GNOME Bugzilla – Bug 579000
LiveCD won't display, video card fan died---any connection?
Last modified: 2009-09-25 14:45:44 UTC
Steps to reproduce:
1. Boot from LiveCD
2. Select (0) when given video option menu
This is quite bizarre but I'm filing it just in case there's a connection and not just a coincidence... I tried to run GParted from LiveCD on an HP Pavilion with a rather old monitor. At the second menu, I selected the default graphic mode (there's nothing in the documentation or anything to suggest I should have done anything different). The monitor displayed an error message "Frequency Out Of Range" and wouldn't display. Later, the machine started making awful clicking noises, and the service guy said that the video card fan had gone bad---the bearings had come loose or something. The computer itself was only 2 months old. This is most likely just a coincidence, but I'm filing it in case LiveCD's inability to determine the correct resolution on its own could have resulted in a situation where it makes the fan work too hard on some systems. I'm not a hardware guy so if this is just stupid I wouldn't know, but if it's a real possibility then you might not want to release a product that could damage someone's computer.
I just found this that might explain some things:
So I wonder if there are some special settings that HP includes with Vista on its machines, that also need to be performed on the LiveCD???
Should the GParted web site warn Pavilion users not to use LiveCD until this is fixed (or until HP fixes the video card issue)?
Thanks. I have put a warning on http://gparted.sourceforge.net/livecd.php.
If you know something we can use on Debian lenny to avoid that, please let us know.
The card with the problem was NVidia 9500 GS (912MB). I did a little searching but haven't yet found any info on what code is needed to work around the issue, but I'll keep looking.
I've looked into this a bit further. On this forum:
I saw this comment:
"I think what killed that fan is that when the computer starts, the
fan runs at insane speed (and noise) until the driver kicks in and
tells it to calm down. If it runs like that for long enough, it just
wears the bearings."
That would be consistent with the problem I had, if LiveCD just
doesn't have the correct driver on it, so that nothing ever told the
fan to slow down. So perhaps the solution is just to make sure the
correct driver is run?
The drivers appear to be at these sites: For 64-bit Linux:
For 32-bit Linux:
It's not precompiled for Debian, but the source is included, so I
presume it could be built.
I think I've reached the limit of my knowledge on this, though...
Thanks Adam for all of your research and the link on the forum.
I read through the very long forum thread and to me it appears that a new software driver did _not_ solve the fan problem.
It appears that early replacements of the card did not fix the fan noise problem. Later on, some people fixed the problem with hardware modifications. Still later on, replacements of the video card started eliminated the problem.
Hence I am inclined to think that this problem arose from a hardware problem in earlier NVIDIA 9500 GS video cards.
With this in mind, do you currently experience the loud fan noise with your computer?
If not, would you be willing to try the GParted Live CD again?
> Thanks Adam for all of your research and the link on the forum.
> I read through the very long forum thread and to me it appears that a new
> software driver did _not_ solve the fan problem.
> It appears that early replacements of the card did not fix the fan noise
> problem. Later on, some people fixed the problem with hardware modifications.
> Still later on, replacements of the video card started eliminated the problem.
> Hence I am inclined to think that this problem arose from a hardware problem in
> earlier NVIDIA 9500 GS video cards.
It does seem that earlier versions of this card had a defective fan.
In fact, when the video card was replaced, the repair person who
installed it said he thought the fan on the new card looked more
solid. My thinking was that although having the correct driver didn't
solve the problem, not having the correct driver could hasten a
breakdown; if it's true that "when the computer starts, the fan runs
at insane speed (and noise) until the driver kicks in and tells it to
calm down. If it runs like that for long enough, it just wears the
bearings", then it would seem that not having a driver that tells it
to calm down at all would wear the bearings down much more quickly,
causing failure much sooner; I think that's what happened in my case.
Yes, it's probably true that computers with the bad fan were going to
fail eventually. Just not that quickly.
Part of the reason I pursued this was that I don't know what kind of
driver currently exists on LiveCD---if it's a generic driver that is
expected to work with any video card, then it wouldn't be taking any
special steps that may be necessary with a particular video card such
as this one. If that's silly, sorry; I'm not at all an expert on
> With this in mind, do you currently experience the loud fan noise with your
No, not with the new video card, but that isn't a conclusive indicator
of anything. I didn't experience any loud fan noise with the previous
video card either, until I started trying LiveCD.
> If not, would you be willing to try the GParted Live CD again?
Not if I can find a different way---and I think I may have found one
that involves doing some partitioning under Vista, and then running
GParted under Ubuntu without having to dismount the root. Sorry, I'd
rather not risk the same breakage again if I don't have to.
Thank you for the quick response Adam.
If you do not wish to re-try the GParted Live CD then I can certainly understand. From reading the forums it sounds like it was frustrating for many users dealing with HP regarding this problem.
I did find another forum that outlined a cause for the problem:
"The problem is not related to the fan spinning at a certain speed,
it is caused by the fan scratching against the sides of the fan cage"
On the driver front, I believe GParted Live uses a generic driver to maintain maximum compatibility with all video cards. As such I expect it would not have code specific to the NVidia 9500 GS.
Taking a different tact on this problem, have you booted any other Live CD's? Perhaps Ubuntu, or the System Rescue CD?
If so did you have any problems using these other Live CD's?
Regarding the fan scratching against the sides of the fan cage: I had also read that in the forum. In my case, the repair person did tell me that the bearings had come loose, and that was the cause of the noise. I don't doubt that the cause was different for other people---it sounds like this fan had multiple defects.
In answer to your last question: this is the only time I tried booting any other CD's. (I installed Ubuntu via Wubi and thus didn't need to use a CD.)
Okay, so no other Linux Live CD's to verify with.
Hmm... thinking about it, if the video card driver was the problem, then booting from a Windows CD would also cause the problem because these CD's would not have the special driver for the NVidia 9500 GS.
Have you tried booting from a Windows XP, or Windows Vista CD?
Also Steven, if you are listening, would you be able to answer the question about which video driver the Live CD uses?
Actually the video driver is decided by X.org automatically if the default mode is chosen. The video drivers included in GParted live are located in path /usr/lib/xorg/modules/drivers/.
I guess either video driver vesa or nv is used for NVidia 9500 GS.
If the new Pavilions are anything like my older Pavilion then I'm quite sure it's acpi related. I have a pavilion a635w that consistently spits out the following in my syslog:
May 28 14:59:24 trench kernel: [ 391.333105] ACPI: Unable to turn cooling device [f6c18f18] 'on'
I receive this output every six seconds. And I've had this problem for well over a year, on three different versions of Ubuntu. Every live disc I have seems to conjure the same.
Editing my menu.lst to include 'acpi=off' upon boot used to kill the error-output in syslog but I've had no luck with that since my upgrade to Jaunty. On live discs, in the past, I've been able to clear the problem by adding the same 'acpi=off' to the boot command line.
Also relevant here is that the fan *is on*. It's always been on. Upon booting it spins very fast, and loud, but it settles down into a consistent speed as X begins to load.
All of that said, I've been using live discs all day today to attempt some recovery work. I'm about to download, and use, the gparted live disc. Reporting back in after having doing so.
ACPI confirmation of sorts.
Loading the GParted LiveCD was not fun. The first menu, boot prompt, was fine. I chose the default. As it booted I saw many instances of "ACPI: Unable to turn cooling device 'on'" as the boot text scrolled. Once booted, now presented with the second menu, I began scrolling with arrow keys through the options and then a huge graphical glitch occurred as the "ACPI: Unable to turn cooling device 'on'" error began to appear - overlaying itself on top of the menu items. Very bizarre. It wasn't consistent in where it appeared - sometimes to the left of my screen, sometimes right, sometimes centered. Once there, they didn't disappear. And they kept appearing, ultimately covering every menu item in the list. Finally I had to shutdown via the power button on the machine.
Yet my fan [both, actually] continued running the entire time.
I don't have a NVidia card though. My graphics are, unfortunately, coming from the motherboard. My guess is Pavilion users are experiencing the same errors as myself, only the NVidia cards are keeping X from freaking out.
Which version of GParted live are you using ?
grabbed from: http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?group_id=115843&package_id=271779
Would this be an issue with an HP Pavilion dv5000 laptop? I believe it has an ATI graphics card in it.
I just uploaded another GParted live (0.4.5-3), which comes with slightly newer kernel (2.6.29-4 -> 2.6.29-5). Maybe you can give it a try ?
I just tried 0.4.5-3 with interesting results. It's not fixed, but there were noticeable differences this time around. First, after the boot screen, during 'default' boot, it stopped and told me it was unable to find a proper video mode, offering me a selection of video modes to choose from. I didn't understand the video modes presented (VGA, I should have written them down) so I opted to "scan" for additional modes. Additional modes were all BIOS video modes. Without knowing which to choose I decided to risk picking a random VGA mode. Booting then continued, at which point I saw several of the "could not turn cooling device 'on'" errors again. Once booted, I was at the GParted menu. I let it sit idle for a few seconds and the first cooling device error popped up, as previously described. Although this time it never covered the actual menu. They popped up to the left and right of it, but never on top. Probably I could have continued using the GParted disc but it was at this point I decided to just reboot the system and report back with this info.
I might try to go a bit deeper into it later tonight.
And again, the fan is definitely on. Yet Jaunty still tells me otherwise as well. It might be a fan-speed control issue, but I've no way to monitor that (that I know of) being the system believes it's off. Confusing.
Did you mean when you run GParted live, actually the VGA card fan is _NOT_ on. However, with Ubuntu Jaunty, the VGA card fan is on correctly ?
This is related to this issue IMO...
I have an old Ghost 2003 CD I run on my desktop machine to create HD images.
It is an E2200, with an nVidia 8600. This a custom built machine.
I noticed that the fan runs at full speed the entire time I am running the Ghost CD to create the HD image. I realize this probably isn't good for my fan, but since I do this rarely I'm hoping it won't hurt anything in the long run.
So, I'm guessing you guys are right in the sense that something has to send a signal to the vid card to not rip the fan at full speed.
I've noticed when I boot Windows XP that the fan starts out at full speed and at some point in the boot process I notice that the signal gets sent to the vid card and the fan slows down to a more normal speed. I do realize that the fan speed is based on the temp of the vid card because during the summer I can hear the fan running a bit faster than during the winter months.
I'm not sure if this really helps you guys out or not, but I hope it is of use in some way.
I just downloaded the gparted CD today, so I haven't had a chance to run it on an of my computers yet. I will report back with what happens on the desktop with the nVidia card.
I have an HP elite Pavillion m9340f (6g ram, 64 bit Vista) with the invidia GEForce 9500 GS card factory installed. HP has had to send me two replacement fans for this machine. It took me a while, but I convinced them to send the card to me to install. The problem with both was the cooling fan bearing. It started making a little noise, then got louder and louder 'till I was sure it was going to fail. The first replacement lasted about six months. The new one has been in for about a month. The technician (after a lot of go-'rounds) agreed to send the second one, and before he hung up he said his supervisor wanted to know if my fan was blue or black. Both the original fan and the first replacement were black. The new one is blue. I'm guessing that the new blue one has had the problem solved.
I'm writing about this to let you know that the fan has problems without dual booting, as I haven't done that yet. I set up a separate drive for xp a while back, but ran into a glitch and gave up for a while. Planned on giving it a try again and saw this 'glitch' posted on the GParted site.. Go figure. I'm going to look into it some more before going for the dual boot.
Thanks for sharing that. Please keep us posted.
Thanks. However, when you mean "the fan has problems without dual booting", did you mean the fan has problems with dual booting ? Normally the machine comes with single boot, not dual boot, right ? So normally with single XP on the machine, it should run without any problem.. Right ? I am confused...
I have not yet installed my copy of Windows XP on my machine, and I've had
to replace the fan twice. I believe it's possible that the dual booting may
have had nothing to do with the problem, rather it was just a coincidence.
I want to do more research to make sure that I'm right before trying it.
In reference to this general thread, I have been having a range of problems with Jaunty on a Compaq Presario (V6000 I think. I'm at work and the machine is at home.), mostly related to wireless, which I got working via a driver but then lost for some reason when I went to update. Now I can't update because the partition isn't large enough. I'd like to use gpart, but this machine was purchased after the HP-Compaq merger, so I'm concerned the same issues might be present. If I can use a cable for internet, does the download present the same problems as the LiveCD? Thanks for enlightening a total newbie!
The problem about video card fan die is not caused by GParted program itself. It's because the programs comes with Debian, which is GParted live based on. Therefore if you are not using GParted live, I mean if you use your own GNU/Linux, and you have no problem with the fan and X window, you can use the GParted program. It won't make your fan die.
(In reply to comment #19)
> This is related to this issue IMO...
> I have an old Ghost 2003 CD I run on my desktop machine to create HD images.
> It is an E2200, with an nVidia 8600. This a custom built machine.
> I noticed that the fan runs at full speed the entire time I am running the
> Ghost CD to create the HD image. I realize this probably isn't good for my
> fan, but since I do this rarely I'm hoping it won't hurt anything in the long
> C ya,
> Uncle Chad
This apparent bug has me puzzled.
Surely a fan should be able to run quite happily at full speed, I was under the impression that slowing the fan was merely a power saving function anyway.
Has this been confirmed as a problem or is it a coincidence.
I have an HP Pavilion 2070eg Laptop with an Radeon HD 4650. Just for people who got frightened of this bug report: I tried it and GParted worked for me with the current version 0.4.5
However, my personal idea is that this is more a "hardware bug" (no living one though ;-) ) than a software sided bug.
Thank you Geoff Lane, MrRecorder, and many others for your additional comments or testing.
I believe this to be a hardware problem, and not a software bug. A fan should be able to run full speed continuously. In fact having the fan run at full speed 100% of the time might be required in some hot climates to prevent the video card from overheating.
If you are in agreement Steven, we should probably close this bug.
same problem here :(
I ran GParted from LiveCD on my old PC-desktop (Pentium4 + NVidia GeForce 6200).
I started GParted with the first option (default) and monitor (LCD wide-screen) displayed an error message "Frequency Out Of Range".
Well, I had to reset because I couldn't saw anything :D, and then I tried again with "VESA" graphics mode and it worked, I remember that I partitioned my hard disk and and some things more (about 30 min), then I shutdown the live session, and turned off my pc.
All is fine, but the next day, when I turned on my pc I noted something "rare", like when you play a game for a lot of time and your pc seems stressed or overheated, so I ran EVEREST software and the sensor cooler of NVidia Geforce 6200 marked 90 C°, so I turned off pc immediately, wait 15min, turned on again and the same happened, in minutes got up again to 80-90 C°. I didn't do anything, kept using my pc and two days later my graphic card died, (NVidia GeForce 6200 gets burned).
This is to confirm that the fan noise is definitely a hardware problem if you are using NVidia GEForce 9500 GS video card, and not the use of GParted. HP directed me to this website:
It explains that the black fans are bad, and they will send replacements (blue casing) if you return the bad one, no charge.
(per my previous comments #20 and 22)
I think the gparted download page should be modified, indicating that just HP Pavillion with NVidia Geforce 9500 GS have this problem.
I successfully ran GParted in a HP Pavilion dv2000 with NVidia Geforce 8400M GS, without any cooler noise.
My native language:
Eu acho que a página de download do GParted deveria ser modificada, indicando que somente HP Pavilion com Nvidia Geforce 9500GS possui esse problema.
Eu consegui perfeitamente rodar o GParted num HP Pavilion dv2000 com Nvidia Geforce 8400M GS, sem qualquer barulho de ventoínha.
Thanks. However, we mentioned that "on some types of HP Pavilion machines", which does not mean all HP Pavilion machines.
The conservative approach was wise, but since it's not gparted at fault, there's no particular reason to call out this hardware recall on the web page anymore (it casts gparted in a suspicious light).
I am inclined to agree that this appears to be a hardware fault. As such the problem is not limited to any one software application (e.g., GParted), or any one GNU/Linux distribution (e.g, GParted Live), or any other bootable CD.
I agree with Bill that we can probably remove the warning on the web page, though I defer to Steven as he maintains the GParted Live distribution.
(In reply to comment #0)
If you have a Nvidia GeForce 9500 GS, it's the cause. It's not a bug with bugzilla. HP have made a recall on those cards recently, because they make the clicking noise. I'm one of those customers too. I got my new card which is lightly modified revision B. It's so silent since then. It has no link with GParted :)
I am happy to remove that, since it's hardware problem.