Troubleshooting a Flickering Display after a Windows 10 Upgrade

Summary: This article provides the information on "Troubleshooting a flickering display after a Windows 10 upgrade"

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Symptoms

This article provides the information on "Troubleshooting a flickering display after a Windows 10 upgrade" 

Flickering Display

Systems experiencing a flickering/flashing screen after upgrading to Window 10 are being affected by apps causing Explorer to crash, or causing display driver issues. The following troubleshooting steps may assist in locating the application causing the issue.
 


Resolution

Troubleshooting Steps

The first step is to determine if the issue is a Software compatibility issue, or a Display Driver issue. The easist way it to see if the flickering affects Windows Task Manager. If Task Manager is flickering the likely cause is a Software compatibility issue that causes Explorer.exe to crash repeatedly. If Task Manager is not affected, the likely cause is Display Drivers. To test Windows Task Manager, press: CTRL+SHIFT+ESC. Observe the behavior and then proceed with the suggested troubleshooting steps below.

Task Manager flickers > troubleshoot Software Compatibility by following these steps:

NOTE: If Task Manager is flickering, or it didn’t open, try the same steps in Safe Mode ( How to boot to Safe Mode in Windows 10  SLN298620_en_US__1iC_External_Link_BD_v1 )
  1. Use the File, Run option in Task Manager to open additional tools as-needed. Be sure to check the box to run tools as Administrator. These could include:
    • appwiz.cpl: Opens Programs and Features.
    • compmgmt.msc: Opens Computer Management cmd.exe. Use Computer Management to open Event Viewer.
  2. Use Programs and Features to remove any non-essential applications.
  3. Search for crash events in the Event Logs in Event Viewer. These may indicate which application or third party DLLs are the faulting module(s) in the Explorer.exe crashes. ( Using Event Viewer to Troubleshoot Problems SLN298620_en_US__1iC_External_Link_BD_v1 )
  4. If removing software does not resolve the issue, use these commands to repair Windows:
    dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
    sfc /scannow
    Note: A reinstall of Windows 10 from the Dell recovery tool may also work even if sfc /scannow does not find any issues.

The following applications have been shown to contribute to flickering issues. Uninstall these to test if they are the cause (ensure reinstallation media is available before uninstalling):

  • Norton Antivirus (Symantec)
  • Other Anti Virus solutions
  • iCloud
  • LiveUpdate6
  • IDT Audio (faulting module IDTNC64.cpl)
REFERENCE: Symantec Knowledge Base: My desktop screen flickers after I upgrade my Norton product SLN298620_en_US__3iC_External_Link_BD_v1

Task Manager does not flicker > troubleshoot Display Drivers by following these steps:

  1. Boot to Safe Mode with Networking ( How to boot to Safe Mode in Windows 10 SLN298620_en_US__1iC_External_Link_BD_v1 )
  2. Use the same steps here as for Black Screen issues – if the system has a dual graphics chipset (Both Integrated and Discrete Graphics), disable built-in graphics by opening Device Manager > expand Display Devices > Right click the Intel GPU > left click Disable device. If the display still flickers, re-enable the Intel GPU and perform the same steps to disable the other GPU.
  3. If this does not work, or there is only a single chipset, uninstall the device and remove the driver software by opening Device Manager > expand Display Devices > Right click the GPU > left click Uninstall device. Follow prompts to completely uninstall the device and the associated driver. This will force Windows to default to the native display driver.
    NOTE: the default display driver is not recommended for use beyond troubleshooting.
  4. Boot into Windows and update the display drivers to the latest from dell.com/support/home.
 

 

Article Properties


Affected Product

Alienware 34 Monitor AW3418DW, Alienware 25 Gaming Monitor AW2518HF, Alienware 55 OLED Monitor AW5520QF, Dell S3220DGF, Alienware AW3420DW, Dell S2417DG, Alienware 27 Gaming Monitor AW2720HF, Alienware 34 Monitor AW3418HW, Dell S2716DG, Dell S2419HGF, Dell S2719DGF, Alienware 25 Gaming Monitor AW2518H, Dell Reseller Option Kit for Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Windows Server 2016, Microsoft Windows Server 2019, Microsoft Hyper-V™ Server 2008, Microsoft Windows HPC Server 2008, Microsoft Windows HPC Server 2008 Service Pack 2, Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2008, Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2011, Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2008, Microsoft Windows Essential Business Server 2008, Microsoft Windows 2008 Server R2, Microsoft Windows 2008 Server Service Pack 2, Microsoft Windows 2012 Server, Microsoft Windows 2012 Server R2, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12, Red Hat Enterprise Linux Version 5, Red Hat Enterprise Linux Version 6, Red Hat Enterprise Linux Version 7, Red Hat Enterprise Linux Version 8, Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization 3, Solaris 10 Operating System, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15, Ubuntu Server LTS

Last Published Date

23 Nov 2020

Version

2

Article Type

Solution

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