When I first installed an HD5670 vid card on my Vista Home 32 SP2 system, about three years ago, I had frequent cases of a black screen for a couple of seconds followed by the notice the vid drivers had stopped responding and been reset. I've forgotten what I did back then to fix this but have had no graphics issues since. Until yesterday.
I was online when there was a brief black screen and the driver notice. This didn't occur again so I chalked it up to a system hiccup. The oddity being the driver listed at fault wasn't part of the installed driver package (the filename began with "amd...", the installed drivers all begin with "ati...").
That evening I went to enjoy a racing sim and had frame rates about half normal, checked the game settings, checked RivaTuner settings, everything normal. Tried other racing sims, an rpg, and MS Flight Sim, all had frame rates around half normal.
My first thought was to reinstall the drivers, so I went through my normal procedure:
-CP>Programs...>uninstall all ATi
-boot to safe mode, run driversweeper, run ccleaner, delete any remaining ATi folders on C drive
-install new drivers
When the installation completed there was no notice to restart, in fact no indication that anything had happened. Device manager showed the drivers installed but "code 10". Restarted windows but still "code 10". Went through the uninstall procedure again but did not install new drivers when back in normal mode; device manager now shows the standard vga graphics adapter as "This device cannot start. (Code 10)". If I try "update driver" here and select the .inf in the ATi folder, Vista tells me I already have the best driver installed.
(FTR, Avira, MSE, and Malwarebytes all came up clean two days earlier.)
So, short of getting a bigger hammer - what next?