Monitor goes to sleep when playing Borderlands (2009) and ONLY Borderlands

Hi, thanks for any help or guidance you can suggest.

This is a Windows 7 machine.

Temperatures seem normal on GPU (Radeon R9 380 series; 52 – 57 C), CPU (i7 4770; ~53 – 67 C) and motherboard (Asus Z87 43 – 50 C), as measured by HWMonitor.

The machine has 24GB of RAM. Memtest found no problems. Issue happens when I have recently restarted or have had a lot of other things running in the background for a long time.

This doesn’t happen with other games. Batman Akham Knight and GTA V ran fine for a long time with no monitor shutdown. I repeatedly ran the built-in graphics benchmark routine on Arkham Knight with no issues.

This happens whether video options set to max or minimum.

No other PSU symptoms as in no random restarts, BSDs, odd behavior, etc. (it’s a 750W Corsair HX Series).

Turning the monitor off and on ‘cures’ the problem. Sometimes I have to do it several times in a row, sometimes just once or twice.

Timing seems random. It’s more often when I tab over to the game, but it sometimes happens randomly during play. It can be when I have a menu screen open or just standing around looking at minimally-dynamic scenery. It occasionally happens when there is action on the screen and the graphics card is doing a lot of work, but since it mostly happens when I tab over, it’s usually relatively static background or a menu on the screen.

Once I’ve cycled the monitor and the game is stable, it usually plays for an hour or so without further interruption.

I’ve checked and updated all drivers, from motherboard chipset to graphics card. A slightly odd thing is that DxDiag says that I’m running DirectX 11. I saw on this Microsoft page that DirectX 11.1 is available for SP1. I followed a link to this page to download the “Platform Update for Windows 7” but when I ran it it said I already had the KB update. I have not other issue with this, so I have no idea if it’s relevant.

I’m so used to thinking of this as a temperature, PSU or driver issue that I’m clueless as to where to turn to next. Not that it couldn’t be one or more of those, but it seems that

(Obligatory relevant XKCD)

Try changing the settings on the game. From Windowed mode to Fullscreen, or vice versa.

Could be that while in game your mouse/keyboard activity isn’t registering. Good luck.

Hehe. In a no-hard-save-point game like Borderlands having your screen go into sleep mode during a battle has got to be hilarious.

It probably has much less than 1% chance of helping you, but I had vaguely similar symptoms with Windows 10 once and fixed them by following the instructions here:

It seemed peculiar that, despite 2 or 4 more accessible places to change the monitor sleep duration, an overriding sleep had to be adjusted with this involved procedure.

I did try a mix of settings, both audio and visual. Ultimately pushed everything down to the minimum, but it still happened. In troubleshooting, I’d seen the ‘windowed mode’ advice, but Borderland’s (2009) only has options for resolution, not playing in windowed mode.

However, in double-checking, I just saw that I can put “-windowed” in the launch options (right-clicking it in my library) so will give that a try.

Will try the monitor sleep workaround next.
I haven’t noticed any mouse/keyboard inactivity issues. When the monitor winks out, my first movement is to hit escape so a menu pops up; it gives an audio signal that I’m in a menu. When the issue repeats itself, I’m often taking two steps or looking around ~winks out~ click on and off … move a few steps ~winks out~ …