Find the answer to your Linux question:
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 21
I bought a broken Linux Certified laptop on ebay with the intention of repairing it. However, I have never rebuilt a pc much less a laptop before. From what i ...
Enjoy an ad free experience by logging in. Not a member yet? Register.
  1. #1
    Just Joined! spacetekcrusaders's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Querta
    Posts
    25

    Rebuilding Laptop


    I bought a broken Linux Certified laptop on ebay with the intention of repairing it. However, I have never rebuilt a pc much less a laptop before. From what i have read, building a pc is supposed to be fairly easier, but there is little information on building a laptop and it is evidently significantly harder. Have you ever built/rebuilt a laptop before? If so, do you have any advice?
    thanks

  2. #2
    oz
    oz is offline
    forum.guy
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    arch linux
    Posts
    18,733
    I've never rebuilt a laptop myself but have seen a few HowTo articles online explaining the various steps, and from what I've read on them, it doesn't appear to be an overly difficult task. Either way, a quick Google search should pull them up with the proper search terms applied.

    Good luck with it and do let us know how the rebuild goes.
    oz

  3. #3
    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    I can be found either 40 miles west of Chicago, in Chicago, or in a galaxy far, far away.
    Posts
    11,393
    How is it "broken"? Does it just need a software reinstall, or is there something else (physically) wrong with the system?
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

  4. #4
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Riverside, CA
    Posts
    1
    that's what I was going to ask also. as long as it posts, then I can give you tips to get things running again. If it doesn't post....then we're in trouble

  5. #5
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    44
    I would first verify what is or is not missing from the laptop...If it's missing something, than I'd start there, and replace anything that is missing.

    I would also tear that laptop to pieces and give it a thorough cleaning. You wouldn't believe how much dust can accumulate in just a year.

    If it's overheating, try a poor man's reflow...

  6. #6
    Linux User
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Tokyo, Japan
    Posts
    260
    If you're in luck, all you would need to do is replace some simple components, like the disk, memory, or screen. For really difficult problems, you might need to replace the motherboard. I would NOT recommend trying to diagnose problems or replace components on the motherboard yourself. Only professionals with the right tools should do that.

    The components can be expensive for laptops (especially when shipped individually), and can be sometimes difficult to find, unless you know some nearby hobbyists who collect parts. Usually laptops are intended to be repaired at the factory by professionals for customers who have a warranty or have payed for extended repair services.

    It is much easier repairing desktops computers which have many easily replaced parts. Laptops use much more specialized parts that are designed especially to fit into small packages, and are therefore much more difficult to repair.

  7. #7
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    44
    I would NOT recommend trying to diagnose problems or replace components on the motherboard yourself. Only professionals with the right tools should do that.
    I disagree whole heartedly...In fact, this very statement goes against the very grain of the OSS community. It is very apparent, to me anyways, that the OP bought this lappy with the intent of fixing it. Sometimes it just takes some thinking outside the box.

    I don't know about anybody else, but if I had been the OP, and I read your reply, the first thing I would do is tear this lappy apart and start with the mb first.

    This is like telling someone that they should stick to MS because linux is for professionals...give me a break.

  8. #8
    Linux User
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Tokyo, Japan
    Posts
    260
    Quote Originally Posted by chadfluegge View Post
    I disagree whole heartedly...In fact, this very statement goes against the very grain of the OSS community.

    This is like telling someone that they should stick to MS because linux is for professionals...give me a break.
    Open source philosophy breaks down at some level simply because real life resources, like parts and expertise, cannot be distributed freely and without cost the way software can. Even when Sun Microsystems open-sourced their UltraSPARC T1 processor, I don't think anyone said "Hey, I'll just download the VHDL source and manufacture my own CPU microchip in the garage!" VLSI fabrication requires multi-billion dollar processes!

    Like I said, as a learning project, by all means do what you can to fix the system, I don't want to discourage anyone from learning. I'm just saying, don't expect a working computer anytime soon unless the problem is really just a matter of replacing a disk or memory. You may need to replace the motherboard. Replacing parts requires finding them online and having them shipped, which can cost a lot. If too many things need to be replaced, you may end up buying a whole new computer in parts and then end up having to assemble it.

    Fixing parts on a circuit board requires tools (which can be expensive unless you already own them) and a certain level of expertise, like soldering surface mount components. If you make a mistake, you could cause permanent damage to a portion of the board. If you damage something important, like the memory bus, the board will have to be replaced entirely. Be realistic when considering doing your own soldering.

  9. #9
    Just Joined! spacetekcrusaders's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Querta
    Posts
    25

    Smile

    Thanks everyone for their input so far. The laptop does not power on. I do not know everything that is wrong with it, but it did not come with CPU, HD, or AC adapter. I took everything apart last night. The case has some serious cosmetic wear, but I like the style of it. It does have the motherboard, but I have no idea if it is any good, the screen appears to be ok although it has some scratches. The touchpad looks fine as do the heat sink and fan.

    My problem now is to fix it on a very low budget. I am hoping to find some inexpensive, perhaps older or damaged laptops or parts on eBay, and then trade parts from one laptop to another until I have a functioning unit. Then I will install some lightweight Linux distro on it, probably Archbang. Mostly the reason I want to do this is to learn about how a laptop is built/works, and to have my very own laptop that I can say I built myself, even if it ends up not being the highest quality.

    So overall this is a learning experience. However, I do not want to dump any large amounts of money into it since I can get a half-decent functioning laptop on eBay for pretty cheap, plus I already having a good, functioning Toshiba that serves all my needs. I will probably just use the one I build for school work - i.e. writing papers, etc.

    Thanks again for all your input, even the ones who advise again the attempt - I am pretty ignorant when it comes to this, so any input is helpful, and I enjoy looking at the different point of view. =)

  10. #10
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    44
    If we knew the make and model of the laptop, we could help with the investigation...

    I would hazard to guess that the reason why you can't power the laptop up is because it is missing the ac adapter and the battery is dead.

    Other than that, I'm wondering why the cpu is missing. I would have guessed that the RAM would be missing, not the cpu.

    For the ac adapter, I got one for a laptop a few months ago on eBay for $7.99, shipped. I would do the same for the hd.

    If you're looking for another rebuild project, you could check out the "broken" laptops on shopgoodwill.com...You never know, you might find a hidden gem.

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •