Dell Inspiron 910 Ubuntu

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Dell Inspiron 910 Ubuntu

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We bought two of our kids the Dell 910 Mini notebooks, but one was running Windows (and doesn't run at all anymore) and the other (slightly newer) is running Ubuntu. Had a problem with Ubuntu shortly after getting the second mini and was sent a USB Reinstallation media Ubuntu for Dell Inspiron Mini 9 (910). Now only one of the computers works at all, and both are long out of warranty. I've recently tried to get at least one of them working again, and I got the one with Ubuntu running, but it kept trying to install updates but always had a problem with it. Then I tried using the reinstallation usb and started getting the message that the disc was full. Couldn't use the Add/Remove Program because it was trying to install updates and that wouldn't work. I even turned off the auto-update feature, and still didn't work. I found some old files and deleted everything I felt comfortable deleting (meaning I knew what it was) and freed up a little space. Now it'll boot up into Ubuntu, but still won't run most programs, most noticeably the Web, where I am getting a message it's not finding Firefox.

Now I'm trying to just completely wipe the system and use the usb to reinstall, and I saw other posts about hitting certain keys when the Dell logo appears. Only problem is that when I turn the computer on, only the Ubuntu loading screen appears, then it goes to the desktop. The Dell logo never comes on. I've tried changing the desktop from Dell classic to the Ubuntu and back, but still no Dell logo. It doesn't matter if the usb is in or not. I've even tried just letting it boot up w/ the usb in and then going into places>computer>usb (or something like that, basically showing the files on the usb) and trying to run the .config. That doesn't work.

So, does anyone have any suggestions on how I can get back into the Dell boot menu, or get this computer working at all? The wireless shows connectivity to our router, but since it doesn't have firefox it won't open a webpage, even the Dell support page.

Thanks!

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