[conspire] new laptop Fedora 13 with NVIDIA graphics card - yum update - now only blank screen

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Sun Sep 19 17:15:09 PDT 2010

Quoting Darlene Wallach (freepalestin at dslextreme.com):

> I purchased a new laptop from Linux Certified with Fedora 13
> installed.
Your postings on this subject have not included what make/model of
laptop this is.  That data could be vital.  Unfortunately, even though
Linux Certified sells rebranded gear from major OEMs, the company isn't
very good at telling you what upstream Taiwanese equipment it is selling
you under the Linux Certified house brand (with the exception of the
firm's 'LCTP' series, which are rebranded particular models of Lenovo

For example, given the manufacturer make/model, I might be able to look
up for you what key combination toggles between external video only and
internal video only.  Fixing your problem might be as simple as hitting,
e.g., Alt-F7.

Suggestion:  Insist on having that information ASAP, plus an electronic
copy of the product manual.

Given that data, you would also be able to determine how to force a boot
from default BIOS settings, which is often also extremely useful for
diagnostic purposes.

> I'm not seeing any bios or boot messages. I do not have a VGA cable so
> I can't connect to another screen. I am hesitant to do that though as
> the last time I tried that I think I damaged an old Sony VIAO.

Sorry, but that does not make sense, that you would ever damage a laptop
merely by connecting an external monitor to it.  That's not even a
significant amount of power draw.

It's a shame you don't have access to a regular ol' VGA monitor with
regular ol' VGA cable attached.  Given that, it _might_ be the case that
you'd attach it and say 'Oh, I must have toggled my laptop to external
video only.  Whew!  That's good news.'

It's always handy to have access to known-good equipment, exactly for
situations like this.

One other thing that comes immediately to mind:  In all of your several
messages to this thread, you haven't yet mentioned whether you are
seeing other signs of life from the laptop at all.  When seeking help on
a mailing list, you need to remember that you are our eyes and ears.  If
you don't tell us what's going on, we simply won't know.

So, for example, when turning on a laptop, normally several observable
things happen in sequence, during the early stages of boot-up, by no
means all of them involving displaying of video onto the screen.  You
turn on the power, and you will most often see some LEDs flash, as those
components are initialised.  Then, sometimes you will hear a beep.
Then, depending on the boot order set in the BIOS, you might hear the
optical drive seeking, to see if there's a readable disc.  Then, you
will hear the hard drive spinning up and seeking.  At the same time as
the HD activity, you will generally see the HD LED showing irregular
blinking patterns characteristic of HD reading.  And typically, just
before then, the motherboard starts sending video out to whatever video
port has been selected in the BIOS.

It is extremely handy to get to know these characteristics during
ordinary operation of the machine, so that you can better perform basic
debugging when things go wrong.

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