Let me premise this post with a few things:
- I have a Nvidia card
- This won't help anyone with temperature-related issues
- Be careful tampering with motherboard settings if you don't know what you're doing.
- Apologies if this has been brought up here already, I didn't read all 28 pages of this thread
Try disabling any on-motherboard graphics options through your bios. It may or may not help, but can't hurt to try.
I was having the same problem mentioned by many here: my video would stutter/blank out for ~15 seconds. Sometimes the desktop would appear with the 'Nvidia drivers have stopped responding and have recovered,' message, and other times I would have to reset the computer. This would occur randomly, sometimes happening twice within a short period, sometimes happening after hours of play. As a hardcore player having lost a few characters to this problem, I was fairly desperate for a fix. I searched many forums and tried many potential fixes without success.
At some point, a friend of mine suggested disabling on-board graphics options on my motherboard. I have a new motherboard which supports lucid virtu, and there is an option to disable IGPU multi-monitoring in my bios (this option controls the lucid virtu feature). After disabling this, along with all other on-board graphics options, I have been problem-free for ~3 days, which have included quite a bit of playtime. Since my problem was occurring randomly, I can't say with 100% certainty that it has vanished. But this is by far the longest period of time in which I have not experienced the issue.
This may sound like, and may in fact be, a narrow solution which will only help a few others. However, I have read in a multiple places that Nvidia cards are somewhat sensitive to external communication (ie. when the motherboard or something else tries to communicate or extract some bit of information to/from the card - other than graphics information of course). While I think my problem was solved by disabling lucid virtu settings (which demands some extra communication between the card, the MB, and the CPU), there may be many other motherboard/northbridge functions which could be triggering that sensitivity.
I have no idea if this will help anyone or not, but I thought it couldn't hurt to post. It's obviously not a fun problem to deal with.
Edited by Josh#1749 on 6/4/2012 1:52 AM PDT