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Which driver for GeForce 6200 on Windows 7? 302.59 gives almost black screen


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Hi, I'm new to this forum. I apologize in advance if I'm posting in the wrong place. I searched the existing forum topics and could not find an answer to the following.


I'm trying to update my old Sony Vaio VGN S4M/S to Windows 7 (with GeForce 6200). I have the "S4 series" driver from Sony; this installs ok after the Windows 7 install but then gives me no way of switching between the laptop display and an attached external monitor (because the old function key shortcuts no longer work under Windows 7).


So I tried installing the 302.59 driver from this website. The install works fine, but after the required restart my laptop display comes up as almost black. If I look very carefully I can see it is displaying the usual content, but just very very dark. I can fiddle with nview to e.g. create an extended display between the laptop display and an external monitor, and can access the functions for switching on only one or both of the displays.


Summary: I can switch between monitors, which is good, but I can't see what my laptop display is showing! Is there an earlier (than 302.59) driver version that might not have this problem? Or is there mileage in trying to install first 302.59 and then the old S4 driver from Sony afterwards, hopefully overwriting the nvidia driver from 302.59 itself but preserving the nview etc functionality?


Side question: the 302.59 driver also seems slightly unstable - I noticed two crashes within the space of ~15 minutes, though they were both recovered within a second or two. Could this be due to the "tweaks" for added performance etc in the .inf file? If yes, is there an .inf file that _only_ has the entries that will make the driver install, but not the performance tweaks? Or instructions on how to edit the .inf file accordingly?


Many thanks in advance for your help.

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Try the last ones that were released that OFFICIALLY support your card



You DONT need a modded INF with these drivers
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ricktendo64 - great, thanks for the quick reply. Have tried the 259.47 driver, which is the latest "official" one, with the original .inf. Install took a long time but so far results look good - can switch between monitor and display, and also have 1280x800 display resolution available.


There seems to be occasional flicker at the edge of windows, e.g. in Chrome. Also just as I was writing this there was a more serious fail - black and white stripes across the screen, with recovery after a few seconds. If I wanted to downgrade to an even earlier driver to solve these remaining issues, is there a particular one you'd recommend? I remember reading something about pre-185 being the most stable. Many thanks in advance.

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Yea the one before that 257.41, I found it worked best for my VAIO VGN-AR with a 8600M GT. It was the only one that did not break screen brightness control

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Ok, will try that one, thank you for the suggestion. I went right back to the earliest Windows 7 driver, 186.10, but that one also flickers/crashes, sometimes seriously (i.e. screen goes blank and have to reboot).

In some sense the best solution would be to take the old driver from the laptop (which I still have, see original post) and modify the .inf file so that Windows 7 will properly recognize the two displays and allow me to switch between them. But I don't know how to do that, or if it's even possible.

Anyway, thanks again for the input. Will try 257.41 and post how I got on.

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Hmm. I hope I'm not being stupid but the 257.41 refused to install, saying it couldn't find any compatible hardware. And the .inf file doesn't have a device with id 0167 listed. I don't quite understand why this driver comes up if I filter for 0167 in the driver list. Any other suggestions gratefully received!

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It is listed, you need to look in NV_WHQL.inf


%NVIDIA_DEV.0167.01% = Section003, PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0167
Make sure you grab the one from Microsoft Update


You have to first uninstall the newer driver in order for it to install

Edit: also may be a good idea to install nvidia guard service, it will protect you against a vulnerability in the old drivers


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Many thanks for this.


I let Windows Update download an updated driver and it pulled in the one that you suggested (DriverVer = 07/12/2010, I still have the same crashes though - normally the screen goes unresponsive for a second or so, then shows a pattern of thin horizontal stripes, then a black screen, for a few seconds, then it's back to normal with the "graphics driver has crashed and recovered" pop-up. I also sometimes get the whole system just freezing, requiring a hard shutdown.


I haven't tried the nvidia guard service yet but the web page above doesn't have my model (VGN S4M/S) listed so I'm not sure it'd be wise to install it. Comments welcome.


I've done some more googling and seen suggestions that the origin of the problem might lie in the wireless card (Intel Pro 2200bg). I don't know how this would interact with the graphics driver - can anyone shed light? I've installed the Vista driver for the wireless card which seemed the best suggestion available on the web.


I'm also trying a registry fix suggested at http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/355555-33-display-driver-crashed-recovered

but haven't tested this yet - will report back if that helps.


Are there any log files that the nvidia drivers leave (or can be configured to leave) that I could look at to see if it really is the wireless or something else that is causing the crashes? The windows event log just tells me which .dll has crashed but not why.

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Trust me you need nvidia guard service, it patches the old drivers to fix a vulnerabilty





Affected Models

VAIO computers with NVIDIA Graphics Driver versions x.xx.x1.73.01 to x.xx.x3.11.00 installed.


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Ok, many thanks. I've installed the nvidia guard service but am still getting the graphics driver crashes and occasional system freezes. The registry fix mentioned above didn't help either.


I've also tried switching off the wireless and connecting via cable. This suggests to me that the wireless card/driver is not issue, though maybe I should completely uninstall the driver to be sure.


Are there other things I could try to fix this problem? Is an earlier driver likely to be more stable on my system? Or is there some way of using the original pre-installed (Windows XP) driver and updating it or the registry entries to allow me to switch between monitor and laptop display?


Thank you very much for the continued help.

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