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Black screen after POST/BIOS

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by Drjones, Jul 1, 2011.

  1. Hi guys....trying to diagnose a computer problem.

    It's a Dell Dimension 5150. It will not display anything at all from the onboard video, so I popped in a graphics card that I know is good: I have an almost identical tower as my primary PC (Dimension E521) and I upgraded my graphics card, so I have my old card lying around that I threw into it.

    The box will display POST info & I can get into the BIOS, but that's all; after that, I just get a glowing black screen; it's illuminating the monitor, but not displaying anything; no error messages or anything.

    RAM is good, already ran a test on that, as well as re-seated it & dusted out the interior thoroughly. I haven't checked out the HD, but have never seen a bad HD have this effect on a box.

    My thought is the entire MoBo is fried/bad.....what do you guys think?

    Thank you!
  2. srhoades


    Jul 14, 2000
    So can you make changes to the BIOS or does it crap out after you enter the BIOS?

  3. I can do whatever I want in the BIOS, and it also displayed an image just perfectly while it was running a memory test from a bootable CD I have.

    It only displays an image through the add-in graphics, though.
  4. srhoades


    Jul 14, 2000
    If you have the BIOS set to PCI for the display instead of onboard and it is still blank, then I would agree the board is no good.
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2011

  5. Yeah, I double-checked the BIOS setting for video before posting this thread & it's set to "Auto", which is where it says it should be to use either the on-board graphics or a PCI card...

    Too bad the boards' no good....oh well.....
  6. GotGlock1917

    GotGlock1917 Lifetime Member

    Apr 7, 2004
    Central Arkansas
    Have you tried booting in safe mode and reinstalling the video card drivers?
  7. srhoades


    Jul 14, 2000
    Instead of Auto can you manually set it to PCI? Maybe it is no auto-detecting the card and thinks the slot is empty. If it is displaying the BIOS then it is working to an extent. I bet it is switching back to onboard when it loads the OS.
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2011
  8. I can't even get it into safe mode....if I don't get into the BIOS, it will not display anything after that....

  9. No, it's got settings for either "Auto" or "onboard/PEG."

    Just to be sure, I switched it from auto to onboard/PEG and it's still exactly the same.

    There is a setting where it will tell you what, if anything, is plugged into the PCI slots, and it recognizes the graphics card I have inserted.

  10. GotGlock1917

    GotGlock1917 Lifetime Member

    Apr 7, 2004
    Central Arkansas
    Oh, I see. I misread.
  11. srhoades


    Jul 14, 2000
    Perhaps try resetting the bios either via the jumper or yanking the battery. Go back into the BIOS and set it to onboard and see what it does. I guess that is the last grasping at straws option.
  12. GotGlock1917

    GotGlock1917 Lifetime Member

    Apr 7, 2004
    Central Arkansas
    Do the diagnostic lights tell you anything?
  13. GAFinch


    Feb 23, 2009
    If your video card works from a boot cd, then it's most likely a software issue, not your motherboard. Sometimes when you install drivers for a video card, it will disable/remove the drivers from your onboard video, which is why the onboard's not showing up from the boot CD. Boot from your Windows Install disc and try doing a System Repair installation. If it does work, keep in mind you will have to re-install all the security updates and service packs again.
  14. Detectorist


    Jul 16, 2008
    Do you have the original Operating System CD and can you boot to the Repair Console from it?

    What operating system?


    Was the power button light green or yellow when you get the black screen? If it was green there is a 99% chance it's software.

    You need to come back and give us update.
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2011
  15. da chef

    da chef glock convert

    Sep 25, 2001
    The "Free" State
    try reseating sata hdd cable or hdd power cable?
  16. Pierre!

    Pierre! NRA Life Member

    Jun 20, 2003
    Lovin Sparks Nv!
    I always disconnect every non essential device, and work up from there...

    Could be you have a failure in another device - CD/DVD, HD, and it's dragging the PSU down just enough to act funny...

    Add the HD first and see what happens... If No Joy,
    Add the CD/DVD and start running MB/CPU/RAM tests overnight.

    In the AM, try adding a known good drive and see what happens.

    You may find something in there, and if not use your 'spare' troubleshooting PSU to assure that the PSU isn't failing.

    Something is busted, just got to work the puzzle!

    don't you *love* being >PAID< to solve puzzles?!?!? :faint:
  17. IndyGunFreak


    Jan 26, 2001