For being such a powerful piece of hardware, my gaming rig has TONS of driver, compatibility, and software problems. I can’t really identify why except for a combination of bad luck, beta software, and Windows Vista.
Update I: 175.92 drivers come with NVidia PhysX software! I can’t wait to see if it matters to anything, ever.
Update II: After passing the Vista boot loader and the cool little OS loading progress bar, my system halts at a black screen, numlock fails to respond, and I’m a tad angry. I’m calling it the BlackSOD. It could be your death, so watch out.
Update III: Luckily, safe mode still works, so I’m able to walk around my system. Gonna take some time to download cleaning software, and see if I can’t get rid of every NVidia driver intertwined with my windows installation folders. I’m going to try using Guru3D’s Driver Sweeper software to make my life a little bit easier.
Update IV: Finally uninstalled all display drivers to the point where I could reboot my machine and successfully load Windows, which I’ll be calling the baseline.
Update V: Installed 175.89 forceware drivers, which brought back the BlackSOD. The uninstaller in Safe Mode brought me back to baseline.
Update VI: Okay, after reaching baseline, I was asked again if I wanted to install drivers from NVidia, and normally I had been saying “Ask again later.” This time, I said “Go ahead and install.” I’m not sure what it actually will install, but I guess I can check later.
Update VII: Got BlackSOD again, but this time I accidentally hit the power button instead of the reset button. I shit you not, the system booted up properly. I don’t know what the hell is going on here, but I don’t fucking like it.
Update VIII: I rebooted after that weird miracle occurrence, and now my system is exhibiting a true BSOD, message SYSTEM_SERVICE_ERROR, at nvlddmkm.dll. Fabulous. What the hell is it?
Update IX: After an uninstall, I didn’t go back to baseline, and I’m back to BlackSOD again. No power button tricks either, this thing’s dead in the water. I guess I’ll attempt to revert to the 175.19 official drivers from June.
Update X: As if by magic, my graphics cards now appear as Standard VGA Graphics Adapters. I may have achieved a clean slate? Yeah right. I’ll make a restore point just in case, and then run the setup for 175.19.
Final Update: A really detailed look through the Event Viewer showed that the NVIDIA Display Service couldn’t start because a dependency service failed. Since the system was waiting for that service to actually start up a window manager, it froze. I really had no idea how to fix this problem, so I checked to see if there were maybe any windows updates that would fix this problem. I last checked for updates last week, but that was before I had installed this new driver. Lo and behold, some updates were availale, and after installing them, the system started to behave as normal again. To me, this is a crap solution, but it’s late, and I’m going to bed.