1 (edited by 00ian 2010-07-31 17:51:34)

Topic: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Gparted live CD
The live CD boots OK but when the desktop should appear all I get is black with thin vertical lines in a variety of colours.  I have tried all the optional boot modes with the same result.
My computer has a 1280x800 LCD display.  A Ubuntu 9.04 live CD works with no problems.
Can someone please tell me how to go about solving this?


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Can you try the latest testing version (gparted-live-0.6.0-4)?

3 (edited by 00ian 2010-07-02 19:09:22)

Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Thank you for your attention.  I tried that in all 4 modes with the same result as the current stable version.  I also let the laptop sit for 10 minutes after the CD stopped spinning in case there was some CPU activity which I was interrupting.

This is a 15" laptop with an AMD 64x2 CPU 2GB RAM and an ATI Radeon Express 1150 graphics card.  This is neither particularly new, old or rare so it should be possible to get it working.  The native display resolution is 1280x800x32@60Hz.

I am an experienced Linux server administrator but I have never had many problems with desktop booting so have not had to learn much about it.  It seems that I should be able to edit the boot command line and get it to work but I have no idea what parameters to use. sad

The default video mode seems to be 788 (I don't know what that is).  I have tried editing the boot command to give an invalid video code which then offers me a list of video modes.  I have tried 323=1024x768x32 VESA and a few others which Widows display manage says the display supports.  All of them result in different versions of the same theme of vertical lines.  It seems to me that changing video modes only changes the terminal display and not X.

Thanks again for your time.

Do you know haw to specify 1280x800x32 at 60Hz for X?


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

This issue is about the kernel 2.6.32 KMS mode with your VGA card.
Please add "xforcevesa" in your boot parameter, or give GParted live 0.6.0-6 a try.
Please let us know the results.



Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

I guess I left out of my second posting (No.3) that It applied to gparted-live-

I have now tried xforcevesa with both and and it made no difference with ether.  I also changed video=788 to 323 with no result.

I burned to a CD-RW and it booted fine using the defaults.  It would appear that where the display goes bad on the two newer versions is at the choose keyboard stage.

I suspect that the problem is with X choosing too high a refresh rate.  The graphics chip is capable of higher refresh rates and more resolutions to support external monitors but the built in display is only capable of 60Hz.  Is there some way to tell the new version of X what resolution and refresh rate to use?

Ubuntu defines the display as a 15" laptop display.  This may be a patch to the new version of X to get it to work with laptops whose displays do not report properties.

Thanks again to both of you.


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Did you try GParted live 0.6.0-6?
http://sourceforge.net/projects/gparted … e-testing/
Does it make any difference?


7 (edited by 00ian 2010-07-02 18:26:59)

Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Sorry I did not read your post closely enough.

Same problem as all the other recent releases.  Please see my post above.


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

I thought the problem is KMS with kernel >=2.6.32 with your VGA card... now it looks it is not.

Could you please test Ubuntu 10.04 live CD?
Please let us know the results.


9 (edited by 00ian 2010-07-06 14:31:14)

Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Ubuntu 10.04 live CD?

No display during initial boot menu just a blank purple screen.  After the timeout exactly the same black screen with vertical lines in various colors which I get wit gparted-live.

I will have to try a few more very recent distros.

Any Idea what is causing this/ workarounds?


10 (edited by 00ian 2010-07-08 13:33:49)

Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

I found a (partial) answer on the Ubuntu forums.  Delete quiet splash and add nomodeset to the grub command line and it works fine.  So far I have no idea why.

I have not been able to find a way to transfer this to gparted-live.  Any ideas?


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Nomodeset also works with Fedora 13 live.   They seem to feel it   is a bug in the ati drivers.  Why   does it not work with gparted-live?


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Well this problem is not going away.  I tried gparted-live 6.1-2 with exactly the same results.  I noticed that the run from ram option already had nomdeset as one of the parameters so I booted the disk in my desktop and recorded all the key strokes needed to get it to load.  No luck!  The load process fails before X is loaded so it seems to be the display parameters used for the configuration of the keyboard and language selection.

This may be way out of the ballpark but perhaps it is time to change these selections to the initial boot screen as most live distros do nowadays.  I cannot find any combination which works in my laptop.

I finally gave up and connected the disk to my desktop since it is a SATA disk and have the laptop working now.   BUT, I tend to be very stubborn when something like this comes up and want to find and answer.  Sometimes I have only the laptop for weeks at a time and cannot relay on the resources of my home network.

If one of the developers does not reply to this can someone please tell me how to file a bug report in the development forum that will have a qualifed person looking into this?



Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

GParted Live is based on the Debian distribution.  The changes for each GParted Live image can be viewed in the changelog info link listed on the Download page.

Have you tried booting Debian?  If the same problem happens on Debian then you may wish to report the boot problem to the Debian team.


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

I downloaded the latest debian-live 5.05 gnome and had no problems.

I hope this is the right version or should I have been using one of the testing versions?

I notice that Debian does not give the option to chose keymaps etc before configuring and starting X.  It appears more and more that it is this gparted customization creating the problems.

Now can this be escalated to a bug?

Are there some more workarounds which can be applied?


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Bug reports for the GParted Application, GParted Live, or Documentation can be logged at the following link:

The current version of GParted Live is based on Debian Squeeze as can be seen in the ChangeLog.

Debian-live 5.05 is based on Debian Lenny.  You would need to test Debian Squeeze to see if you still experience the boot problem with this newer Debian release.


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

I downloaded and tried Debian-live 6.0alpha and booted using the default live option.  Everything worked perfectly.  Sorry!  the ball is definitely back in the gparted court.  I should stress again that it appears to be the screens which offer keyboard selection etc. causing the problem before X starts.  Debian does not go through this at all it leaves it up to the user to change after the desktop has been started up.

Thanks for all the attempts to help.  I sure hope that someone with more expertise than myself can find a cure for this.  Trying to read through development forums is definitely over my head.


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

The kernel of GParted live 0.6.1-2 is slightly newer than that in Debian-live 6.0alpha. Therefore it's different. Maybe you can give older GParted live a try, e.g. GParted live 0.5.1 or 0.4.8.



Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

0.5.2-1 works.  0.5.2-9 does not.  None of the subsequent ones do either.  I hope this gives some useful information.


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

I decided to work my way up the "testing tree"
0.5.2-5 loads normally. produces the same old vertical lines instead of offering the keyboard selection.

Maybe this will give a good clue to one of the developers.

Thanks again for everyones help.


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Hi, it may be a little late but i found a way to get to the graphical environment, i also have an ati video card (dell optiplex pc).

you need to change the i915.modeset=0  in the boot options to radeon.modeset=0

and that's it. I don't know why and what that change does but it works.

21 (edited by 00ian 2010-07-31 20:05:59)

Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Thank you very much.  I missed the notification of your posting but I tried it and it works!  I simply added
to the boot options.

I reported this as a bug two weeks ago and so far it as been untouched and attracted no interest from any of the people with the knowledge to fix it.

I downloaded the latest 0.6.1-5 and found this in the default boot option and it now works with no problem!

Do you ever feel like one of the proverbial infinite number of monkeys?


Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

Which File(s)should I change[and how] to fix video display problem described in this thread?

I too get a screen full of colors and lines when I boot up the gparted-live 0.7.02. on my DELL Vostro 1500
The writers of replies in this thread suggest a fix.
They suggest modifying the bootup part of the program by changing  "config i915.modeset=0"  into  "radeon.modeset=0".
Would someone tell me where/how to change that?

I am not a programmer but think I can make straightforward text file changes using notepad++ with help.

There are 4 lines in \isolinux\isolinux.cfg  and 2 lines in \syslinux\syslinux.cfg  that start with:
"append initrd=/live/initrd1.img boot=live config i915.modeset=0 xforcevesa radeon.modeset=0 noswap nomodeset"

It seems this code already attempts the fix, or am I wrong?

FYI I am able to get Ubuntu live to install & display correctly, but prefer using the gparted program.

Thanks from a very old guy trying to learn new tricks.

23 (edited by gedakc 2010-11-03 18:11:15)

Re: No display on Dell Inspiron 1501 [SOLVED]

When you are at the GParted Live initial screen (see last picture on screenshots page) press the tab key.  This will display the boot parameters that you can edit.


The default parameters for GParted Live 0.7.0-2 are as follows:

/live/vmlinuz1 initrd=/live/initrd1.img boot=live config
  i915.modeset=0 xforcevesa radeon.modeset=0 noswap
  nomodeset vga=788 ip=frommedia nosplash

I suggest you try removing the parameters I have noted in red.  The parameters to remove are:
  i915.modeset=0 xforcevesa radeon.modeset=0 noswap
  nomodeset vga=788 ip=frommedia nosplash

I am curious as to if this works for you.  Removing these parameters permits my NVidia GeForce 8600 GT card to boot.