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View Full Version : Got myself into a bit of a mess!!



Sinister
13-04-2008, 12:22 PM
Its not so much the laptop that has an issue, its me, and what i want to achive with the laptop.

I am in the process of designing a portable arcade machine (my 2nd arcade project) and i have learnt from my first attempt. Instead of using a full computer i have dicided to contruct an arcade machine which has a small laptop inside, connected to a 22" WS display. I brought a cheap laptop off trade me which has a broken screen (you cant see ANYTHING).
When i received it everything was fine, I could hook a external monitor in the side of the laptop and it would display and because the graphic drivers were set to "Clone" it was fine. I then discovered after the first time that i turned it on that the entire OS was in Chinese and I couldnt do anything to change it. So i reinstalled windows.

Bad Idea.

I managed to get though the installion of the OS with the monitor still detecting fine, and it booted into windows mint. At this point i did not have the gfx drivers installed and didnt think this would make a diffrence but i beleive because i didnt install them then and there, the next time i start it up, what do you know, it doesnt detect the monitor.

I know it definaly boots into windows fine because if i press ctrl+f4 and then hit enter it shuts down. I just need to find a way to display the screen temporarly to install the gfx drivers. The only thing I can think of is to unscrew another laptop and try to plug its monitor into my laptop. Its a bit outthere but its the only thing i can think of. Aslong as the connectors are the same (never worked with laptop internals). Are all laptops the same?
I have opened my laptop and disconnected the screen so i know how to do it, I just want to make sure what i want to do is achiveable.
If there is a better/easier way. Please let me know.

My desired result is a half a laptop (no hinged screen attached), connected to an external monitor, that displays the OS.

Cheers,
Daniel.

PS. Yes i have tryed the Function + F3 combination that is set on my laptop to swap between the laptop and monitor. This does not help. I belive the fuction keys dont work because of no laptop drivers.

:thanks

Trev
13-04-2008, 12:25 PM
The screen on the laptop should work, as when you install Windows it installs default graphics drivers. So the drivers are not the problem.
:)

stormdragon
13-04-2008, 12:39 PM
You could try slipstreaming all the required drivers into the Windows install disk using NLite (http://www.nliteos.com/).

Sinister
13-04-2008, 12:42 PM
The screen OF the laptop or the screen connected TO the laptop?

As I said, I brought the laptop for cheap with a broken screen (so cracked it cant display anything, only solid black or white cracks). The external screen connected to it is fine, however there is no signal coming from the laptop to it (drivers).

Sinister
13-04-2008, 12:44 PM
You could try slipstreaming all the required drivers into the Windows install disk using NLite (http://www.nliteos.com/).

Cheers, this was also suggested to me by a mate of mine, but i wont be able to contact him again till after 3 today. My arguement to him and you are, "How do I install windows with no screen?" :P even with the drivers on the install CD i dont see how i can pull it off! Any ideas?

Cheers again.

stormdragon
13-04-2008, 12:55 PM
Cheers, this was also suggested to me by a mate of mine, but i wont be able to contact him again till after 3 today. My arguement to him and you are, "How do I install windows with no screen?" :P even with the drivers on the install CD i dont see how i can pull it off! Any ideas?

Cheers again.

The screen worked last time you tried installing Windows will it not work if u throw in the CD again?

Speedy Gonzales
13-04-2008, 12:58 PM
The screen worked last time you tried installing Windows will it not work if u throw in the CD again?

Its CRACKED / broken, so no. You cant see anything, thats the prob.

A cd has nothing to do with trying to fix a cracked/broken screen

You would have to reinstall the video drivers somehow, then somehow enable it so the signal goes to an external monitor

stormdragon
13-04-2008, 01:14 PM
Its CRACKED / broken, so no. You cant see anything, thats the prob.

A cd has nothing to do with trying to fix a cracked/broken screen

You would have to reinstall the video drivers somehow, then somehow enable it so the signal goes to an external monitor

I meant external screen. If he managed to use an external monitor to install Windows previously he should be able to do it again with a slipstreamed OS CD.

Speedy Gonzales
13-04-2008, 01:17 PM
Theres probably a few keys you have to press (or you may have to go into the driver's config / setup), to configure it first.

It worked before because the drivers were installed and whatever was configured, so the signal went to the external monitor

sal
13-04-2008, 01:18 PM
Yep, you'll need to get an unattended install of XP together and give it a run through via VPC (http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/virtualpc/default.mspx) to get the steps you may possibly need to do initially to get it going down on paper. Find out more here about unattended installs (http://unattended.msfn.org/unattended.xp/) and nLite (http://www.nliteos.com/) will be very helpful with slipstreaming drivers, etc.

Sinister
13-04-2008, 01:23 PM
The screen worked last time you tried installing Windows will it not work if u throw in the CD again?

The screen worked last xp install because it automaticaly switched over to the external screen because of the laptop gfx drivers that enabled the port. No drivers = no external screen.


You would have to reinstall the video drivers somehow, then somehow enable it so the signal goes to an external monitor?

Yes, thats what im trying to figure out. I dont want to fix the broken screen, I just want it to work with the external screen. But I cant get these drivers installed without a screen.

And slipsteaming sounds good .... if it was a fully automated install of xp that also applied the gfx drivers instantly. This would be quite hard to do i beleive so i think an easyer option would be to try to connect another laptop monitor to my laptop base.

Sinister
13-04-2008, 01:29 PM
Put it this way:

Learning to Slipstream XP with drivers and then doing it = hours.

Unscrewing a mates (he will do it), laptop to connect his screen to mine just to install some drivers. = minutes.

As long as the plugs are the same of course.

Any ideas?

stormdragon
13-04-2008, 01:33 PM
The screen worked last xp install because it automaticaly switched over to the external screen because of the laptop gfx drivers that enabled the port. No drivers = no external screen.

Where are you quoting me from I don't remember typing the 2nd part.

When its switching over to the screen Windows hasn't been loaded therefore the drivers haven't been loaded.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong but the Windows Installer shouldn't care if drivers are previously loaded or not, as it uses the resources on the CD and is not reading the HDD.

stormdragon
13-04-2008, 01:36 PM
Learning to Slipstream XP with drivers and then doing it = hours.

Slipstreaming doesn't take hours.

Sinister
13-04-2008, 01:39 PM
I may give that Installer option a try. Cheers.

If not i think the chances of having two laptops with the same plugs pretty rare.

If this doesnt work its onto the slipstream. Cheers!

Speedy Gonzales
13-04-2008, 01:41 PM
Put it this way:

Learning to Slipstream XP with drivers and then doing it = hours.

Unscrewing a mates (he will do it), laptop to connect his screen to mine just to install some drivers. = minutes.

As long as the plugs are the same of course.

Any ideas?

Not really, it depends WHAT drivers you want, just as long as the drivers you have, have an inf file in it, (it helps if they do), if you use Nlite, its pretty straightforward.

But youre right. It can take a while for the install (after youve slipstreamed something) to work properly. My previous slipstream was a bit of a disaster. It installed ok but IE 7 was a bit screwed I think.

I just redid it a few days ago, and installed / tested the cd I burned to another hdd.

It works now. This includes IE 7, WMP 11 + updates, with XP SP2.

And two sets of drivers for the Leadtek Expert / Deluxe drivers, and the drivers for the modem in this. It saves me installing these later.

All I have to wait for now, is SP3, then I'll add that to another slipstreamed CD.

I would have added the ATI drivers, but then it'll properly exceed the size of a cd, and become a DVD. (Since these drivers need the .net framework files as well).

sal
13-04-2008, 02:21 PM
lol, you think unscrewing a mates laptop screen to connect to yours is going to be easier than clicking a few button in program to create an unattended install. Hmm, you're wrong.

Just download nLite already and create an unattended install. As I said earlier, do a dummy run in VPC to pick up the two or three buttons you might need to push, links are all in my earlier post.

pctek
13-04-2008, 04:05 PM
I am in the process of designing a portable arcade machine

I brought a cheap laptop off trade me which has a broken screen (you cant see ANYTHING).
When i received it everything was fine, I could hook a external monitor in the side of the laptop and it would display

My desired result is a half a laptop (no hinged screen attached), connected to an external monitor, that displays the OS.


It shouldn't make any difference whether or not Windows is loaded. It either displays via the external monitor or it doesn't.

Why do you need a laptop anyway? My friend built a mame cabinet, he just had an HDD in it.

Whether its a full sized cabinet or a smaller version shouldn't matter.

Sinister
13-04-2008, 04:10 PM
It shouldn't make any difference whether or not Windows is loaded. It either displays via the external monitor or it doesn't.

Why do you need a laptop anyway? My friend built a mame cabinet, he just had an HDD in it.

Whether its a full sized cabinet or a smaller version shouldn't matter.

Trust me, it does. Just having the laptop in the case is crammed for space. Its a "PORTABLE" version. Not just a smaller version. With a full PC you cant just fold it up and pick it up with a handle. My 1st attempt at this failed badly because it was a computer. If my prototype goes well I will be looking at marketing them.

pctek
13-04-2008, 06:14 PM
As I said all my friend had in his was the HDD, not a PC. Portable or otherwise.
A HDD is smaller than a laptop.

sal
13-04-2008, 07:09 PM
btw, I hope you're not trying to build your own PS3 laptop (http://stash.ableapp.com/here/ps3_laptop.jpg) which has been a news item (http://www.engadget.com/2008/04/10/the-ps3-laptop-from-ben-heck-to-engadget-with-love/) recently, lol. Either way, hope you get your headless-laptop going and have fun with this project.

Deathwish
13-04-2008, 08:16 PM
It doesn't output anything at all via vga out? what if you try s-video out? I remember that an old laptop of mine that for some reason didn't work with vga out on a monitor, did work on a tv when i plugged that in via s-video.

Sinister
14-04-2008, 05:44 PM
It doesn't output anything at all via vga out? what if you try s-video out? I remember that an old laptop of mine that for some reason didn't work with vga out on a monitor, did work on a tv when i plugged that in via s-video.

No S-Video Port sorry! :(


As I said all my friend had in his was the HDD, not a PC. Portable or otherwise.
A HDD is smaller than a laptop.

WTF?!?! Could you explain futher or maybe ask your friend how this was acomplished?
Few questions that first spark to mind:

How does it interface with the monitor?
How does it interface with the controls?
How does it interface with the speakers?
How does it interface with power?
How does it interface with graphics?
How does it interface with well ... everything!

Do you cut and crimp the all the cables together into an IDE cable?

haha. :rolleyes: