60Hz problem under Windows 2000/XP: Instructions for taming the frame rate

60Hz problem under Windows 2000/XP: Instructions for taming the frame rate


In the Windows 95, 98 and Millennium Edition operating systems, you can specify the desired refresh rate in Hertz for each screen resolution under Control Panel> Display> Settings> Additional Options> Graphics card, which is then always used. No matter whether on the desktop or in applications or games that make use of the special functions of the graphics card driver. Under Windows 2000 and the Windows XP based on it, however, due to the different driver implementation, the selected refresh rate is not retained in certain cases and the action flickers across the screen at 60 Hertz. This problem could be avoided very quickly by manually adapting the nv4disp.inf file, which is part of the nVidia Detonator driver. But with the official driver version 28.32, the structure in the nv4_disp.inf was finally changed, which was also the case with some, but not all, of the leaked 27.x versions. (Therefore, in the following, the drivers from version 28.32 also refer to the unofficial 27.x detonators, which have the structure of the 28.x drivers!) This new structure meant that neither the well-known trick for manual adjustment of the nv4_disp .inf worked, the free refresh rate fix tools were still doing their job. But even with the new drivers and the changed structure, you can achieve the desired frame rates with a little manual work without major problems!

Update 05/27/2002: With a tool called Refresh Rate Fix MKII that has been adapted to the new drivers the problem can now be dealt with more easily than described here!

Update 08/30/2002: Since version 40.41, nVidia has integrated a RefreshFix into the Detonator driver, please read the section Hidden Settings of our article Beta Detonator Version 40.41 !

Refresh Rate Fixes

The use of such a tool takes effect, as already mentioned in the introduction, only for drivers older than version 28.32. But even these are still widely used, not least because of some stability problems with the current driver generations. So if you use older drivers, you can get away more easily with these tools, e.g. the nVidia Refreshrate Fix . First of all, we can fully agree with this. However, if you follow these instructions here, which also describe the manual procedure for Detonator drivers older than 28.32, you only have to adjust the driver once and can then use it with every Windows installation without further changes. This procedure can also be used to regulate the adjustable image refresh rates in a more differentiated manner, so you have more options. So if you want to do a little tinkering yourself, you have more options with this approach. However, users of the latest driver generation from 28.32 onwards currently have no choice but to go the rocky road, as no tool has yet been adapted to these drivers.

Incidentally, it should be noted that owners of an ATi- or 3dfx graphics card can try their luck with one of the following programs, which should eliminate the problem:


So, for better or worse, you have decided on the method that requires some manual labor. Here we will adapt the graphics card driver so that it leads Windows to believe that the graphics card can only display 100Hz, for example, and no less in a certain resolution. You don't need any programming knowledge, nor do you have to deal with a hex editor. The only tools you need are the Windows Editor and a packer program like WinZip or WinRAR in the current version.

We have not checked the extent to which these instructions are applicable to the adapted drivers of the individual graphics card manufacturers, but generally there should be no problems. We recommend using the detonator drivers developed by the graphics chip manufacturer nVidia. Provided you are using a current version, these support all graphics cards from this company from the Riva TNT to the GeForce 4. A speed difference should also not be found between the adapted version from Asus, MSI & Co. or the nVidia drivers, as these are often only minimally adapted variants. The latest official Detonator drivers can always be found directly at nVidia, otherwise we recommend our Download section , where you can also find the unofficial drivers.

Identify the graphics chip

The following table should help you to find out the code name of the graphics chip based on its sales description. This will be needed afterwards to adapt the drivers in the right place!

Codename sales name Codename sales name NV4 Riva TNT CRUSH11 GeForce2 Integrated GPU NVVANTA Riva TNT Vanta (LT) NV15 GeForce2 GTS/Pro NV5 Riva TNT 2 (Pro) NV15DDR GeForce2 TiNV5M64 Riva TNT 2 M64 (Pro) NV15BR GeForce2 Ultra NV5ULTRA Riva TNT 2 Ultra NV15GL Quadro2 Pro NV0A Aladdin TNT 2 NV17 GeForce4 MX 420/440/460 NV10 GeForce 256 NV17GL Quadro4 200/400 NVS or 500/550 XGL NV10DDR GeForce 256 DDR NV20 GeForce3 NV10GL Quadro NV20_1 GeForce3 Ti 200 NV11 GeForce2 MX/MX 400 NV20_2 GeForce3 Ti 500 NV11DDR GeForce2 MX 100/200 NV25 GeForce4 4200/4400/4600 NV11GL Quadro2 MXR/EX NV25GL Quadro4 700/750/900 XGL

On the next page: Procedure