06-02-2012 12:21 PM
I really appreciate any help or suggestions. I have very little knowledge of the workings of computers, except what I have been learning while trying to fix this problem. I am in the middle of bar prep and need to have my computer as I am doing the bar prep online.
System (I can provide any other information needed, if that would help)
I have a T61 (7658-CTO).
Accelerator in Use is Mobile Intel(R) 965 Express Chipset Family.
Video BIOS: 1436
Driver Version is 126.96.36.1997
OS: Windows 7 Ultimate, Service Pack 1 (6.1.7601)
What happened. My computer was running Windows Vista and working fine. I was enrolled at the Univ of Washington and part of the tuition covered Windows 7 and Microsoft Office with everything. So, I went and had both installed on my computer. Afterwards, my computer began crashing and often I would get BSOD with code 116. I looked this up and it was the display driver. I downloaded the newest driver 188.8.131.527 and that problem seems to have gone away.
My new problem has only been occurring for the past 2 days. When I first start up my computer in morning, the backlight goes after a few seconds. (I am currently living in a cold basement, so last night I made sure that the computer was kept in a warmer part of the home, but the problem still occurred this morning.) I am able to get the blacklight to work again if I hit fn F7. However, this it only stays on for between 3 to 20 seconds and then it shuts off again. I had to do this about 15 times today and I am worried that I may be doing more damage to my system. The weird thing is that once the computer has been on for about 20 minutes, the problem seems to go away. (I am basing this assumption on the fact that the last 2 days that the computer began running fine after about 20 minutes.) I am worried that this problem will get worse to the point that I cannot do my bar prep, or even worse have a problem during the actual bar exam.
Any information would be helpful.
06-03-2012 01:22 PM
This could definitely be a failing screen, but it could also be a software problem, as the backlight can be controlled by software, both bightness or shut off completely. One simple way to tell would be to start it from a different operating system. If you have another T61, you can install the drive and see if it behaves the same, or you could start the computer from a Linux live CD. If you have the same problem running under linux (or a different windows OS), then you can safely assume it's hardware and should consider replacing the bad part... most likely the screen.
A good source for a linux liveCD would be ubuntu.com
ps. another thought... if my future depended on me having a working computer every day... then I'd surely have a spare handy.
06-05-2012 09:27 AM
It is hard to be sure without seeing it, but my guess is that the backlight bulb is dying.
I agree with richk, and just to clarify, the backlight bulb is part of the lcd assembly. It's not a part that is normally serviceable. It is possible to solder a new bulb into your lcd, but in many cases the assembly is glued and or spot welded together, plus opening the lcd assembly should be done in a "clean-room", as the lens act like dust magnets and it's nearly imposible to remove all the dust once it gets in. Unless I had some rare type of LCD screen that couldn't be replaced at a reasonable price, I wouldn't bother trying to replace a backlight, but if you enjoy such a challenge, then it could save you some money, but even with an optimistic outcome, you'll have a less then perfect screen when you're done.
06-06-2012 09:15 PM
Thanks for the advice. I think the bulb is now 100% gone, as the screen will no longer light up. Sounds like it would probably be best for me to wait for a laptop sale and just purchase a new one. I can't be too mad, that old T61 made it through 4 years of school and probably was used for at least 10 hours. Fortunately I have my old Lenove R60e which I can use until I decide to get a new one.
Thanks again guys.
06-07-2012 05:48 AM
I would put a used screen in it and use it for another several years if it was mine.