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Thread: Reboot without Blue Screen

  1. #1
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    Reboot without Blue Screen

    Hey Guys,

    Recently my laptop computer (Toshiba M45-S269, with an extra GB of RAM and updated HD), started seemingly rebooting at random. This would happen without warning and no BSOD almost like I unplugged and plugged back in the power connector. I noticed that the behavior seemed to be correlated to accessing the HD (certain folders). The HD is a Seagate Momentus 7200.2 120GB (SATA), roughly 8 months old. Going on this notion I attempted to check for errors using Windows built in disk checking utility launched from bootup (not within Windows). This did not complete as a reboot would occur. I hooked up the HD to my desktop as a slave and downloaded Seagate's diagnostic tools. I had access to all of my files without issue so I performed a backup. I ran every single test on the HD which all passed. I also ran Windows Disk Checking utility (including bad sector detection) which again passed. At this point I was thinking corrupt file system near some system files, or perhaps a pooched Windows installation. So I performed a full format (NTFS which it was initially). So that is where I am now, I am about to reinstall the HD into the laptop and reinstall Windows. Is it possible this was a software issue? Is it likely there is some other HW issue with my laptop (memory, SATA controller)? And recommendations of things to try? Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Extreme Member! BipolarBill's Avatar
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    99% of the time, it's a software (driver) issue - not hardware.

    Go for it.

    Next time, write to us *before* formatting. We may have saved you the trouble.
    MS MCP, MCSE

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    Thanks for the reply. I will reinstall Windows and update my drivers and see if the issue persists. Next time I will ask before formatting (thought for sure it was the drive).

  4. #4
    Stark Raving MOD Midknyte's Avatar
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    Random reboots can be caused by heat. Make sure to clean out the heatsinks/fans with compressed air.

  5. #5
    Ultimate Member Ol'Tunzafun's Avatar
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    A bad memory stick will do that too.
    http://oca.microsoft.com/en/windiag.asp

  6. #6
    Stark Raving MOD Midknyte's Avatar
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    I prefer Memtest+ (on UBCD), but OlTunz has a point.

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    Attempting to reinstall Windows (XP Pro) reboots after the "Installing Devices" phase exactly when it prompts the user for "Regional and Language Options" input. This occurs in a cycle. My CPU fan appears to be running fine with no visible blockage. Nonetheless I have blasted it with compressed air. I guess its now time to consider RAM? On a whim I removed the initial DIMM (512MB) which came with the machine and the Windows XP install completed with no issues. However, on first entering the desktop, again it reboots. I rebooted into safe mode and it hasn't rebooted yet. Is testing the memory still in the system the next move? Thanks.

  8. #8
    Ultimate Member Ol'Tunzafun's Avatar
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    Is testing the memory still in the system the next move?
    I would say so. The UBCD that Midknyte suggested would be the best choice for that. It has many other useful utilities that may prove useful before we are done.
    You could also pull the new dimms one at a time.

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    Windows Memory Diagnostic is on its 4th pass without error. I am downloading and burning UBCD now.

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    Memtest+ is now running, looks like it will take a while. How many passes is sufficient?

  11. #11
    Stark Raving MOD Midknyte's Avatar
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    I usually run at least a couple full passes for a basic diag. If you get ANY errors, you can just stop at that point and swap out your ram.

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    Currently I have run 3+ error free passes. Is it time to consider something other than RAM? Thanks.

  13. #13
    Stark Raving MOD Midknyte's Avatar
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    Sounds like the ram is good.

    When you cleaned it out, I didn't mean just the fan. Make sure the heatsink fins are clear also (fins on the left side, I believe). Blow air into the fins and see if junk comes flying out by the fan.

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    I blew air into the heatsink fins and a little dust came out of the fan. After restarting I noticed that my fan is no longer running at all. Why would this be? Is there anything I can do about that?

  15. #15
    Mod w/ an attitude Sterling_Aug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stringplucker View Post
    I blew air into the heatsink fins and a little dust came out of the fan. After restarting I noticed that my fan is no longer running at all. Why would this be? Is there anything I can do about that?
    That could be a good thing or a bad thing depending on what happened inside.

    Dust may have been blocking airflow and the fan running all the time was a way to compensate for the higher temps.

    Or, you may have blown dust into the back of the fan and stopped it from turning.

    I always blow air into EVERY possible opening in the laptop (including the ethernet port, the modem, I open the CDROM drive, I take out the battery, everywhere).

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