Black Screen on Dell Vostro 200

15 pts.
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Dell PC-Vostro 200
Has anyone had experience with the Dell Vostros where after a time upon restart the PC goes through the Dell 'POST' and Windows XP screens then the raster goes black and nothing further. I spent a lot of time on the phone with Dell tech support but they were no help. Any advice or suggestions, other than re-imaging the box would be much appreciated. Ben Powell, Tech Support, MSE, Van Nuys, CA

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Sadly, I have seen this happen to all 14 of the Dell Vostro 200 computers I have sold; usually after a few days and/or restarts. Support for the problem is worthless, as everything revolves around reformatting and restoring.

Here is the only solution I have found thus far that keeps data and takes the least amount of time:

Using Windows XP disc, start from CD. At the first propt to install or repair, choose install. When Windows XP setup detects a previous version of Windows, choose repair. This process will complete an in-place upgrade (reinstallion) of Windows XP. Once complete, all of your programs will still be intact and unchanged, but you will need to reinstall all Windows updates, including IE7.

Good luck… because unfortunately I just received another call for one of these systems and I have to reinstall Windows tomorrow. Thanks for nothing, Dell.

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  • ITsHere
    Im not sure you would need to strip the machine down completely, but getting rid of any hardware you might have added on after market couldn't hurt. I would first try running the computer in Safe mode. I have a Dell that I have hooked up to a plasma and occasionally if the plasma is not on, it will not display on the monitor. Why this happens I am unsure and it could be a gfx card issue (most likely the case). Sometimes it will be fickle and goto a black screen because it cannot display on the primary monitor. If this is not the case, then ignore everything I said. If you can get to the windows screen, I would definitely try running in safe mode, checking your gfx card drivers. There could also be a conflict between on-board gfx and an addl card as sometimes irq conflicts can occurr. I know most Dells do not always allow you to disable the on-board gfx (trying to make the machine fool proof) but as long as you disable it in windows (only if your using seperate gfx card) then it should work. Let me know how it works out for you.
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  • Milo
    Had EXACTLY the same problem. Traced it to a bad Lexmark printer driver. Never thought a printer driver would have this effect on an OS.
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  • Coachhelton
    I am having the same issue with about 10 different machines in my building, using different printers, monitors, etc. Dell was no help, just wants me to recover or format. It just took about a week for 4 or 5 of them to start having problems. Any other suggestions would be great.
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