Hello Acmiller4, I am sorry to hear that have had this kind of problems.
This type of error has been reported at Intel. Please check the following URL for additional information and several solutions.
I hope this information helpful for you
I have made some progress by downloading an NVidia driver from my laptop manufacturer's website, rather than the generic driver as I had before. However, it would seem that the Intel driver would not install, and would display the message "The setup program failed to install one or more device drivers." Installing the NVidia driver seems to have cleared up the dots/display crashes, but now I cannot launch any games whatsoever. Each one seems to display some message about not being able to find a graphics driver.
Acmiller4, which graphics driver version are you trying to install?
Something that I do not understand is that the error is mentioning Windows 8, but you are using Windows 7. So I think this could be a registry error on your operating system. For this kind of issue I recommend you doing a system restore on your computer to the last working state.
On a system with switchable graphics it is necessary to install the Intel graphics drivers first and then Nvidia’s.
I'm trying to install Intel(R) Graphics Driver: 126.96.36.19957. This was the driver listed on my manufacturer's website. I have also tried installing the generic driver 188.8.131.52.3257 from Intel's website, but I still get a failed message either way.
At this point, I'm not able to do a system restore to the point before I was having issues, though I have tried it before with no results. Should I try re-installing Windows 7?
I think that a Windows 7 reinstallation will be necessary.
Performed a complete reinstallation of Windows 7 and installed all the drivers. I seem to be back where I began with dots covering the display and various black flickers... Could this be an issue with the hardware rather than the software?
It could be a hardware issue since you already tried different graphics driver versions.
Please try running the Intel® Processor Diagnostic Tool. Processors — What is the Intel® Processor Diagnostic Tool?
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Maybe have a look at the Intel HD control panel. When I switch the "Energy profile" using the "power cord" (not the battery !) to "maximum performance" I also have dots appearing all over.
Problem is fixed right away when I select "balanced" again.
Bart, as Allan mentioned on the other thread, this issue could be related to the graphics controller.
My recommendation will be to get in touch with system manufacturer.