Ancient Laptop Screen don't work 21:18 09 Mar 2007

I have an ancient IBM Thinkpad 390 Laptop running windows 2000. About a year ago it ran itself into a few problems, and I asked a local computer shop to fix it, which they did successfully, then a different problem occurred, I again asked them to fix it. They did, but they created a new problem; The screen was not displaying anything, but black, it comes on, but that is it. At the time I was frankly too busy too do anything about it, as it was already very old, and it was only a computer I was trying to use to mess around with. Now, I have been trying to get it going again for a friend, to just try and see if a laptop benefits him. I can still use the laptop if I plug an external monitor into it.

Has anyone got any ideas on how to get the screen going again please?
Has anyone got any ideas on how to get the screen working again please?

  Technotiger 21:26 09 Mar 2007

Hi, if the screen is totally black then on such an olde laptop I would suspect that the back-lighters have failed - it is possible for them to be replaced.

- click here

  De Marcus™ 21:34 09 Mar 2007

A totally black screen isn't indicative of a dead back light. Under normal conditions you can usually still see the goings on of an OS when a back light goes pop, just not very well at all. The fact that the screen is completely blank is more likely to represent a connection, power or driver issue which would be representative of the fact that the symptoms were only present after coming back from repair.

If the screen is completely black when the machine post's then I'd suggest looking at the actual connection as opposed to any other fault as it would be the most obvious symptom to start with.

P.S. Why didn't you take the machine back after this supposed repair??? 21:36 09 Mar 2007

Ok, thanks, I've had a look at the website and will proberbly look further.
Yes basically the screen is blank. when it comes on, it the screen seams to come to life, it lights up and everything, It just does'nt display anything but black, apart from one pixel which is green (guessing this might be a dead pixel.) 21:43 09 Mar 2007

Thanks for advice. It's kind of a long story why I did not take it back, But to make it short;
I knew the guy who ran the shop, and he had sone nemourious other repairs on other computers of mine and given advice for free. He seamed very confused and would not tell the the whole story about why the screen was blank when I collected it, He just fobbed me off by saying something about taking out the hard drive, and not finding anything wrong with it!!?? So because he had done things for free for me, and it was already an old laptop, I though i would just not bother trying to pin him down about it (I have not used them since this though.)

Can someone briefly explain to me the basics of what I need to do to check the connection of it please? Cheers.

  skidzy 21:52 09 Mar 2007

Have you tried booting into safemode ?

Maybe the bios has been changed somewhere (screen disabled,or similar)

FN+F8 or again something similar ?

Check the ram is clipped into place and not loose.

Have you tried without the battery using just the mains.

Just a few things to try. 16:56 10 Mar 2007

Here are the results of checking what you kindly surgested;

Safemode - Checked, Does'nt help
FN + F8 - This does not seam to help
Ram - All in place
Mains/Battery - None differs from the other
Bios - Can't check, It wanta a password, But i do not know what it is!!

Thanks for you tips Skidzy, But none seamed to of helped. Knowing my luck, The screen has proberbly cotten disabled in the bios somehow (Like you surgested), But the only problem is I can get into it!!

Any more help, or advice on how to get back into the bios would be much appreciated-Thanks! ;)

  PalaeoBill 17:08 10 Mar 2007
  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 17:56 10 Mar 2007

Thinkpads generally use Fn + F5 to change screen from interal to external 22:34 10 Mar 2007

right, Ok. I have followed the link PalaeoBill posted. This has helped tonnes (thanks by the way!)
I think the sreen must be disabled in the bios. I managed to get the screen working by taking the motherboard battery out of it. Altough when I put it back in the bios seams to go back to the old settings, password, disabled monitor and all.
Unfortunatly the website PalaeoBill posted does not cover my laptop (IBM Thinkpad 390) So I have been unable to acctually reset the bios for good.
But at least I know the screen is working. I have had a quick look on google for resetting the bios for my model, but was unable to find anything. Any other advice please!?

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