On ibm thinkpads adjust the brightness - press the fn key, and then press F12 or F11. The one with the lightbulb pointing up. on other PC's, find your moniters brightness controls and adjust it. It probably went dark due to a hard drive shock or a power surge.
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If you connect an external monitor to the video port on your laptop, power up the monitor first and then boor up the laptop and the video information will automatically display on the external monitor. This will indicate the on-board video is functioning OK and the problem is the video connection to the LCD screen. The video connector from the LCD screen may need reconnecting to the motherboard to restore video information on the LCD screen.
The display of your laptop may go dark in one of two scenarios.
Physical damage that has resulted into a cracked or broken screen, if your laptop is dropped, especially with its case opened.
Malfunctioning of video power or control circuitry
If your laptop screen is physically damaged you should determined whether there is other damages to the laptop. You can plug an external monitor by using the video output connector to ascertain this. If your applications function of this external monitor you can simply go LCD screen repair and you can be sure that you will be able to recover your data. On the other hand, if there is no physical damage to your laptop screen and it goes blank you can connect to an external monitor and determine if other components of the laptop are functional. These steps will help you in your repair decision.
If you've replaced the LCD Panel already, then chances are good, the failing part may be the FLR inverter. It's a thin little chip about 3 or 4 inches in length that bridges the connection between the LCD and the motherboard. It's location varies from computer to computer though, so you may have to check with manufacturer documentation. They're not too terribly expensive to replace though, much cheaper than the LCD panel, anyways.
One of 2 things happened....
1) You Blew the Power Inverter... The Power inverter is a thin rectangular circuit board that plugs into the display panel cable and also powers the LCD Bulb.. If This Part Fails - You Lose Light to the Display even though the display will still be on and viewable against a bright light....
2) The LCD Bulb is Faulty... When the LCD Bulb Fails it will typically give pre-warning signs- though not always.... It will give signs like the whole screen has a light orange or pinkish tone to it, but eventually it will blow and no light at all to the Display Panel....
Both Of These Are Repairable....
The Power Inverter Can Be Purchased Off of Ebay, For Around $15 to $30
The LCD Bulb Itself is also Replaceable.. Though It is a Job Only to Be Performed By An Experienced Laptop Tech... Bulbs as well can be bought off of ebay for a few bucks..
Firstly, the LCD+external setting will switch one or the other or both on.
Secondly, if you go into your display properties (or even the advanced page where your video card additional features are) you can usually select which monitor is "primary".
I suspect that your external display is primary, and the LCD screen is not "enabled" or used as part of the desktop.
The settings are all there, it's just a matter of finding them (depending on what video card is in whatever laptop you have)
This might have happened in the first place if you accidentally hit "Fn" and one of the "F" keys up the top. Fn + F6 on my laptop will switch LCD/external monitors on and off. (for example) There is usually a little blue picture on one of the "F" keys to denote that function.
Your concern is a typical problem with LCD displays/monitors. There could possibly be three (3) reasons why it is behaving as you have posted. 1. Backlight/Inverter problem; 2. LCD panel problem; 3. Video card problem.
You can do initial diagnosis by: a. connect the laptop to an external monitor. Using the Fn + F? keys, activate the external monitor to be the default display. If it works, you have eliminated the possibility of the video card having a problem. If it likewise did not display anything or blanks out after sometime, then you have just confirmed that it is the video card that is a problem.
If you have ruled out the video card (using above procedure), you can proceed determining if it is an LCD panel problem or backlight/inverter problem.
To determine if it is a backlight/inverter problem, run the laptop normally even without a display. Let it boot and run through its startup sequence even if you can not see anything. Using a flashlight, shine a light obliquely to the face of the LCD display. if you can see some semblance of your desktop albeit dark, then you have just confirmed that it is the backlight/inverter. If even with the aid of a flashlight, the display s completely blank, then it is possible that the LCD display panel is defective. In some cases it is the flexible flat cable that is at fault.
With any of the aforementioned possible problems, opening the unit is required. This would need familiarity with electronic components and circuitry, use of a DVM and perhaps even a soldering iron. Should you not be comfortable doing this, it would probably be to your best advantage to seek the services of a qualifiedly professional.
Hope this be of some help/idea. Pls post back how things turned up or should you need additional information.