Is There A Known Virus That While Turn Off the Video Display Shortly After Startup?

I have a couple of hard drives that were in a laptop where the LCD screen failed.  Once removed and "different" hard drive inserted, the laptop worked until one day it too blackscreened.  I purchased an lcd inverter and that worked, but just for a short time.  I purchased a second one and that one didn't last much longer than 2 months if that long.

However with both inverters inserted & working the handful of hard drives with the mystery command that turns on the screen still turned them off.  I even tried attaching an external monitor to the laptop in order to bypass the blackscreen but I could literally hear the laptop turn off the monitor.  When I would start up the laptop, you could see everything all of the startup text before switching over to the laptop.  At that point it would attempt to switch turn on the monitor evidenced by the visual click I can hear when it first connects and you can briefly see that the monitor came on and then immediately black out.

My only thought is that this HAS to be a virus, one which is installed on each of these hard drives because they all do the exact same thing.

And Just FYI the software has to do with surveillance that the software company requires go through their server which I was never too keen on.

Any suggestions?
MariyamAsked:
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Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorCommented:
have you tried xp in safe mode?
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TutorialTeacherCommented:
Your HDD(Hard Disk Drive) has probably died try replacing it thats what happened to mine and thats how i fixed it
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Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorCommented:
...could also be the display on the system board failing
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TutorialTeacherCommented:
or loss of graphics card drivers
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web_trackerComputer Service TechnicianCommented:
My guess would be the video card as well since both hard drives do the same thing. It would be unual that the video drivers would be corrupt on each hard drive, but it could be possible. If it boots to windows in safemode then the video driver is a strong suspect as the windows native drivers are loaded when booting in safemode. It could be a virus but on both drives?
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TutorialTeacherCommented:
yeh also on some computer it will make a beeping noise if the hard drive
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JBrITCommented:
I would be looking at booting in to Safemode and checking that the screen displays correctly. If it does, then as siad above, it is likely to be the Graphics drivers. Have they bene updated recently? (ATi, NVidia or other automatic update?)

If it doens't display in Safe mode, it is likely it's the graphics card that is beginning to fail.

The liklihood of a virus on both drives preventing the display from working is incredibly slim.

You could put the drives in another machine if you have access to one and see what they do...
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MariyamAuthor Commented:
seth2740
"have you tried xp in safe mode?"

Yes it does the exact same thing - I can momentarily see the screen on the laptop before it switches over to the external monitor at which point I hear a click on the monitor and then the monitor goes black as well.  If I insert a different hard drive, it doesn't black screen although I tend to agree with the comments that it sounds like the video card might be failing, but that still wouldn't explain why these 2 or 3 drives have the ability to turn off the video but all of the other drives don't which is what was making me think it's a virus associated with the surveillance software (X10 - http://www.thehomeautomationstore.com/)

TutorialTeacherPosted
"Your HDD(Hard Disk Drive) has probably died try replacing it thats what happened to mine and thats how i fixed it"

The drives are fully accessible when attached to any other computer as an external drive.  The one thing I haven't tried (I don't think) is inserting them into a different laptop to see if they will boot there.  I'll try that this weekend and post back my findings.

web_tracker

"My guess would be the video card as well since both hard drives do the same thing. It would be unual that the video drivers would be corrupt on each hard drive, but it could be possible. If it boots to windows in safemode then the video driver is a strong suspect as the windows native drivers are loaded when booting in safemode. It could be a virus but on both drives?"

When I experienced this behavior the first time, I pulled the hard drive, inserted a new one and re-installed the same software.  This software was only installed on that machine although on a few different drives in an attempt to make it work.  It didn't or barely worked before it stopped causing all types of problems and crashes of the laptop eventually resulting in it turning off the monitor shortly after POST.  

Also, the company required that all of the video feed be sent and stored on their server which felt to me too much like advertising when I wasn't at home.  Considering that it never worked properly and managed to corrupt several hard drives I'm still wondering about those people although the clarity on the cameras they sell are pretty amazing.

Do any of you do any forensic examination work?
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JBrITCommented:
I know this doesn't help answer the main problem but may help with your worries.

The software company probably needs the video feeds to be transmitted to their servers so that they can encode it. Therefore it reduces the hardware requirements of the end user and makes the whole package much more afforedable and available.

X10 isn't a surveillance software or suite, it is one of the many respected home automation frameworks and one of its big features is that it supports 3rd party video surveillance kit.
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MariyamAuthor Commented:
JBrIT

I have no problems with their hardware, in fact I love their cameras.  It was only when I tried to use their cameras with one of their software products that the problems cropped up.

I always prefer to store the footage locally, with a second camera surveilling the first in addition to surveillance sofware monitoring what the computer is doing.  I know how that sounds but if you ever had the types of problems with your system being targeted the way mine has, you'd understand.  And while it still doesn't always work 100% of the time, at least I have 3 separate systems from which to cull data.  Generally if one device doesn't catch it, one of the others will have.

Anyway, thanks for the suggestions.  If I ever get it all figured out I'm come back and post the resolution.
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