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Why do websites tuen tiny and grey?
September 19, 2012 12:23 PM   Subscribe

Some web content, like Tumblr and the videos on Netflix appear in greyscale, with vertical lines all over them, and smushed into the left side of the screen. If I want to click on something, I need to click on the place it would normally be, rather than where it appears on the tiny, greyscale screen. I don't think it's my browser, because it happens on both Safari and IE (I know, I know, but I can't watch Netflix on Safari). I couldn't find an answer on Google. Thanks in advance!
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? to Computers & Internet (21 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
And I also apologize for the typo in the title.
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 12:24 PM on September 19, 2012


This is on a Mac, running what version of OSX? Mountain Lion?
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 12:26 PM on September 19, 2012


Shoot, I really should have mentioned that It's a Gateway. With Windows Vista 6.0.
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 12:29 PM on September 19, 2012


Have you tried Firefox or Chrome?
posted by Rock Steady at 12:34 PM on September 19, 2012


I thought those had more problems with Netflix, but no, I haven't tried them. This is a kind of embarrassing ask!
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 12:36 PM on September 19, 2012


Yeah, definitely try a new browser. IE is...not good, and if you're using Safari on a Windows PC it's an old version of the software, since they dropped Windows support in the latest release.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 12:37 PM on September 19, 2012


I got Firefox, but it's still doing it, sort of. The screen will now appear normally if I keep the mouse on the address bar, but if I move it to pause the video or anything, it turns little and grey again. I wouldn't bother you with it, except that I can't figure out what stupid mistake I'm making.
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 1:01 PM on September 19, 2012


Okay, so it's not your browser. Is it happening with all Tumblr content? Just images? Just video?

(Also, people with Netflix: Does Watch Instantly run on Flash?)
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:05 PM on September 19, 2012


On Tumblr, the entire pages does it, though not all the time. I don't know what triggers it, though.
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 1:07 PM on September 19, 2012


Watch Instantly runs on Silverlight, not Flash, as far as I know.
posted by en forme de poire at 1:23 PM on September 19, 2012


Huh. Okay, not flash then. (Also, ew.)

So it's not a corrupted browser plugin, because it happens on a fresh install. It's not an issue with the browser itself, or the stylesheet or whatnot, because ditto. It's not a third-party program being called by the browser, because Netflix uses Silverlight while Tumblr has nothing to do with that software. There has to be some common factor, but I'm racking my brain to think of what it would be and coming up empty.

Do you know what video hardware your computer has? Geforce, Radeon, Intel Integrated?
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:36 PM on September 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I don't know what video hardware it is, but this happens to sites without video, too. I'm so sorry I'm an idiot. I really wouldn't have used IE if I hadn't thought it was my only option.
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 1:38 PM on September 19, 2012


The video hardware is responsible for taking the information your processor spits out and turning it into an image to display on your monitor, not just rendering Netflix and DVDs and the like. I'm not sure exactly how it would be responsible for what's going on here, but I wouldn't rule it out.

If you don't know offhand, you can go into the Device Manager (accessible through your control panel) and look for the Display Adapter.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:42 PM on September 19, 2012


Also, you're not an idiot, and your choice of browsers is in no way responsible for the problem here.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:43 PM on September 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


NVIDIA GeForce 7500 LE
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 1:51 PM on September 19, 2012


It's worth a shot to go to nvidia.com and download and install the latest driver, then (warning: video drivers are hugenormous). It'll be under Support, and will automatically direct you to the software for your card.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:54 PM on September 19, 2012


sounds like a vid card problem... its not always obvious what things will get what type of hardware acceleration. does your video card come with a diagnostic or benchmark tool?
posted by Yowser at 1:56 PM on September 19, 2012


Video card was my guess, too, but it's not an easy thing to test unless you've got a spare lying around (which, if you don't know what kind of card you've got installed offhand, you probably don't). Can you tell us what other sites cause problems? YouTube?
posted by Rock Steady at 1:57 PM on September 19, 2012


I don't think I can test the vid card because, in case you haven't guessed, I don't really know much about computers. Youtube has never messed up, but ....thechive.com has. Gah, I'm so glad this is anonymous!

Who fixes problems with video cards?
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 2:01 PM on September 19, 2012


With a card that old, you'll be replacing it - it's not really worth even a small amount of time to fix. If upgrading the driver doesn't cure this issue, I would go to a friend or family member who's comfortable mucking around in a computer and ask them to pick out and install a new video card. It's an extremely quick, low-risk procedure, and if you're not playing the latest Call of Duty or whatever you can get a perfectly good replacement for thirty bucks.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 2:06 PM on September 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Haha! Now that I've updated the driver, everything seems to be working! You are so wonderful. Thank you.
posted by WhathaveIdonenow? at 2:43 PM on September 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


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