My daughter experienced the same with her laptop. It seemed an hard drive issue, but when they installed a new one in the nearest shop that didn't work either. So she had to buy a new laptop, because she was out of warranty.
The diagnosis can't be done from a distance. So for the moment I agree with your observation. Back to Dell for a repair if it's under warranty.
We have a Dell Vostro 1710 laptop and something really strange has happened.
Last month, I was turning the laptop on and I clicked my username on the Windows Welcome Screen. It began to load but all of a sudden, I was faced with a BSOD.
I restarted the laptop and it wouldn't load the operating system. I looked in the BIOS and it wasn't detecting a hard drive at all!
I contacted Dell and they told me that the hard drive had died. I thought fair enough and purchased the same hard drive from Dell.
I have very carefully fitted the hard drive and it still isn't detecting it! I honestly believe that this is now a motherboard problem.
I would be very grateful if anyone can help me.
The laptop has hardly been used and has Windows XP Professional as its operating system.