The difficulties of updating a 2009 Sony VAIO L116 to the latest version of windows…

Sony VPCL116FX All In One

Well, today, I began the task of updating my Sony VAIO L116 All-in-One to Windows 10 10240 (RTM build).  It was very difficult as the first install that I did today was trying to use the flash drive with the 10166 build on it,  but it never completed, so I force-restarted the computer and got an error message saying that Cortana and the Start Menu failed to load, restart and we will try to fix it for you.  After three restarts, there were no changes.

So I then went about updating my trusty USB Windows install flash drive to the latest build 10240 using this method:

Plug in the USB drive, and follow the next steps to make a bootable Windows 10 USB media:

  1. Open a Command Prompt window. To do this, trigger Run (Windows key + R will do the trick, or you can find it in the Start menu), type “cmd” and then hit the OK button.
  2. Use the “diskpart” command to open the disk partitioning software. Validate the UAC prompt, if asked, to carry on.
  3. Use the “list disk” command to reveal the list of attached physical storage media. This will show all the HDDs, SSDs, USB drives and so on.
  4. Identify the disk number of the USB drive you are using for this process (look at the size column for easy identification; based on my experience, it is usually listed last).
  5. Use the “select disk X” command to select it, where “X” is the disk number of your USB drive.
  6. Use the “clean” command to erase the contents of the USB drive.
  7. Use the “create partition primary” command to create a primary partition on the USB drive.
  8. Use the “select partition 1” command to select the previously created partition.
  9. Use the “active” command to make said partition appear active, or validated.
  10. Use the “format fs=ntfs quick” command to format the said partition as NTFS, using the Quick routine.
  11. Use the “assign” command to assign a drive letter to the USB drive. Afterwards, it will show up as a drive under My Computer.
  12. Copy the extracted contents of the Windows 10 ISO to the USB drive

This time, the install worked except for some major issues with the Nvidia Geforce GT 240M driver since that had been only compatible with Windows 8 or previous versions.  Windows 10 did not include the drivers for that card, so they just installed a generic display driver which only supported a maximum resolution of 1600×900 even though the VAIO L116 screen supports a full 1920×1080 HD picture.

Installing the Graphics Card

I spent many hours today looking for a solution.  After looking around I found a site called Laptop Video 2 Go.  I tried several of their graphics driver packages compiled from previous Nvidia setup file releases.

Finally after looking on several sources including a Windows Insider Preview board and seeing which of the drivers would end up working on Windows 10, I found out that I had to download the Nvidia release package 341.74 which provided the proper files for the GeForce GT 240M card (which actually is an old laptop card, not a desktop card, so that threw me off a little).

Kudos to Darren_CP on Sony’s support forums for providing the initial how-to, which I tweaked to suit my own device. The procedure went a bit like this;

Download the latest nVidia drivers direct from the nVidia website (Windows 10 is minimally supported)

Attempt installation of nVidia drivers.  As expected, the installation will fail and inform you that no compatible hardware was found.  However, the installation will extract installation files to the C:\NVIDIA folder

Select and modify INF file for your hardware

This is the tricky bit !  Look up your hardware information in device manager. Open device manager, open display adapters. Double click to open the “Microsoft Display Adapter”. Click on the details tab, and select the “hardware Ids” property. Take note of your DEV and SUBSYS.

In the case of my NVIDIA GeForce GT 240M, the value was:

“PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A34&SUBSYS_9060104D&REV_A1”.

Now go to the “C:\NVIDIA\DisplayDriver\341.74\Win8_WinVista_Win7_64\International\Display.Driver” folder.  Pick an .inf file.  I selected “nvdispi.inf’ as some of the hardware here closely matched my hardware.  Make a copy of this file, then open it using notepad.  Scroll down to the section headed with:

[NVIDIA_SetA_Devices.NTamd64.6.0]

%NVIDIA_DEV.0405.011D.1025% = Section001, PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0405&SUBSYS_011D1025

Now scroll further and try and locate an entry with the same DEV as your hardware.  Copy this line and paste it to a new line below.  Adjust the line so that it matches your hardware DEV and SUBSYS.  For my NVIDIA GeForce GT 240M, I added the following entry     %NVIDIA_DEV.0A34.9060.104D% = Section012, PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A34&SUBSYS_9060104D.

I also added the same entry to:

[NVIDIA_SetA_Devices.NTamd64.6.1], [NVIDIA_SetA_Devices.NTamd64.6.2]  and so on.  I’m sure that 6.3 is really needed for Windows 10, so you can stop there or add it to all headings.  Now scroll down to the section headed with:

[Strings]     DiskID1 = “NVIDIA Windows (64 bit) Driver Library Installation Disk 1”.

Find a line that matches your hardware.  Copy and paste this entry to a new line.  For my GeForce GT 240M, I added the line:

NVIDIA_DEV.0A34.9060.104D = “NVIDIA GeForce GT 240M”.

Save the file.  Then copy it over the original inf that you originally copied.  This change will break the digital signature of the driver installation, and cause the drivers to now be unsigned.

Allow use of unsigned drivers

Open a command prompt as administrator.  Enter the following commands:

BCDEDIT /Set LoadOptions DDISABLE_INTEGRITY_CHECKS

BCDEDIT /Set TESTSIGNING ON

Restart the computer.  Go to “C:\NVIDIA\DisplayDriver\341.74\Win8_WinVista_Win7_64\International\Display.Driver” and run setup again. The installation should now complete successfully.  You may now want to turn test signing back off again by opening another administrator command prompt window and entering the following command:

BCDEDIT /Set TESTSIGNING OFF

Good luck out there !!!  I hope this saves somebody the time and immense frustration i faced having to overcome this potentially needless problem.

The install finally worked.  Everything now looks great and works great.  I even have installed my USB microphone so that I can talk to Cortana.  Now on to making sure everything else I need installed works.

Cortana

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20 thoughts on “The difficulties of updating a 2009 Sony VAIO L116 to the latest version of windows…

  1. Thanks for all of your effort. It makes the change to Windows 10 easier. I followed your instructions, but had to use 341.81 instead of 341.74, (Couldn’t find 341.74). After the installation of the driver, I found that the max resolution of that I could find was 1600×900. Did I do something wrong or miss something? Any advice is appreciated.

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    1. You should be able to select 1920×1080. If not, then the driver isn’t installed and you are running the Windows Default Display Driver. Go through the install steps again and find 341.74 on Nvidia’s website, locate your device id in device manager and then go through all the steps in order.

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      1. Tried it a second time, It worked flawlessly. The only problem I seem to have is that the built in microphone does not work. Again, thanks for the guidance and all of your initial work.

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      2. I’d try reinstalling the factory (circa 2009) Realtek drivers from Sony Support as they will work on Windows 10. Otherwise, it could be a hardware issue as I have no issues with mine.

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  2. We have the same computer and I followed every steps, got mixed up a little bit at the part of editing the .ini file but figured it out also. NVIDIA driver installed on the first try and every thing works and looks great on Windows 10. I could say this was a good investment for a desktop to last me that long.

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    1. That’s good. If you swap in a solid state drive, it will last you a good while longer too. It completely fixes any lagginess you might have with the standard drive, though you will have to reinstall Windows 10.

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      1. After completing the Windows 10 upgrade successfully using the Nvidia 341.92 driver I decided to upgrade my HDD to an SSD. Purchased a 500GB Samsung SSD 850 EVO, Sabrent 2.5 SATA HD to USB 3.0 adapter and Sabrent 2.5″ SSD SATA Hard Drive to Desktop 3.5″ SATA Bay Converter Mounting Kit (BK-PCBS). Used the software received with the SSD to clone the HDD, then swapped in the SSD. The VPCL116FX runs like a new machine.

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  3. Thank you for the information. I have a Sony Vaio VGN-AW190. The hardware is different but the procedure is the same. I had attempted this a month ago but it did not work. I think the missing ingredient was to allow the use of unsigned drivers. I am thrilled to have my proper resolution back following the Windows 10 upgrade!

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    1. Make sure to install any factory driver updates as needed to make sure everything works from Sony Support. (I recommend bios, intel memory management, as well as any PCI Ricoh devices such as memorystick, sd, etc. If you have a touchscreen, get that driver as well.

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  4. That’s great! I have yet to perform the SSD upgrade on my own personal machine, but I have updated a client’s VPCL137GX with a 512GB SSD from Samsung and they said the machine is running faster than their newer machine now.

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    1. I have since used a 480GB TeamGroup Evo SSD on my VAIO VPCL116FX and it works fine. First go round, it was a bit buggy (flashing HD light and freezing and Windows Updates wouldn’t come through), so I had to wipe the drive and reinstall Windows 10 again, and now with the anniversary update applied, it runs very well 🙂

      Like

  5. Are you still able to adjust brightness after this? I went through the process last night and successfully have Windows 10 installed w/ the GeForce GT 240M graphic driver on my VPCL116FX. However, now my screen is stuck at the brightness level it was before the update (super dim). Any ideas?

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    1. I’ve never even messed with my default display brightness (but I figure the buttons on the right side of the all-in-one screen can do the trick, most likely).

      Like

  6. Thank you very much for this info. It worked perfectly for my friends GT330M and if not for this, would have been a show-stopper for using Windows 10 with the Sony VPCL137FX.

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  7. Fantastic! Just saved me from having to buy a new laptop! Nvidia GeForce 9600M GT in a Sony Vaio works like a charm with Win10..
    Great Job!

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  8. Help please I tried but I messed up somewhere i have sony VPCL111FX and I download nvdia 314.74 drivers but i’ve never edited files like this. WhenI did do edit them It ran and pass it all expect the driver part. Please help could you tell me what it needs to be here is the hardware ID:PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&SUBSYS_9060104D&REV_A2
    PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&SUBSYS_9060104D
    PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&CC_030000
    PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&CC_0300

    Thanks for help in advance

    Like

    1. Did you download the latest Windows 10 NVidia drivers? Also please check that you did the Admin command prompt BCDEDIT Set TESTSIGNING part correctly as well. If you follow these directions to the letter, they should get it done for you. Don’t forget to Set TESTSIGNING to off when you’re done and reboot.

      Best Regards
      Chris

      Like

      1. mine is ivpcl111fx with the same video card but differnt version GT 240m video card I’ve never edited video ini files before So dont know what to insert in so it is correct in the .ini file
        hardware ID:PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&SUBSYS_9060104D&REV_A2
        PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&SUBSYS_9060104D
        PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&CC_030000
        PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&CC_0300

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  9. Follow these steps to get the strings inserted into the .INF files. If you’ve never edited .INF files, simply right click on them and open with… Notepad, but when saving, make sure you have all file types selected and save back as a .INF, otherwise, you will end up with a text file that won’t work.

    Select and modify INF file for your hardware
    This is the tricky bit !  Look up your hardware information in device manager. Open device manager, open display adapters. Double click to open the “Microsoft Display Adapter”. Click on the details tab, and select the “hardware Ids” property.

    Take note of your DEV and SUBSYS.
    In the case of my NVIDIA GeForce GT 240M, the value was:
    “PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A34&SUBSYS_9060104D&REV_A1”.

    Now go to the “C:\NVIDIA\DisplayDriver\341.74\Win8_WinVista_Win7_64\International\Display.Driver” folder.  Pick an .inf file.  I selected “nvdispi.inf’ as some of the hardware here closely matched my hardware.  Make a copy of this file, then open it using notepad.

    Scroll down to the section headed with:
    [NVIDIA_SetA_Devices.NTamd64.6.0]
    %NVIDIA_DEV.0405.011D.1025% = Section001, PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0405&SUBSYS_011D1025
    Now scroll further and try and locate an entry with the same DEV as your hardware.

    Copy this line and paste it to a new line below.  Adjust the line so that it matches your hardware DEV and SUBSYS.

    For my NVIDIA GeForce GT 240M, I added the following entry

    %NVIDIA_DEV.0A34.9060.104D% = Section012, PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A34&SUBSYS_9060104D.

    I also added the same entry to:
    [NVIDIA_SetA_Devices.NTamd64.6.1], [NVIDIA_SetA_Devices.NTamd64.6.2]  and so on.

    I’m sure that 6.3 is really needed for Windows 10, so you can stop there or add it to all headings.

    Now scroll down to the section headed with:
    [Strings]     DiskID1 = “NVIDIA Windows (64 bit) Driver Library Installation Disk 1”.
    Find a line that matches your hardware.

    Copy and paste this entry to a new line.  For my GeForce GT 240M, I added the line:
    NVIDIA_DEV.0A34.9060.104D = “NVIDIA GeForce GT 240M”.

    Save the file.  Then copy it over the original inf that you originally copied.  This change will break the digital signature of the driver installation, and cause the drivers to now be unsigned.

    Make sure to follow these instructions inserting your PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0A74&SUBSYS_9060104D&REV_A2 where you can find the DEV number 0A74 within an inf file. I can’t do it for you because everyone’s .inf files can be different (which .inf file you pick is dependent on your hardware). You will have to browse through them and look for the number 0A74 yourself manually.

      Hope that helps.

      -Christian

      Like

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