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I wiped XP off my laptop and installed Windows 7. It is beautiful!

But, I have now lost a number of adjustment settings, most importantly the ability to press Fn + Up and Down arrows to adjust brightness. It is now set at one level and does not adjust anymore. I see no other way to change brightness, not even in the BIOS.

Any ideas? I also cannot switch monitors (Fn+F8), which will become an issue when I give a presentation next week.

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Have you installed all the drivers for hte system, from Dell's website? – Iszi Sep 23 '11 at 15:47
+1 for Del site. Note that sometimes even entering the Service Tag does not get a list of all drivers and apps. Sometimes you need to go to the more general Vostro 251 listing. – Dave M Sep 23 '11 at 16:03
Yes, that is what was needed. File R189832.exe Post this as the answer @LSZI and I'll mark it as the answer. – Daniel Williams Sep 23 '11 at 19:48
Done. Glad to hear it was that easy. – Iszi Sep 24 '11 at 5:47
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Whenever you do a clean install of an OS, it's very probable that there will be devices in the system that the OS install does not have proper drivers for. These can include some of the simplest things like the display adapter, keyboard, or pointing devices.

In such cases, the OS will fall back to default "universal" drivers written by the OS vendor. However, just like a cheap universal remote for your entertainment system, these drivers often lack features which could be provided by drivers from the hardware vendor.

After any clean OS install, regardless of what appears to be working or not, you should always download and install the latest drivers for all your system's components.

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See if the Notebook System Software for Vista will install, it includes all the special keyboard and button drivers.

Dell does not officially support Windows 7 on that model and do not provide Windows 7 drivers.

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If the function key and the increase or decrease brightness keys are not working on your laptop then probably the relevant drivers are not upgraded on your system by a Windows Clean install. Visit Dell's website to install the latest driver.

If you are using DELL Vostro Intel i3 processor, then install the Intel Graphics driver from the DELL's website after which the function key and the increase/decrease brightness keys should work

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Best solution when it comes to things like this is always refer back to the manufacture site for your laptop model. Although the windows will install whatever lastest drivers of hardware your hardware it never covers the keyboard functionality which is a very rare in most cases. Most manufacture will tell you spefically what each download file consisit of if they don't you're almost better to get something refer as a utility it maybe related to it. Better yet sometimes some sort of application.

Hope that helps.

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