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Dead video card on new precision M6500

Hey all,

Last week I received my brand new precision M6500, now 4 days later it appears my video card is broken.

Yesterday all was working fine, I closed the laptop lid and it went into sleep mode, yet when it woke up again my screen was black and remained that way. I tried to connect an external screen, but still nothing.

I rebooted and managed to run the Dell diagnostics tool, the beeps gave error code 3-3-1, which would be 'NVRAM insufficient power'.

Now I can still boot the OS, Windows 7, so my data is still there, and I urgently need to recover some files from the HD.

Does anyone have any ideas to do this?

In my last attempt, I connected an external HD, which has autorun.inf and autorun.bat files, the bat file should perform an xcopy action which copies the folder on my laptop to the external HD. This works on my other Vista laptop, just connect the HD, press enter to start the bat file, and the copy works, but on my Windows 7 precision laptop with no screen, I can't seem to be able to do the same. The precision laptop has UAC turned off, so it should work this way...

Any ideas are welcome! The files are critical for work, as I have done 4 days of work on the precision so far, and I really don't want to lose that work...

I'm probably gonna end up sending back the laptop for repair, but that might take a loooong time...

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RE: Dead video card on new precision M6500

I solved the black screen problem on the Dell M6500!!! 5/28/2014.

After reading all the Dell support customer forum posts (50 pages) under “M6500 freeze”, the black screen problem appears to be the 230 watt AC adapter is providing a false overheating signal to the video card that causes a video card overheating shut off. This only happens when plugged in, no black outs when on battery power.

A. Plug in AC and charge battery 100%

B. Unplug AC

C. Boot up on battery power only.

Solution: Based on Dell forum info, I Google searched and downloaded NVIDIA power mizer manager software and installed it. Run software. There are three settings.

  1. selected medium range,

  2. select medium range,

  3. Disable overheat power shut off

  4. Save and reboot.

No more screen black outs after this fix.

Safe to plug in AC now.

I am running temp monitor software. The video card temps range from 54c to 59c. Video cards are rated to take 100c before overheating.


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