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Thread: Should a laptop provide VGA / composite out signal at bios?

  1. #1
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    Should a laptop provide VGA / composite out signal at bios?

    I ask as I have a salvaged toshiba laptop (s203?), with a broken screen and no os. I am thinking of using it as my first carputer. However with the broken screen, and no OS, I cannot even tell if it is working. The power and HD leds light up, but I have no signal to an external monitor through vga or composite video. I have not yet tried to install an OS, but I do not think this would make a difference. Some laptops auto detect the external connection at start-up, but I cannot find out if this one should, or if that is a software function. I have no recovery discks etc... Anyone know anything about this laptop model? A key press sequence that would enable the external monitor would be great, but I'll take even random thoughts. Thnaks!

    PS, should I just get an epia and ebay the parts?

  2. #2
    FLAC ukchris's Avatar
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    Have a look for a key marked to activate the external VGA port, usually marked CRT/LCD or similar.

  3. #3
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    Tried the function key as suggested with no result

    Should that work even without an OS installed? If so is this thing likely toast?

  4. #4
    Constant Bitrate Ill1's Avatar
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    I have a toshiba tecra 8100 and pressing function+F5 changes the screen output. Try pressing it a couple of times and see if you can get the external screen to turn on.
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  5. #5
    Variable Bitrate
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    i don't think so......

  6. #6
    Variable Bitrate
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    was this your laptop or did you get it from somewhere not knowing if it worked????

  7. #7
    Raw Wave
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    The external vga signal should come on even before the OS loads up. The composite normally dont come on until the driver is loaded up.

    As been said just connect a VGA screen and press the "screen select" key.

    If you still not getting any luck you can always remove the broken screen, make sure you disconnect it from the motherboard then try again...this way the laptop should default to the external screen.

  8. #8
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    Laptop was a cheap buy, condition unknown.
    Will removing the screen force the MB to provide external output? If I remove the screen, and I still have no signal, do I assume the MB is shot? Any other tests I might run? Thanks for the suggestions thus far.

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