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Read this before asking for help!

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Staff member
Oct 6, 2004
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System Name Big Fella
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Below are some steps you should follow before asking for help, in order to get you the best help possible.

here are some basic suggestions that apply to the ENTIRE forum when asking for help
  • No XXX card Vs. XXX card threads. There are reviews a plenty with the information you need to make an informed purchase.
  • Leave news posting to our news posters. We don't need threads with news articles from other websites. Especially from "FUD" websites. These threads will be locked or moved to general nonsense.
  • Come up with a proper thread title. "help!" "i broke it" and so on are no good. People will not click the thread link without knowing what its about.
  • Use proper spelling and grammar. If english is not your first language, get someone better than you to proof read it. We cannot help you if we cant understand you.
  • Fill out your user specifications here. Make sure you change the drop down box to "yes"
  • Wait for a response. Dont add needless posts asking for help such as "is anybody there?". It merely annoys people, so they wont bother to help you.
  • If you have more information to add, use the edit button and edit the first post. New people to the thread read the first post and may offer help not realising you've added more details further on.
  • List your problem in a clear and concise manner. See below for a good example and a bad example
  • Search for other people with the same problem in google. There could be an easy fix that has already been stated somewhere.
  • If you find another thread here on TPU with a similar problem, but NOT the same do not post your issue there. Start a new thread. Simply because it has something in common, does not mean its the same problem, nor does it mean it will have the same solution.
  • Be polite. no ones going to help you if you arent nice to them. If people arent nice to YOU, ignore them and hit the "report post" button underneath their name.
Good example:
Hello, when i play 3D games my computer restarts. my PSU is a 400W Bestec that came with the case and my video card is a radeon 2600XT. What can i do to find out why its restarting?
I'm running windows XP service pack 1 and catalyst 8.12 drivers from the AMD website.
The problem has been happening for months, but i never got around to fixing it.

Bad example:
my stupid comp is crashn n stuff. tell me how to fix it before i smash the darn thing.

Here are some suggestions specific to the graphics card help thread.

  • There are ATi/Nvidia subforums. Please use them for the appropriate product.
  • Remember to update all relevant software (see below)
  • Revert all your graphics control options to default. Settings like Anti-Alising (AA) and Vertical Sync (Vsync) can drastically hurt your performance.
  • Test with other, similar software. If you crash in one game, it might be the game - but if you crash in 3 different games, we know its something else.
  • Check all the hardware you know how. Often its as simple as a loose cable, or a fan thats stopped spinning because its full of dust.
  • Try with any spare parts you have, or spare PC's. Dont make assumptions as to what the problem is, you may think the PC is broken when its actually the cord to your monitor.
  • Make sure you mention what drivers you are on, what operating system, and when the problem first started
  • Make sure you let us know if you've done something abnormal - Modded drivers, upgraded video card cooling, crossfire or SLI - that kind of stuff. It may help.

Make sure you have updated all of the following to the latest versions BEFORE asking for help.

  • DirectX (even if you use DX10 or 10.1, the updates are included in the 9.0 download)
  • Video card drivers. Links are here for ATI and Nvidia
  • All available windows updates.
  • All available updates for the game or program in question.
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