I think graphics cars is defect, computershop dissagrees.

Computer: HP Pavilion HDX9000
GPU: Mobility Ati Radeon 2600 XT
OS: Windows Vista

My brother, who knows little about computers, tried to install a recommended bios upgrade, as he was promted to do. He said the computer shut down when installing the bios update, as if it tried to restart, meaning it closed down the open windows before shutting down. But it would not start again.

it will boot up past the bios but freezes before it logs on to windows. It doesn't completely shut down, but there is absolutley no activity... It just hangs there with a black screen, and doesn't respond to anything other than holding down the power button for 10 seconds, which will shut it down.

I presumed that a windows update had failed, and i resorted to formatting the drive, and re-installing windows vista from the recovery partion (image) on the computer. This did not work and produced exactly the same problem. When the computer restarted during the installation, to show windows the first time, it died before the windows screen came on, with the round logo in the center of the screen.

I then got hold of a windows vista cd from work. I installed it and it worked fine... Until i installed the drivers. After the drivers were installed, it would again produce the exact same problem.

I then tried to install the newest bios upgrade in safemode, which was newer than the one on the system at the time. But this didn't make any difference.

I suspected the video card to be the problem, so i tried disabling the display driver in safe mode, and whoopty, the computer started normally after that, with crappy craphics of course. Every time i try enabling the display driver, it will reboot and freeze in the same manner.
I then tried to install new display drivers, both from the HP webbsite, and from ATI. They installed, the computer re-started and again it produced the same problem.

I used to work as a computer technician (programmer now), so i took the computer to my old workplace, the same place this computer was purchased. A guy there tried booting it up on a bootable Centos cd, and it worked fine. The graphics looked good, and the resolution was 1600Xsomething, which i think was the highest resolution on windows, when the computer worked. The highest resolution in windows safemode is 1400Xsomething. He did not try to install any drivers or stress test.

I am almost positive there's something wrong with the graphics card, but the technician who tried Centos on it, dissagrees with me, on the basis that it worked with the Centos cd. He blames windows (linux nerd).

The computer is still under waranty, but they refuse to take it in since it seemed to work with the bootable Centos CD. They say their job is not to fix windows errors.

Does anyone have any suggestions here? I would like to prove that the graphics card is faulty, but the computer has no built in diagnostics tools or cd's, and i can't seem to find one for download.

Any help is much appreciated
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  1. I know a little about computers so I was thinking just a process of elimination really.
    Take out your Graphics card and throw it into another computer if it works in that computer then the computer shop was right and your problem lies somewhere else. Really I find computer shops to be like any other place just a bunch of peoples own opinions mixed in with actual truth... So yeah. =] Good luck.
  2. My brother updated the bios on his own computer without my knowledge. He just figured it was a regular update.

    I re-installed a newer version bios on his computer after all of this, and it did not change anything.

    Milsie: I would like to have that option, but i don't have another laptop of the same kind, and these graphics card are specifically modeled to fit this model of laptop.
  3. The computershop in question is the official hp supplier here. They are required to take the computer in for waranty, as i tried to explain to them, but they refuse to do so, because they don't think there's anything wrong with the hardware itself. They say it's a windows error, and so they won't take it in for waranty.
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