Changing Out LCD Display on Dell PowerEdge 2850 Server

By Mike Kidd – Velocity Tech Solutions

We have all been there at one point; We walk into the server room and notice that one of the bezels is lit up orange. As we begin to investigate and pull the bezel off to see what the display says for an error message, you are promptly greeted with this! (A1)


A plain, blank, orange color, void of any information leading to a resolution. It laughs at you by simply telling you that there is an error, but it’s not going to give you an answer. Fortunately, I am here today to give a quick run-through on how to change out the display unit and show that server who’s boss.  First, power-down the server and unplug it (yes, I know this is not necessary but sometimes when hot-plugging the display units, they do not display text properly once replaced). Next, there will be 2 black Phillips screws that need to be removed from the front of the server that secures the display unit to the chassis as shown in A2.


Once removed, you can take off the cover from the top of the server. After you have removed the cover, direct your attention to the front left side of the server in the location of the display unit. There will be a single screw to remove from the front display and USB ports as shown in A3.


Once removed, it will give you access to the actual display unit.

The display itself is going to slide straight back towards the rear of the server (A4) with a small tilt.


I find it helps to push on the power button (another great reason to unplug the server) to aid in pushing the bad display unit out. It can take a bit of “fidgeting” to get the display out of the chassis.

Once you have the unit out of the chassis, flip it over so you can see the ribbon cable attached. Firmly grip the sides of the black plastic around the base of the ribbon (A5) and wiggle gently while pulling the cable away from the display.


Sometimes they are very stubborn, requiring the use of a small flat-head screwdriver to “pry” at the sides of the plastic base. Throw the old unit away and replace with your new one. Installation is just the reverse of the removal. That’s it!

Final Result!

Don’t forget to check out our  video tutorials at our YouTube channel: velocity783.

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9 thoughts on “Changing Out LCD Display on Dell PowerEdge 2850 Server

  1. says:

    Once completing the reinstallation I get two little lines one is one pixel shorter than the other. Any ideas ?

  2. Mike says:

    This is kind of odd, and I haven’t found a solution on Google yet.

    I have a 2850 that had a bad display. I replaced it using your instructions, and now it’s working – Blue background, Dell name and ‘Poweredge 2850 scrolls across just fine. However, if I force some kind of failure: remove one of the power cords, or open the top, I NEVER get an error message. The display stays blue and no error message comes up (like PS1 AC LOST or INTRUSION). Is there a BIOS setting, or something else that I have to set/reset?

    • This is strange, Can you get the display to blink by pressing the small “I” information button that is located just below the display? Did you remove all power by unplugging the server during install? You could try re-seating the wires connecting the display unit. If all else fails it may be a faulty display. I checked out all the internal settings of the 2850 bios and bmc, and could not find anything to change its error color. Let me know if you find anything out.

      • Mike says:

        I found the solution:

        Apparently the internal error log was completely FULL. Once I cleared out the error log, the display started to pop up the warnings correctly.

        It was strange that the whole thing worked, except that error messages refused to come up. After digging around a bit (and finding the Server Manager program on Dell’s site), I was able to find/view the error log. On a whim I cleared it and all is A-OK now.

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