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Dell i8600 has graphics problem and reboots when moving LCD

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by jason10mm, Feb 28, 2005.

  1. jason10mm

    jason10mm NRA-GOA-TSRA

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    This is pretty specific, but everything else can get answered on GT, so why not this??

    I'm having a very annoying problem with my 2 month old 8600. The system is a PM 1.6 with 256 mg of Dell ram and a 1 gig Kingmax I installed from newegg. It has the SXGA screen. The HD is the 60 gig 7200 rpm Hitachi. It has the MR9600 128 mg card. I'm running XP pro.

    It has been rock stable till the past few days, when I have been getting a random system freeze followed by a garbled screen and a reboot. This seems to be created by movement of the LCD screen back and forth. If I lift up the laptop a little by the screen, it is fairly reproducable.

    Sometimes it reboots smoothly, other times the "ON" led lights up and there is a little whirring sound (probably the DVD drive), but nothing else. The screen stays blank and there appears to be no HD activity (the second LED does not light up). Sometimes there is a very brief blue screen filled with text (too fast for me to read) prior to the crash. When XP loads, I get a "serious windows error" report. The codes come back as a "graphics driver error", once even as an "ATI driver error". It recommended disabling hardware acceleration and write combining, neither of which helped the problem. Nor did updating the ATI driver and BIOS from the dell site, nor installing the Omega catalyst drivers.

    I checked my RAM, it was firmly seated. Could this be a loose graphics card? I have not done a system restore to a week ago, nor have I swapped my hard drive for the dell supplied 30 gig that came with my system. This seems to be a physical problem, not a software one. The only odd thing I can think of is that my GF plugged in my powered USB hub cable while the hub was unpowered. This generated an "insufficient power" error message and temporarily deactivated the USB port on my laptop. It resolved after a reboot. That was about a week ago. As far as I know, the laptop has not been dropped, though I do transport it to and from work daily.

    I have the error codes if anyone thinks they will help.

    BCCode: 100000ea
    BCP1: 89E15DA8 or 89EF0228
    BCP2: 89EAF828 or 89EF3670
    BCP3: F78C6CB4
    BCP4: 00000001
    OSVer: 5_1_2600
    SP: 2_0
    Product: 256_1

    There have been some others, but these are the most frequent. Thanks for any advice. My system has the full warranty with CompleteCare, so I can always turn to Dell, but if this is something simple, I'd rather do it myself.
     
  2. calestus

    calestus

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    You update the radeon drivers? www.ati.com

    If you are lifting up the screen and it freaks out there could be a problem with the switch that tells the lcd to vsync+blank (i dont actually know if lcds do that.) Also it could be a faulty connection to the actual lcd and a driver is freaking out when the lcd 'goes away' as thats not supposed to happen on a laptop. I'd update all your drivers and if the problem still happens revert to the original dell configuration and try to reproduce the problem. If it goes away add the components one by one as you do whatever you do to make it BSOD.

    Take internet advice with a grain of salt ;)
     

  3. fastvfr

    fastvfr Ancient Tech

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    Well, the first thing to do is to stop it from rebooting.

    Navigate System> Advanced> Startup & Recovery> and untick the Restart Automatically box...leave the other two ticked.

    That will show you some details about the nature of the crash.

    Sounds to me like the cable from the LCD to the MOBO came loose when the case was opened last. Sounds like you installed the 1GB...If so, make sure the LCD's cable is not pinched or partially unplugged.

    This should help.

    Good luck!
     
  4. David_G17

    David_G17 /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/

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    i was thinking the same thing, but why would that cause it to reboot?
     
  5. jason10mm

    jason10mm NRA-GOA-TSRA

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    An update: I swapped hard drives with the one that came pre-installed from Dell. Still freaks out when moving the LCD/flexing the chassis (not aggressively mind you, sometimes just enough to peek behind the laptop to plug in a power cord!). But, I did get the BSOD long enough to see the dreaded "ATI2DVAG inifinite loop error". This is something I read up on. Seems to be a persistant driver error for some folks. Not sure why I would suddenly get it now on a system previously stable. Not sure why it would also happen on a different hard drive or why it seems to be mechanically induced.

    I did crack the case to check for loose wire. Nope, the LCD cable is firmly atached. The memory is accessed from the bottom of the case, it is in firmly.

    I'm having even wierder problems now. It has trouble booting up, halting acessing the DVD drive. Once it completely boot up, but the LCD remained blank. Hooking it up to an external monitor didn't show a picture there either :(

    I'll hit up the Dell tech support this weekend, lets hope for the best!