Monitor has a thin red line on boot up

Do you have a question? Post it now! No Registration Necessary.  Now with pictures!

Threaded View

Until recently, the only symptom has been a thin-red vertical line, showing
in the middle of the crt monitor, when shutting Win2k down.

I have an ***Radeon 8500 deluxe*** video card, with a way-too-heavy Zalman
heatsink and fan (ZD80???).  An Asus A7v333 mobo with AMD2200 cpu.

Occasionally I have had to reseat or push the video card back into its slot,
as gravity and the heatsink are pulling the video card out of its AGP slot.
I've even made stilts for the card to keep it in place, which has helped.

*********Here's the current problem*********
I took the video card out to reseat it today.  After I re-inserted the card,
I don't get a POST beep anymore but I do get a colorful little vertical line
on the monitor, for an instant, when booting up.  (Typically this has been
resolved in the past by reseating the video card or pushing it back into its
AGP slot.)

I've tried using another monitor and video card in the AGP slot.  Same

I don't have a spare PCI video card and I can't test my video card on
another system, (in case air-brushing it also caused another problem), as
the heatsink is too large to fit into my other PC's.

I tried reseating the RAM, as perhaps forcing the video card into the
motherboard time after time has caused some warping of the motherboard,
although the mobo is supported, where the AGP slot is.

I haven't reseated the CPU.  I haven't removed all the cards and reinserted
them one at a time.

I am extremely disappointed with the large video heatsink, as it has
continued to pull my video card out of the AGP slot far too many times,
though the cooling has been impressive.

Should I try extracting all the cards and RAM and re-insert, one component
at a time?

If I reseat the CPU, then is my 6 month old tube of ARCTIC silver 5 up to
the job?  (Not always stored vertically.)

I'll also have to find out how to remove my Thermaltake Volcano 7 heatsink
and fan and re-install that, on the Web.

Thanks for reading my rantings.


Re: Monitor has a thin red line on boot up

On Wed, 12 Oct 2005 20:56:17 +1000, "Darren J"

Quoted text here. Click to load it

You might consider getting a different heatsink.  Radeon
8500 wasn't all that hot-running, any old Pentium 1, socket
7 'sink strapped on should suffice then if the fan is too
loud, put something quieter on there or use one of the
myriad methods of fan-speed reduction.

Quoted text here. Click to load it

This is quite unique, I would wonder if the AGP slot
contacts have been bent out of shape a little or maybe the
contacts had more residue/dust/whatever accumulation due to
the card not always being in constant contact with same
points due to shifting around.  You might try taking a
fairly water-resistant piece of lint-free paper (not a paper
towel), cut it to the length of the edge-connector on the
card, fold it in half and spray contact cleaner on it then
quickly slide it into the slot by pushing it in with the
card-edge.  It would need be quickly as most contact cleaner
has a rather fast-evaporating solvent in it.

Also if any contacts look bent out of alignment you might be
able to coax them back into shape with a fine needle.

Your board isn't so great for the card/sink combo you have
since it has the AGP Pro slot which doesn't lock down on the
back of the card, IIRC.

Quoted text here. Click to load it

I doubt the ram or CPU are coming out due to the video card,
if it's that hard to insert you might have a motherboard
that's not lined up well with the case standoffs, or perhaps
a case that is off-spec a little, has the standoffs a
millimeter or more away from correct placement.  Maybe not,
just a thought as we can't see the system.

Quoted text here. Click to load it

As I mentioned above, it should be easy for most 'sinks to
cool your card.

Quoted text here. Click to load it

I guess it wouldn't hurt but I doubt that will help.  You
might try reflashing the motherboard bios, clearing CMOS,
loading setup defaults then making any manditory bios
adjustments... though I'd at least check to see if the
problem persists before making any changes from the

Quoted text here. Click to load it

I really don't think that's the problem but you could just
stick a fine piece of bent wire into the end of the tube,
twirl it around some to mix it up as best you can then
squirt some out and assess whether it's the right viscosity.
AS5 and other synthetic compounds don't seem to separate
near as much as the zinc/silicone types do.

Quoted text here. Click to load it

Doesn't it just use the standard socket clip with the notch
on the side?  

it has the stubborn slot/tab design so you just need to
press down and pull out on the clip-end, carefully, with a
medium-small slotted regular screwdriver.  It'll probably be
much easier of you remove the memory first, and if the
screwdriver is short enough that it doesn't get blocked by
the drive bays or drives themselves.

Re: Monitor has a thin red line on boot up


I must thank you for your outstanding reply.  I appreciate Tony's reply as
well of course but you were quite correct in the alignment of case and mobo
being slightly off-spec.

Thankyou for your in-depth reply and the time involved.  (Sounds like I'm
starting up a Kony fan club!)

Much appreciated.


Quoted text here. Click to load it

Re: Monitor has a thin red line on boot up

Quoted text here. Click to load it

Firstly, if you have your card screwed in properly using the backplate, it
shouldn't move no matter what weight is applied - if anything it would snap,
or bend the metal on the backplate, but it shouldn't fall out! So check the
backplate is connected to the card and also screwed to the case properly.

Secondly, if your card is falling out and you are pushing it back in while
powered-up, then you might have damaged parts on the motherboard or graphics

Thirdly, replace the rediculous heatsink - you do not need a huge heatsink.
If the card was overheating, then perhaps the case is too hot? My radeon
8500 is happy with a zalman ZM17-CU. I have a silent fan blowing nearby, but
that's not necessary. The card has never moved in over a year.

You can pick them up on ebay and sometimes in the B-Grade section at the
bottom of this page (there is one for 4.70 right now):


Re: Monitor has a thin red line on boot up

Thanks for the advice guys

I'll try your suggestions

I don't push the card back in when the unit is powered on thank goodness.

I do have some heat issues with the system unit that I've been addressing
with case mods.

Thanks again

Quoted text here. Click to load it

Re: Monitor has a thin red line on boot up

Oh and I forgot sorry, the card doesn't fall out, it's just that the contact
with the AGP slot isn't sound when gravity takes effect.

The Zalman heatsink was an overkill.  I realize now it wasn't the best
solution for my slot as it is so incredibly heavy.

I may replace the heatsink and use it as an automatic transmission cooler on
my car!

Quoted text here. Click to load it

Site Timeline