I'll be in contact with a high-level Dell technician later today (Tuesday Aug. 10). I'll provide him with all the details of what I've learned. My thinking at the moment is that this is indeed a hardware issue. (Or some sort of combination driver/hardware.) Though a strange one as, on select machines, I can reboot and all will be fine for a while. Then suddently the touchpad go bad on me. But of the last 8 Dell M6500's I received (last week) only 3 of them have this problem. The others seem fine. Never having a touchpad issue.
The first batch of Dell M6500s I received in July were worse. Touchpads were okay but the touchpad buttons were very intermittent. Having a Dell tech replace the touchpad hardware did not fix the issue. I sent all those 8 units back to Dell. At least on my current batch all the units have reliable touchpad buttons, even the 3 with the defective tracking have reliable buttons.
We had a Dell technician come in today (8-11-10) and replace the touchpad and keyboard unit on one of our Dell M6500’s. Prior to the repair, this particular laptop would usually have its touchpad fail within a few minutes of power on.
After the repair, for the 1st half hour or so, I experienced no problems so thought all was resolved. I also had done 3 normal startups (power on) and shutdowns during this time.
However, upon the 4th power up, the touchpad problem immediately returned again as before with the same old touchpad tracking issues: Cursor would not respond, or respond erratically, or only move vertically. Same with reboot #5, problem occurred immediately after opening my 1st window.
Reboots (normal shutdown and power up) #6 and #7 were problem free. I spent 15 to 20 minutes in each of these sessions with absolutely no issues. Upon my 8th shutdown and power up touchpad problems returned.
If the problem is in the hardware, it probably is the motherboard.
I flashed the BIOS of my m6500 from A02 to A04 last week and the user reports that the problem hasn't reoccurred for almost a week now. Latest BIOS seems to fix the issue, at least on Linux.
If it helps others, I'm running Debian Lenny with the 2.6.32-bpo.5-amd64 kernel package from the lenny-backports repository.
My BIOS was already at A04, and it made no difference.
Dell asked me to remove all of my Control Point software - which I did - and that made no difference also.
The Dell tech will be here in a few hours to swap some hardware around.
Given previous posts in this thread I'm not convinced that touchpad swapping means that my problems are all behind me now.
Yes. My whole 2nd batch of (8) M6500's was at A04 BIOS and I had 3 units with touchpad problems. Yesterday a Dell tech came out to replace the touchpad, keyboard, and motherboard of one of my problem units. But he didn't bring the motherboard. Went ahead and had him replace the keyboard and touchpad (for the 2nd time) on this unit. So far, so good. Problem has not re-occurred on this unit.
I also took home another M6500 (that did not appear to have any problems) this past weekend and gave the touchpad a good workout. Spent about 3-4 hours using the touchpad and I did not experience any problems.
So my current "theory" this that this is indeed a hardware or some short of design/hardware issue affecting many but not all Dell M6500's. Unfortunately there is no guarantee that the hardware your tech will bring out will be "good hardware". Just keep sending out those techs until they get it right or return the unit for a different model. All my research and experience indicates that this problem (within Dell) seems unique to this model. I've just staged a number of Precision 4500's with absolutely no issues.
Was contacted by Dell today. They have reviewed this thread as well as my own experiences and Dell Engineering is now aware of the Dell M6500 touchpad issue. In a few days I'll be sending Dell one of our defective M6500's for their analyses.
I have the same Problem and the M6500 was shipped yesterday.
we want evaluate the hardware for our engeniers but there are troubles troubles troubles!!!
No working driver for the ATI 7740 card which works under Win7.
Bluetooth light is on but no software or driver.
The support is an horror.
When there is no sollution until one week the NB goes back.
And we will use HP
My touchpad and keyboard was replaced yesterday and so far so good.
Interestingly, after the replacement the new touchpad was completely unresponsive until I reinstalled the very same touchpad driver that was already installed for the old touchpad.
I think for it not to have been able to recognise the new hardware suggests that the new touchpad must have been of a different design level than the original one.
It seems fine now, and it almost seems more responsive than it ever was before - even when it was working well.
Either way, I think Dell may only now just be starting to take this issue seriously.
I was contacted by 4 different Dell techs yesterday (Jeffrey, Jason, Ben and Wei) and I was told that the problem has been escalated to a higher tech authority now.
It seems like maybe Dell don't actually use or monitor this support forum in any way (their own support issues web site?!?!), and they claim they only had one prior record of this problem that they can see on their system even though there are numerous accounts detailed here - some even resulting in whole machine replacements. It seems like there are some loose ends in their knowledge base.
Here's the update on the situation:
- Dell has been testing the first defective computer that I received which i sent to a separate department in Dell (not the Returns or Pro Tech Support department). They've determined that the problem is a hardware problem and are in the process of setting up production of a new palmrest. Along with this new palmrest, a new driver will need to be released, which will take time.
- In the meantime, a temporary fix which they suspect will relieve the problem (I am currently testing this fix), and which was suggested by 'dageezerus' in an earlier post, is to disable the "Dell ControlPoint Button Service" and "Dell ControlPoint System Manager" entries in the "Services" tab of the System Configuration UI (msconfig), along with the "Dell ControlPoint" and "Dell ControlPoint System Manager" entries in the "Startup" tab of the same UI.
- Disabling the two services and two startup entries in the quick fix above does not disable core functionality like scrolling. I'm not sure what effects it has on other features.
- I'd suggest that we all try this fix so that we can let Dell (and all of the users here) know whether it is a viable temporary fix.
- I agree with many here that Dell needs to make significant improvements to its support. They (as a company - I don't believe any individuals are solely responsible here) have mishandled my case almost every step of the way. I, and I am sure all of you, want to make sure that with the next 4 years of "Pro Support" I purchased, I receive a satisfactory level of service, which has not been the case over the past months.
Let's all hope that this temporary fix works so that we can at least have normally functioning computers while we wait for the hardware update. If you go ahead with the quick fix, please post your results here. I'd say we should test for a good five days before saying it works.
Day 2 after the touchpad & keyboard replacement and NO evidence of the problem now at all. (Woohooo!!!!)
That's by far the longest I have gone without issues.
Note that I tried removing EVERYTHING even remotely related to Control Point from the system and it did not change anything at all.
I tried drivers, bios, removing Jog Shuttle, etc - etc - etc, and nothing worked until the new touchpad went in.
Good luck everybody!