Alienware m18x r2 + 8970m won't work

Discussion in 'Alienware 18 and M18x' started by Notabrawd, Jan 23, 2019.

  1. Notabrawd

    Notabrawd Notebook Consultant

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    Hello.

    I have an Alienware m18x r2 from 2012

    Throughout the years three 7970m cards have gone bad... apparently this is due to a design flaw in that model where one of the internal solders becomes melted or unseated...

    On the recent burnout, I decided to purchase an 8970m instead, as I was under the impression this card would work in this model of Alienware, and didn't have the issue of failing every 1.5 - 3 years.

    After physically installing the card, Windows loaded fine. When I went to run a GPU intensive executable the screen went white and I thought to myself "oh probably drivers" since it was still running on the 7970m driver.

    I have tried drivers from the AMD website but these do not work.After loading windows the screen simply goes black instead of login screen. I'm writing this from safe-mode.

    I have tried to find an 8970m driver on the dell site, but the only one I found was inspiron for windows 7 (won't install). There is an alienware driver for the 8970m but its windows 10/Alienware 18 which I haven't tried, as I'm on windows 7/m18xr2 and assume it won't work and I'm not yet brave enough to try :)

    I'm kind of stuck, and want to check in before I go the "update everything" (BIOS, etc) route... because in my experience this sort of thing is as likely to cause new issues as it is to fix old ones.

    TLDR: Does anyone know of a driver for an 8970m for windows7-64 that will work on an Alienware mx18r2? Or something else I need to do?

    Cheers & thx!
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
  2. Rengsey R. H. Jr.

    Rengsey R. H. Jr. I Never Slept

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    I had it working. You need to let windows install the driver by itself. Windows will install compatible driver.
     
  3. Notabrawd

    Notabrawd Notebook Consultant

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    Thanks for the tip! Do you know if I need to have windows update turned on or anything like that?
     
  4. Rengsey R. H. Jr.

    Rengsey R. H. Jr. I Never Slept

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    I was running windows 10 when I had the card installed. It automatically install on its own.

    I no longer have the M18X-R2 (Besides Parts).
     
  5. Notabrawd

    Notabrawd Notebook Consultant

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    Rats, my windows 7 is having none of that!
    I've tried every sort of driver trick I know.
    It's weird because the first time I was using the 7970m drivers I was able to log on and it just went white when I tried to put it under load
    Now it does the windows graphic but then just goes black instead of the login screen.
    Wonder if it's possible I damaged it somehow?
    Or if I should try the Alienware 18 drivers for win 10... I read sometimes win10 drivers work for win7, and maybe Alienware 18 has similar enough architecture to the m18xr2... could THAT damage something?
    Thoughts?
    Ideas?
    Upgrade to win 10? :D
    I'm pretty boned if I can't get this to work somehow.

    UPDATE: I managed to install an older AMD driver from ~2014 and get past the login screen... but now the screen randomly turns grey or white whenever I run something with graphics...
    Supposedly it's a new card...
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2019
  6. Notabrawd

    Notabrawd Notebook Consultant

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    UPDATE:
    It works but only running from batter power (maximize battery life)
    As soon as I put it to maximize performance it stops working (screen goes black)
     
  7. Raidriar

    Raidriar ლ(ಠ益ಠლ)

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    Means you have a bad card possibly, going to max battery limits the clock speed significantly. Balanced or high performance allows max clock speed for core and ram, which means either your ram or core is overheating or may be bad.
     
  8. nforce4max

    nforce4max Notebook Geek

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    This is one of the reasons why people hate these because frankly they don't work and when they do there is always that awareness that at some point they will fail. Should have been better and AMD could have chosen a different GPU for the job where at the least there could have been a lower power density, probably a little rehash of the old bumpgate where the tin solder between the gpu die and the substrate doesn't hold up.
     
  9. imest

    imest Notebook Consultant

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    I have never been an AMD fan. Just sucks when **** doesn't work. I have had (in the past) too many bad experiences with AMD.
     
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