When I first started working on this laptop, the hard drive had problems when the person tried to update it to Windows 10. It got stuck in a loop that wouldn't allow them to restore the laptop in anyway. They couldn't continue and they couldn't revert to the original install. In fact, they couldn't even use the restore partition to wipe out the drive and reinstall the original system. So, I installed a new drive and reinstalled the Windows 7. After that was complete, I went to the Dell site and downloaded all of the drivers using the Dell utilities to load all the drivers. Believing the laptop was up-to-date on all the drivers I went to upgrade it to Windows 10. Failed.
It turns out that the BIOS driver that the Dell utility provided was only A09, which when updated to Windows 10, refused to show the screen info on the laptop. I was able to see the screen for a few seconds on an external monitor before it went black. This was enough for me to run the task manager and run the BIOS updates which I found and installed from the Dell site version A11. Everyone said this fixed their problem. I could now see my cursor on the laptop screen, but the screen would still black out leaving only the cursor. I then found that there was yet another BIOS update to A12 that others said fixed their problem, but again, my screen blanked out after a few seconds after logging in.
When I pressed control-alt-del, I would get the lock, change password menu and I could see that without a problem. When I launched the tax manager from that screen, I could see the task manager from but everything else was blank. I launched the control panel from the task manager (File / run new task) and then type in "control panel" and after looking at device issues, I finally looked at the event log and found that every time I launched explorer.exe, it crashed due to the IDT audio driver. So I uninstalled the IDT audio driver and launched explorer.exe from the tax manager and my desktop came back to life. Rebooting the laptop, installed some generic High definition audio drivers and my screen worked with out a problem afterwards.