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Factory Restore - Need Help!

Last response: in Windows 7
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July 16, 2012 2:28:02 AM

Ok, I'll start at the beginning...

Some system files got messed up on my computer and after a day on the phone with Dell tech support, they determined that I needed to wipe my hard drive and start over from scratch. During this process, they had me open up my computer to remove the hard drives (they wanted to test to see if a problem was being caused by my HD or CD drive).

I spent the next 3 days on the phone with Dell tech support changing settings myself and waiting as they made changes and installed drivers remotely. Everything was going seemingly smoothly until it was time to install my video card drivers. At first the installation failed, and the Dell technician had me change some settings, then in the middle of a second attempt to install them, my cat walked on my laptop, stepped on the power button, and the computer shut off. After that, spent a long time trying to get it to install correctly, but nothing would work.

After hanging up with Dell, I tried to log into some games, but they wouldn't start. I looked at the driver the Dell technician was trying to install and I didn't recognize it (NVIDA Display Driver v301.42) , so I then went on the Dell website and downloaded the Driver for my video card (nVidia 280M). The installation went smoothly and I could now launch and play games and watch videos unlike before.

I figured things were fine, so I stopped contacting Dell. However, a few problems began to arise with the computer:

-The computer is VERY hot. Much hotter than it ever was before. I can't keep it on my lap anymore, because it burns my legs.
-The computer will randomly freeze or the screen will change to all one color (pale green for example) and parts of it will flash, forcing me to restart. This only happens if I'm in the middle of a game or watching a video.
-There's this error message that pops up every time I start or shut down my computer:


Something else that might be important (maybe causing overheating?): The screws for the HDs were connected to the HDs with thin plastic holders (presumably so that you don't lose the screws) and while I was unscrewing one of the screws, the plastic holder broke.

Anyway, I'm not exactly sure what the problem is, but it is really annoying and it's pretty much impossible to play the games I want to, as the computer just randomly stops working without warning. I called back Dell Tech Support, but they want to charge me another $150.

I'm not sure what to do now. Is there anything I can do to find out the problem? Can I just do another system wipe and start from scratch? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Nick

More about : factory restore

July 16, 2012 2:44:44 AM

warlucith said:
Ok, I'll start at the beginning...

Some system files got messed up on my computer and after a day on the phone with Dell tech support, they determined that I needed to wipe my hard drive and start over from scratch. During this process, they had me open up my computer to remove the hard drives (they wanted to test to see if a problem was being caused by my HD or CD drive).

I spent the next 3 days on the phone with Dell tech support changing settings myself and waiting as they made changes and installed drivers remotely. Everything was going seemingly smoothly until it was time to install my video card drivers. At first the installation failed, and the Dell technician had me change some settings, then in the middle of a second attempt to install them, my cat walked on my laptop, stepped on the power button, and the computer shut off. After that, spent a long time trying to get it to install correctly, but nothing would work.

After hanging up with Dell, I tried to log into some games, but they wouldn't start. I looked at the driver the Dell technician was trying to install and I didn't recognize it (NVIDA Display Driver v301.42) , so I then went on the Dell website and downloaded the Driver for my video card (nVidia 280M). The installation went smoothly and I could now launch and play games and watch videos unlike before.

I figured things were fine, so I stopped contacting Dell. However, a few problems began to arise with the computer:

-The computer is VERY hot. Much hotter than it ever was before. I can't keep it on my lap anymore, because it burns my legs.
-The computer will randomly freeze or the screen will change to all one color (pale green for example) and parts of it will flash, forcing me to restart. This only happens if I'm in the middle of a game or watching a video.
-There's this error message that pops up every time I start or shut down my computer:
http://i822.photobucket.com/albums/zz141/Warlucith/errormessage.jpg

Something else that might be important (maybe causing overheating?): The screws for the HDs were connected to the HDs with thin plastic holders (presumably so that you don't lose the screws) and while I was unscrewing one of the screws, the plastic holder broke.

Anyway, I'm not exactly sure what the problem is, but it is really annoying and it's pretty much impossible to play the games I want to, as the computer just randomly stops working without warning. I called back Dell Tech Support, but they want to charge me another $150.

I'm not sure what to do now. Is there anything I can do to find out the problem? Can I just do another system wipe and start from scratch? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Nick


Wow I can't believe Dell tech support had a novice (sorry) try to open up their computer and fudge around with it? That seems a bit irresponsible on their part. I am assuming this is also a laptop, since you said it is too hot to run on your lap.

It sounds to me like your GPU fan may not be running, causing your GPU to overheat, leading to some graphics corruption (e.g., the pale green screen + crashing.) This could also be why your laptop has started to get too hot to leave on your lap.

The Microsoft .NET component error is likely due to a software issue (wrong software, or just a weird daemon bug) and can be fixed with an OS re-install most likely.. there are other ways to debug this but its a bit difficult to walk someone through it via message board.

The overheating however, is likely due to a dead fan.. or maybe you accidently disconnected something you shouldn't when you were fudging around in your laptop? I seriously doubt your HDD mount is causing so much heat to be generated.

Not sure if it would work, but I would call Dell and tell them the tech support guy had you messing around in your computer even though you didn't know what you were doing, and just ended up making problems worse. They should be obligated to come out and take a look and repair your laptop onsite, but I guess that would only be in a perfect world.

If that doesn't work, I would try to isolate the issue of where the heat is coming from. GPU being the obvious source IMO. If you figure that out, just do a clean system wipe and see what happens. Is this an SSD?
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July 16, 2012 2:57:23 AM

1. You likely have two problems, caused by a third.
2. The broken plastic is likely the cause of your overheating. (We need the year, make and model of your laptop for further exploration of this)
3. Take a screen-shot of your .Net error with the details section expanded

It sounds like you may need a physical repair, not something to recommend to a novice as it's a laptop. If under warranty you'll likely need dell to deal with it. If out of warranty check the local shops, be sure to ask them if they do in-house repairs of if they send the equipment off.

The .Net issue, unless driver related, can most likely be solved by un-installing .Net, restarting, and re-installing. Windows caches commonly used DLL's and files making the restart between steps necessary.
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July 16, 2012 3:06:20 AM

c3h8 said:
1. You likely have two problems, caused by a third.
2. The broken plastic is likely the cause of your overheating. (We need the year, make and model of your laptop for further exploration of this)
3. Take a screen-shot of your .Net error with the details section expanded

It sounds like you may need a physical repair, not something to recommend to a novice as it's a laptop. If under warranty you'll likely need dell to deal with it. If out of warranty check the local shops, be sure to ask them if they do in-house repairs of if they send the equipment off.

The .Net issue, unless driver related, can most likely be solved by un-installing .Net, restarting, and re-installing. Windows caches commonly used DLL's and files making the restart between steps necessary.


Hey Mr. Propane, :D 

Going to have to disagree with you on the plastic issue. He snapped some plastic mounts for the HDD... and unless he is running some 10K rpm drives in his laptop, I doubt they are going to generate the heat (even if they are mounted incorrectly) to cause potential lap-top sterilization.

As you mentioned tho he probably needs someone with a bit more experience to take a look at whats going on.
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July 16, 2012 5:33:03 PM

c3h8 said:
(We need the year, make and model of your laptop for further exploration of this)

The computer is an Alienware M17x Laptop from 2008.

onichikun said:
Wow I can't believe Dell tech support had a novice (sorry) try to open up their computer and fudge around with it? That seems a bit irresponsible on their part. I am assuming this is also a laptop, since you said it is too hot to run on your lap.

No offense taken. Yea it's a laptop, but regarding their irresponsibility, I'm pretty sure they designed the laptop to be opened by novices. I've had experience completely disassembling and reassembling my old laptops and those were WAY more complicated. This one just has a hatch underneath that you can open up and have access to the inside. The part that broke was just because of a faulty part (all I did was put a screwdriver in the screw and turn counterclockwise, the thin plastic film around the screw ripped as I did that. None of the other plastic films ripped when I did the same thing.)

onichikun said:
Not sure if it would work, but I would call Dell and tell them the tech support guy had you messing around in your computer even though you didn't know what you were doing, and just ended up making problems worse. They should be obligated to come out and take a look and repair your laptop onsite, but I guess that would only be in a perfect world.

Anything hardware related is covered under my warranty, so I wouldn’t have to hope for the perfect world. :) 

c3h8 said:
It sounds like you may need a physical repair, not something to recommend to a novice as it's a laptop. If under warranty you'll likely need dell to deal with it.

It’s still under warranty, so having Dell come to fix any hardware issues wouldn’t be a problem.

c3h8 said:
3. Take a screen-shot of your .Net error with the details section expanded

The details section filled up 7 pages in Microsoft Word so it was a bit too big to screenshot and I probably shouldn't post 7 pages on the forum either.


So what I've gathered is that there might be a software problem and a hardware problem. Anything software related is not covered under my warranty, so I'd have to solve those problems on my own. If I reinstall my OS and successfully install all the drivers, I can know for sure if there's a hardware issue and get Dell to come fix it. I'm not entirely sure of all the drivers I'd need though...is there anywhere I can see a list of everything I'd need to do upon reinstalling? Also, does my plan sound reasonable? :na: 
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July 16, 2012 6:25:49 PM

You could use pastebin for the 7 pages and just post the link here.

That aside, I am glad the hardware is still covered under your warranty. I am 100% sure a system re-install should take care of your SW issues... DELL would just need to repair your hardware.

As for the missing drivers, usually the Dell recovery CDs have an old version of the drivers, and you can always download driver packs from the vendor websites (e.g., video drivers from nvidia) if windows update doesnt detect your hardware VID/PID. I would def. just check your hardware menu for what devices dont have a driver, check out the VID/PID if you dont know what it is, and find out what driver supports it. You can google some of the stuff and it will usually tell you what it is.. just make sure to get the driver from a verified source, and not the websites that will install malware all over your system ;) 

I am sure that a windows update should take care of some of the driver issues though.
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