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Dell Inspiron N4010 Troubleshooting

Dell's entry level laptop with a 14" screen.

Slow Computer Performance ¶ 

Your computer takes an unusual amount of time to do offline activities

The Computer is in Battery Saver Mode ¶ 

If your computer is set to a battery-saving mode, it may be the throttling the cpu which would lead to slower completion of simple tasks. Power modes can be accessed by clicking on the battery indicator in the lower right of the screen or in Control Panel.

The Laptop is Using all Available Resources ¶ 

Right click the taskbar and click Start Task Manager then click the performance tab. You will see some graphs. If CPU usage is over 20% with no applications open and ram usage is over 50% with no applications open then you may need to perform a system restore or upgrade your ram or change your CPU

To perform a system restore open the start menu and search for System Restore then follow the steps in the wizard. NOTE: This will effectively take your computer back in time before these issues arise and will cause you to loose files created after the time indicated on the restore point. Back-up any data you don’t want lost to a separate drive.

The Fan is not Circulating Air Properly ¶ 

If the fan isn't working, or not working well, the CPU will heat up and slow performance to manage its heat. This is called thermal throttling and can be solved by cleaning or replacing your fan. Follow the fan replacement guide for the Dell Inspiron N4010

Short Battery Life ¶ 

Your computer dies in less time than the manufacturer indicates

Computer Is in High Performance Mode ¶ 

Changing your power mode to a high performance setting will use more power than a battery saving mode. If performance is not required then changing the power mode is the easiest way to get better battery life. Power modes can be accessed by clicking on the battery indicator in the lower right of the screen or in Control Panel.

The Battery is Old and Needs to be Replaced ¶ 

The battery that is dying faster than indicated by manufacturer might be faulty. Batteries also don’t hold capacity as they age. Replace the battery (*dell link*) by following the battery replacement guide.

Computer will not turn on unless plugged in ¶ 

The Laptop turns on and operates as normal once plugged in but cannot stay on when on battery power

Battery is not Making a Good Connection with the Laptop ¶ 

Remove the battery from the underside of the laptop and check to see if any of the contacts are damaged or dirty on either the laptop itself and on the battery. Clean them off with a dry microfiber cloth

The Battery is Broken and Needs to be Replaced ¶ 

Replace the battery by following the battery replacement guide. Make sure you use Dell batteries (found here) //link to dell battery available to purchase

Computer will not charge ¶ 

The Wire Coming from the Plug to the Power Brick is Faulty ¶ 

Replace the cord with any 3-pronged cord with the appropriate connections. Simply pull the thicker cord out of the power brick and insert a new cord into the slot. Make sure the wire itself can handle the Voltage and Amperage supplied by your pug.

The Power Brick is Faulty ¶ 

If the power brick is broken, it cannot be used to charge the laptop. Buy a new one from Dell [Link] and use that one instead.

The Motherboard is Broken ¶ 

Follow the motherboard replacement guide.

Certain keys unresponsive ¶ 

Keyboard is Broken and Needs to be Replaced ¶ 

Follow the keyboard replacement guide

Touchpad gestures not working ¶ 

Drivers are Out-of-Date or Faulty and Need to be Updated ¶ 

Update device drivers through dell's website [Link]

Touchpad is Dirty ¶ 

Clean touchpad with a dry microfiber cloth

Sound is not Playing Through the Speakers ¶ 

Sound should be playing through the speakers but is not

Sound has been Turned Down to Mute ¶ 

In the taskbar click on the speaker icon and drag the slider upwards. You should hear a chime.

Drivers are Faulty or Out-of-Date ¶ 

If this doesn’t work, plug in external speakers/headphones and if that makes sound your speakers are bad, if that doesn’t work you need to update drivers (only if both speakers and headphones are not working)

Speakers are Broken ¶ 

If one speaker works then the other is almost certainly broken and needs to be replaced. Follow the speaker replacement guide.

Screen Issues ¶ 

Many common issues reported are associated to its screen. If your screen is in constant BSoD (Blue Screen of Death) or it will not turn on, consider these helpful steps.

Computer Has Suffered a Fatal Error and Throws a Blue Screen of Death (BSoD) ¶ 

For this, first check Error Code Guide on Microsoft’s website. This will tell you nature of the problem. Other fixes include restoring the system, replacing RAM, or even replacing the CPU.

Display Is Broken ¶ 

To test, first try an external display on both VGA and HDMI. If this works shows a picture, this means the actual screen could be the problem.

Video Drivers are Out-of-Date or Faulty ¶ 

Try either reinstalling video drivers and/or re-configuring screen settings. If this still doesn’t work, consider replacing the screen. However, if the screen does not work but the power lights on the laptop body are on, consider replacing the laptop’s battery or even replacing the CPU.

Serious Hardware Error Preventing Windows from Starting Up ¶ 

If the screen flashes on and the computer begins to make a "beeping" sound use the following guide to determine the issue: [ Link ]

File Issues ¶ 

Files are either changing names, locations, or disappearing.

Hard Drive is Faulty and Needs to be Replaced ¶ 

Follow our hard drive replacement guide. Please note you must back up any files on the drive, including recording any software keys, especially for Windows. You must also have some sort of installation media created for Windows as you will need to reinstall it after replacing the drive.


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