Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

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Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Bitals » 2018-12-08 11:06

Hello everyone, thank you in advance for help.

Not too long ago I installed Debian Stretch on my main PC in order to go away from Windows. Choosed Debian because it have been running on my home server without any major software problems for some time.
But on my main rig it staight up kkills GPUs. I know how ridiculous and stupid it sounds, but I have no other explonation.
I installed Debian with Asus R9 380, played a bit, but there were some issues with fan control (they almost always were not turning, just sudden bumps to 100% speed for a second). It happened in games too. So in order to just have some fun and play couple of games with friend I loaded windows again, but it either gave me artifacts or straight up bluescreened on load.
Tried to flash known-good VBIOS into GPU, no luck. Reintalled windows with completely wiping out drive — nothing. Tried this card in another PC, identical behaviour. GPU sort of works in Linux, but does not at all in Windows.
Some time later my friend lends me a GTX 650ti boost, just to play casually untill I buy a new card. I inserted it into PC, selected Windows in grub, and boom — it is as dead, as my R9 380. Can't launch Windows, can't even start KDE in debian.
Looks like every GPU used to output Debian-customised grub dies on me. Does anybody have any idea WHY and how (if) this 2 GPUs could be fixed?
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Cybermancer » 2018-12-08 14:29

Hi,

I have a hard time believing that Grub or Debian are the cause of your dying graphics card.

The fact that multiple cards died in the same system might indicate a faulty power supply. I would recommended testing it (you can find ATX power supply testers for pretty cheap, and they're pretty reliable from my experience) or trying to replace it.

You should also try to install your faulty graphics card in another system to ensure that its the cards that are dying, and not another component in your system.

I hope my this helps you, have a nice day.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Segfault » 2018-12-08 14:34

Yea, I had to replace graphics cards all the time when I was using Grub. Now I use Lilo, it eats network cards, but these cost less.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Bitals » 2018-12-08 15:43

Cybermancer wrote:You should also try to install your faulty graphics card in another system to ensure that its the cards that are dying, and not another component in your system.

I wrote that I tried the first card in other PC, it did not work. After this post I flashed new BIOS to the 650ti, now it works. However, it still does not work with R9 380.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby bw123 » 2018-12-08 15:43

Both cards have quirks, ati/amd needs firmware, nvidia boards often have driver issues that people struggle with. I think it's possible to kill a board if you run it long enough without fan. This isn't a grub issue though. Flashing the bios on a board has a lot of potential to mess things up. On the R9 board, I might try to put the original vbios back on it if possible?

If you have two boards that appear bad in the same machine, I'd suspect something else (mboard? bad slot? loose screw somewhere, shorting something out?) because that seems unlikely. It's not logical to say the boards are dead and grub did it, video issues are real common.
Last edited by bw123 on 2018-12-08 15:48, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Bitals » 2018-12-08 15:48

Segfault wrote:Yea, I had to replace graphics cards all the time when I was using Grub. Now I use Lilo, it eats network cards, but these cost less.

Thank you. I have a bunch of NICs lying around, would consider this. How often does it need to be fed?
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Bitals » 2018-12-08 15:52

bw123 wrote:It's not logical to say the boards are dead and grub did it, video issues are real common.

I am aware of this and I tried everything else. I have a pretty good experience with hardware, and some with Linux. Used Debian on servers, couple of Ubuntu-based distros on desktop, it was fine all the time. This PC worked last 6 years, and it works now with Windows and the 650ti I was able to fix, as I said before. 650ti was fixed with vBIOS flash, with AMD it did not work.
Last edited by Bitals on 2018-12-08 15:59, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby bw123 » 2018-12-08 15:59

Well, if the R9 is dead, experience has taught you don't run a board with no fan.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Bitals » 2018-12-08 16:03

bw123 wrote:Well, if the R9 is dead, experience has taught you don't run a board with no fan.

It runs fanless without load by default, as any modern GPU. Only load I have put on it lasted less than a minute, it had no chance to die in this time. It did not crash or anything, I stopped it manually as soon as I noticed.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Segfault » 2018-12-08 16:16

Not in my experience, without adequate cooling it can overheat in less than 10 seconds under load.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby bw123 » 2018-12-08 21:41

If the link below is the R9 380 mentioned, it seems to have a 0db mode for fan that can be adjusted. Since the other GPU mentioned is not dead, the question would be, "Did you install the firmware for the R9" and test it? What evidence is there that grub killed anything?
http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id- ... nning.html

There are a lot of people with yrs of experience that get flummoxed by hardware problems. Getting on a forum and claiming that an os killed two different boards from two different mgfrs is pretty bold. You should be prepared to prove it.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Segfault » 2018-12-08 22:32

Actually, Grub is not an OS. Although it is getting so complex it is almost like an OS ... :roll:
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby bw123 » 2018-12-08 22:48

Segfault wrote:Actually, Grub is not an OS. Although it is getting so complex it is almost like an OS ... :roll:


Actually, grub is an open source project. The claim was that os software killed some hardware. How do we know that windows didn't kill it first?
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Segfault » 2018-12-08 22:57

Yes, Grub is a standalone project and it may be used to boot anything and there are other bootloaders available, so claiming Grub is part of Linux or Debian is plain wrong. Although lots of binary distros love it because kernel upgrades can be easily automated with Grub.
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Re: Debian grub killed 2 my GPUs (what?)

Postby Bitals » 2018-12-09 11:08

I know Grub is standalone, but all the distros usually modify it a bit. I did not have such problems with other distros, and cards would die just after they loaded grub once. I can not figure how the hell would this happen, but here is a full storyline (again):
Live sadly wih Windows and working R9 380;
Install Debian;
R9 dies.
Take working 650ti;
Load grub and select Windows in it;
Card is already dead, black screen;
Wipe drive;
Install and load Windows with Intel hd4000, which survives like everything;
Flash new BIOS to 650ti;
It works now.

I assumed corrupted installation, bad drivers, everything
650Ti did not even load Debian once, only Grub. And somehow this was enough for it, BIOS was corrupted. Maybe R9 380 has just an inner software problem too, but it was not solved by just BIOS flash.

I came here not to trashtalk, I seek for help from someone who might have had similar problem and therefore could provide some help with ressurecting the GPU.
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