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Thread: Adding 2nd graphics card to WinME PC

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    Adding 2nd graphics card to WinME PC

    Hi there. My 750MHz AMD PC is currently running WindowsME with a Geforce2MX graphics card in the AGP slot. I've got a 2nd monitor and a PCI TNT2 graphics card I want to use it with. If I was installing a dual-head graphics card I think things would be simple, but while I know you can add a 2nd graphics card I'm sure there may be some issues (especially on ME). So are there any tips about what to do or what to do? Like taking the current card out when I install the new one, for instance. The fact they're both nVidia cards will hopefully make it a little easier...?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Super Moderator Big Booger's Avatar
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    Step-by-Step Procedures

    You must be running the Microsoft Windows ® 98, Windows® Me, Microsoft Windows® 2000, or Windows® Xp operating system and have either a PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect) or AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port) video card for each monitor in order to use these procedures.
    Configure the system to recognize two monitors

    If you are using Windows 98 or Windows Me do this:

    1.

    On the Start menu, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
    2.

    Double-click the Display icon.
    3.

    On the Settings tab, click the image of the second monitor, and then select the Extend my Windows desktop onto this monitor check box.


    That should do it.

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    Sounds too easy! Although that does assume you've managed to install the 2nd card OK.

    Thanks.

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    Super Moderator Super Moderator Big Booger's Avatar
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    Yes second card should be installed and in working order.

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    It's the part about getting it installed and working correctly that I'mworried about I hear these bad stories...

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    Well I now have a nVidia TNT2 16Mb (PCI) and a nVidia Geforce2MX 32Mb (AGP) in the same box, running at once. I can set the resolutions independently and the desktop is on both screens. But I have a few minor teething problems:
    1. The nVidia driver says the TNT2 driver is not WinME certified - should I OK it anyway?
    2. The slower PCI card is set as monitor 1 and I can't find an option to change this.
    3. When the monitors turned off from power saving, only the monitor on the primary card turned back on when I came back.

    Any help would be great, but so far I'm reasonably pleased how easy it is!

  7. #7
    Super Moderator Super Moderator Big Booger's Avatar
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    The nVidia driver says the TNT2 driver is not WinME certified - should I OK it anyway?

    That is fine.

    There's a setting in the advanced display properties of your Nvidia card to change the monitor order from 1 to 2 and vice versa. I don't have an NVidia card in any of my primary computers so I can't point this out to you, if you look though I am sure it is there.

    Make sure to update both drivers to the latest from nvidia. I don't recommend a beta driver with windows ME.
    Last edited by Big Booger; December 2nd, 2004 at 12:04 PM.

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    Thanks. I have the very latest combined driver kit from nVidia which should update all ihstalled cards - it seems that the latest TNT2 driver just hasn't been certificated though it claims to be ME-compatible. Maybe I'll just disable the warning...
    Any idea about the power-saving issue?

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    Super Moderator Super Moderator Big Booger's Avatar
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    You got me on the power saving feature. I guess it's just limited to the primary card.  I will see what I can find out later.

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    Well it seems I can't switch the primary adapter to be the other one from windows. If I right-click on the monitor in the settings panel with the two monitors shown, there is a 'primary monitor' tick-box but it's greyed out and unticked. For monitor 1 it's checked and also greyed-out. The other odd thing is that it shows my Geforce2MX twice - once with a standard monitor and once with my LG Flatron. 3 monitors are shown in the settings panel and I can actually enable them all! When I select to 'identify' each monitor, '1' and '2' appear as expected on the right monitors but also '3' shows up on monitor 2 as well! I'm wondering if I needed to upgrade the drivers for the MX before I added the TNT2. Thinking about removing the MX and re-installing it. Think that'll work; or is that just a quirk of the drivers- in which case you mentioned there might be a Bios setting to force the AGP to be the primary adapter? I suppose it could even be a jumper setting but that seems unlikely. I do have the manual for the motherboard but multiple graphics cards was much rarer in 2000 than now so whether there's anything useful is a small chance!

  11. #11
    Super Moderator Super Moderator Big Booger's Avatar
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    You could try installing the mx card again. That might set it as primary.
    As for the jumpers and so on, I dunno. I've never seen it, but then I haven't seen a lot of things. So it is worth looking into.
    Check your BIOS for a setting like that and your motherboard manual might also help.

    Good luck and report back your findings.

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    Yep, will do.

  13. #13
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    I think with the computer architecture initializes and uses PCI VGA first before AGP, hence your TNT2 card is acting as primary... check in your bios settings, as you may be able to change VGA init = AGP (not sure if this fixes) With newer OS (2K/XP) it was able to use PCI as primary just for startup, then when windows loaded your AGP would switch to primary so you can play games and work on good VGA card.

    Might be worth upgrading OS, or getting a dual head AGP card...

    --- 0wN3D by 3gG ---

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    Turns out there was a nice BIOs setting. I missed it 3 times fine-combing the BIOS and suddenly saw it yesterday. It seems to work perfectly!

    Thanks everybody.

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    Good to hear Doohg, the second screen will come very handy

    --- 0wN3D by 3gG ---

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