Old Dell Dimension E520 Video Issue

Hi All,

Have an older Dell Dimension E520 that is experiencing a wierd issue. This is my parents computer, though I now have it in my possession for troubleshooting, so I don't know what brought it on, but from what I'm told, one day they all of a sudden were unable to boot into Windows.

Now on startup the BIOS screen and first screen or two (where it is detecting drives, etc.) are full of very garbled text. (I will post pics at addresses below). I can see the BIOS text "underneath" but as shown, these weird characters persist.
It will take you to the windows boot menu where I can select to start in safe mode, or continue regular boot. Regular boot will hang. Safe mode usually succeeds, albeit with low resolution, fewer colors, etc.

Pic 1: http://www.picpaste.com/IMG_20121202_125920_2_-19LOLNEo.jpg

Pic 2: http://www.picpaste.com/IMG_20121202_125928_1_-mVed7UtC.jpg

(*Note: You may see the left monitor of my dual-monitor setup which looks fine. Only the right-side monitor is connected to the affected system)

I'm thinking this is likely a bad video card as the rest of the system appears to be trying to function.

I have no older video card to test it with. Does anyone have any other suggestions before I just order an inexpensive video card replacement?


3 answers Last reply
More about dell dimension e520 video issue
  1. Try a checkdisk and memtest86 first. Based on win only starting in safe mode, i would bet on the HDD.
  2. I will give that a try and report back. I'm familar with chkdsk, and I'll look into memtest86. Thanks.
  3. I have done both of these.

    Chkdsk reported no errors. Memtest86 passed without difficulty.

    Anyone have suggestions for a next step?
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