questionsdoes anyone know any way to charge a laptop…

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Does your laptop support usb charging?

(Like plugging a usb from desktop to laptop and it charges the battery?)

Some do. And sometimes that is on a different charging circuit than the ac adapter.

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First, the "charging circuit" in the notebook is simply an on/off type of switch supplying power - the battery itself contains the charge and monitoring circuitry. If you can, test the battery in another notebook that uses the same battery. If that's unfeasible, go to a battery shop (there's a Batteries Plus near me, for example,that sells or rebuilds/repairs computer, UPS, cell phone, etc., batteries). They can test the battery and the charging circuitry.

If the battery is OK - which I doubt - there are things called "Universal Battery Chargers" (google it - they're on Youtube, too) that can supply the voltage necessary to charge almost anything.

Also, the problem with notebooks is usually the connector where the power supply plugs in or the wires from there inside.

If your battery is not okay, get a a new one. Do a search (like in Google shopping, Amazon, eBay, and so on) and you should find an D830 battery in the $28 to $37 range like I just did.

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@jxliv7: Battery is brand new.

As for the universal charging... might have to check that out.

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My guess is that the extortion pin -- what Dell refers to as the "smart pin" -- is broken, or otherwise not conducting. See http://www.laptop-junction.com/toast/content/inside-dell-ac-power-adapter-mystery-revealed (try getting to the BIOS screen).

Can you get/borrow another Dell branded AC adapter? That Targus "charger" @drchops suggested is unlikely to have the pin, and it'll act the same as your existing power adapter (and, incidentally, http://www.meritline.com/merax-universal-portable-laptop-car-power-supply---p-39133.aspx); no charging.

If you can't charge the battery and you must be tethered to an AC outlet then I suggest unplugging the battery and leaving it behind -- no sense lugging dead weight.

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@goldfndr: lol "extortion pin.." I spent a minute wondering what the hell an extortion pin was and why I had never heard of it...and how do you EXTORT a battery?

Took me a minute to realize it was a joke :D

It was funny though..
I don't know much about Dell batteries, but I'm guessing it's one of those semi/necessary parts they built to break?

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If you do not have a charger to test with for under $10 you can buy one from eBay from a US seller including shipping. Example http://cgi.ebay.com/Laptop-charger-Dell-LATITUDE-D531N-D830N-D810-X300-/310282208722?pt=Laptop_Adapters_Chargers&hash=item483e42c5d2#ht2153wt905

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@goldfndr: (And everyone else) I borrowed a Dell OEM charger from someone and the battery charged fine. Ordered a new one. Thanks for all the help!