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Before merging with HP, Compaq manufactured a full range of laptop computers. Now they are manufactured by HP mostly with basic features.

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Black screen on boot, external monitor shows bsod

compaq presario cq42

I plugged in the laptop to another monitor since it would not recognize the main display, during boot, it shows red lines across the whole display and right after boot there are lines across the whole display and could only run on 16 colors (not the monitor fault, i tested it with another laptop) after downloading the video drivers, i rebooted and got the blue screen saying: attempt to reset the display driver and recover from timeout failed, then the laptop restart by itself but the laptop backlight is on and the external monitor shows it stuck on the compaq boot screen (but without the logo and any text). Do i need yo change my motherboard since its a graphics problem or what should i do?, i just reinstalled Windows 7 Home Premium on it since Windows 10 would give bsod with error video tdr failure (which is the same thing as the current bsod i have right now)

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Does the problem occur even if you boot-up in the BIOS screen?


i could boot into the bios but the laptop main display would still show nothing


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Hi @thesamuelong10

Is there a LED blink error pattern being shown, you didn’t say?

If there are then here’s a list but I’m not totally sure if a CQ42 is the same as a CQ40 but suspect that it may be.

Did you try a replacement video cable? You only said that “…. not the monitor fault, i tested it with another laptop”.

Here's the maintenance and service guide for the laptop.

Perhaps you could try changing the CPU but if that were faulty you'd think that there would be other problems as well. On p.94 you will find a list of all the compatible CPUs

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If you can boot-up into the BIOS, and the screen is good, then it is definitely a driver corruption issue. Graphics drivers and printers are probably the most troublesome things for computers!

Uninstall with a graphics driver uninstall program such Display Driver Uninstaller:

and follow instructions.

Then update the BIOS and other drivers from the HP website:

That’s for the Compaq Presario CQ42-365TU Notebook PC. If yours is not the 365TU model then insert your specific model. The chipset driver is especially important.

If you get it working fine with Windows 7 then I’m guessing that Windows 10 would install with an inplace upgrade.

I’ve got Windows 10 running fine on a very old Dell laptop from 2008!

Let us know how it goes.

P.S. Replacing your motherboard, if you could find one, would be too expensive for such an old computer.

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