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Thread: When switching user get "Cannot Display This Video Mode" message

  1. #1
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    When switching user get "Cannot Display This Video Mode" message

    I have a new computer with XP and when switching from one user to another, the screen goes black and this message appears
    "Cannot Display This Video Mode"

    I am then unable to do anything but shut the power button and restart.

    Any ideas what might be wrong?

  2. #2
    Hardware guy Super Moderator FastGame's Avatar
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    Does it do the same if you go straight to that user account at the logon screen ?

    Something is wrong with a setting for the resolution & refresh rate of your monitor, its using a setting your monitor doesn't support. Could be your monitor driver or video driver.

    Uninstall your video driver and reinstall it. If you need help doing this let us know.

    Welcome to TZ

  3. #3
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    It doesn't do that when I go that user's screen straight from logon, only when switching users. I will try to reinstall the video driver and see if that works. Thanks.

  4. #4
    My Name is.... TZ Veteran Stripe's Avatar
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    you could also boot up into safe mode and verify your video/monitor settings. Then try switching users in safe mode. Does it still happen? If so, I would be lead to believe that there is an issue with the video card/monitor.

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    uninstalling and reinstalling video driver didn't work. after a phone call with dell i was told not to log off and switch user but to hit log off,then hit log off again, and then just select the other user's profile. that does work but it seems crazy that i can't just use the switch user option. the dell person said it's because using that option leaves other stuff running in the background that can interfere with the monitor's functioning. thoughts?

  6. #6
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    That's true to a point. The "switch user" option is designed to allow multiple users to be able to use the system alternately without closing or loosing what they were doing. Unfortunately not all applications, drivers, etc. work well with the switch user option. Personally I suggest not using it and just loggin off the acct the way we always have.

    But...what video card are you using and what monitor.

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    The monitor is a Dell 17 inch flat screen. I'm not sure about what video card...how can I tell that?

    Another problem I'm having is that after periods of inactivity, Explorer doesn't work and I need to reboot. I can't figure out why this is happening. Any ideas?

  8. #8
    The Beast Master TZ Veteran PIPER's Avatar
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    Go to your control panel, choose the system icon then click on the hardware tab, from there click on the device manager button and look for your display adapter icon and click on the +, that will open up your display adapter for you. This will show the video card installed in your system.

    What type of internet connection do you have?....are you dial up or broadband?

    How many users on your computer?

    It is possible that there is a problem with the windows install. When Dell sends your order to build, several puters are set up for the software install at the same time from a master disc if you will. You can try booting to your dell cd that has windows on it and choose the repair option. When you get to the c:\windows prompt you want to type chkdsk /r (make certain you have a space between the k and the/) this tells your puter to check the disk for errors then scans the windows install for possible problems and corrects them.
    this operation can take some time so be patient. When it is complete, remove your cd and hit ctrl alt del to reboot the system or just turn off the puter and restart it.
    Last edited by PIPER; June 13th, 2004 at 06:20 AM.

  9. #9
    Junior Member wolfman's Avatar
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    Cannot display this video mode

    I am having the same problem.Seems to be only happening to dell monitors.I have the 17inch LCD display as well and a geforce 4..Ive found overriding the refresh rate to what your monitor will handle for each resolution worked for me.That way when you run your program or in your case switching users and it tries to put it outside its display, it cant...Hope this helps with you as it did with me....Dell has an article about this you can find it at support.dell.com
    Last edited by wolfman; June 26th, 2004 at 02:13 AM. Reason: New information

  10. #10
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    Can you post the link to the article plz wolfman? BTW, Welcome to Techzonez and Thanks for helping out.

  11. #11
    Junior Member wolfman's Avatar
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    Possible Solution..

    Thanks for the welcome..I cant remember the url for the article but know ive seen it on support.dell.com..Calling Dell will get you either formatting your system or having your system messed up even worse,trust me..If you have an Nvidia video card, there is an option in display settings to override refresh rates..A solution that worked for me is to override the default refresh rates to 75HZ for all resolutions listed..If some do not allow 75HZ 60 will work fine..Hope this helps some.......Found the link http://support.dell.com/us/en/kb/doc...asp?dn=1079260 Its not the same solution that I use but maybe it will help for others..
    Last edited by wolfman; June 27th, 2004 at 03:49 AM.

  12. #12
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    cannot display this video mode

    Here's a link to Dell Support:
    http://forums.us.dell.com/supportfor...l=en&s=gen&cs=
    According to a forum member on this post, "This is caused by the LCD monitor failing to autosense the refresh rate of the display adapter.
    To resolve this problem, turn off the monitor for 15 seconds. During the startup, the monitor will detect the input signal and will now function normally."

  13. #13
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    I also have a similar problem...I have a Dell 17 inch flat monitor but connected by a KVM box to 2 PCs, one the original Dell and the other my old hybrid. If the switch box is not set to the booting PC I get the "Cannot Display This Video Mode" on the old one and the Dell seems to select a different screen resolution or something (the font looks bigger). Not a great problem, just have to wait while they boot individually.

    Hmmm.....

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