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Could you reboot your computer and as it starts tap the F8 key slowly till you get to the Safe Mode selection screen.
Select the Safe Mode with Networkingoption by using your cursor keys and hit enter to select.
Once you are in safe mode could you click start then run and type "devmgmt.msc" wthout the quotes and hit enter, Then open display adapters and right click your adapter, Choose Update Driver and see if it installs a new driver.
If it does not the right click it again and choose uninstall then reboot your machine and see if it boots all the way to windows.
If it does it should find new hardware and automatically install the drivers for your graphics card, Once it has rebooted once again it should respond correctly.
If that does not work let me know
That is fine,
Let it finish then try my suggestions.
When you say really dark, Do you mean that if you look at the screen you can see a ghost image?
If so does it look ok?
Let me know
if you look at the screen in a brightly lit area can you see a ghost image?
That is exactly what I needed to know, If the machine displays correctly right up till you enter windows then could you try holding down the FN key and slowly tapping the Home, or end keys and see if the sreen brightens up.
If it does then click start, Settings Control Panel and open the IBM power management Center and reset the screen brightness settings and then reboot.
Let me know what happens.
And what happens when you press the FN+Home keys?
Also do you have a normal display in Safe Mode?
So if you flick the button the machine will light the screen?
Bythe sounds of things there is nothing physically wrong with the flat panel, What is happening is the power settings in indows are ausing the issue.
If you can see the screen try clicking start, Programs, Accessories, System Tools and opening Sysytem Restore.
Click next then select a date in Bold from before this problem started and follow th prompts to restore your system to an earlier date.
If it is the power management settings that are messed up we could try t reset the BIOS.
If you shut down the machine and then as it starts enter the BIOS and check to make sure your power settings are set to maximum for AC adapter and battery.
Try that and let me know what happens, If it does not work then do you have an external monitor we can hook up to the machine so we can try to adjust the power settings.
Press and hold down the F1 key or tpa it about every 1/2 secondand then power on the machine, keep pressing or tapping till it enters the BIOS.
Open Power settings and set them all to Maximum Performance.
Do you have an external monitor we can hook up?
If so connect it then boot the machine and open the power Options from Start, Control Panel.
Once it is open click Advanced and tel the machine to do nothing when the lid is closed, Then click the first tab and tell it never to turn off Monitors.
click ok and shut down, Then disconnect the monitor and boot it back up.
Could you look under the program menu using the external monitor and see if there is an ibm poer setting utility, If there is then make sure the brightness is set to its higest level.
In that case using the external can you try downloading and reinstalling the IM Power manager from here http://www-307.ibm.com/pc/support/site.wss/document.do?lndocid=MIGR-61583
Once it is installed reboot and try to launch it again.
Did you get a disk with your machine or does it just have the restore partition?
Let me know.
My last suggestion would be to see if you could borrow a windows XP disk from a friend or use one from another machine, All you need is if you are running Home edition you need a Home disk or if you are running Pro you will need pro.
If you can get a disk put it in the machine and then click start, Run and in the box type SFC/ SCANNOW and hit enter so that your machine can repair itself.
Once that is done try redownloading and install power manager and see if it will run.
Let me know if this may be an option.
You can use the restore to roll the machine forward as well as back, So you may wish to restore it to today.
Beyond my last suggestion I cnnot think of anything more as if the screen was black all the time then it would be a hardware failure and easy to diagnose, However the fact it fires up for a short time lets me know it is a power issue with the machine shutting down the baklight under windows.
I am going to opt out so hopefully someone else will be able to help resolve this for you.
Sorry I could not help
Yes it will stay open and I have sent a message to another expert to see if they can help.