Add a video driver when the computer has no video

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by JD, Sep 24, 2012.

  1. JD

    JD Guest

    Hello Experts,

    I have an Advent computer that went belly up. The monitor screen went
    black after a few minutes of flickering. The computer ended up with a
    broken video route that may have caused other damage to the motherboard.
    Is it likely that the board is otherwise sound? How to test?

    If I want to get that computer going again, I need to get a route via a
    video card that could work and have a driver. Adding the driver to it
    could be a real problem. The Advent has a CD player but can it work in
    that case? The monitor would still be black so how do you solve this

    Help greatly appreciated.

    JD, Sep 24, 2012
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  2. JD

    JD Guest

    Had a thought. In this situation could popping a CD, with the right
    filter, into the computer be able install the filter where it should be

    JD, Sep 24, 2012
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  3. You have spent far tto much time and effort on this board/problem. It's time
    to get a new motherboard and move on down the line.

    Have you gotten your meter out of storage and checked for the operating
    voltages of the power supply?

    Have you determined that the boot sector of the HDD is working or not?

    You have posted at least a dozen questions about this computer that are
    basically fundamental electronics. It is difficult to tell what your problem
    is from this side of the Interweb -- Thank you Mr. Gore -- but from what I
    have been able to gleem, whatever the problem is, you have pretty much come
    up with a dead mother board, dead power supply, or dead boot sector on the
    hard drive.

    My money is on the motherboard going belly up.
    Jeff Strickland, Sep 24, 2012
  4. You need a bootable CD that can start Windows, and then load the video
    driver. If you have a Windows CD, then it is time to reinstall Windows from
    scratch. You will loose anything that is on the hard drive, but that's the
    way the cookie crumbles.

    They make a device for about 20 bucks that will turn your existing HDD into
    a USB device. You can then connect the HDD to your laptop to extract the
    files -- NOT PROGRAMS, JUST FILES -- to either the HDD of the laptop or to
    another storage media, then reinstall the HDD back into the Advent to
    reinstall Windows AND WIPE OUT THE DATA ON THE DRIVE. This will re-establish
    the drive's boot sector with bootable information that will help get your
    machine going again.

    You can have a dead boot sector but still be able to see the drive with the
    BIOS -- Setup Screen. If this is true, then the machinen will start, display
    the splash screen with the maker's mark on it, then the screen will go
    blank. The maker's mark might not be displayed, but if it is then the video
    has enough instructions to continue loading Windows. If you can get to the
    BIOS screen, then the video instructions are deep enough to load Windows. If
    Windows does not load, the problem is that there is no boot sector on the
    HDD. You _might_ be able to reload to this HDD, or you might need a new HDD.

    If you have the original Windows CD, then this is your next step.

    The video drivers will give you full control over the various video options
    that might exist, but without the driver, the video should give at least
    basic functionality -- 800x600, or a little better -- and look more or less
    like Safe Mode.
    Jeff Strickland, Sep 24, 2012
  5. JD

    Paul Guest

    You don't understand the situation. He put in a replacement motherboard,
    but is having problems getting the Advent OEM Windows 7 running. It might
    take a repair install, using the COA on the outside of the PC, to make
    it work with his new motherboard. If he uses the "restore" option
    in the Advent software, it's probably going to fail on SLIC activation.

    To get around this "extra work", of downloading a Windows 7 DVD, burning
    a DVD and doing a repair install, he wants to revert to the *old* motherboard.
    The one, that for all intents and purposes, appears to be dead.

    So, here's the deal. If a *working* video card is plugged into a computer,
    the OS has a fallback VESA driver to make the video card work. The video
    card is also designed to VESA standards, for a couple of known resolutions.
    Even the BIOS, uses the VESA information, to drive the display, and
    that's how the BIOS is able to draw the screen early in POST.

    And that's how anybody is able to see the screen, when plugging in a
    strange new monitor. It's some VESA modes.

    The driver end of things, is *not* the problem. Something else
    is the problem.


    Video cards are available to fit any sort of slot. They include:

    1) PCI Express x16 (this is the slot that's quite possibly ruined)
    2) PCI Express x1 (hard to find, made at one time)
    3) AGP (the older video slot standard, this one is almost gone as well)
    4) PCI (A lot of motherboards had one or two of those slots, cards still made)
    5) USB (see next example)

    The DisplayLink company makes chips to create a USB display. This
    one claims to support VESA - even if the BIOS couldn't display on
    the screen, it might work when Windows finds it and uses the VESA
    driver already in the OS. (The BIOS may not be expecting a display
    device on USB, which is why the BIOS screen might not work there.
    I don't know to what extent these work at BIOS level.) But the
    VESA part of it, should work in Windows.

    HIS Multi-View II Video Adapter (Mac & Window 7 compatible version)
    HMV2-MAC-PC USB to DVI Interface $45

    That particular one, comes with a DVI to VGA adapter in the package.
    So can run either a DVI or a VGA monitor.

    If I had to resurrect his old motherboard, I'd be using (4), a PCI
    video card. I own a PCI FX5200 for this very reason, to deal with
    busted video. I use the PCI FX5200, if I'm flashing the BIOS chip
    on another video card.

    But the days of using my PCi FX5200 are limited, because there are
    motherboards now with nothing but PCI Express slots. While the
    DisplayLink is an interesting distraction, I don't know if I'd want
    to gamble on it as my first solution.

    This is an example of a PCI 6200 card, for $40. Cards like this
    are not "fast", because they're bus bandwidth limited. But you can
    still run Windows this way.


    Paul, Sep 24, 2012
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