Serious Problem With Dell Inspiron 9100, Need Help

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Hello, I have a Dell Inspiron 9100 laptop with a P4 3.2 ghz processor,
1 GB or ram and a Radeon 9700 mobility graphics card.  This laptop is
experiencing problems.

I was working on it once, and went to take a 10 minute brake.  When I
came back, the laptop did not respond.  It just displayed a static
image on the screen of whatever it was doing before I left. None of
the buttons worked, but the image still displayed on the screen.  I
let it sit there for 5 minutes hoping that it might clear up and then
I turned it off by holding down the power button.

I let it rest for 5 minutes and tried to turn it back on again.  It
starded with the POST test, but halfway through it it just hung
again.  Again there was no response from any of the buttons, and the
laptop produced no beeps.  The fans were still blowing and the image
just displayed there with the POST bar stuck about half way through.

I tried restarting it several times, and every time the same thing
happened, just with the POST getting stuck at various points.

The next day, post completed successfully, and I was able to get to
the BIOS.  Then it hung again when I tried to go to the next page in
the bios, and it produced some random characters along with the normal
text that was supposed to be there.  (very strange)

Today I was able to get the laptop running and I was able to boot into
windows xp.  The computer hung after about 15 minutes of normal work.

These are strange symptoms, and it is a fairly expensive computer that
I want to get fixed.

Here are some of the questions:  Has anybody ever experienced similar
problems here, and does anybody know of any solutions? This has
completely stomped me, and I have no idea of what might be
malfunctioning or what might be going on.
Can anybody also please give any suggestion in how I might be going
about trying to trouble shoot this, before I will send this machine in
to make repairs.

I am fairly computer technical and have no problem with taking the
laptop apart, so any suggestions would be welcome.

I will also post this in the computer hardware discussion group.

Thank you!

Re: Serious Problem With Dell Inspiron 9100, Need Help

quick update: when i turined it on one more time, it got into windows,
and the creen went balank while i  was doing windows update.  The fan
was still blowing and the indicator lights were still on.  No response
form the laptop otherwise.

Re: Serious Problem With Dell Inspiron 9100, Need Help

I just tried to turn the darn thing on again and had my digital camera
with me. Here is what I captured.  (Sorry for the poor quality):

You can see the BIOS and the "Red heart" and "Question Mark" symbols.
They should not be there.

The computer is unresponsive.

Then I snapped this at the next restart:

Maybe it is a RAM problem?
I have no idea what can screw up the BIOS this way.

Re: Serious Problem With Dell Inspiron 9100, Need Help wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

This is strictly a guess, but I would assume the CPU fan is
dead. Todays CPUs get hot very quickly. The other fans in
the laptop can be working, but if the CPU fan is dead, they
would probably not be able to compensate for the lack of
cooling for the CPU.

I had a a HP Pavilion zd8205us that had that problem.
Actually one of the auxiliary fans died first then the CPU
fan died. The zd8205us used a Pentium IV (not M or Celeron)
and when it got hot it got very hot. By the time I had to
send it in to be fixed, it couldn't run for more than 15
minutes at a time and that was with it elevated and a small
fan pointed directly at it.

Got both fans replaced and it has been running like a champ

Ciao . . . C.Joseph

    "A promise is nothing more than an attempt,
     to respond to an unreasonable request."

Re: Serious Problem With Dell Inspiron 9100, Need Help

solved the problem; thank you.

Problem was with ram

Re: Serious Problem With Dell Inspiron 9100, Need Help

Hi there,

I'm having the same problem on my I9100. My BIOS starts loading and
gets stuck after abt 75% on the BIOS loading progress bar.

I recently installed 1GB x 2 memory from Crucial.

Could you please tell me how exactly you resolved this problem... I
have too much data on it that I cannot really afford to lose on it.. Any
help wud be greatly appreciated..



Re: Serious Problem With Dell Inspiron 9100, Need Help

travelbug wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

Restore the original RAM? What happens if you go into BIOS setup at boot
and look at the memory specifications, if any?


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