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Dead Dell Inspiron 1525 Laptop - Help?


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#1
Schmoe

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Hello all. Looks like a very helpful community here, so I thought I might drop in to ask a question:
My girlfriend's laptop, a Dell Inspiron 1525 has suddenly stopped posting. This occurred out of nowhere:no puff of smoke, burning smell, or drop to the ground.

I hit the power button, the lights on the keyboard flicker as they would during a normal startup, then things just stall, with only the power light still lit. I have to hold in the power button to turn it back off.

Any idea what might be happening?
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#2
The Admiral

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If all three lock lights on the keyboard flash once, then the laptop is in fact completing POST.

Try turning on the laptop while holding down the <Fn> key. This will start up in a diagnostic mode, describe what you see, hear, and smell (j/k about the smell) when you start with this diagnostic boot.

What if you turn it on normally and plug in a monitor, then press <Fn> + <F8> to switch the graphics over? Do you see anything then?
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#3
Schmoe

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Thanks for the quick reply admiral. I don't have the laptop with me right now, so I'll try this out tonight and report back with the results first thing tomorrow.

Thanks again for the help!
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#4
Schmoe

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If all three lock lights on the keyboard flash once, then the laptop is in fact completing POST.

Try turning on the laptop while holding down the <Fn> key. This will start up in a diagnostic mode, describe what you see, hear, and smell (j/k about the smell) when you start with this diagnostic boot.

What if you turn it on normally and plug in a monitor, then press <Fn> + <F8> to switch the graphics over? Do you see anything then?



Okay, here are the results:
The three lock lights do not flash at all on the initial boot. The LED touch-sensitive media controls at the top of the keyboard light up in a left to right pattern, then turn off. The power button and hard drive light/led turn on and I hear the computer fan spin up and the DVD drive whir for a second. Then the computer fan spins down and the hard drive light turns off, leaving a blank screen with only the power led still lit, no other signs of life.

I tried booting and holding down Fn and got a blinking number-lock light(the number 9 inside a lock). Otherwise, everything else was the same.

Any thoughts on what might be going on and whether or not I can fix it? Or is it just "deal with the Dell warranty people" time?

Thanks again Admiral!
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#5
The Admiral

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Or is it just "deal with the Dell warranty people" time?

I am the Dell warranty people. :)

Is the power button solid on, or pulsating? What happens if you try with just the battery, or just the power cord? Will anything change if you take the following components out of the computer - Hard Drive, Optical Drive, wireless card, and one stick of RAM? Have you tried a monitor?

We need to make sure it isn't the RAM - try swapping RAM around from slot to slot, 1 stick, 2 sticks, see if that ever changes the situation.
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#6
jt1990

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Or is it just "deal with the Dell warranty people" time?

I am the Dell warranty people. :)



LOL!
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#7
Schmoe

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We need to make sure it isn't the RAM - try swapping RAM around from slot to slot, 1 stick, 2 sticks, see if that ever changes the situation.

Thanks Admiral! It was the RAM. The system came configged with a 1 Gig stick and a 2 Gig stick... and of course the 2 Gig stick was the bad one :)

The system was purchased through Best Buy, so I'm not sure if the warranty coverage is through Best Buy or Dell. Any idea if we can just send the RAM alone back in for a swap? Or will we have to send in the whole laptop just so they can "rediagnose" the problem?

Thanks again for your help! Much appreciated.
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#8
The Admiral

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Since it was purchased through Best Buy, they (specifically, Geek Squad) offers their warranty service. The only thing Dell will warrant for Best Buy systems is the power cord and AC adapter. It's not because we hate you and want you to put up with the Geek Squad, it's because of the contract we have with Best Buy.
That said, if you take it into the Geek Squad and tell them up front what you did and what you diagnosed the part to be, chances are that they'll swap it out for you on the spot and not have you wait around for it. But it is carry-in service, so you might be without your laptop for a few days. Maybe.
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#9
TCL

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Since it was purchased through Best Buy, they (specifically, Geek Squad) offers their warranty service. The only thing Dell will warrant for Best Buy systems is the power cord and AC adapter. It's not because we hate you and want you to put up with the Geek Squad, it's because of the contract we have with Best Buy.
That said, if you take it into the Geek Squad and tell them up front what you did and what you diagnosed the part to be, chances are that they'll swap it out for you on the spot and not have you wait around for it. But it is carry-in service, so you might be without your laptop for a few days. Maybe.


Now you tell me, If I had known that, I would NEVER HAD BOUGHT one from Best Buy... seems to me Dell Is DELL! If you want a Best Buy unit it should say BEST BUY not Dell..

To me this is like GM saying take you car only to the Dealer you bought it from and Don't call GM cause your dealer is not very good!
Just my opinion. I own several Dells nearly all from Dell and have clients etc with units from Dell, I sent out 75 emails this AM telling them NOT to buy from Best Buy.. so thanks for the heads up
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#10
angeac

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I totally agree with you, I will NEVER BUY FROM BEST BUY again! I have always owned Dell's and recently bought my laptop Dell Inspirion 1525 too from there. I did in fact drop it 1 foot and just paid to replace the hard drive. I called up there and they were SOOOOOOOOOOOOO RUDE (BEST BUY). I agree, they should tell us this up front and should not tell us it has a 1 year factory warranty. I am writing to Best Buy, probably won't do any good but wrong is wrong and that is wrong!
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#11
justicedreadz

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GRRRRRRRR!!!!! I'm having a similar issue. I bought this Dell 1525 Special Edition from a local pawn dealer. It starts but then the screen goes black. If I hook up another monitor to it through the vga port, it seems to work fine. Kind of defeats the purpose of it being a laptop. Any suggestions would be great. Whats nuts is that it was working then would shut off if you moved the monitor screen.
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#12
choi

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sir i would like to add something i had a same problem with my laptop... same thing sir.. i tried removing all plugins hard drive, ram, and CD drive still its the same thing that happens... and the reading light is in solid state once started and immediate turns off and leaving only the power light on... pls help sir
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#13
Tuan Nguyen

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I HAVE FOUND A WORK AROUND, WORK 100% with guarante

If testing (press and keep "Fn" and press the power button) of your Inspirion 1525 is ok, do the following

1) press and keep the button "F2", press and release the power button
2) after about 10s, you will see light on the display, release F2

voila (try again if it not work the first time, turn all off before you try)

why F2? because it is for the BIOS setup, I want to check the bios settings, and then I saw this trick by using F2 to "trigger" the display. There must be a bug in Dell POST check since it "thinks" there is something wrong and then it halts the whole check.

GL
Tuan
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#14
dudublum

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Hello all,

I'm having a similar problem with an Inspiron 1525 system as Schmoe described before.

It started suddenly and without no obvious explanation. The computer won't start. It is plugged in to the wall, the ON led does turn and keep on (although there is no light from the turn on button), the battery led sometimes blinks blue (as in charging) and sometimes it doesn't (full charge?), and the three leds (Capslock etc.) turn on and off. The PLAY, STOP etc. leds do light blue when I touch them. When I try to turn on with the Fn button pressed on, the three leds (Capslock etc.) remain blue, while the one with a "9" on it blinks blue.

I tried to take off one memory at a time and to switch slots - didn't work.
I tried an external monitor - didn't work.
I took off the battery and also the HD and put them in again (one at a time!)- didn't work.

The green led on the battery adaptor is on.

The F2 trick did not work to me.

Any ideas? Good news? Bad news?

Thanks a lot!
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#15
dudublum

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So I found that these three leds are actually used as a code for errors. Thanks to this forum I got to this link:

http://www.user-guid...sp?TOPIC_ID=273

Based on the table, my problem seems to be "Enabling/configuring the dock", whatever "dock" means :-)

It says I should try:

1. Reseating system in the dock.
2. Replacing the dock.
3. Replacing the system board

What is the system exactly? Should I just try to pull it out and put it back in again?

What is the dock?

The motherboard has been replaced in this system once (about a year after buying it)...
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