We help IT Professionals succeed at work.

Dell Precision M 90 won't boot up and displays blank gray screen

Starbuck67
Starbuck67 asked
on
I have a Dell Precision M 90 that today failed to boot up. When I turn on the laptop a gray screen appears and there is about 5 seconds worth of disk activity. After that the only thing that happens is the gray screen begins becoming mottled and blury 2" wide empty squares  slowly appear. I tried booting from the installation CD and had about 5 seconds of activity on the CD drive and then nothing but the same gray screen.

I am running Window 2K.
Comment
Watch Question

Attach an external monitor to the laptop and see if the same screen appears on it. If it does then its either a problem with the video card(not integrated on this system) or the motherboard.
Most Valuable Expert 2015
Commented:
This is a hardware problem. You should contact Dell for a warranty repair of your laptop.
Top Expert 2013

Commented:
here my laptop troubleshooting guide :
- if no display - test with an external monitor
- test also with a known good battery !
- remove battery and AC adaptor, hold power button for 20 sec, connect AC and reboot --> any display ? if NO -->
- disconnect all disk and cd drives, battery , and other cards and peripherals, leave only 1 ram stick
- boot -->any display ?
- if NO remove all ram and reboot --> if NO beeps, mobo or cpu bad ; if it beeps, replace ram stick

for troubleshooting the display (LCD) problems :  http://www.lcdparts.net/howto/troubleshooting/troubleshootingLaptop.aspx      LCD troubleshooting

Commented:
This is most probably a graphic card problem.

In case of M90 it's pretty common. If you have followed nobus guide and found out to be hardware then I can advise.

The M90 graphic cards are hardly to be repaired (30% chance of success).
But you can replace it with a various dell graphic cards.

The systems that are digitally compatible: inspiron 9300, 9400, precision M6300, Xps one, xps 1710, xps 1730, xps M2010 and some others.

So the cheepest solution is to get something like this:
 http://cgi.ebay.com/Dell-9300-GD294-Graphics-Video-Card-32mb-ATI-x300-/180507417304?cmd=ViewItem&pt=PCC_Video_TV_Cards&hash=item2a07149ad8

You can byu graphic cards which fits for $50-$200.
Don't target on M90 graphic card as it's usually too expensive.

Petr