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CompTIA A+ CE
PC Pro Certification
Marchman Technical School Certificate of Completion
School and Experience
- Sunlake High School (Dual enrollment)
- Graduation: 2014
- Marchman Technical Center
- Graduation: 2014
- Linux (I often have a second dedicated Linux computer)
- Intermediate board level repair and data recovery
- Gaming (Limited to older games without excess DLC and microtransactions; PC only since Xbox One and PS4 launch)
About how much life is left on this SSD?I got this SSD in a pile of junk (128GB mSATA SM841N) and while it works, it was at 88% when I got it - not ideal as a...
How do I fix this without a reinstall?When I started my Windows 8 laptop from sleep, I have noticed this happened. I tried to shutdown the laptop by holding the...
Fixing the GPU fan (OEM Radeon 7570)?I have had this XPS 8500 I’ve had for a while. I recently put an SSD in to get some extra time out of it. However, after...
Removing the "Insert MetroPCS SIM" message? Phone used as an iPod.I got this phone a while back used as a backup device, but I found out it can’t be unlocked without having it on MetroPCS...
Removing the BIOS asset tag from a used Dell?I know this may be a bit exotic for the iFixit community and that's fine. I purchased 2 E7440 i7 FHD Touch systems as a...
When will the parts shortage clear up?As you can guess being an older business laptop, the battery I got with it isn’t dead yet, but it’s beginning to have...
Removing Google Play Music from my phone?While I knew Play Music was due to be shut down, I was hoping that it would still work as an offline music player, but...
Is this worth fixing or should I let it die broken?TL;DR: Did something nice for a family member who needed to use it for photos. Supposed to be short term, made it a 9 year...
Is this RAM Apple OEM? Black PCBI purchased this RAM used for diagnostic purposes since I do not have any established DDR3L (and I can put this to good...
Is this worth trying to repair anymore? Multiple issues.I have a Latitude E6440 I’ve had for ~6 months and it’s always been running fine - except I also never noticed the fact...
crwdns2890332:0Why does my pc not recognize the os on my usb drivecrwdne2890332:0Your BIOS may be different from my Dell, but this is how I have mine setup for USB boot after I reinstalled Windows 10. I would try setting the following on it, but I will also give you visual clues. I HAVE seen this BIOS on a 9th gen Inspiron desktop, so I’m thinking Dell may have changed things in recent years and switched over to one BIOS skin. (1) USB Configuration: Enable Boot Support and External USB boot (2) Boot sequence: Make sure UEFI is enabled and Windows Boot Manager is first. UEFI Hard Drive should be next. Once you make those changes, press F12 and select the USB flash drive. At this point, you should not have an issue but you may need to temporarily disable Secure Boot. I personally leave it off permanently, but it does have some security benefits for average users which justify re-enabling it. I sometimes run Linux on my systems, and few distros properly support it.
crwdns2890332:0Why can't I install Windows 10?crwdne2890332:0How are you writing the USB stick? If you’re using the Media Creation Tool, it writes it with a preference for UEFI boot modes on compatible systems. With these systems, you often need to have it set to UEFI boot for it to show as a boot option. In addition, you’re committing to keeping it as a “UEFI” system once you reinstall since changing back isn’t going to happen without a reinstall. If you want to have some flexibility, you’ll need to use Rufus.
crwdns2890332:0Dell Monitor - Vertical lines - Stuck pixels?crwdne2890332:0That’s a TAB failure in this case - not stuck pixels. With TAB failures, there isn’t much one can do to repair them as the machines required are more than you want to know about and buying it to fix one display makes no sense. In many cases with a TAB issue like this, the cost of the panel outweighs the cost of a newer monitor purchased brand new. You can still use these as test bench monitors due to how cheap they can be purchased, but unless the lines are barely noticeable it’s not an issue many can easily live with day to day.
crwdns2890332:0SSD replacement on the 7390 2-in-1 really not possible?crwdne2890332:0Oh no - it’s true. They traded modularity for battery on this XPS 13 :-(. Admittedly I expected the RAM to be soldered since that’s a XPS 13 staple design fail, but soldering the SSD is where I draw the line. All I know is the soldered SSD has put the XPS 13 onto my do not buy list as an extreme precaution because apparently some of them are soldered, while others are not. The RAM is annoying, but I can sort of understand on a super slim machine - but if you solder it and there’s room for modular RAM then that’s just lazy engineering. BUT the second you solder the SSD on is when I put a entire series of machine onto a “do not buy” list. From what I can tell, it’s just the 2-in-1 that’s plagued with this but nonetheless I’m considering both no buys as a cautionary measure.
crwdns2890332:0I dont have this exact model but- I just bought it and its so slowcrwdne2890332:0These are designed for grandma and high school kids as far as I’m concerned - and you need to be a very average high school student to not have an issue living with it. There is also no modularity of the RAM (2-4GB, usually 2GB) or 32GB of eMMC (Microsoft imposed for the free license HP takes advantage of). Do not buy one if you keep your laptops for the long haul, or expect a lot! There’s nothing you can do to make them less horrible to use, sadly. Back in high school I had a Asus X53E with a i5-2450M CPU and that would still run circles around these today with a good SSD, 8GB of RAM and Windows 10 - even though I moved on from Sandy Bridge and focus on Haswell as the minimum baseline for new rebuilds. Personally I usually buy secondhand business laptops that need some work and I’ve been way happier with machines like my E6440 - the aged wonderfully well in comparison, even if the batteries age like crap. Update: The service manual doesn’t lie - the RAM and SSD are soldered.
crwdns2890332:0White power light flashing but laptop not booting uocrwdne2890332:0Check if the RAM has an issue on this machine, and try swapping it. These can use normal 1.5V DDR3 or PC3L (DDR3L) 1.35V RAM, so you have a choice since Ivy Bridge is “DDR3L Aware” but is likely to run at the 1.5V operational voltage. More often than not, boot issues like this are due to bad RAM modules. Most new modules are DDR3L, so buy a matched pair and do not reuse any of the original RAM because DDR3L does not like to be mixed with 1.5V DDR3. It “works” on 1.5V compatible systems (Read: Pre Haswell/Trinity), but not well and may manage to fail POST, if it isn’t unstable. If that doesn’t fix it, try to remove the CMOS battery to clear out any bad CMOS settings preventing it from booting. Some of the cheaper Toshibas may have this soldered, but generally even they realized soldering the CMOS battery is stupid - thankfully this one is socketed. Note: Test this and check the voltage - if it’s 2.5V or below, just replace it. If it’s within 3-2.5V, I would try and reuse it. If neither fixes it, I wouldn’t...
crwdns2890332:0My laptop will not turn on.crwdne2890332:0Original or replacement hard drive? Asus is one of those brands who tend to have weird issues when the drive is dying out that seemingly make no sense on paper, but resolve with a replacement drive (or isolation by removing for TS purposes). My old X53E was one of the machines that have “no boot” conditions when the drive has an issue that clears up when you replace the hard drive, or remove it for isolation. Win8 and Win10 are also known to have weird issues at boot time as well which tend to be due to failing drives*. *Unless the drive is relatively new, which may be due to a bad Windows install. Refer to this guide to take the laptop apart. Try reseating the connector and check but it if persists, the drive may be failing. Put a 250GB or 512GB class SSD in and be done with it at that point.
crwdns2890332:0The ssd is running slower than it shouldcrwdne2890332:0Did you change the HD cable and the drive, or just the drive? The cables in these vary wildly; some have the “thin” SATA II cable, while others have the thick SATA II or SATA III cable. As a general rule with these, throw the cable out and swap it with the SATA III revision to avoid these issues at the time of the SSD purchase. If you buy one used do it when you do other maintenance items like dust and thermal paste so you can say it's “done” and then buy the drive when you're ready and just install it. You’re going to want to with how cheap a good SSD is now and how miserable the original drives are. The exception to this rule is when the seller can prove they did it, but most of them don’t get it out of the way before they sell it unless it’s a machine they personally used and know about the problem. Think of it like this: if you know something is a ticking time bomb, do you wait until it blows and becomes a problem later, or fix it ahead of time? You would want to address it before it becomes a problem....
crwdns2890332:0Why does my pc get stuck on the dell logocrwdne2890332:0Is it the original hard drive, or an SSD? If it’s HDD based on the original drive, Dell typically uses Seagate on a lot of their systems (although I HAVE SEEN OEM WD drives but they are rare compared to Seagate). With Win8 and Win10, constant boot time filesystem repairs usually point to a dying drive - especially multiple occurances. If it gets stuck, that’s a large red flag on its own - odds are even worse with a boot screen BSOD. This DOES NOT MEAN THE DRIVE WILL DIE OVERNIGHT, but it’s generally on borrowed time before it never boots to Windows again and then fails! If you can’t do it now, brace for failure and make regular backups in case it drops dead with no warning. I’ve personally never seen one of these go beyond a few boot filesystem repairs before they stop booting because there’s too much filesystem damage due to the failing drive. Replace the drive with a 240/250 or 500/512GB SSD while it works. With these, remove the bottom screws and replace the original drive. The service manual can be...
crwdns2890332:0How do I fix a water damage laptopcrwdne2890332:0With water damage, it’s rare for the keyboards to make it - even on a ThinkPad or Latitude. If I got liquid on my personal E6440 I’d probably be fine too, but I’m shopping for a keyboard because I already know it’s going to need to be done. I’d probably swap it over even if it keeps working while I have time, so it doesn’t start dropping keys like this. It typically isn’t super complicated to swap out, but it isn’t like the T series since the Edge is a cost reduced SMB model, and serviceability is affected accordingly. I’m not sure about the Edu and Edge series because I tend to avoid “education” (and budget models that have no reason to exist) variants when the market is flooded with better machines or “retail” SKUs (or in some cases, no cam models without webcams where everything else is solid other then the screen), which are usually gov’t surplus or purchased by large companies who do not want the cam. Hopefully it’s not spot welded in and you’re doing the palmrest assembly.