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Thread: Grey screen on boot Inspiron 1501

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Grey screen on boot Inspiron 1501

    Installed is an ATI Radeon Xpress 1150 card. Since V11.04 I have been getting a grey screen on boot from a live cd. Using 'nomodeset' in Grub fixed this. Once installed everything works fine. Now at V12.10 nothing helps. Plugging in an external monitor I get a proper display, but the laptop screen is still grey. The same happens with Mint, Mageia, Puppy 5.5 Racy, and several others. A long and intensive searche of several forums have been of little help. Please help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Re: Grey screen on boot Inspiron 1501

    I am having the same issue. Were you able to find the cause and a solution?

    I reverted to Lubuntu 12.04 and no problem with installation using 'nomodeset'.
    Last edited by rparker; April 28th, 2013 at 11:17 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2013

    Re: Grey screen on boot Inspiron 1501

    I was having the exact same problem on a Dell Inspiron 1501. It seems to be a problem with the display driver in the kernel. However, there is a work-around:
    As you already mentioned, the notebook is booting and fully functional, it's just the screen that is not working correctly. If you disconnect the notebook from AC and wait until it goes into screen suspend mode (screen off, probably 5 minutes) and then wake the screen up again by pressing a key, the screen is working correctly. You can also try to close the lid, wait a few seconds ans open it again but that only works once logged in.
    So, you could configure the time before shutting off the screen at 1 minute and automatic login, but you can also run a script at startup:

    In Ubuntu / Mint etc:
    Make sure you have automatic login enabled (sorry if that's a draw-back, but this trick is only working after the user is logged in...)
    edit the fle /etc/rc.local as root
    Insert the following lines at the bottom, above the very last line (exit 0):

    xset dpms force suspend
    sleep 1
    xset dpms force on
    That's it. Reboot and you'll still see the grey / white screen at startup, but after the system logged you in and starts X-windows your screen will switch off for a second and wakes up again. Works great and you can leave Grub as it is and have max sreen resolution.
    Last edited by Bill_Highestcreek; September 20th, 2013 at 07:42 PM.


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