How To Disassemble Laptop (Dell XPS M1330)

February 2nd, 2009 by | This article was viewed 132,540 times.

How To Disassemble Laptop (Dell XPS M1330)

Coming back to Malaysia and the anticipated Chinese New Year did not hinder me from my main quest of searching for more laptops to disassemble. Thanks to my really wonderful friends, Thomas and HQ who would let me disassemble laptops directly from his storage room. Although not new, but it’s a Dell XPS M1330 laptop, XPSes are fancy notebooks.

Alright, this “How To” guide will provide a step by step guide to Dismantle your Dell XPS M1330 Laptop.


This guide is made just to show you a step by step sequence on how to disassemble your Dell XPS M1330 Laptop for cleaning purpose. Advices taken here are taken at your own risk. takes no responsibility if you break any of the hardware or lose your warranty.

NOTE: Even though Dell said disassembling yourself would lose your warranty, but I have yet to see the notebooks I’ve disassembled void their warranty.

Tools You Need For Dismantling

  1. Philips Screwdriver
  2. Flat Blade Screwdriver

Before You Start

Clear your table. You’ll need an empty medium sized table to put all the laptop components when you disassemble your Dell XPS M1330. Also get a container to put all the screws so that they don’t go missing.

Also, make sure there are no power connections to your laptop. This means unplugging the power connector and removing the battery out from its bay.

How to remove battery on a Dell XPS M1330?

  1. Note the battery position at the back of your laptop.
  2. Slide the battery latch that has a “lock” sign beside it.
  3. Push the battery out from its compartment.

Great, no more power, now ground yourself and your Dell XPS M1330’s motherboard to avoid any electrostatic discharge. To ground yourself, simply wear a wrist grounding strap or touching an unpainted metal surface from time to time. Press the power button to ground the motherboard.

Step 1: Locate and Remove Fan

Laptop fan is the most common area where dust tends to gather. Usually clearing the air vent and the fan would solve the problem.

In this Dell XPS M1330, the fan is extremely easy to locate, unlike the previous Dell Inspiron 6400 which I disassembled before.

  1. Take note of the screw slot with the “M” icon. That’s where your fan and the memory are located.
  2. Unscrew the M2.5 x 5mm screw and 3 captive screws.
  3. Lift the cover up (Obviously I forgot to take out the battery first).


  4. You can see your RAMs and the fan connected to the heat sink.
  5. Loosen 5 captive screws.
  6. Disconnect the fan’s power cable.
  7. Lift it up from the laptop.

Now you’ve got your hands on the fan, clean it by using brush. Remember to clean the air vent as well so that airflow can be as resistance free as possible.

When you reassemble the heat sink, apply some thermal compound to the processor if you have some.

If cleaning the fan isn’t enough because there is too much dust in the laptop, I suggest disassembling the palm rest. If you’re eager to follow through, then continue reading.

Step 2: Remove Communication Cards

Communication cards are WLAN and WWAN cards which you have to take out in order to remove the palm rest.

  1. Note the captive screw with a “C” icon located at the bottom (base facing up).
  2. Unscrew it and lift the cover up.
  3. Disconnect the antenna cables from the WLAN/WWAN cards.
  4. Unscrew the M2 x 3mm screw.
  5. The card lifts up automatically so you’ll just have to pull it out.

Step 3:  Remove the Harddisk

  1. Note the screw slots with 4 container icons located at the bottom right (base facing up) of the laptop.
  2. Unscrew the four M3 x 3mm screws.
  3. Slide the harddisk out from its bay.

Harddisks are extremely fragile components. Put it in an antistatic bag (to avoid electrostatic discharge) and make sure there are no way the harddisk would drop or hit anything.

Step 4: Remove the Hinge Cover

  1. Remove the two M2 x 3mm screws that was covered by the battery.4911
  2. Turn the laptop over and open the LCD screen as far as possible (don’t break it).
  3. Remove the hinge covers caps for both sides. They are quite loose so using your finger nails would do the trick.
  4. Pry the hinge cover. Hinge covers are always the hardest part to disassemble, be firm and steady when you open it. Pry the hinge cover slowly because there’s a fragile cable at the bottom of it. You’ll need to remove the keyboard in order to disconnect the cable.
  5. Just lay the hinge cover on top of the LCD Screen first.

Note that the hinge cover is not easy to open. The fragile cable does not help too. Take extreme cautious of the amount of strength you use to pry the hinge cover up.

Step 4: Remove the Keyboard

  1. Unscrew the two M2 x 2mm screws on top of the keyboard.
  2. Lift the keyboard up slowly and carefully so you don’t break the connector.
  3. Note the connector at the bottom of the keyboard.
  4. Pull the tab up and slide the connector out.

By now you should be able to see the hinge cover’s cable clearly. Disconnect it by pulling the 2 release tabs up and slide the connector out.


Removing the Bluetooth Device

By this time you will be able to see the Bluetooth device clearly at the left side of the laptop, if it is installed. They are around 2.5cm x 1cm long. You can see it at this picture, the little card located at the left side of the laptop. Just pull the cable out. Easy


Step 5: Remove the LCD Screen

  1. Unscrew the two M2.5 x 5mm screws located at the upper corner of the laptop base.
  2. Dislodge all the cables that are connected from the LCD screen. Lists of them are:
    - WLAN/WWAN antenna cables: push them through the hole.
    - Display cable: Disconnect with the pull tab.
    - Camera cable: Just pull, easy.
  3. Unscrew the two M2.5 x 5mm screws at each side of the LCD screen’s support.
  4. Slowly lift the screen up and put it on a flat surface.

Step 6:  Remove the Palm Rest

  1. Remove six M2.5 x 5mm screws at the bottom of the laptop.
  2. Remove 7 screws at the top of the palm rest.
  3. Disconnect the touch pad cable.
  4. Carefully separate the palm rest from the base so that you won’t break any components.4915

There you go, your Dell XPS M1330 laptop disassembled. Take extreme care from here onwards. Clean whatever that is necessary, don’t apply force on area you think you shouldn’t touch.

Addon Step: How to Remove the Memory Modules

The memory modules share the same entry cover with the heat sink/fan. The one with the “M” labeled cover. So, after removing the cover, the RAMs can be seen.

To remove the RAM:

  1. Pull the two pins outwards.
  2. The memory module will pop up, you might even jump out of surprise if this is your first time.
  3. The popping up means the memory module is ready to be taken out.
  4. Note the connector pattern when you replace your RAMs.

I hope this guide would help anybody who wants to disassemble their Dell XPS M1330 for cleaning or etc. Do leave some comments if I left any steps out. Happy Disassembling!

If you have difficulties disassembling your laptop, I would gladly help you out, Free. The idea is not to break your components. Contact me and we’ll discuss the details.

More laptop disassembly guides at the Laptop Disassembly Archive.

Please forward any questions or comments regarding Laptop Disassembly to the Forum at Real Time Gamer (RTG) website. RTG is a website we have long-term partnership with.

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102 Responses to “How To Disassemble Laptop (Dell XPS M1330)”

  1. Dao Says:

    waitin for XPS M1210

  2. Moooooo Says:

    JAmes !! u’ve forgotten to show the part of “reconstructing” the machine back ==”
    *Crow Fly By*

  3. Anthony Says:

    Thank you very much!!! Just what I needed as the User guides do not show how to disassemble the monitor.

    Thanks again =D

  4. Mohammed Says:

    Hi! Does anyone know how to install a Bluetooth module in a Dell XPS M1330?
    If you do then please email me at!

    I’ve bought a an XPS M1330 and i dont want to go about opening the laptop without having the proper information. Also, if possible do let me know if theres a better module then the 355 to install in it?

    Thanks, will appreciate the help!

  5. James Says:

    I have updated the post with the bluetooth device removal method. It’s included in the step by step sequence.

    So all you have to do is take off the hinge cover and the keyboard then you’ll be able to see the bluetooth. In fact, take off the hinge cover is enough, but I highly suggest you to remove your keyboard as well, for ease of disassembling.

    Again, thanks for notifying me Mohammed. I appreciate that. Happy disassembling

  6. Jo Says:

    I recently broke my lcd screen and wanted advice on replacing it. In your opinion, is this a job that I would be able to do myself or would it need to be handled by a professional? If possible, would you be able to go through a tutorial that could be of assistance? Thanks!

  7. James Says:

    Anybody can replace the LCD screen. But if you still have your warranty, it’s best to have a Dell personnel to replace it for you.

    By the way, the tutorial is up there. Just follow the step by step method until removing LCD Screen.

  8. edward pearson Says:

    I don’t suppose you can tell us the location of the NVRAM EEPROM responsible for storing the BIOS password can you?

    Please :D

  9. James Says:

    No I can’t Edward, this is a guide to disassemble laptop.

  10. Daniel Says:

    I just want to replace the LCD back cover. How can I do that? Thanks.

  11. James Says:

    I have never trifled with the LCD panel before. However here’s a link that explains everything about disassembling the LCD panel.

  12. Daniel Says:

    I appreciate your help James. Thank you very much!

  13. Tommy Says:

    Hi James,

    I followed your guide up to step 6, but I’m wondering how to proceed further; I’m planning on taking the motherboard out and replacing it with a fixed part dell are sending me, I’m just getting some practice now before the part arrives. Would you happen to have an idea of how to go about doing that?

    It seems like I pretty much have to gut the entire laptop to do it, does the mobo come out of the top or the bottom? Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!

    – Tommy

  14. James Says:

    If Dell are sending new parts because of warranty to you they will help you fix it. However, if you insist follow these few steps

    Basically there are a few things to Remove
    1. DVDROM
    2. Expresscard reader
    3. Processor Heatsink
    4. Wireless sniffer board (located at the right side of the laptop)

    Disconnect these cables
    1. Power button cable
    2. Center control cover cable
    3. Speaker cable

    Last step. You need to remove 2 screws that secures the motherboard. After that it’s just a matter of getting the whole thing out.

    Yes, the motherboard comes out from the top of the laptop.

  15. Tommy Says:

    Thanks James,

    I got most of the components off but I lacked the proper screwdrivers to get the final screws out; I already partially stripped some of the remaining screws so I decided to stop.

    I got the new mobo yesterday and took the machine to a local shop sans HDD and battery, that had experience with dealing with xps laptops (apparently), recommended by the IT guy at my work.

    Ordinarily Dell would replace the part by sending a technician, but the machine was out of warranty. Honestly it took me 5 hours on the phone to get them to admit that there was a warranty extension on GPU failures (it’s the vertical lines of death). After that they said they’d send me a box, which I could put the machine in, and then they’d fix it, and send it back… It’s a work laptop and it caught me at a pretty bad time, even though I have backups (thankfully). I didn’t want to risk sending it to Dell and back and having to wait weeks.

    Their customer service is usually pretty good, I suppose I should be thankful that they even honoured something written on their site, harhar.

    Anyway, I did learn plenty about the innards of an xps laptop, and have come away with the firm belief that the next machine I buy which will be in a month or two, will be a custom built desktop, and not something that lasts for a year and a half and then fails due to manufacturing faults :)

  16. barionic Says:


    I just wanted to say “thank you.” My XPS M1330 bricked due to a power supply failure. I got no lights or anything. Since the power supply and motherboard are integrated, I had to replace the motherboard. Since my laptop was out of warranty, I had to fix it myself or pay mega $$$. With the help of your instructions above, I was able to quickly and safely disassemble, replace the motherboard, and then reassemble. I have a high level of technical expertise (I was a computer tech in a former life) and I had the right equipment (screwdrivers and what not). However, my experience and results would have not been quite as pleasant without your help. Thanks again.

    You’re welcome. I am glad that my guide is able to help you out! :)

  17. CGIMana Says:

    Hello all. These instructions work! To put is back together, just follow the steps from bottom to the top.
    Anyway, I need one of the components replaced. There is a little grey box just next to the NorthBridge away from the Processor.
    I have done research and it is a rectifier, IR5L gL62 That I need to replace, anyone know where I can obtain one from? if you do.

  18. CGIMana Says:

    Anyone know why my comment would have been deleted?
    I wasn’t trying to sell anything.
    I just had a problem was hoping I could get some help with.

  19. James Says:

    Your post was not deleted, it was moderated.

    And for the rectifier item, I have no clue where you can get that from.

  20. patch Says:

    I have damaged LCD and out of warranty now. Where can I get a new LCD with minimum price?

  21. James Says:

    A laptop LCD screen? I’ve never bought one of those before but I think ebay should have spare parts from spoilt laptops.

    If that doesn’t work refer to Dell. XPS M1330 is still new so I presume they must have a lot of those parts left.

  22. chiguy Says:

    Thanks for this guide. It looks like hte XPS M1330 left mouse button cannot withstand more than a year of use. Now I don’t know if I’m brave enough to try to replace the palm rest assembly myself, but glad that this reference exists.

    Did the laptop that took apart have a fingerprint reader and would that make any difference in the steps you took?

  23. James Says:

    Haha, most of the gadgets are made for a certain period only. I’m sure you are brave enough.

    If my memory serves me well. This laptop I disassembled had a fingerprint reader as well (I could be wrong). The only difference it will make is an extra wire for the fingerprint reader. So there isn’t much to worry about.

  24. Carlo Says:

    i’m having problem with my dell xps m1330. it wont boot-up. i can only see fading in vertical lines then it turns the screen completely white. then lines again… then fade to purply-blue screen. i’ve read that there’s a defect with its nvidia geforce 8400m gs. i want to take it out and see if it’ll fix the problem. can you tell me how to take it piece of shit off my laptop. thanks a lot and keep it coming.

  25. Khron Says:

    There are two wires under the keyboard that i can’t figure out how to remove, one has a piece of orange tape (not sure if i should remove) & the other seems to go under the keyboard, any thoughts?

  26. James Says:

    I’m not too sure that is possible or not. Graphic card is integrated together with the motherboard.

    I am not too sure which wires you’re talking about. Are you talking about the antennas?

  27. Ammar Says:

    Thanks a lot for your help and your amassing guide.
    I buy recently a used XPS m1330 laptop. I find that the mic do not work. I dissembled the LCD and fined that the camera/mic cable is little bit bracken (its faulty) and I find that the three cable (WLAN + camera/mic + display) are not arranged in a proper way inside the display hinge.
    Can you provide me with a picture with clear view for the left hinge and how the cables arranged or a link? (I checked the link you gave for display dissembling from dell but it’s not give clear view for the left hinge and the cables.

  28. Khron Says:

    The cables that i am referring to are in the second image in step 5.

    If you look at the cable at the bottom, the one with the thickest wire and it has a blue tip. The two cables i am talking about are directly above it.
    One of them is going into a hole.

    How do you remove those two?

  29. James Says:

    As you can see, those cables which go downwards are antennas connected to your WLAN and WWAN. You’ll have to remove the WLAN and WWAN cards first, then push the cable out through the hole.

    As for the orange tape, that’s the webcam cable, just pull sideways.

    Just remember the cables are connected to the LCD screen.

  30. Khron Says:

    Ok thanks, i’ll give it another shot.

  31. Keith Says:

    I have an xps140. it will not even turn on. when i do the power cord light goes off. i purchased a new one and this light pulstates but will never go off, and still no power. the power light will not light and the battery light will not go on showing recharge. can you please help me with where i my find the problem. thank you for your time.

  32. Khron Says:

    Thanks James, I managed to swap out my palmrest. Thanks Alot, I appreciate your help.

  33. John Durst Says:

    My battery light doesn’t light up when the charger is plugged in. A working charger was plugged in an it didn’t work either. So the problem is the plug going into the motherboard, I guess. I followed your directions and got to the end, but still can’t see if there is anything wrong with the plug. Maybe its hopeless. Any suggestion?

  34. James Says:

    @John Durst,
    Have you checked the adapter?

  35. Ludvig Says:

    @ John, cc @ James

    NOTE: Not verifyed, only a wild guess:

    John, I´ve got the same problem today. I tried, as you also did, with a working charger – but still that little blue light turns off when I plug it in to the comupter.

    I talked with my brother whose a computer freak – he told me that the problem is the motherboard, some connection. The problem should solve if you replace it with a new one. Thats what I´m going to do. It seems that we had the same expireddate on our mothercard, I bought mine 2007.11.04. haha. Best of luck man!

  36. Ludvig Says:
  37. Ba Tran Says:

    Tks a lot for showing me how to disassemble xps m1330 laptop, very help full. But after assemble I don’t know why there ‘s no sound from speaker (If I connect head set, sound is OK) If possible, could you pls tell me how to fix the sound on this laptop speaker. Tks again for you expert help!!!

  38. James Says:

    @Ba Tran
    I think you have forgotten to plug in the speaker cable.

  39. Ba Tran Says:


  40. tuan Says:

    im sure he ment the speaker cable from the motherboard not you speaker wire from your speaker to computer

  41. James Says:

    Yes that is what I meant speaker cable from motherboard to the speakers. He had forgotten to plug in those.

  42. Badru Says:

    The Guide seems to be extremely useful, though my queries are bit apart. Maybe someone can help!!!

    1. My Dell XPS 1330 (Out of Warranty) is just fine except for the POWER BUTTON, it just doesn’t work. I avoid Shutting Down the system due to this. whenever I SHUT it DOWN, I have to replace the Battery for it to Boot up again.

    2. I had setup BIOS Passwords and now completely forgot it.
    CAN THE passwords be erased???

  43. James Says:

    In what manner your power button does not work? Is it hard to press or is it some battery problem?

    There was once a BIOS password question before, and I remembered that the person fixed it by phoning to Dell Technical Support to fix it up.

  44. Badru Says:

    The Power Button just doesn’t work. I’ve tried with Battery, I’ve tried by removing the battery & using the Laptop on Direct AC supply. As mentioned earlier, if i SHUTDOWN the system I’ve to remove & replace the Battery which automatically boots up the laptop. Also, there is no Blue light on the Power Button. IT’S NOT HARD TO PRESS, I CAN PRESS IT BUT TO NO EFFECT, EVEN NOW WHILE WRITING THIS I TRIED TO PRESS IT, BUT IT DID NOT AFFECT THE SYSTEM BY ANY MEANS.

  45. Badru Says:

    If I touch the multimedia Keys they light up normally.

    there is One Home Key besides the Power Button, which I’ve never used. I tried pressing it as well & there was no effect (Not sure when to use the key though :-)

  46. James Says:

    I’ve never experienced problem like yours before. Sorry. I don’t even know that replacing the battery would automatically boot up the PC, is that even true?

    Indeed it is a very odd situation you’re having there. My suggestion is phone up Dell Technical Support and see how they can help.

  47. Edward Delgadillo Says:

    I have a dell xps M-1330 laptop and the fan went dead. This I know! but is it responsible for the battery not charging when connected to the cord to the wall outlet. The computer only runs with the cord, but will not charge the battery. When I flipped the laptop over I noticed that the fan was dead. Are these symptoms synomomus to eachother or not?


    Disgruntled XPS M-1330 user

  48. James Says:

    @Edward Delgadillo,
    How do you know that the fan was dead? Sometimes the fan does not run to save battery.

    Have you take the fan out to test if it is dead or not?

    I don’t think your fan has anything to do with the battery in terms of who is responsible for killing each another.

  49. Zach Says:

    Hi, I’m having problems with charging. I know the charger connection to the motherboard is loose or broken. How can I get to that area of the computer to check it, and resolder the connection or whatever if needed? The directions you provided in this article only went so far. Thanks.

  50. jessejane Says:

    Love this… helps me a lot… but now I need to figure out why when I replaced the keyboard 3 days ago the fan and back light have quick working.
    And it is spontanious… I have got the back light to work a couple of times but only for a moment.

    I was wondering if the two of them worked off a different voltage than the rest of the components? Maybe there is a cable I pulled on and created a short?

    Thanks James for any more help! jj

  51. jessejane Says:

    Oh… and yes for 3 days everything worked fine… just the 4th day opened and could only see screen via flashlight! haha
    Thanks … jj

  52. Steve Grant Says:

    Hi James,

    I have a problem with a jammed CD in my XPS M1300 drive, can you pls suggest how I can get it out without removing the complete CD, DVD drive unit?

    I press the eject button, it makes the normal noise to eject it but it doesn’t pop out as it always has done..

    I’ve scoured the web and tried many of the Vista software solutions to no avail, e.g. replacing the driver, using microsoft regedit and cmd, flashing bios etc!



  53. Bo Lendal Says:


    Can you please help me with a way to determine witch motherboard i’m having, i have the XPS M1330 PP25L with Nvidia 8400GS, but i can see, that there is more than one part number (verison) of this motherboard, how can i find out witch one to order ?

    Bo Lendal

  54. Anders Says:

    How do you remove the CMOS battery (where is it located)?

  55. James Says:

    At Step 1: Locate and Remove Fan, can you see the picture titled 4904?
    The orange arrow on the far left side is pointing directly at the CMOS battery.

  56. Pete Says:

    Hi I adopted a M1330 2 months back with a bad battery and managed to load linux and everything work fine. The last I did was to upgrade the Bios to latest version, however .. I pulled up the wrong plug during the upgrade. Now the laptop is well .. basically dead.

    I have tried using some bios retore method via usb flash disk.. no work. I put in a dvd recovery.. now got stucked. I have removed the CMOS battery and left for a day.. result still the same. Would you know the step to recover or reflash the BIOS? Some friend told me that need to send back to Dell cause they will need to reset the EPROM.

    Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.


  57. Shail Says:

    Hi James, I just want to remove the keyboard to clean it. Can I just go to step 4 without opening up the innards?

  58. James Says:

    Yes you can start from the hinge cover step, then to the keyboard step.

  59. maya Says:

    Does anyone know how to remove a 80 mm cd from the cd/dvd drive on the xps m1330?

  60. Elus1ve Says:

    Great guide!
    I’ve used it to open up a M1330 and remove the motherboard. The motherboard was dead and I baked it in the oven to revive it. Happy to say that you guide has helped save the laptop.

  61. Elus1ve Says:

    Quote(maya on December 16th, 2009 at 8:03 am):
    Does anyone know how to remove a 80 mm cd from the cd/dvd drive on the xps m1330?

    Ah you might be in trouble… what an idea to put a 80mm CD in the m1330!

    I would try to shake it out without damaging anything. In theory, there isn’t anything that should stop the 80mm CD from falling off. Else, you will need to follow this guide to reach the inside and open up the cd-drive. Lots of trouble for a 80mm CD…

  62. CarloM61 Says:

    Hi James, I hope u can help here.. Dell Technicians came 2 times to exchange motherboard due to gpu issues, now after 1y warranty expired and I have to replace the DVDrom by myself. I’ve hopefully found it cheap online and I will proceed disassembleing it. My question, as I cant find any instruction, the dvdrom comes up before or after removing the motherboard? is there a way to remove it simply from the top instead? thank you very much.

  63. James Says:

    If you mean removing it without disassembling anything, no, that is impossible.

    The DVDROM comes before the motherboard and after the palm rest. The palm rest is a very tricky part though. So be extra careful and good luck.

  64. Matt Says:

    Hi James. You’ve made some fantastic instructions on how to disassemble this laptop, but I still have a few questions.

    I’ve managed to put a few dents in my palm rest and they drive me absolutely nuts every time I see them. So my question is, are all of these steps necessary in order to get the palm rest off? And once I have it off, is it possible to hammer dents out or are there some type of obstructions? The primary dent I’d like to correct is located about an inch to the left of the touch pad.

    Thanks in advance.

  65. James Says:

    Yes, all the way until step 6 is required to take the palm rest off.

    I have no idea how you would want to hammer the dents out. However, I strongly suggest that you get the palm rest replaced if the dents drives you mad so much.

    Happy Chinese New Year

  66. Matt Says:

    Thanks for the swift reply.

    The idea was to turn it upside down on flat surface and gently hammer them flat. Bad idea?

  67. Matt Says:

    Ah, well, I think my plans may be ruined. The screws holding down the hard drive were so tight that one became stripped after one attempt at unscrewing it. Is there a way to take care of this stripped screw? Or am I out of luck? Thanks.

  68. James Says:

    It is not a very bad idea but looking at the material used to build this thing, I think the odds are against you.

    Stripped screws are extremely hard to remove. Try using a plier.

  69. kevin Says:

    I have XPS M1330 tearing all apart.
    I have tried to assembly all the parts into this laptop.
    except there are 3 cables from LCD on each side
    totally I have 6 cables: Left side 2 blue and 1 gray
    Right side 2 black and 1 white.
    I do not know what are these cables and where to plug in motherboard.
    Please advise!!!

  70. James Says:

    As you can see from this image,
    Or alternatively you could go to step 5 and re-read.
    You should know where the biggest 2 cables go.

    I assume the rest of the cables are antennas. They go behind the laptop through a in the middle.

    However, not all the antennas will be used. If I am not mistaken, only the black and the white antennas will be used for the WLAN card.

    Unless of course if you have a WWAN card.

  71. Remko Says:

    Hi James,
    Thanks for the great instructions. I have a question for you.
    My M1330 emits some loud annoying noise from the speakers – I have no idea why, it may be a speaker or a soundcard problem.
    The thing is that I could live without sound, but not with this noise. So the question is: Is there an easy way to cut the speaker wires? I don’t see the speakers on the pictures you made.
    Thanks, and greetings from Spain,

  72. James Says:

    Yes there is a way to disconnect the speakers.
    As you can see, your speakers (2 of them) are located at the hinge cover. The connector goes all the way into the motherboard.

    So what you should do (If you want to disconnect the speaker) is to disassemble the palm rest (that means going through all the steps in this guide).

    After that you will see the speaker cable that connects to the motherboard. From there you can just disconnect it. Reassemble back and wholla, no sound.

  73. rana Says:

    Hi James,
    I have inserted a mini disc in my dvd rom of dell xps m1330 n its stuck in there,if you can pls advice me on how to take that out,i ll be grateful to you. Thanks

  74. JH. Ding Says:

    My battery is dead (for XPS M133). How can I open it an replace the cells?

  75. Thank_you Says:

    Je tiens à vous remercier !!! C’est génial le partage

  76. Komodo Dragons Says:

    Quote(Thank_you on May 18th, 2010 at 7:17 am):
    Je tiens à vous remercier !!! C’est génial le partage

    Translation: I want to thank you! It’s great sharing.

    Thank you Google translate, lol!

  77. riyaz Says:

    Dear James,
    In my m1330 there is a slot for 3g broadband sim card underneath the battery, but it is not functioning, what should I do

  78. mas Says:

    Hi James,

    Thanks for the most helpful instruction set. I replaced the motherboard on my laptop today, and your instruction helped a great deal. Without it I’m sure I would’ve broken something.

    Many thanks

  79. Angie Says:

    does anyone know how to set up the finger print reader on a dell xps m1330 if so please email me at thank you

  80. Harold Says:

    thanks dood…great tutorial. you really saved me with this. my laptop crapped out this morning before work…came home, found your site, and had it repaired in about two hours. turns the all three cables in the left hinge going to the lcd screen had been worn down to either the metal in the wiring or the shielding. soo i taped them up to keep them from touching frame and each other. nevermind! that wasn’t the problem! just went crazy again. anyway, b/c of your tutorial i can troubleshoot again!

    thanks again!

  81. Carlo Says:

    Hi James,
    Here I am again, this laptop seems to be very unluky wth! This time it wouldnt start (neither battery – which I reckon it’s completely down – or power supplied) and every time I plug in the adapter, the adapter itself switches off, I can see from its green led. The adapter is fine, tested into another identical laptop but something is wrong with the mobo or something that I cannot figure out. No warranty no nothing. Any suggestion? Plz email tnx a lot!

  82. James Says:

    There have been numerous complaints on Dell’s laptop about the soldering of the power pins onto the motherboard.
    I believe you could try and look into that.

    I have never personally soldered a Dell motherboard before so I am not in any position to give any advice.

    However, you might want to try looking for a new motherboard or a new laptop.

  83. jenn Says:

    Hi James, I found your site searching for an answer to my mouse button problem. About 2 weeks ago both my mouse buttons stopped woking on my M1330. I have found minimal information as to why this happens. I guess I am just wondering before I spend any money on a new palmrest. In your experience with this laptop Do you think That is the problem or could it be as simple as needing cleaning? I bought it used and it is approx. 2-3 years old.
    Any ideas would help. Thanks

  84. James Says:

    Everything has its end-of-life times. And for your case, it is extremely subjective.

    It depends on how often do you use the palm rest. If you don’t use it too often, then it might be some stuff had stuck in there.

    But if you use it everytime you use your computer for the past 3 years. Then it could faulty.

  85. jenn Says:

    Ok Thanks for the imput. I will just order one and hope that works. And yes I used it alot. Thanks Again. Jenn

  86. jenn Says:

    Hi James, Jenn here I just wanted to let you know I am happy to say I am writing to you with my new working palmrest. Thanks for the instructions they made it very easy to change it out.

    Thanks again Jenn.

  87. Phil Says:

    THanks very much for the guide. My laptop was getting really hot and I was concerned it needed a clean. I found almost no dust, but it was my first laptop disassembly and very interesting.

    I wonder what I should do with the extra screw left over! (d’oh!)

  88. David Says:

    Hey Thanks 100X for this guide. I successfully replaced my mouse buttons and it only took about 30min.

    Great stuff James!

  89. sam Says:

    Hi-please advise how i can fix my m1330. The motherboard and keyboard were replaced twice under warranty – heating issues i think. and once they replaced the screen too. now long out of warranty.
    my laptop was knocked off my lap and now screen is just black, nothing at all. i have been using it plugged into a monitor. the lid has since cracked a bit and split and i am going to order a new part from ebay for the lid, if you advise.
    could it just be a wire is lose somewhere inside which is why the screen does not show? everything else works perfectly. please help! thank you very much

  90. Was Says:

    Hi James,
    Just wondering what type of CMOS battery the M1330 takes? Is it a CR2032?

    Cheers for any help.

  91. James Says:

    Yes, CR2032. Wow I had to check the internet to make sure it is the same thing.

    Very hard to say, it might be just a lose wire (which you can easily check by disassembling it), or it could be a broken wire (which means you have to fork out money to get a new monitor).

  92. twig Says:

    Quote(David on September 12th, 2010 at 2:05 pm):
    Hey Thanks 100X for this guide. I successfully replaced my mouse buttons and it only took about 30min.

    Hey David/James,

    I’ve had my laptop for about 3years now and its far past its warranty period. I was hoping to fix the left mouse button issue myself but I need to order the replacement part first.

    The issue is the button no longer de-presses as it should. It stays pressed in halfway, so sometimes clicks work and other times it doesn’t.

    I presume the little rubber thing (the sort you find under keyboard buttons) underneath the mouse button must be broken.

    Could one of you advise me on the part number? Or where I can get a cheap replacement that fits?


  93. cy Says:

    hi james,
    i have a problem with my m1330 .. it automatically shuts down, i dont know why … and sometimes after it shutsdown and then i start it again after a minute, it shutsdown again … what should i do ?

  94. Clement Says:

    Dear James,

    I followed your steps in disassemble my laptop xps m1330 to replace the motherboard as it was shortcircuited. After replacing a new one, I try to turn on the motherboard but it did not work. I already make sure all the connections are done appropriately and grounded myself.

    Please advise what else could be wrong.

    Thank you.

  95. James Says:

    Did the laptop power on at all? If yes, what are the signs on the 3 LED lights?
    If no, check the power if its connected properly.

    If you do it correctly this shouldn’t happen.

  96. Bob Says:

    When replacing the motherboard, can the thermal pads on the heat sink be reused or should they be removed and could arctic silver 5 be used instead? I’ve noticed there is quite a large “gap” between the bottom of the heat sink and the chips they contact.. the thermal pad helped fill that gap.

  97. sven Says:

    Recently my Laptop just shut down and after unplugging and reconnecting the AC adaptor I noticed that the blue LED turns off as soon as it is connected to the computer. I figured that there is (most likely) a short circuit somewhere.
    I disassemled the computer thanks to the great advice on this page.
    There was a MOSFET 4435B located near the DC connector on the motherboard that looked burned. I had this component replaced (name on the board was U40), but the symptoms are still the same – LED on adaptor turns off as soon as it is plugged into the computer.

    Does anyone have any ideas? Other than replacing the whole mainboard…
    Thank you very much.

  98. Mark Says:

    Finally a site that everyone can complain/fix/troubleshoot their 1330. I also am the lucky owner of a 1330 that has been replaced twice by dell for the Nvidia/GPU failure. The second time I got it back, I removed the back where the cooling fan is, removed the cooling fan and applied quite large amounts of heat sink compound (found at Radio Shack) to help pull heat from the GPU. This kept the laptop running for two years until recently it stopped accepting a charge from the A/C adapter. Tried two different adapters with no success. I believe its an intermittent connection on the mother board. If I twist the A/C jack when it is in the laptop, sometimes the charging light will come on. I have re-soldering the jack connections on the motherboard and checking the voltage on the pins, all good. I’m hoping to find the problem w/o MB replacement. Anyway, this one, and most 1330’s out their are on life support due to the GPU problems. Any thoughts would be appreciated and if I find the solution, Ill sure post.

  99. rpfn Says:

    Hi. Any instructions on how to change the motherboard? I guess I have to do it on my xps m1530

  100. Erik Says:


    I think that our XPS computers (I have two) are over heating because their fans have both stopped working. so I plan on removing the fans and getting a replacement to re install. The bottom of the computers get very hot to the touch. Also sometimes the computers shut down due to heat.Where is the best place to get these fans, obviously Dell would have a replacement part, but maybe there is a better fan available from an other sourse. Thanks Erik

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