably suit you? Plus it's cheap too..