TechSpot

Laptop screen is "dead", but still works with display?

By TheLostApple
Apr 28, 2010
  1. Note: I'm running Windows XP installed through Bootcamp on a Macbook Pro 13" Late 2009 model.

    Recently, I found out my laptop screen no longer functions when using Windows XP. It boots up normally, gets past the "welcome" screen, and then reaches my desktop. It stays fine for a few seconds, then suddenly goes black. I tried shining a flashlight to see if it was a lamp problem, but there was no "faint outline" of anything, meaning its not the lamp's problem. However, I know my laptop's still running because of the fan noise and the beeping sounds.

    Then, I tried plugging my laptop to my Phillips 230T 23" display, and everything worked fine. I could see my desktop, and everything normally. I also booted in Mac OSX and things worked fine too, both on the display and on the laptopscreen. No black screen there, but only while using Windows on the laptop screen itself. This means its not a video card problem either....

    Any advice/help?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Try booting into Safe Mode (pressing F8 on startup) and select VGA
     
  3. gguerra

    gguerra TS Maniac Posts: 317

    Yes apparently you have your display resolution set to something that is not compatible with your screen. In theory that would be hard to do since the display is built in but I would look at resolution and screen refresh rate. Plug in your laptop to a regular monitor and change the settings, then try it.
     
  4. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Alright, I'll try both your solutions. Thank you for taking the time to answer.
     
  5. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I tried both solutions, but they did not work.

    When I ran in Safe Mode, then enabled VGA, the screen turned to a very low resolution when it reached a desktop-the icons and start button were huge. Then, the screen proceeded to black out again.

    Any other possible fixes?
     
  6. gguerra

    gguerra TS Maniac Posts: 317

    You must have another type of problem. You had mentioned that it worked when using a regular monitor.. Plug that in and try reinstalling the video card driver. scan for malware.. It seems that your computer is switching off the main display for some reason. It may be by design.. There may be some kind of utility to control that in control panel. If the display seems fine right up until the desktop and icons show up then you display works just fine and may be shutting off for some other reason.
     
  7. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    This only started happening after I pulled the VGA cable connecting my laptop to my display out without changing displays on my nVidia utility first.....

    I usually change the display settings from laptop screen to display, or vice versa, then disconnect. But the other day, I jumped to step 2 immediately...could this be a reason?

    I'll try scanning for malware in the meantime...
     
  8. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Er, bump?

    If anyone could provide a solution, it would be greatly appreciated as I'm traveling for 3 weeks next month, and I'm unable to bring the display. Without it, I can't access important files and such on my Windows side.

    Thank you.
     
  9. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    I'm afraid that you will have to take it into a laptop repair center to have it fixed. The laptop would have to have Windows reloaded, I'm afraid
     
  10. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    *Sigh* Alright, I'll see if I can find a store to fix it in.

    However, could this thread be left open for awhile, just in case more solutions come in?

    Thank you.
     
  11. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    This thread will remain open so you can come back and tell us what was done to fix the computer. Good luck :)
     
  12. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +116

    If it only does it in Windows its almost certainly a driver problem. Without sounding rude, I really don't know what you expect Mac to do about Windows problems?!? If it was a hardware fault it would do it regardless of what OS it was running.

    The hint you need to follow here, is what happened to make it happen the first time. I would strongly point towards a change or corruption to nVidia's drivers on your Windows XP side.

    My advice is to remove all nVidia drivers, and then re-install the new, correct drivers to suit your graphics hardware and LCD. Removing the feed whilst still running has clearly affected the driver and software in some way, so the best way of returning to the beginning is to remove, then re-install the software.

    If possible, try and re-install the latest driver for the display through the device manager as well.

    The problem is not hardware though as it works in OSX, but not in Windows XP.
     
  13. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for the reply. :)

    I've never done anything related to drivers before, so could you give me some directions on how to remove/install the nVidia drivers? I guess its the only thing I haven't tried at the moment....
     
  14. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Replacing a driver while having no display will be very difficult
     
  15. tkr3alm3r

    tkr3alm3r TS Rookie Posts: 29

    my computer
    right click
    manage
    device manager
    display adaptors
    should see your graphics card there
    uninstall the card
    reboot
    when windows loads should detect new hardware
    then re-install n'vidia drivers (best to download these prior to uninstalling the card)
     
  16. ultragrey

    ultragrey TS Rookie Posts: 61

    Just adding with you... he will require the cd of the motherboard...
    [​IMG]
     
  17. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    He can get any of the motherboard missing drivers from the motherboard manufacturer's support website
     
  18. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    So my 'manufacturer' would be nVidia, right? :D

    "Replacing a driver while having no display will be very difficult."


    I can't use my external display during the process? D:
     
  19. brucethetech

    brucethetech TS Enthusiast Posts: 229

    if you have tried all teh above you may have the option for multiple monitors set and the primary display may be an extrnal device. go into the display settings and make sure that the primary monitor is the LCD and not the extrnal display.
     
  20. tkr3alm3r

    tkr3alm3r TS Rookie Posts: 29

    +1 I agree
    could have the non laptop screen not set as primary
    good pick-up
     
  21. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    "I can't use my external display during the process?"...
    As long as you have video externally through the hole process, you will be okay
     
  22. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    When I need to use my external display, I right click my desktop, and go to 'nVidia Control Panel" where I can select whether to use the display or my laptop screen. After I select the one I want, there's a 15 second preview period. If I want to keep using the display I selected, I must click yes or after the 15 seconds period, it goes back to the previous screen used.

    I went to the control panel, and chose 'laptop screen' as my default selection, but I'm unable to click "Yes" on my laptop because I can't see anything (due to the black screen). So it reverts back to my external display.

    If I could get around this problem, I might be able to fix the problem entirely.
     
  23. tkr3alm3r

    tkr3alm3r TS Rookie Posts: 29

    use the left or right arrows on keyboard and hit enter
     
  24. tweakboy

    tweakboy TS Guru Posts: 467

    Your gonna have to carry your stuff, tough luck my friend.. good luck
     
  25. TheLostApple

    TheLostApple TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for the continued help guys.

    I used the arrow keys, as suggested by tkr3alm3r, and it the display switched to the laptop BUT the screen remains black/off.

    I know it switched to the laptop because my display screen went into standby a couple seconds later, meaning it was no longer in use by the laptop.

    Are there any commands I could run or anything I could do to fix this problem?

    Thanks again. :)
     
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.

Similar Topics

Add New Comment

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...