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Dell Inspiron 5520 Laptop keyboard stopped working


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#1 kcbronson

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Posted 30 April 2015 - 05:01 PM

   So my Sister in-law had some virus problems and took her laptop to me. After receiving it, I removed some obvious adware and ran Malwarebytes. It found a quite a few items and quite a few registry problems. So I did a Fix All solution. After the "quarantine" I decided to restart the laptop and I noticed the keyboard on the laptop wouldn't work. None of the buttons. But after some force shut downs I noticed the keyboard works in BIOS settings, like to select Safe Mode or to Run Windows normally. but as soon as Windows boots up, it doesn't work. I thought to myself oh crap, maybe I can do a system restore and, that still didn't really fix my problem, it just technically removed Malwarebytes but still had the folder in, my programs.

   I went through Device Manager, and it doesn't recognize that anything is wrong. I've uninstalled the HID keyboard in hopes to re-install it in device manager, and it just reappeared. I've been using a spare USB keyboard for desktops to use the keyboard. I did notice that if I leave the laptop on long enough (3-5 hours) the laptop keyboard will finally work. But I'm not about to tell her that she can use her keyboard 4 -5 hours after boot up. I feel stumped on this one unless I'm overlooking something simple.

   I've removed malware and a few viruses in hopes one of them was preventing keyboard use. But still nothing. And nothing came out of a google search. Only if a few keys weren't working

 

The laptop specs are:

 

Dell Inspiron 5520

Windows 7 64-bit SP1

Intel Core i5-3210M

Intel HD Graphics 4000

1TB HDD and 8GB RAM

 

Let me know if I need to add anything else to my details.

 

By the way hello again, I had a bleeping computer account years ago. So I thought I'd get a new one!


Edited by hamluis, 05 May 2015 - 09:55 AM.
Moved from Win 7 to Internal Hardware - Hamluis.


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#2 JohnC_21

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Posted 01 May 2015 - 09:16 PM

To rule out a hardware issue download Puppy linux. You can burn the iso to CD/DVD by right clicking the iso file in Window7 and select Burn Disk Image. Boot to the Puppy desktop. If the keyboard works then you have a Windows 7 issue.

 

If the keyboard works in Puppy do a sfc /scannow at an elevated command prompt in Windows 7. This will replace any missing or corrupt system files.



#3 kcbronson

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Posted 02 May 2015 - 05:26 PM

Thanks JohnC_21 for the next step in the troubleshooting. But after running Puppy linux, the laptop keyboard still did not work within the linux OS. I still attempted a "sfc/scannow" in the command prompt in W7 and it said there was no problems. I'm not ready to re-install Windows yet, but if the keyboard didn't work in puppy linux, I'm concerned that keyboard wont work after starting fresh. What boggles me, is the keyboard seems to be fine in BIOS, I've navigated through BIOS with the laptop keyboard with no problem. Maybe I got rid of an important registry entry during my Malwarebytes scan. Any other suggestions?



#4 JohnC_21

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Posted 02 May 2015 - 05:46 PM

That the keyboard did not work in Puppy would have indicated a hardware problem but because your keyboard works in BIOS I am at a loss. I can't understand how it would work in BIOS but not in Puppy linux. If it did not work in linux I doubt it would work if you reinstalled Windows. I don't know how long you have the computer but if you run linux and let it sit for a few hours like Windows and the keyboard begins to work then I would say it is definitely hardware related.

 

Have you tried using a USB keyboard to see if it works in Windows?

 

Take a look at this video. It shows how you can replace the keyboard. Pay special attention to the way the person releases the keyboard cable. You could try reseating the ribbon cable and see if that works. Be sure to be careful of static electricity and remove the battery and power adapter as noted at the beginning of the video.

 

Edit: Because this is a Dell tapping F12 at boot will get you to the Diagnostics option. It may help determine if you indeed have a hardware problem.

 

Edit Edit: You say the keyboard works in BIOS. In BIOS you use the arrow keys and enter, correct? Can you use the arrow keys in Windows? Possibly the tab keys work too?


Edited by JohnC_21, 02 May 2015 - 05:56 PM.


#5 kcbronson

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Posted 02 May 2015 - 05:54 PM

I can try that next. And yes, I have been using a USB keyboard which worked in puppy and in Windows no problem. I will try leaving puppy on and wait to see if the laptop keyboard "kicks on" and starts to work.

#6 kcbronson

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Posted 04 May 2015 - 03:03 PM

So I got an update on the keyboard situation, apparently Dr Pepper was spilled on the laptop a year ago-ish which wiped out the use of the mouse touch pad, but she told me when the keyboard doesn't work, to shut the screen open it back up and tap the power button. And sure enough, worked like a charm. Thanks for the help, and now it looks like I'll get back to work trying to solver her main original problem of Microsoft Office not working. Thanks again!



#7 jefferysummers

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Posted 05 May 2015 - 12:04 AM

If you're still in your warranty period or have an extended warranty, then try your laptop manufacturer's tech support line. If they determine that you're using a defective keyboard, then you should be able to get it replaced at a service depot without too much hassle. Once I had a similar issue I hold my laptop upside down or at the very least at a 45- to 75-degree angle from horizontal and I give the laptop a good shake. Sometimes crumbs from working lunches or your last snack break can get stuck under the keys. This is more of a problem the older your laptop is, but it's worth a shot even on a new laptop to see if you can fix the problem quickly.






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