Thinkpad Blank / Dark Screen Workaround / Solution

I just had a problem with my IBM Thinkpad1 (T60) where the screen would go dark/blank after a couple of seconds. The only way I could get anything was to keep hitting Fn+F7 as a sort of refresh, but that wouldn’t last longer than seconds at best.
Apparently this is not an uncommon problem with Thinkpads. One theory is that the problem is with the inverter but someone else had to replace the whole screen.
After doing some fiddling, I found that my problem was be solved – at least temporarily by dimming the screen down from full brightness. I have no idea exactly what the problem is or why this worked, but if you’re having similar trouble you may want to try dimming your screen before shelling out hundreds for a new screen – or thousands on a new computer. So far it seems to work ok for me, but I have no idea how long it will last. Minimally it should make backing up easier while you go computer shopping.2
Please let me know if this was a helpful solution.
Update: Turns out this solution lasted one day – a valueable day for backups, mind you, but one day. If this works, do not close the screen.
. 1. Yep, that’s right – an IBM Thinkpad – was one of the last runs before the change to Lenovo.
2. Thankfully, I actually ordered a new Thinkpad on sale earlier in the week before the screen went dark. I did notice some screen problems, but I was having more performance and HD issues typical of a computer several years old.


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