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Monitor going black while watching online video could indicate video drivers, overheating, or even screen saving settings.
My Windows 7 computer works great in every way except within the last week, whenever I play a YouTube video, half to three quarters of the way through the video, my monitor goes black. No video and no monitor. I have to restart my computer, it opens again normally. This does not occur when I play videos, which are archived, on my hard drive. Thanks for your assistance.
In this excerpt from Answercast #70, I look at a case where a computer suddenly shuts down while watching online video.
So, by your "monitor going black," I have to assume that, since you have to restart your computer, that it's not just your monitor going black. It's your computer actually crashing.
In other words, your computer's no longer operating.
If you could, while the monitor was black, actually be able to do things like type the keyboard sequence to shut down your computer (Ctrl, Escape, U, and then Enter, I think would be the appropriate thing.)
Give that a look the next time you're looking with the screen up. If you can use the keyboard sequence to shut down your computer, then the computer is still running. It's not just the monitor.
So, in a case like this, a couple of different things come to mind.
Since you're streaming YouTube videos, the very first thing that I think of are video drivers.
When you've got video on your hard drive versus video that you're streaming over the internet, it's not just where it's coming from that's different. It's very possible that the video format that's being used in those two different instances is in fact different. The reason that's important is that it is possible that a video driver can have problems or can be susceptible to issues with one format that it's not susceptible to the others.
So for example, it's possible that the video driver could randomly crash when playing YouTube videos regardless of where they're coming from versus playing some other video that happens to be stored on your hard drive.
So the very first thing I would do is check for updated video drivers for your video card to make sure that isn't a problem.
The other thing that comes to mind right away is overheating.
Normally, you would assume that playing a video from your local hard drive might not be as process intensive or as heat generating. I actually would assume that as well.
However, like I said, these are different video formats that are typically involved between the two. It is possible that the video driver (or whatever software is actually involved in displaying the video) requires more CPU horsepower - therefore, the CPU itself is heating up more.
It is possible that your computer is very simply overheating.
So, in a case like that, make sure:
That all of the ventilation is good;
That you've cleared out all of the dust from inside the machine;
Keep an eye on the fact that your machine may simply be sensitive to heat and take the appropriate steps to make sure that it has the opportunity to get cool air and to run with air flowing through it unobstructed.
And finally, this one seems really odd. It's really off the wall but I have to include it for completeness... and that is: I'm going to assume you have already determined that this is not just your screensaver kicking in!
Many screen savers, or many monitors, will turn themselves off into a power saving mode after certain amount time of inactivity.
Depending on what "inactivity" looks like to the monitor, it could be that since you haven't touched the keyboard for awhile or you haven't wiggled the mouse for awhile, gosh... "Maybe I should turn off the monitor because he's not actually here."
That's unlikely, but it's such an easy one to test. The next time it happens, wiggle the mouse, type the Shift key on your keyboard, do something to prove to the computer that you're still in front of it.
If that suddenly makes they screen come back without having to reboot your computer, then you know that you need to look into things like the screen saver settings in your computer and potentially the power management settings for your display device.
So those are three things that come to mind: video drivers, overheating, and
power saving or screen saving type settings.
Answercast 70 - Why does Outlook still download deleted Gmail messages?
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