Question Is my laptop dead for good?

Oct 7, 2020
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The object of discussion is a 8 years old Asus X54H laptop (GPU model is AMD 6470M) with a black screen of death. It has served me very well and, being the frugal zero-waste person that I am, I'd much rather bring it back to life than buy a new one.

What happened:
One day, rather suddenly, graphical glitches/artefacts started appearing on the screen. Bright pink squares of pixels flickering here and there quite randomly, screen lagging. Soon enough a blue screen of death followed, saying "Video TDR failure". After reboot, the visual artefacts did not disappear. So, I booted into safe mode. An important note: there were no visual artefacts during my entire stay in safe mode. While in safe mode, I attempted some troubleshooting like the Chkdsk command, checked the SSD for errors, none found. Ultimately, I twice tried to reinstall GPU drivers, but the AMD catalyst control center installation to C:\AMD was aborted both times, after getting to a certain point for some arbitrary reason.
After exiting safe mode, the problem immediately starts. The screen is completely black from the start, black before even getting to manufacturer logo screen.
The laptop can be heard to attempt reboot on its own, 2 or 3 times, as the fans restart and the optical disk drive makes the clicking sound. After that, it just sits idly.

I attempted to boot with the SSD removed, got same results. Reseated the RAM. Finally went through the process of disassembly, removed the CMOS battery for 20 minutes, reassembled the laptop, all to no avail.

I have no access to a VGA/HDMI monitor right now, would be nice to test it with another monitor, but I highly doubt it would work.
Last resort would be replacing the GPU.

The fact is, it worked perfectly well while booted in safe mode. Perhaps someone with more troubleshooting smarts than me might be able to identify a point in the process where I screwed up? Maybe I shouldn't have attempted to install the AMD catalyst control center. Then again, the problem persists even when the hard drive is completely removed... Any thoughts?
 

Lutfij

Titan
Moderator
Welcome to the forums, newcomer!

Given how this is a 2nd gen Intel mobile processor platform, the AMD GPU you have on your laptop is a hybrid solution, meaning that you should try and install drivers found off of Asus's support site, not the one's found off of AMD's support site. Once the drivers from Asus have been installed, then you can install a latter AMD driver on top of that.

The order is, GPU drivers for AMD from Asus>Intel driver>AMD drivers from AMD's support site.

That being said, if removing the CMOS battery from the laptop and replacing it bore no fruit, try and see if cleaning the sticks of ram and also sourcing another stick of ram changes your experience.
 
Oct 7, 2020
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Welcome to the forums, newcomer!

Given how this is a 2nd gen Intel mobile processor platform, the AMD GPU you have on your laptop is a hybrid solution, meaning that you should try and install drivers found off of Asus's support site, not the one's found off of AMD's support site. Once the drivers from Asus have been installed, then you can install a latter AMD driver on top of that.

The order is, GPU drivers for AMD from Asus>Intel driver>AMD drivers from AMD's support site.

That being said, if removing the CMOS battery from the laptop and replacing it bore no fruit, try and see if cleaning the sticks of ram and also sourcing another stick of ram changes your experience.
Thank you for your answer. I already tried reseating the RAM. What's strange is that after booting into safe mode the graphic glitches immediately disappeared. And after exiting safe mode, the black screen of death immediately appeared. Such a scenario makes me doubt if it's really a faulty RAM stick...
But you make a good point that I shouldn't overlook the RAM as it could indeed cause a black screen of death. I should try to get a DDR3 stick somewhere and test it.
 

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