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Dell Inspiron 5100


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Dell Inspiron 5100

  • Marty's got problems!


    I recently reloaded Vanilla my older Inspiron 5100. I loades its original Vid driver whitch was a little slow. So--I attempted to reload the upgrade driver. In this process I lost the driver completely when I re-booted.

    When I now reboot it comes up with no video and checking the bios shows it is runnint in the XGA mode.

    Most machines have a hot key that allowws you the reset the biops to default vhitch probably would place it back in the VGA mode.

    I really hatee to have to open up the machine and use the reseet jumper on the circuit board.

    Any one out there know the hot Ket Or Any other suggestion?

    Sure could use some help.


  • Bacazoa,

    Can you help clarify some of your notes?  Vanilla... is that the name of the notebook or did you install something called Vanilla?

    Did you re-install the operating system on your 5100 and then install the drivers?  There is a recommended order when installing the drivers.  Do you recall if you followed the recommended order?

    What operating system do you have on this system? Did you upgrade to Vista or Win7?  The video driver you installed, was it from Dell's web site or from somewhere else?

    If you connected a video cable from the laptop to a monitor, do you have any video or does it appear the same as on the laptop screen?

    Can you boot to SafeMode, to see if you have any different video results?

    Has this system received any impact, like being dropped, that might have prompted the re-installation of the OS?  If you pressed, or gently flexed the LCD panel, or pressed firmly along the status light bezel... do you see any change in video?  Is it possible there could be damage to the connectors inside the LCD panel or where the LCD connects to the motherboard?

    Lastly, power system down.  Unplug any power cord.  Disconnect anything connected to the laptop (any USB device).  Take the battery out.  Press and hold the power button for 5-10 seconds.  Plug the power cord into system (leave battery out for the moment) and turn system on and see if the behavior remains.

    My daughter went off to college with a 5100 as a freshman in 2004.  It just might be time to consider replacing the system if you can't get the issue resolved for $100 or less.


    Optiplex Optiplex L755 USFF Windows Vista Business

    Macbook Pro OS X 10.8

  • I dident really expect such and well informed reply so quickly. Had I, surley I wouldd took more time to generate the post.

    Yhank you.

    Below is a corrected post. This may not suffice to answer all your question for clarity so I will attempt to give you this as follows:

    Vanilla is just a term used to indicate that you scrubbed hard drive by formatting it using a government wipe method ( 7 format passes) and then installed the original software from Microsoft). This also included installing all the original microsoft and 3 party drivers offered by microsoftt on the disk. The platform was Microsoft XP-SP2. I then downloaded several hundred updates ffrom the microsoft update site. This included XP3. Everything was working fine through all this excepet the original Video driver was updated shortly after the software had been released. ( I am sorry but I had a stroke several years back. Recently I began noticing I am developing Displexia along with other things. I may have to stop and rest before I can continue this. If so I will continue  as soon as opossiblr.)

    The video raster is present on an analouge monitor as well as the Lap top. However therre is no Video modulation.

    I tried your suggestion for resetting the bIOS BY  HOLDING THE POWER ON KEW 10 SEC. WHILL BOOT ING . This did not restore the analogue video the the monitor or the digital modulation to the LED screen of the Lap Top. The intencity of the screen can be varied on both video output devices/

    Before I turned off whaterev in the Lap Top every thing tested perfect! I sure hope you can help me fix whatever I messed up.

    Thank you for your help.,

    Mrty Wise Sr

  • Thanks for the clarification.  May I ask for additional clarification?

    You mention that you installed the original OS from Microsoft... Was the OS disk from Dell unavailable or was this 5100 originally purchased by you from Dell?  I only ask because Dell does have specific requirements when installing drivers as far as order is concerned.  It's possible that the 3rd-party drivers might be the issue, especially if not installed in the proper order.  I know this sounds brutal... but you may need to re-install the software again, including drivers and (sigh... the hundreds of updates!).

    If you're not seeing any usable video, I can't really advise to uninstall the video drivers and then install the ones from Dell.  You could take this to an authorized service location and have them determine whether this is software or hardware related.  If you have the time, I'd recommend going to Dell's website (on a good computer with a means to download drivers onto a disk, preferably a dvd) for support and download the drivers specific to the 5100:    Enter the service tag for the 5100 and review all the drivers there.

    Before you begin downloading the drivers, I'd also recommend this article:    Before you begin downloading and installing the drivers... to get your Dell laptop running, I'd follow the Dell process for installing these drivers.  THEN you'll get to enjoy spending a day installing the updates from MS!  Given that you'd be installing video drivers from Dell's web site, you're going to be getting the most up-to-date driver for you 5100.  3rd party driver  update might have been the issue/cause of the loss of video.

    Finally, if this 5100 is a project to get running - have fun!  If not, I'd have to say it might be time to donate the box and take a look at something newer.  The 5100 is nearly 10 years old, and it's technology will only be able to do so much compared with what has been built in the last couple of years.  Good Luck.


    Optiplex Optiplex L755 USFF Windows Vista Business

    Macbook Pro OS X 10.8

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