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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2002

    Question Anything Special When Fixing a Laptop?

    I'll be heading to New York on Friday to visit relatives, and i'm supposed to take a look at my aunt's laptop. Apparently she dropped it, and it no longer works, but other than that, I have no details. I don't know what is specifically wrong, and whether it POSTS or not.

    Basically, what i'm concerned with, is grounding. I don't have a wrist-strap, so what would the next best thing be? I'm not too familiar with laptops, I've used them before, but haven't ever taken one apart. Should I be alright if I plug it in, and touch whatever metal casing I can find? (And of course avoid things like wearing fuzzy socks while sliding across shag carpet at the same time I rub a balloon on my head and pet furry animals.)

    Are there any other special laptop oriented things that I need to take into consideration?


  2. #2
    Member dowmace's Avatar
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    Jun 2003
    Under your desk stealing your fans
    I can't think of any except be careful with the lcd screen I somehow managed to funk up the colors on mine when I took it apart

  3. #3
    The Jet Man! ashenfang's Avatar
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    Feb 2003
    well, if the laptop posts, thats a good start. A couple things to check is if it looks like its booting up, but no video, inside the laptop you will see the thin cable leading from the LCD. Reseat this connector, for some reason theya re very sensitive, especially from a drop. Also want to make sure that all components, (cpu) are properly seated. Laptops can take some bumps, but things tend to shake loose on a drop. One thing you will notice when working on them, to get to one part, you have to remove 3, so make sure you keep track of where everything goes.
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  4. #4
    Member nealric's Avatar
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    Sep 2002
    under the floorboards
    I recently opened up my laptop to see If I could upgrade the proc.

    A few suggestions if you need to work in it:

    Its sometimes hard to figure out how best to get into it. On mine, it was a small panel below the lcd that flipped up and allowed removal of the keyboard. Dont start by removing all the screwes you see like i did - I wasted 30 min doing that before I figured out I was an idiot.

    The ribbon cables are a bit different. They are quite thin and dont seem to have a plug. If one comes out, or you need to remove one, dont worry- they just push in.

    Good chance the hard drive is fubared in such a fall- if it posts, might want to do some diagnostics to make sure the hdd is alright.
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  5. #5
    Member cack01's Avatar
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    Mar 2002
    San diego or UC Davis
    Originally posted by nealric

    The ribbon cables are a bit different. They are quite thin and dont seem to have a plug. If one comes out, or you need to remove one, dont worry- they just push in.
    This is a huge thing to remeber. There are sometimes a lot of cables, with very hard to find plugs. Make sure you know where they go before you remove them. You won't be seeing anything as obvious as an IDE plug. Most plugs are about a cm thin and an inch wide.

    Another big thing is to bring a bootable floppy. If the system can boot off a floppy, then you know it is eighter the harddrive, or the windows instalation itself.
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  6. #6
    Captain Random
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    Arkaine23's Avatar
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    Yeah, try to boot from a floppy or cd. I would think the hdd is the most likely part to be damaged by a fall.

    You need a very small screwdriver to take a laptop apart. Make sure you note what connectors go where- they're very thin and small ribbon cables.!
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    New Jersey
    for the most part, you will need to take the keyboard off at some point to get to the screws under them. it took me hours to figure that out after taking all the screws out from the bottom ... i'd suggest putting the screws in a ziplock bag so you don't lose them, there's quite a lot of them! and like everybody else says, make sure to note where those ribbon cables go.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Thanks for the help so far, you guys have been great. My guess is either the screen is messed up, or the hard drive. I'm not sure of what my aunt's definition of "it doesn't work" is, but she did say it was hardware.

    I'll probably bring my Knoppix cd, just to test whether its the HDD and/or windows. The thing is, I don't know too much about Knoppix or Linux. Would their be a program that could do HDD Diagnostics, or would I have to look for another program, and boot from a floppy?


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