Joe, I can definitely confirm this is a serious problem with Gateway's m6750 laptops, a friend of mine purchased a unit about 1.5 years ago, and had me install software and updates right afterward. After an hour or so working on the laptop, the unit just cut power in the middle of working on windows updates. Moving the laptop, I immediately noticed metallic rattling inside the laptop's chassis, disassembled the cover for the ram memory access, and extracted 3-5 little metal pieces, which greatly confused me as to what they did. They probably caused a short on the motherboard as you also suspect, so my friend took it to Best Buy, where he had also purchased an extended service plan (thank goodness) with the laptop, and had it serviced. However, as my friend described what I had experienced with the laptop to the Best Buy geek squad agent, they idiotically placed blame on me, and took a month to service the motherboard fault. Now, months later, my friend is experiencing a reccurence of the problem. I do not have anything against Gateways, but in my past experience with their desktops at school, they historically demonstrate poor build quality with their products.
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Try to get into the BIOS using either F2 , F1 , F8 , or F10 when it starts to load . Once there , check it's boot sequence to make sure the hard drive was not removed from the load list . If it was , change it to be the first boot device , save , and then restart .
The fault could be a faulty inverter or a faulty CCFL lamp.
The inverter supplies high voltage to the CCFL lamp anf the CCFL lamp is a tint fluro lamp and it dims with age or fails like any fluro lamp.
You could test the voltage output of the inverter with a multi-meter or just replace it cost about $40 and the CCFL lamp cost about $10. Check out LCD Parts for service, parts, and DIY info Use this link to their WEB site :- www.lcdparts.net
wisest but most cost intensive option: get a whole new one
second: remove harddisk and RAM and try to sell it off to s.o. marked broke and get a similiar or older model second hand, make sure your RAM fits(harddisk will anyway)
third and most time-consuming: if you want to repair it yourself, try to get the mainboard(you will have to look the web and ebay really hard) but mind there is no warranty and you may make things even more complicated...
fourth: if that wasn't you who broke it, get the diagnostic report, the one who cause the malheur and talk to your insurance...
its going to need to be troubleshot deeper. Its either going to be an lcd, inverter or a motherboard problem.
The only thing to do is to try another lcd and inverter. If those fail, then it has to be the lcd connector on the motherboard which means the motherboard would have to be replaced.
First try this: Unplug the laptop from the AC adapter (very important). Then take out the laptop battery and place it back into the laptop after a few seconds. Try powering on the computer. If that does not work, then continue reading.
If there is a LED light on the gateway power adapter check that it turns green when the adapter is plugged in. If it does not turn green (assuming there's a light there at all) then your power adapter is bad. There are a couple of different places to go from there. If the computer is less than a year old take it to geek squad at any best buy to have them send it into service under manufacturer's warranty. If it is not less than a year old try buying a universal adapter from Best Buy to see if that works (which you can return without penalty if you wish). If that does not work then your motherboard is bad. The cost of repair would probably come close to the cost of a new laptop.