Anyways, so here is my problem. My IBM Thinkpad T30 backlight is all wonkey. The backlight would just turn off randomly, and later snap back on. At first, I thought it was that little button they use instead of a magnet to detect if the lid was shut. I was so annoyed I went as far as to remove it figuring it was busted, but it continues to have the problem. Is it the inverter, the motherboard, or the screen?
Any help is appreciated
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Intermittent/flickering backlight, aka CCFL, on a system as old as a T30, most likely is due to a bad bulb. If the wonky lighting is also accompanied by a pink/reddish tint, then definitely that's the answer. Although it is possible to swap out the backlight, I'd recommend getting a replacement screen (or complete lid assembly) given that you have some guarantee that the 'new' screen is functioning correctly.
You can use the instructions from the T30 Hardware Maintenance Manual (HMM) found here:
(An index to most of the Thinkpad systems can be found at the top of each one of these fourm's page named "HMM".) A lesser chance is that you have a marginal inverter but based on past experience, the inverter will either work 100% or not at all.
Given all this, I also would not recommend relying upon a 15 year old laptop that can barely run Windows XP today (with all of the latest patches), never mind an OS that is still being supported by MSFT. For a college student that needs a laptop they can easily carry around (not the 6 pounds of a T30) and that has several hours (~5) worth of runtime, I'd suggest a good used X300 or X301 with a 6-cell battery running Windows 7.
X22 X24 X31 X41 X41T X60 X60s X61 X61s X200 X200s X300 X301 Z60m Z61t Z61p 560 560Z 600 600E 600X T21 T22 T23 T41 T60p T410 T420 T520 W500 W520 R50 A21p A22p A31 A31p
NOTE: All links to PC-Doctor software hosted by me are dead. Files removed 8/28/12 by manufacturer's demand.
1: from a ThinkPad T22, with a terribly yellowed display and a lot of dead pixels but otherwise working $5 + shipping
2: from a ThinkPad A30, with a bit yellowed display, minimal dead pixels, but is dying with more and more horizontal lines forming (I am pretty sure the number of horizontal lines is now enough for it to be useless unless you pry it to an angle). At the cost of shipping
Both options are great if you want a working CCFL bulb out of it.
PM if interested.
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
2xT43 14.1" 2.26 SXGA+ 2gb 1*fp W10
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A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
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