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Thunderbolt Dock 3 display issues

ZBook Studio G3
Microsoft Windows 10 (64-bit)

Issue 1

I purchased the ZBook Studio G3 + 2 months wait on the Thunderbolt 3 Dock to primarily connect 2 4K Samsung monitors.  When connected via the display port one will display at 4k while the other will only display @ 2560X1440.  I had bought a a couple of CableMatters thunderbolt 3 X display port adapters while waiting on the dock.  If I plug one of the monitors in using the adapter and the other into the display port both will display 4K.

Anybody else having this issue?

 

Issue 2

After the computer goes to sleep only one monitor will wake up.  The NVDIA control panel still shows both connected.  Only way to get the second monitor awake is to shutdown and reboot.

 

Issue 3

I have the displays configured to go blank after 1 hour.  Once this occurs and I enter my password all of my open programs are displayed on one screen rather than on both.  This would be normal if you have undocked and re-docked a laptop.

 

Issue 4

If the laptop is opened while docked. One display goes blank and one is duplicated with the laptop screen.  This is not typical docked behavior. 

 

I moved from an  Elitebook 8540W with dock.  I'm really questioning my whether this was an upgrade.

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Thunderbolt Dock 3 display issues

answering #4 is easy: that is standard behavior by default. you should be able to then extend the external screens

 

as far as the issues, you may not know that Thunderbolt 3.0 is a protocol that now 'rides' on top of the usb-c 3.1 connection. This leads to, sometimes, unexpected behavior. For example, the dock has a separate ethernet controller with its own driver, it has a driver to manage the usb ports, and it has a driver to manage the dp ports and the vga port. With all those things going on, there may be an occasion where if the laptop is allowed to go to sleep, some drivers may or may not come back correctly or in the correct sequence. For example, the usb-c drivers should restart first

 

with this in mind, it is likely that new drivers and/or firmware will come out to fix some of the things you are seeing. I would encourage you to check and make sure your laptop has - at least - these drivers and thunderbolt f/w

 

Component NameCategory on Product Support Page on hp.comSoftpaq #Version
BIOS(BIOS)SP754091.06
Intel Thunderbolt Secure Connect Driver(Driver - Controller)SP7478315.3.39.250
Intel® Thunderbolt™ Firmware Update Utility(Firmware)SP7493816.1.7.0.6
Intel Graphics Driver(Driver - Graphics)SP7461220.19.15.4360
NVIDIA Graphics Driver(Driver - Graphics - Nvidia)SP74313354.61
ASMedia eXtensible Host Controller Driver(Driver - Chipset)SP741641.16.29.1
Broadcom Ethernet Controller Driver(Driver - Network)SP7415317.2.0.0
Conexant Audio USB Driver(Driver - Audio)SP748761.31.36.14

 

you can check the thunderbolt firmware by selecting Settings\Detail in the Thunderbolt icon

 

I work for HP. However, all opinions and comments are my own.
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Thunderbolt Dock 3 display issues

Exactly, exactly as I have experienced.  Even upgrading form the 8540w laptop.  I have also observed:

 

1. The docking station cable doesn't seat well in the docking station and the slightest move to the station or cable can cause a disconnect then all peripherals stop.  A longer cable might help here.  Also, the power button being directly opposite the thunderbolt connector causes the power button to be pressed unintentionally when reseating the cable. This can be really troublesome because it puts the laptop to sleep which causes additional monitor detection/disconnects.

 

2. A USB keyboard (ms in this case) drops characters or repeats a keystroke periodically.

 

3. From a powered off state, lid closed, plug the PC into the dock, power on from the dock power button .  The monitors come alive for a few minutes then turn off. Seems like the dock is disconnected but the mouse and keyboard continue to work.  Opening the laptop sometimes brings the monitors back, sometimes not.

 

4. With two external DVI monitors installed the laptop display and one of the monitors are identified as "1|2" and the second external monitor is "3".  Monitor "3" always defaultedddddddddddddddddddot028 (<- there's the USB issue) defaults to 1280x1024 instead of the native resolution.

 

I have applied several updates but there has been no definitive list until this one.  I will check to see that I have all the drivers up to date.

 

 

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C_Brent Tutor
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I have an open ticket with HP for issue 1 and have installed all the latest drivers via the sdm tool.  Was hoping someone had found a solution as HP is really slow in responding.

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Thunderbolt Dock 3 display issues

Update1: For my laptop I needed SP74935 instead of SP74938.

 

Update2: The problem with the dock disconnecting seems to correlate to a P2V VM I created from my old laptop.  About 15 minutes after launching the P2V VM the dock would disconnect.  VMs created from scratch don't exhibit this issue so I suspected it was something on the VM.  Best guess was the video drivers because with the KM and mouse plugged directly into the laptop, the dock would still disconnect.  After uninstalling the nvidia drivers from the VM the system seems to be stable.

 

Update 3: The thunderbolt cable/connection is also a bit flaky.  The short cord and placement of the dock allowed for the connector to wiggle free from the laptop with the slightest move of the laptop.  To solve I secured the dock to the monitor stand with zip ties.  The dock is actually upside down in the pics below.  This orientation allows for the power button to be front-facing while keeping the cable stable and unstrained while plugged into the laptop. 

 

connection1

connection2

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C_Brent Tutor
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I was sent a white paper, 4AA6-5088EEW, May 2016, Rev. 1 from HP support showing that the issue of display resolution is normal.  Here is the verbage:

4K Display
––Only one 4K at 60Hz display connection can be made to the display ports on the dock
––In order to use a 2nd 4K at 60Hz display, the connections must be made through the USB Type-C™ port on the
dock or directly to the notebook or mobile workstation. Refer to Table1 for the dock’s display connection options.

 

I had purchased a USB Type-C to display port adapter while waiting for the dock to ship and had verified this configuration to work some time ago.  However, until I got the white paper I had no idea that this was a required configuration.

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YeoLyle Honor Student
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Thunderbolt Dock 3 display issues

I have experienced a variety of issues with the Thunderbolt 3 dock using 2 DVI monitors connected to the dock.  The displays for no reason at all start going on and off, on and off, on and off, but the network connection stays active.  Sometimes the external monitors will go off and on at the same time in sequence, other times one will go on and off and the other  external monitor stays on or my favorite when the alternate where one goes off and on, then the other goes off and on repeatedly until I disconnect the dock and plug it back in.  Sometimes I can go several hours without an issue other times the displays start flickering within 30 minutes of boot up.

 

I also have at least once lost all the external displays and ethernet from the dock.  The dock cable didn't get disconnected at this time, but in order to get it back I had to unplug the dock and plug it back in.

 

I am running the latest firmware and drivers as of 5/25/2016 per the HP SDM.  The displays ran off the NVidia driver and are only set for 1920 x 1080, for 2 HP LV2311 monitors but I have noticed that the Thunderbolt dock is rather warm. 

 

I even tried swapping out the dock to ensure it wasn't something with the dock, still no luck. 

 

I will be opening a case with HP support, but I see I am not alone.

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@YeoLyle: Your experience mirrors mine.  Blinking monitors, no disconnect for hours then suddenly a disconnect that requires physically unplugging/plugging the cable from/to the laptop.  

 

I've done some digging in the event logs and found two interesting events that happen to coincide with a disconnect that happened this morning at around 10:30.

 

Windows Logs/Application

10:34:32 Outlook. Connection to Microsoft Exchange has been lost. Outlook will restore the connection when possible.

10:32:43 Outlook. Connection to Microsoft Exchange has been restored.

10:32:45 HPSupportSolutionsFrameworkService PowerEvent handled successfully by the service.

10:32:59 HPSupportSolutionsFrameworkService PowerEvent handled successfully by the service.

10:33:00 HPSupportSolutionsFrameworkService PowerEvent handled successfully by the service.

10:33:02 HPSupportSolutionsFrameworkService PowerEvent handled successfully by the service.

 

 

System Logs

10:32:34 NDIS Error.  Miniport Broadcom NetXtreme Gigabit Ethernet, {1a73ef4d-0c07-4733-af0a-6772ee05a090}, had event Fatal error: The IM miniport has failed to initialize.

 

These look related.  Interestingly I have the GB cable connected through the dock.

 

Strangely enough I had another disconnect while typing this response.  The exact sequence of events outlined above for 10:30 replicate for the event at 11:30.  I'd say these are definitely related and that NDIS is looking suspicious.

 

One thing I just changed is to go to the network adapter properties and turn off the ability for the OS to turn off the Broadcom GB adpater to save power.

 

 

YeoLyle Honor Student
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Thanks for the info NickBb.  I disabled the power for the NIC, but took it further.

 

Items changed

  1. Broadcom NIC adapter disabled “Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power”
  2. USB Devices – “ASMedia USB Root Hub” – Disabled “Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power”
  3. USB Devices – “Intel® USB 3.0 eXtensible Host Controller – 1.0 (Microsoft)” – Disabled “Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power”
  4. USB Devices – “USB Root Hub (xHCI)” – Disabled “Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power”

No change. 

 

I did find that the Firmware on the Dock was still on 14.1.7.0.4, so it apparrently didn't upgrade it the first time I went through it (I figure I missed the prompt to press 0 to select the dock to update the first time).   I upgraded the firmware to 16.1.7.0.6 which seems like it helped, but still experienced the issue after locking the system, and after logging back on I had to remove the ThunderPort device and add it back in before the displays stopped going off and on. 

 

While it appears to be better it is still too soon to claim it is fixed.  I will try a few more reboots to see if the updates worked.

 

Lyle

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Hi YeoLyle,

 

Our experience has been very similar.  When I was setting up the laptop even though the SoftPaq manager indicated that a FW update was needed, it failed with an error message, something like "bin file not found".  To confuse matters there were three sources for updates: SoftPaq Manager, HP Software Setup (included on the laptop), and the notes that came with the doc directing you to the www.hp.com/support update site.  The SP from the update site was the one that got me to the correct FW level.

 

Today is the first day of using the system with the Broadcom NIC driver with the changed power settings.  So far:

 

  • Both moitors were the correct resolution from a cold boot connected to the dock.
  • No dock disconnects this morning (previously the dock would disconnect after about an hour).

 

However, when looking at Device Manager the Broadcom NIC is no longer detected in the Network Adpaters.  Not sure what is going on here but I'll turn of WiFi and see it is actually working or not.

 

And the mouse and keyboard didn't work.  I plugged in to the front-side ports on the dock before powering on the dock. Plugged directly into the laptop and they are working and no keystroke issues as previously reported.

 

 

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