Firmware Update Causing Black Screen

We have been getting reports of some people having their computers log in showing only a black screen and the mouse cursor. This is due to firmware updates from Dell. The solution is just to wait a very, very long time.

After the black screen, things will slowly start coming back, first the desktop background, then icons, and windows. Even after it looks like everything is back, often it needs to run longer. This process will most likely take at least several hours, maybe much longer. Letting it run overnight is a good idea.

You will know it needs to keep going if you have apps that won’t open or that misbehave in strange ways. If you shut down the computer too soon, it will start the long process over from the beginning next time you log in.

The computer going to sleep will also stop the update. Here is how to change the sleep settings on your computer to keep it from going to sleep during the update:

1. Click on the start/windows icon at the far left of your toolbar
2. Click on the settings icon, the gear-shaped one
3. Click System, then click Power & sleep
4. Under “When plugged in, PC goes to sleep after”, change the sleep setting to Never.

  As always, feel free to submit an INFORM ticket if you still have problems.


We thought it would be fun to show you an example of something we print with our 3D printers. This is a print of a brain scan one of our patrons had made during a study they participated in. They were able to convert the scan to a file compatible with our printers.

Why not take a look at a site like Thingiverse and find something you would like to print? Then you can email the .STL file or a web link to to have it printed.

Make Yourself Heard! Use A Microphone

Please remember that when we are taping an event in the Community Room your voice will not be recorded if you do not speak into a microphone. We currently do not have a microphone that picks up sound for the whole room.

It is a good practice to use a microphone during an event whether or not it is being recorded to make sure that all attending can hear what is going on, making sure to hold the microphone near (but not too near) your mouth when speaking. It is also best when taking questions or comments from an audience member who does not have a microphone, to repeat what they have said before responding.

Audio-Visual Resources in the Community Room

Video recording and streaming is now available in the Community Room for your meeting or event.

The podium is height-adjustable with a lamp, microphone, computer with USB monitor, and HDMI and VGA video connections for use with laptops. Adapters are available for VGA to Mac video and HDMI to USB-C. A connection can also be made wirelessly using AirStream. Wireless laser pointers/clickers are available by request.

Also on the podium is a touchscreen control for the projector, video camera, audio levels, light settings, and retractable video screen and window shades. A duplicate touchscreen control is located in the AV closet at the back of the room.

Besides the podium microphone, the Community Room has three wireless handheld microphones and two wireless lapel microphones available, along with a floor stand and three table stands. Up to four wireless microphones can be used at one time.

Bring an Idea to Life with 3D Printing

Even though the Medical Library is closed for renovations, 3D printing is still available. Want to have something printed? Here is what you do:

Email a link from a 3D printing file repository — Thingiverse, YouMagine, NIH 3D Print Exchange, etc. — or attach your file (.STL or .OBJ extensions only) to

Want to try creating something yourself? Tinkercadan easy-to-use online 3D CAD design tool, is a good place to start.

We will take a look at the request and consult with you about printability, size, resolution, color, and timeframe. Then when it is ready to be picked up, we will send you an email.

Currently, there is no charge for smaller print jobs.