July 10th, 2005

The vertical black line of death.

Sigh. Doesn't Dell ever do a 72-hour burn-in any of its systems? This was standard 10 years ago...

I left my laptop running a big compile (of my firmware linux distribution) overnight, with the lid closed. I come down this morning, and the darn vertical line down the center of the screen is back. It's now solid black. Great. I'd assume leaving it on overnight is something that never occurred to Dell as something anyone might conceivably do?

This is _after_ getting a new power supply brick. Yes, the big thing attached to the power cord, off away from the laptop itself, stopped producing power and started _beeping_ friday night. How does a dumb transformer beep? Who in their right minds would put circuitry in something that's isolated from the rest of the laptop because it puts off electrical interference and gets hot? (This is what it's FOR...)

The new power supply held out, and the vertical line is still only one pixel wide (annoying, but not particularly distracting). And no it's not a driver problem, it's doing it in text mode too. (Real vga text mode, not frame buffer.) If it doesn't get any worse, I could live with it. But come on, I've had this thing for about two weeks now, and I'm on my third power supply and the video has an obvious problem.

Gotta love Dell...

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