Fixing an Alienware 18 with seemingly faulty GPU's

Discussion in 'Alienware 18 and M18x' started by ColaMonster, May 7, 2018.

  1. ColaMonster

    ColaMonster Notebook Consultant

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    I was discussing this in another thread I made, but this title fits it better to help get the help I need :)

    So I bought a alienware 18, 460CAD, and the owner claimed the gpu's wouldn't accelerate.

    After picking it up, he told me he had taken it to a shop to get them to swap the secondary GPU into the primary slot, to no avail. (Read as a 3MB ATI card)

    So I swapped the original first one in by itself, and it booted and seemed to work great. R9 M290X.

    But I was at a computer tech's place who I was using his table, and he tested furmark. and it seemed to work great. good fps, and the card seemed to work. but the fan didnt come on. 90 Degrees before the pc made a fan noise. Not even a loud one though. 95 Degrees hit, I reached to stop it before it did damage, but he said just wait a second- Then the pc crashed. Duh, Overheating.

    But now I cannot boot into Dedicated Graphics, only Intel Integrated. FN F5, press yes, Reboot, and still in intel. I have yet to try the first card again. Guessing we killed it, but unsure.

    Tried putting one of my 460M's into it, from my M18X R1, but 8 beeps. Guessing incompatible cards.

    Put the R9 back in, boots fine, but wont swap to dedicated. (I havent tried the original 3MB one again that seemed to be fried)

    Then I encountered a new problem after re installing windows, after i log in, its just a black screen. Explorer.exe wont open. Then one time it did, about 4 reboots later. It was about 3AM at this point, getting pretty tired. So I updated my bios, A13. Just now am i realizing this is probably a mistake to have done, because Im guessing I cant flash to unlocked A12 now can I? Or can I?

    TL/DR - Trying to determine if mobo or cards is the problem - Ill order a new Motherboard if needed, or ill order 980M's if its just bad cards. (and their appropriate heatsinks) But I wouldnt want to just fry more cards if its the motherboard. :|

    Thank you in advance anyone!







    @electrosoft @Raidriar , you guys were on my other thread so I thought id tag you :)
     
  2. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    You ran furmark and let the card overheat, chances are you killed it.

    Also R1 is not compatible with maxwell, only 800series or older.
     
  3. ColaMonster

    ColaMonster Notebook Consultant

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    Yeah, honestly im not that suprised. Oh I should mention - The guy I bought it off of said he bought it, played Duke Nukem Forever for about half an hour before the pc crashed, and wouldnt play games. so it sounds like his first card overheated and bit the dust too. I just partially wanted to make sure Its not like a motherboard issue thats messing up the cards.
     
  4. Raidriar

    Raidriar Notebook Prophet

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    He said Alienware 18 R1....can definitely use maxwell cards

    @ColaMonster you can send me the machine (or the cards) and I can test and return to you. More than likely motherboard is fine and the R9 M290X are fried
     
    Papusan and Danishblunt like this.
  5. ColaMonster

    ColaMonster Notebook Consultant

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    @Danishblunt yeah ive got an M18X R1 and i newly purchased an AW18, which im trying to troubleshoot and upgrade :)

    @Raidriar i might just take you up on that. i might test the M290X in my m18xr1 as well first, since i do believe they are compatible :)
     
  6. Raidriar

    Raidriar Notebook Prophet

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    Yes it will work in the M18x R1, but fan control doesn't work, you will need hwinfo to control the fans
     
  7. ColaMonster

    ColaMonster Notebook Consultant

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    my 460M's are not compatable in the AW18 im guessing from it just 8 beeping me when I tried?
     
  8. Raidriar

    Raidriar Notebook Prophet

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    Possible, but weird that it would not work. Do you have any other GPUs laying around? Can the system POST with the R9 M290x before loading into windows?
     
  9. ColaMonster

    ColaMonster Notebook Consultant

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    So with the original one that was reading as a 3MB ATI card, it still posted with that card.
    With the newly fried R9 M290X, it still posts, but refuses to even boot into dedicated graphics, or seemingly even attempt to. any time i FN F5 to swap over, it tells me it needs to reboot to make the swap, seems to reboot fine, but immediately is still in integrated graphics. in abit i can try the first fried one again, try to get into dedicated graphics.

    Unfortuneately I only have 2 460M's and 2 (dead) R9 M290X's, and i live in a small town where I dont think anyone has any extras to sell me :(

    Edit : Managed to get rid of the black screen error, idk what it was, reinstalling windows fixed it.

    Would rolling back to A12 from A13 Bios , then Going to Unlocked A12 allow me to force the system into trying to use the graphics card?
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2018
  10. Raidriar

    Raidriar Notebook Prophet

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    BIOS has no effect, stay on A12. If you can POST with the R9 M290X then fail trying to get into windows, the motherboard is good. Black screens or BSODS after POST mean failure to hardware accelerate graphics, typical of graphics card failure. 460M may be incompatible with the Alienware 18 BIOS structure.
     
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