Accidentally disabled display adapter and can't see, safe mode or VGA mode won't work

By the79Bomb

  1. I just recovered from accidentally disabling my display adapter (*****). I logged into linux to get on the net and found the thread solved by Spike and also by glowingnissan07 on this issue and found that neither of these threads solved the problem exactly. Spikes solution finally ended up working with one change and I thought I would post it here in case anyone else had the same gut wrenching experience (thanks Microsoft).

    Phenomena: accidentally disabled the display adapter and after the XP loading screen you get nothing. Dead monitor. Safe mode hangs each time and "VGA Mode" does nothing different.

    Solution: Here is Spikes original solution (thanks Spike) with a note for step 5. Also beware of "found new hardware" wizard etc popping up at system startup interfereing with these instructions. I recommend pressing alt-f4 a few times after startup to make sure any startup programs get closed and then doing these instructions. Good Luck.

    Log in. If you log in automatically, all well and good. if not...

    1, use the up and down arrow keys to go to your user, and hit enter to select. if you normally have to enter a password, then do it now, and hit enter again.

    2, press and hold the windows key, and tap 'R' (this is the keyboard shortcut to the run box)

    3, type "devmgmt.msc" (without the quotes) and hit Enter (this opens device manager)

    4, wait a few moments to make sure device manager is open, and then hit the TAB key once. this brings the selection onto the device list.

    5, (cancel this step and jump to step 6 with SP2 as you start in device view by type as default and pressing alt-v will pop you into the view menu[new]) hit ALT+V together, which switches to viewing devices by type

    6, hit 'D' TWICE, which should bring you to Display Adapters

    7, hit the RIGHT cursor key to open the dropdown selection, and right again to go to the first device in that selection.

    8, hit Alt+A together to open the context menu for your adaptor (assuming it's the first in the list)

    9, hit the Down cursor key which selects Enable (note, if you've got the wrong device, this will select disable for that device). then, hit Enter to enable it

    10, If you get a number of dialogues, as I just did for a seperate device (I'm not about to disable my own display!!!!), just use a combination of enter/Y (for yes) until they are finished. [I found that pressing Y, Y, enabled the adapter and then proceeded to reboot your system]

    Having speakers on may help for this process, so giving you a few audio cues for what you're doing.

    I just went through this entire process on my machin as I typed it, so I know it works. :) (of course, I know this because I was looking at it. be carefull you don't mistype, or hit the wrong keys!)

Post a comment