Computer monitor problem

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On Thu, 03 Dec 2015 21:50:15 -0700, Don Y

Colour just for logos and highlighting etc

don't print a lot. I've also got an old B&W laser that I hardly use. Used to run Oki 400 . Can;t justify having laser and inkjet

is running less per sheet than the laser. We use the laser for high volume presentation quality stuff and the B&W laser MF prints all the ecommerce orders (we run several really LARGE programs that are all done online. We had an injet doing the overnights, but it "calved" a month or so back and we had the laser sitting un-used. The inkjet was actually faster, and printheads last longer than laser drums ($230 drum in 4 months compared to 2 $85 printheads in a year)

20 pages per minute, duplex, at 300dpi on the Fujitsus - scanned to PDF. Skips the blank pages automatically and the feeders work great. Some of these scanners are pushing 10 years old. We are having to phase them out because there are no 64 bit drivers - hense the new Panasonics. The Fujitsus were over $2000 each new - we bought them all used .

Haven't had many issues with either double feeds or missed pages - and a few degrees of skew isn't an issue - and is not a common problem.
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On 12/3/2015 10:18 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Ah, OK. As a business, it makes sense. For most home users, I think they have to fabricate uses for color (esp if you consider how essential it may or may NOT be!).
[E.g., our HOA sends around a newsletter at random, unpredictable intervals -- barely more than a double sided SHEET of paper (of which, half a side is a dues request form!). The top third of the first side is invariably a color graphic that would only have appeal to someone who had been color-blind from birth... and only recently had full vision restored! I.e., a waste of EXPEN$IVE ink -- for which they need to shame folks into joining and paying dues! :-/ ]

We have a pair of "low temperature" LJ's (a 5p and 6p) that we use for most of our (low volume) printing needs. A cartridge lasts "practically forever" when printing 4 or 5 pages a week (copies of driving directions sent in an email, coupons for a local store, hard-copy of a webpage for a reference, etc.). As they draw so little power when idling (5W, IIRC), we can afford to just leave them on 24/7 (so no waiting when printing).
[The other printers we have draw much more power and have more noticeable startup times; so, you'd never think of leaving them on -- even if the printjob is spooled to another host!]

I don't understand the reference: why is a laser NOT good for a "liability slip" while an inkjet (presumably) is?

My lasers have the drum in the cartridge so it need only last as long as the toner -- I don't print enough to justify the mess of refilling (nor the risk of inhaling that crud: "Hmm, Doctor, this man's lungs are bright CYAN!")
The color laser has an imaging unit that will eventually wear out. But, I've got a spare -- along with a couple of sets of toner cartridges for it. Chances are, it will outlive *me*! :-/

I scan at 600dpi greyscale (or color if the source material warrants. The goal is to faithfully reproduce the document AND maintain enough detail in the images that an offline OCR can extract content -- keeping the raw images for "human arbitration" in the event something doesn't scan well. E.g., a document that I'm working with currently has hand drawn symbols in the text. It predates modern, affordable DTP tools so things like ligatures (e.g., "æ", "ʣ", "ʧ") didn't exist in the native typeface and had to be penciled in after-the-fact. Leaving this "decision" to an online OCR tool (and discarding the original images) easily results in a loss of information -- esp as you (I) may not get around to visually proofing EVERY document as it comes out of the scanner!

Cool!

A small skew isn't a problem. The OCR software can sort it out. I'm more concerned when a page partially jams and you get a large skew. The OCR software is no longer an issue at that point. Instead, you are concerned with any portion of the original image that may be not visible in the resulting scan (which will have been cropped to the "page size" by the scanner -- even if it could theoretically "see" that there was image beyond its extents!).
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On Fri, 04 Dec 2015 14:41:14 -0700, Don Y

Non standard sheet sizes, and toner, being thermal, melts and sticks to the folder you keep the certificate in in the car making an unreadable mess. Water resistant ink is MUCH better

The Oki system has separate toner cartridge and drum assy. Usually 10 to 20 toner refils to one drum replacement. Toners @ $28 list - drim at $235-ish. instead of $150 per combined cartridge (for third party - often more for OEM)

That's why insurance documents are saved in PDF format - and 300DPI is more than adequate resolution

If a paper jams the scanner shuts dowm - and like I said, we do not OCR
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On 12/4/2015 5:52 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

OK. "Liability slip" == "Proof of insurance (document)" I was thinking slip in the context of "slip and fall"

Misunderstanding. You're using PDF as a container for TIFF (or some other raw image format). I use PDF to store *text* plus *illustrations* -- i.e., AFTER the OCR phase.

I'm not worried about a jam but a case where a sheet feeds "crooked". E.g., scanner handles ~9" wide paper. But, can easily feed 5" wide pages (like small-format manuals, data books, etc.) as well. A 5" wide sheet going through at a 45 degree angle is still not going to exceed the width of the scanning bed -- so, nothing to get stuck on/jammed.
But, when the scanner software crops that skewed image to a 5" width, much of it will be "off the edge". I won't notice it unless I examine every page after scanning!
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On Fri, 04 Dec 2015 18:37:22 -0700, Don Y

You are making searchable PDF. PDF just means "portable Document File"
In our case it only needs to be readable by a human.

5 inch paper goes through just great if you set the infeed hopper for 5 inch paper.

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On 12/4/2015 7:38 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Yes. In my case, I may have a few score of *feet* (thick) of paper and I want to find a reference to some particular topic. I don't want to thumb through thousands of pages in teh HOPE that I can remember which document contains the reference. Or, miss some *other* document that also talks about it simply because I wasn't aware the other reference existed!
So, I want to have a text version (at least of those parts that truly ARE text) that a machine can freely access on my behalf.
Imagine you bound all of your "liability slips" into giant tomes... maybe one per year. Now, have to find Bob Smith's paperwork in that tome...

If you have a hopper that can be *set*! :>
I'd likewise not have a problem WAITING if I had a scanner that was FASTER! :>

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On Thu, 03 Dec 2015 13:02:22 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

computers, or their consumer grade crap.
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10 yeard old. Flat panel.
Fault seems to be the external AC to DC power supply. Flickers when monitor doesn't work, glows steadily when it does. Now to decide if monitor killed the supply (junk monitor), or it commited suicide (replace P/S).
--
You know it's time to clean the refrigerator
when something closes the door from the inside.
  Click to see the full signature.
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connect it to a 12 volt battery and see if the monitor works. Be careful of the polarity. If it works, buy a new brick.
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Most likely a capacitor or two went bad. The indicator lights usually work off the low voltage power supply of the computer and not directly off the 120 volts that is switched.
Look on Craigs list on the computer or the Facebook sales areas for an inexpensive monitor. Sometimes the computer repair shops will have some used ones for less than $ 50.
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On 12/2/2015 9:31 AM, KenK wrote:

*0*? Then, why aren't you talking to the manufacturer/retailer about a warranty repair/replace? I.e., did you, perhaps, mean "10"?
[Ive not researched the actual model you cite]

Remove UPS from the issue. It may have a bad outlet, etc.
With *just* the (modular?) power cord, plug it into a known good (i.e., someplace where the plug fits SNUGLY into the receptacle AND you know the receptacle delivers power -- test with a desk lamp).
Put something heavy on the power cord where it finds its way to the floor (or some other flat surface) -- the point being to ensure any motion on the other end of the cord doesn't transfer (wiggle) to the plug's connection.
Now, try wiggling the other end of the (modular?) cord where it mates to the monitor. You may have to alternate pressing the power button with wiggling -- else the power indicator may not illuminate.
If this NEVER works (manages to light the indicator), try replacing the cord with another and repeat.
If it SOMETIMES works, try replacing the cord and repeat. If it still is flakey, you could have a broken connection inside the monitor (the power INLET is usually connected to the power SUPPLY inside the monitor via discrete wires -- not common for one of those to fail).
If it ALWAYS works, then look to the problem being at the other end (wall socket *or* an "open" in the "plug").
If the device has an EXTERNAL POWER SUPPLY (i.e., a "brick"), then this becomes a significant cause of failures. Unfortunately, unless you have a similar power supply on hand (same voltage -- often 12VDC and not lesser current/power capability PLUS the same polarity and dimensions for the connector that mates with the monitor itself), you can't play the mix-and-match troubleshooting game.
If you have a DMM, you can probe the connector leaving the brick to see if there is ANY voltage present. And, if so, if it is the nameplate voltage. (Does the brick have its own power indicator light?? Is *that* lit -- even if the monitor isn't?)
There's no guarantee that the correct voltage "open circuit" (i.e., without the monitor connected as a "load") will continue once the monitor is attached. And, no guarantee that the waveform from the brick is "DC" and not just something that makes the DMM *think* it's DC.

I make a hobby out of rescuing "defective" LCD monitors. They aren't designed as "durable" equipment.
I'll wager that you've got a bad "brick" (if your power supply is external, in that form), a bad "power supply" (internal to the monitor) or a bad inverter board (a SECOND power supply that lights the "backlight" fluorescent lamps IN the monitor) -- that is "shorting" the power supply and causing it to go into shutdown mode (safety).
The brick is an easy replacement (assuming power cord is not issue). A bad power supply or inverter requires surgery.
The inverter can be evaluated (as possible cause) if you open the case and unplug it. In most cases, the controller board will gladly try to operate with a missing inverter board. The controller board is responsible for lighting the power indicator!
If this works, you would be able to see the contents of the display if you shine a light INTO the display while it is running (to compensate for the lack of backlight due to disconnected inverter). It really helps to know what you THINK is being displayed so you can locate areas of the display where you would expect to encounter "detail"; large black, white, green, etc. areas will all appear "black-ish" with this approach. OTOH, a picture of your dog (wallpaper?) would still be recognizable, if you knew where to look for it.

Here, used LCD monitors (modest size) are $10.
I'm not fond of laptops -- I have 7 (or 8?) and rarely use any of them; one is acting as a portable DVD player, currently. Their problem is repair is essentially impossible for most folks. Hiring out for a repair is often as expensive as replacing. Keyboards are smaller, displays smaller, no expansion options, disks are slower (unless you opt for an SSD), etc.
OTOH, if you want portable *or* want to have different machines for different purposes (applications -- e.g., I use a laptop when I am "writing prose", no illustrations, etc.), then their small size can be a win.
What you need to consider is your other investment(s) in the current machine. Any software that you want to salvage -- without having to buy a new license? How much time do you want to spend reinstalling the software? Are your licenses portable to a new machine -- or, node-locked to *that* machine? Any peripherals that probably won't be supported if you move to a newer OS? Budget? How much you get a thrill from "new", etc.
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I concur with the others that older vga monitors may be had for under $10 a ll the time today. Try your local goodwill or any large second-hand, thrift store.
FWIW, in early 2006 I had had it with how quickly the computers I had bough t from Compaq, Gateway, and HP died. I researched basic computer components (mobo, cpu, case, power supply, RAM), talked to a guy at a local mom-and-p op computer store, bought major parts from him, bought a copy of Windows XP , and put together my own computer. The computer became unstable in 2011, a nd I quickly deduced that the mobo was the problem (probably a capacitor or some other heat sensitive electronic component). I bought a new, exact rep lacement from eBay for $40 or so. This fixed the instability. Recently the mobo again started showing problems. I just bought a third replacement mobo from eBay.
I grant that with more effort, I could locate the bad capacitor or whatever is causing the mobo to die after about five years.
I have become disgusted with the downloads from the internet that were mess ing up my desktop computer and the mighty monopoly that is Windows and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (for-profit branch). A year ago I bought an inexpensive Samsung Chromebook. I still do the bulk of my word processin g, spreadsheet, and now GNU Octave (for control systems experiments) on my old 2006 workhorse. I see the Chromebook as my "television" section of my c omputer activity.
I think word processing, spreadsheet, and Windows software is no better tha n it was 25 years ago. I was disgusted with how often I had to buy crap wit h new bells and whistles that made life not easier, but more difficult. My car breaks down less often than my computer.
The only question is when the electronic parts of my 2006 workhorse can no longer be replaced. E.g. my Windows XP is all on CD now. I am a little lear y about putting it on a memory stick and getting a mobo design with, say, a ll solid state drive (SDD, so no more IDE cable connectors and so on; still researching).
Good to see that these topics come up here. I have not found a computer do- it-yourself forum that I really like.
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I concur with the others that older vga monitors may be had for under $10 a ll the time today. Try your local computer repair shops, Goodwill or any la rge second-hand, thrift store.
FWIW, in early 2006 I had had it with how quickly the computers I had bough t from Compaq, Gateway, and HP died and updating Windows. I researched basi c computer components (mobo, cpu, case, power supply, hard drive, RAM, conn ectors), talked to a guy at a local mom-and-pop computer store, bought majo r parts from him, bought a copy of Windows XP, and put together my own comp uter. The computer became unstable in 2011, and I quickly deduced that the mobo was the problem (probably a capacitor or some other heat sensitive ele ctronic component). I bought a new, exact replacement from eBay for $40 or so. This fixed the instability. Recently the mobo again started showing pro blems. I just bought a third replacement mobo from eBay.
I grant that with more effort, I could locate the bad capacitor or whatever is causing the mobo to die after about five years.
Last year I likewise decided "enough" with all the downloads from the inter net and the Windows changes. They were messing up my desktop computer's ope ration. I think word processing, spreadsheet, and Windows software is no be tter than it was 25 years ago. I was tired of feeding the mighty monopoly t hat is Windows and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (for-profit branch ). My car breaks down less often than my computer. A year ago I bought an i nexpensive Samsung Chromebook. I still do the bulk of my word processing, s preadsheet, and now GNU Octave (for control systems experiments) on my old 2006 workhorse. I see the Chromebook as the "television" section of my comp uter activity.
I have found that virus protection does more damage than good and use none. I re-load my Windows XP software about once every two years.
The question to me now is when the electronic parts of my 2006 workhorse ca n no longer be replaced. E.g. my Windows XP is all on CD now. I am a little leary about putting it on a memory stick and getting a mobo design with, s ay, all solid state drive (SDD, so no more IDE cable connectors and so on; still researching).
Good to see that these topics come up here. I have not found a computer do- it-yourself forum that I really like.
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On 12/2/2015 12:55 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:
[duplicate post?]

You can find LCD monitors at the same price point. Most folks now prefer larger/widescreen monitors (Heaven forbid they get "stuck" with some old, 4:3 20" monitor! :> )

Sounds like you've found a design defect. :>

I'd be more concerned that you were just buying Yet Another With The Same Problem. With a little effort, you can examine the components (caps) on the board to see if any show signs of rupture. You can also look at brand names to predict whether or not you will have a problem down the road!
And, don't forget to look inside the power supply! Often a bad cap in a power supply will make the system unreliable -- in unpredictable ways.
Two weeks ago, I had this problem with a neighbor's computer. A year ago, the same problem with *her* neighbor's computer.

You can configure your machine to NOT allow any changes. So, rebooting essentially gives you the same "original" copy of everything that you had. To save things that you *do* want to save (URL's, downloads, email, etc.) you create an unprotected partition, a second drive just for that purpose, *or* use a thumb drive.

Most of my machines use IDE optical drives. These are turning into unobtanium. So, I've started stockpiling CD/DVD drive "discards".

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On Wednesday, December 2, 2015 at 1:53:17 PM UTC-7, Don Y wrote:

Yes. My mess-up.

I am not sure if you are kidding around here. :) I should have clarified th at the mobo's have lasted five years each. From general reading, I think th is is about par for the course. I know there's one bulgy-looking capacitor on the current, soon-to-be-replaced mobo (still working okay but not perfec tly) in my desktop computer. I have read many folks replace caps on their m obos. I may try to tinker with it, for my own education. I have an excellen t Craftsman digital multi-meter. ;) Also because searching eBay recently fo r an identical replacement mobo turned up little this time compared to 2011 . (The new, replacement mobo I bought the other day cost me only $22.) I ei ther have to switch to another make and model of mobo, or plan on repairing mobo's myself.

I'm on it, slowly but surely. I do not like messing with my computer the wa y I like working on my Honda or, less often, electro-mechanical projects ar ound the house.

If the new mobo does not fix the instability, I will check the now 10-year- old power supply next. :)

I hear you. I hesitate to give my computer maintenance more time than I do. I have so many interests, electro-mechanical wise and other. It's been a y ear with my desktop not connected to the internet, using my Chromebook for the internet instead. I feel it's been a lot less aggravation as a result.

Thank you for this and all the tips!
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On 12/2/2015 3:01 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Just an FYI. A friend's email/news client got stuck in a loop, recently, sending me the same message every few minutes for a few hours! If you didn't notice it... <shrug>

Seeing the same problem repeat itself is usually an indication of a weakness in a design. Of course, all designs have to have *some* achilles heel...

A lot depends on how much use it gets, how hot it gets, how good the power supply is, etc. Capacitors are filters: they smooth out voltage surges by storing "charge" (electricity) "locally" so whatever is using that electricity doesn't have to "go all the way back to the power supply" for more.
But, they degrade with temperature -- the hotter they operate, the shorter the lifespan. They tend to be located near things that use lots of power -- like the CPU chip. Things that use lots of power produce lots of HEAT! <frown>
They are typically rated for 85C or 105C (degrees) operation. If the caps that are dying are 85C, someone saved a few pennies KNOWING they would be failing!
You can also purchase them rated for different lifespans *at* those temperatures: 2000hrs, 4000hrs, 5000hrs, etc. Machines designed to run continuously (servers) will tend for the higher temperature AND longer life components.
[These things are really only important if you ever decide to have a board "re-capped"; the labor is the same for 2000hr vs. 5000hr so the extra *component* costs can easily be insignificant -- and, save you another repair down the road]

In general, its not worth the effort. It is typically hard to "unsolder" components -- not only do you have to get the component out but you also have to ensure the "holes" that it connects to the board are clear of any residual solder.
As these are used in places (in the circuit) where power demand tends to be high, there tends to be a lot of "foil" on the circuit board in these areas to which they connect. More foil is like "bigger wires"; better suited to carrying lots of power.
But, more foil means more metal to suck heat from your soldering iron! So, if your iron is too small, you spend forever trying to get the solder around the capacitor's leads to melt -- and, end up heating up a lot of other stuff, unnecessarily.
[I.e., I typically won't do this on any of my machines -- unless it is a really "precious" machine. OTOH, I *will* do it for friends' machines (to save them the cost of a new machine)]

If your purchases are used, look at the boards carefully before putting them into service.

Computer should be a tool. You shouldn't be a slave to a tool. Do you see carpenters fussing over their hammers??

Power supply is bad environment for caps. The currents are high, and the temperatures are high as well. Finally, they tend to be as small as possible so the "hot stuff" ends up "nearby" every component!

My livelihood depends on my computers. And *I* don't want to spend any more time keeping them running than I absolutely have to!
Only one machine talks to the outside world, here. The others are completely isolated -- so, no "security risks" and, thus, no need for the endless line of "security updates".

Man after my own heart! :>

We keep a laptop for eCommerce. But, it is used for NOTHING else (no email, no web surfing, etc.) When I get around to it, I will rebuild it to do the "no changes" trick. It's only a minor inconvenience and easy to accept, given the little use we put it to [sic].
We have another that is used to prepare taxes. When we're done with that, I wipe the disk clean and reinstall the "image" of the original disk (no vestigal financial data).
IMO, this is a good way to use laptops.

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Don Y wrote:

I'd take USB stick over CD. CD is not such a permanent storage medium. One scratch, Oops! Nowadays you shoyld be running some mobo which is capable of UEFI boot!!!!
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On 12/2/2015 5:42 PM, Tony Hwang wrote:

If you can't afford a driverless car *or* prefer to drive yourself, then there's a market for model T's.

Nor are FLASH devices! I've had more thumb drives fail than hard disks! And I've been using hard disks far longer!
I archive to optical media (CD/DVD/WORM), tape and hard disk -- as I can't trust *any* of these, long term (I have archives that go back more than 30 years). Also have to maintain *machines* that have the ability to access those media!

The nature and direction of the scratch play an important part in how much (irrecoverable) damage it does.
I've had thumb drives "suddenly" decide that they were "read only" devices -- regardless of which machine it was plugged into. I guess that's marginally better than becoming WRITE only! :> But, just marginally better. As i wanted to be able to write to it, it was essentially defective (though I could recover everything that was presently stored on it)
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wrote:

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snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

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