Category Archives: PC stuff

Laptop power jack replacement

Intro

My girlfriend’s laptop decided to act up… When moving the cable around the charging was being interrupted. First thought – broken cable, but no… It’s worse – broken power jack on the motherboard.

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Video

Text transcript

Opening the case

The first part of the dis-assembly is quite simple: remove the cover that protects the RAM, HDD and WiFi module.

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Hard disk comes out quite easily as well.

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So does the WiFi Module.

4

To remove the body of the laptop a lot of screws need to be undone. I just followed them from one side and removed them one by one.

Please note, there is a tiny screw in the HDD hole. Without removing it it’s impossible to open up the case. Other tricky place is below the battery. There are two screws there.

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Now it’s time to remove the keyboard. One just needs to touch the tabs at the top while lifting the keyboard up gently and it pops out. A wide white ribbon cable needs to be removed before removing the keyboard completely.

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And then all the screws can be accessed and removed. One of those screws hold the DVD drive. There are three sneaky screws hiding under the drive.

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After using some percussive maintenance and removing a screw or two that I missed, the top cover finally gave in.

Removing the motherboard

To remove the motherboard first gently disconnect the display cable as well as the speakers. There are no tabs holding them, so they just pop out.

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Remove the tape, lift up the tab and remove the cable connecting USB hub and the audio jacks. There are 5 screws holding the motherboard, but they are all marked with small white arrows.

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Replacing the connector

Now the fun part. Here you can see the broken one as well as the new connector from ebay.

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To desolder the old one I am using a desoldering pump that I got from eBay. It costs only 10 bucks but it works like a charm. Just let it heat up and suck away.

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A few pins did not want to give up, so I just used some pliers and it gave up. After cleaning up with some  solder wick the board is ready for the new connector. Some solder and it looks like new.

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Putting it all back together

To put it back together I just followed the dis-assembly in reverse. Motherboard with its 5 screws, then the cables, the lid. After putting on the lid I carefully connected the power button ribbon cable as well as the mouse-pad one. It is important not to forget the three small screws before putting the DVD drive back in. And the one under the HDD. After putting the keyboard back in it’s place the ribbon cable needs to be connected before closing it up.

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It all works now! Time for a coffee.

 

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Cleaning Club3D Radeon HD7870 graphics card from my PC

My graphics card started making some weird noises. After investigation (opening the case, finding a flashlight :D) I found out that the problem was with dust built-up in fan area. After taking care of it I decided to replace the thermal paste. This is how this video was born 🙂

For cleaning I am using 93% denatured alcohol.
Thermal paste is Arctic Silver 5 (http://www.arcticsilver.com/as5.htm)

Setting DNS servers using NETSH

I have just faced an interesting problem at work. When I log onto work’s WiFi network I have to use a DNS server that is assigned by DHCP. After logging in, there is some bug that does not allow me access to company’s web page that is public on the Internet. So I came up with this little trick:

  • Set DNS to be retrieved via DHCP
  • Log into the network
  • Set DNS back to Google ones (8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4)

And all of this can easily be done using NETSH command (everything is in a “.bat” file. It requires to be run with administrator priviliges):


ECHO OFF

ECHO Setting DNS to DHCP mode...
netsh interface ip set dns name="WiFi" DHCP
ECHO ...done. Press ENTER to set DNS back to Google's servers

PAUSE

ECHO Setting primary DNS server...
netsh interface i set dns "WiFi" static 8.8.8.8
ECHO ...done. Setting secondary DNS server...
netsh interface ip add dns name="WiFi" addr=8.8.4.4 index=2

ECHO ...done.

PAUSE

NOTE: My wireless connection name is “WiFi”. Adjust it to match yours accordingly.

CMD output

Windows backup failure: 0x81000033

We all must appreciate benefits of backing up. So do I, but I’ve been facing this error: 0x81000033 while doing backups (using  Backup and Restore) on my new(-ish) Windows 7 Ultimate machine.

After googling a bit I found a solution that worked. Seems that the problem was because of the size of USN journal that was turned-on on System Reserved partition (the 100MB one that’s created by default).

Doing the following things helped to resolve the problem and now my backups to a remote NAS (SS4200-E).

  1. Run Command Prompt in administrator mode (hit Start, type cmd.exe, right-click and select Run as administrator)Cmd.exe in Admin mode
  2. In Command Prompt type fsutil usn queryjournal F:
  3. If it does not say that journal is disabled then type fsutil usn deletejournal /D F:
  4. Retry backup. It should work as it is supposed to.

This is assuming that you have assigned letter F: to System Reserved partition. If not, you have to assign a letter to it.

  1. Hit Start, right-click on Computer and select Manage
  2. In Computer Management -> Storage select Disk Management.
  3. Right-click on partition named System Reserved and choose Change Drive Letter And Paths…
  4. Hit Add… button and choose a letter to assign. And hit OK.

Then do the disabling of USN Journal again.

Source for this post is here.