So back in late October all of a sudden various software on my Alienware 17R3 started to give me warnings that they could not detect the discrete video card, some 3D design software like Sketchup would not even open while others like Google Earth and Photoshop would continue but be extremely slow working only off the integrated Intel video card.
The system shows that my GTX 980M is installed in the Device Manager and Nvidia's Control Panel seems to show that everything is fine but for whatever reason some auto update, maybe a windows update caused most of my design software to not be able to see the 980M... so I thought that a quick driver update from Nvidia would solve the issue so I went online and downloaded the latest drivers for the GTX 980M but halfway thru the driver install it would fail and in the process also uninstalled the old Nvidia driver and control panel so that now the system no longer sees the video card and the USB C connection to my second monitor stops working etc... not knowing what else to do I dug into my windows system restore and found a restore point in early October (before these graphic issues started popping up) and restored my system back to that point and everything was back to normal. My mistake was not saving that restore point because now, a few months later I am having that same problem... some auto update, probably the same one has cause the same problem and I can't update my Nvidia driver (it's showing 389.12) and this time my windows restore point from October is no longer available...guess it does not keep auto restore points after a few months... anyone have any suggestions?
I've had horrible luck with this laptop so far when it comes to system/driver updates, was part of the whole bios update fiasco earlier in the year when Alienware's recommended bios update completely bricked the laptop and I had to mail it out to get Alienware to fix it. Thanks!
Every time you run Disk Clean up. It removes restore points.
As far as your driver, have you tried using the one Alienware has on the site, or the nVidia ones? nVidia fixed the issue they were having back in august/september with 980M Drivers not installing. (400. all work)
Worst case scenario. Wipe the computer to factory and start over.
Thanks, will give that a try. Fingers crossed.
Also, before you throw in the towel, download and run DDU (Display Driver Uninstaller) in safe mode, and try to reinstall your drivers afterwords.