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Gateway 450sx4 display problems

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Laptop (Gateway 450 SX4) display took a dump the other day in the middle of everyday browsing. Thought it was the display driver, but external monitor mimics the laptop display. When I start up, cooling fan comes on and stays on. Display comes on for about 5 minutes, but then starts to pixelate slowly and then goes to stripes. Moving the display panel makes no difference, but if I move the base around, the screen changes. Base is VERY hot near the fan, and the plastic has a slight bulge near the port replicator slot. At that point the machine is useless.

Any thoughts? Motherboard? This is an older machine that i inherited from work...XP w/10G HD, a few games, Itunes and accounting software. Nothing that hogs up space or capability. My 14 year old daughter is out of her mind because all of her Itunes stuff is on there. Any help or advice is appreciated. I have read a lot of stories about this particular unit's heat problems.
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from your description it sounds like it may have overheated and taken damage... if that is the case you would just want to replace it.... repair would most likely be too expensive ( if parts are available at all if it's old )
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