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Two laptops, one desktop broken


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#1 VikingIdiot

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 03:00 AM

Let me start off by saying that my computers are my livelihood. I am disabled and working from home on them are my rent, food and utilities. I am not only upset by my predicament but I am genuinely terrified because if I cannot fix these issues myself I will become homeless - I have no money to buy parts or pay for professional repair.

Laptop #1 - A Dell Latitude D630. I was using it just fine when my cat jumped on the desk and knocked water onto it. Now the charger will not work with it. The battery was dead long before, so I had to run the laptop purely off the adapter. Now I can plug the adapter into the wall and the green light is present on it, but as soon as I plug the other end into my laptop, the light turns off.

Laptop #2 - A Toshiba Satellite L355d. I bought this refurbished with the keyboard not working. I am not concerned about the keyboard. I was using it just fine, I have had no issues, and I shut it down and go to bed. I wake up the next morning to use it and it turns on but the screen is black. The lights are on and the fan is working but the screen is black. I later got a confession from my niece that she was playing games on it around midnight and dropped it.

Desktop #1 - I have had my desktop the longest. It is custom built for me by my brother, to be a gaming computer. No specific make or model. It was working fine, but now when I turn it on it says to select a boot media device and restart. It says this EVERY TIME I restart.

All of my computers broke on the same day or overnight and I am at a complete loss. I have some software knowledge and I know technical terms but I am not good at hardware. If I have to take something apart, I will need a visual walkthrough.

Please.

Please help.

I cannot express how much I cannot go without a computer. I have a week to figure this out but I personally need this done as soon as humanly possible or, for the love of your deity of choice, PLEASE help me.

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#2 Havachat

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 07:28 AM

Laptop 1 - Water or fluid is not good , if you can open it try a hairdryer too dry it out , but probably to late now as rust will start to form.

                 Get a Technician to Professionally clean it.

 

Laptop 2 - If it was dropped it may be the ribbon cable to the display has come loose , you will need to disassemble and check it.

                 Yet could be anything stopping it from starting up , check the hard Drive ? remove and replace it and see.

 

Desktop - Check IDE or Sata Cables are not loose within Case , on Motherboard and Drive.

                 Also Enter Bios and Reset to Default Configuration / save / and reboot.

 

                 If your brother built this , is he not around to assist you , or can you not call him ?

 

Most of these tasks can be Googled to How-To`s  - eg: Make and Model.



#3 brian2009

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 01:59 PM

I have opened up my dell D620 a few times. You can do it. There are some good tutorials on youtube (and pdf's from dell) describing the process. But as has been mentioned, fluid spills are not good at all.

 

Computer 2 might be workable but I wouldn't know where to start. You might try plugging another monitor into it and see if anything appears on the screen to help you. Screen replacements are do-able and youtube probably has diy's of the procedure. Search your make/model.

 

The desktop seems the most likely to be able to get back. Again, do an on-line search for the symptoms. Can you boot it from the CD? If you can there are a number of programs that can be burnt to CD that might help troubleshoot your problem. You might also try to boot it using your Windows(?) CD/DVD.

 

It might help if to know what OS the desktop is using.

 

I just bought a refurbished Dell D620 with Win 7 for about $150. You can get them with XP for <$100 on Amazon. You might at least start shopping around. My guess is you could buy an older refurbed notebook for less than the cost to have one serviced.

 

Good luck.



#4 mjd420nova

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 04:58 PM

Water damage and shock damage are the two biggest laptop ailments.  Some units can be dis-assembled, cleaned and returned to operation, 50%  of the time.  Shock damage can cause head crashes/damage and a new drive with startup disks for the OS and you'd be  back in business.  Cables and connectors do have a habit of loosening or disconnecting themselves, checking them can go a long ways to getting operational again.  Good luck



#5 VikingIdiot

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 05:04 PM

All computers have windows 7 ultimate.

I opened up the Dell and got down to where the power supply is, and this is what I found. What do I do now?

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#6 VikingIdiot

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 05:06 PM

More of the dell.

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#7 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 05:56 PM

Ouch !  If this was just water I take it you live in a hard water area.

 

Since you have the motherboard out and basically you have very little to lose I would consider washing it with water and a moderately firm small paint brush to try and get rid of those deposits. If it is due to hard water they are probably calcium carbonate - chalk - and if they do not respond to washing/brushing I might even consider diluted white vinegar since Ca2CO3 dissolves in weak acids, then rinse well in distilled or de-ionised water and dry thoroughly before reassembly.

 

In your post #6, I believe the first two photos - going L to R - are your ventilation outlet. They just need cleaning, they tend to accumulate dust and hair as time passes. The third photo looks like the CPU, and the white stuff on that is heat sink compound. This needs to be cleaned off thoroughly, and off the other mating surface, and replaced with a thin smear of new heat sink compound before reassembly.

 

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#8 brian2009

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 09:09 PM

To be frank.

 

I wouldn't spend a cent trying to fix that Dell. It most likely would be money taken away from a new/refurb replacement.

 

I don't know what a MB would cost, but I'd pass because there is no assurance that it would work afterwards.


Edited by brian2009, 18 July 2015 - 10:21 PM.


#9 mjd420nova

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 10:02 PM

The Dell might make a good parts donor, minus that MOBO, afraid there's far too much damage.  Solder junctions are corroded, besides the traces on the board.



#10 brian2009

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 11:20 PM

Not sure, but those dell pics don't look like a notebook.



#11 VikingIdiot

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Posted 19 July 2015 - 01:10 AM

I accept that my Dell laptop is dead and is merely for donor parts. I'm upset about it but it is 1 of 3 & I have 2 left for fixing and hopefully can save them by the end of this week.

I got my desktop to the desktop. Now I need to figure out why my internet stick is giving me this message and how to fix it.

This is the internet stick and card in question.

#12 VikingIdiot

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Posted 19 July 2015 - 01:16 AM

The internet stick.

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#13 VikingIdiot

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Posted 19 July 2015 - 01:18 AM

I am working through my phone by the way and if there is software I need to download I can do that with my USB transfer cable.

#14 Kilroy

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Posted 19 July 2015 - 10:08 AM

From how you described your issues they are all hardware issues and will require parts.

 

1.  Water and laptops are a poor combination.  You should be able to get the data from the hard drive.

 

2.  My guess is that the hard drive and/or screen has been damaged by the drop.  You can try connecting the desktop monitor to it to see if you can get anything.  This would allow you to use the laptop.

 

3.  Sounds like a failed hard drive.

 

Hopefully you can use laptop number 2 on the desktop monitor and then you could get a USB to IDE/SATA adapter to get the data from laptop 1 and see if you can read the desktop drive.

 

The second least expensive option would be to purchase a new drive for the desktop.  You could use the hard drive from laptop 1, but the odds of doing so and being able to access the data are slim as you would probably need to install Windows on it first.



#15 VikingIdiot

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 11:22 AM

Hey guys! Long time no talk. Right after all this happened I became homeless so I was never able to post an update. 

 

The long-time-after update: 

 

1. Laptop #1 is still dead. I was never able to recover it. 

 

2. Laptop #2 is also dead. I was able to extract the harddrive, but it also was never recoverable. 

 

3. My desktop PC - I'm using it right now! As it turns out, the reason why I couldn't get it to turn on before was because there was a teeny tiny little circle lithium battery that died. A simple $15 replacement and it turns on and off fine now. As for the Internet Adapter stick, that was completely and through-and-through dead. I ended up trying to use a USB-to-Ethernet adapter, and that worked, but it was a hassle. By the time I got my life set back up again--to where I am now--I just went and bought another USB Internet adapter stick and it works like a charm. Oh well, can't bleed a rock and all that, right? Something about beating a dead horse? 

 

Lesson learned: If you can replace it, do so. Don't try to convince yourself that your dead tech can still work if you believe really, really hard. 

 

Now to figure out why my PC has a 50/50 chance of starting up with my USB ports not working and I'll be golden. 

 

Thanks for all the help guys! 






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