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Computer keeps restarting with black screen

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September 13, 2009 3:13:27 AM

Hi everyone

I have a laptop that doesn't boot up. The last time I used it was 11 hours ago and I used the hibernate feature to shut down the computer. THe last software I installed is Big Kahuna Reef Game found on Amazon.com and the Amazon.com game download program. Those are found here: http://www.amazon.com/Big-Kahuna-Reef-Game-Download-PC/...

So I press the power button and these are the symptoms:

-black screen, no a single text, letter or image shows up
-No option for entering setup or bios
- keyboard does not show lights, so I can't tell if it responds even after hitting cap locks.
- touchpad mouse has a light but when I push the disable touchpad button it doesnt change to orange as it should. So that's frozen
- I dont hear any beeps or error codes
- It automatically powers off and back on repeatedly every 20-30 seconds

Here's my specs:

Compaq Presario Laptop F557US model
2 years old
Windows Vista Basic 32Bit SP2
AMD Sempron Processor 1.8 Ghz
2GB DDR ram
Broadcom wireless card that failed 1 month ago (randomly boots back up)
NVIDIA GeForce Go 6100 Video Card
100GB (5400RPM) Hard Drive (SATA)
24X DVD/CD-RW Combo Drive
15.4" WXGA High-Definition Brightview Widescreen (1280 X 800) Display

Any other specs may be found here if needed:
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c00...

Software:
Avast Antivirus updated daily
Spybot SD updated biweekly
Router Firewall

Stuff I tried:
I removed CMOS battery for 1-2 mins.
I removed both ram sticks, Hard drive, wireless card, cmos battery and booted it up.

I put the items back but 1 at a time while turning on the laptop before putting the next item.

Got any solutions? Also according to the manufacturer site, I have a SATA hard drive. If I cant get the laptop to work, how do I know which enclosure to buy so I can transfer my files to my desktop?
September 18, 2009 3:50:09 AM

You'll need something like this for that hard drive. http://www.thermaltakeusa.com/Product.aspx?C=1289&ID=16...

Do you have Vista installation disc? Insert the disc and reboot then run a fix from there. If you don't have one, try pressing F8 before booting up. If you got the screen to select the option the select "Last Known Good Configuration"

If that fail then remove the hard drive and start the computer, if it doesn't start then your hard drive maybe ok but you laptop.
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September 18, 2009 12:32:11 PM

Did you also try the memory per stick, first one solo, then the other one solo? Can you get an image on an external monitor? Get the cpu out and have it tested? Warranty?
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September 25, 2009 12:12:35 AM

DVD drive works but the computer doesn't read the recovery disk. So no change in symptoms.


Que said:
Did you also try the memory per stick, first one solo, then the other one solo? Can you get an image on an external monitor? Get the cpu out and have it tested? Warranty?


Yeah I tried 1 memory at a time. I plugged in another monitor. It didn't work. Normally if connect the external monitor I am required to press Fn and F4 to switch monitors. Unfortunately the keyboard doesn't respond either. I bought an enclosure and accessed my hard drive on my PC. It seems to work fine.

I'm having a lot of trouble getting access to the CPU. The case seems to be tightly mounted onto the entire motherboard. I'm trying to find screws or hinges that can let me remove the frame but somewhere its hanging on tightly.

Out of warranty 1 year ago. I sent it in 1 year ago right before warranty was over for a motherboard issue and I'm not sure what they did to fix it last time. The symptoms were different before. My USB didnt work last time.
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September 27, 2009 6:09:44 PM

You just have to remove the bottom plastic part that covers the ventilators (including the small memory cover, and the heatsink with the 4 spring-screws. Then it's a lever to release an AMD cpu. or a screw for an Intel processor. I hope it is the cpu (or still both memory sticks), but I'm afraid it may be gpu/gpu-memory since there is no life on an external screen.
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July 1, 2010 3:54:51 AM

This sounds identical to the issues I am now having. Were you able to figure out what was causing the issue? What was your solution?
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July 8, 2010 3:21:14 AM

Hi amberle

Yeah, I figured it out fairly recently. But only do this if you are out of other options and you do not have warranty the computer anymore. If you have warranty, contact HP.

Turns out that my computer wasn't affected due to Big kahuna Reef installation, but it was a hardware defect. The HP series for those laptops and many others have a Nvidia GPU that was released defective. To fix this, you have to remove your entire motherboard from the case. Remove the fan and the metal bar covering the GPU attached to the fan. You have to remove the thermal paste on that chip. Get a blow dryer, and carefully blow on the GPU so it warms but, but careful not to burn the chip. You dont want anything to melt, just feel a little hot. Then when its hot, press the chip down against the board. Once you do that, add thermal paste to the chip, and get 1 penny, lay it ontop of the chip, and clamp on the metal bar back over the chip. So now, you will have a penny sandwiched between that metal bar and chip. Put everything back togther and try to boot it up. I did this 5 times before I managed to get it right.

There are other temporary tricks, such as a towel trick where you wrap the computer around a towel and leave it on for some time to heat, but that doesn't work long and may damage the laptop further. The trick is the pressure provided by the penny. I hope this helps.

Here's a youtube video of someone doing essentially the same thing. Good luck!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MGvJCMQFis
Let me know how it goes.
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!