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Computer randomly suspends

By EStreetJerseyGirl ·
I'm working on someone's computer for the past 2 days, and I can't figure out how to fix this problem. It's a Sony Vaio Notebook, model # PCG-F180 with a P2, 333MHz processor and 64MB of RAM, and running Windows ME. When I first got it, it would shut down within 20 seconds of startup. Actually, shutdown isn't the proper word; I'm not quite sure what it's doing. The monitor turns off, and it sounds like the computer powers down, but the fan is still running and the power light is still on, even if I unplug it from the AC adapter. I have all the BIOS and power management settings set to never hibernate, suspend, sleep, or turn off the hard drives, monitor, or anything else unless I shut the computer down. I thought this might have been the solution I was looking for ( but after trying all of those steps short of putzing with the motherboard itself, I'm still not able to keep the laptop running. I tried swapping in a new hard drive, and now the computer will run normally for about 10 minutes, but then it does the same thing of sounding like it's shutting down, but still being on, and no display appears (from here on out when I say "shut down," this is what I'm referring to, since it's easier than saying all this every time). I've run virus scans, spyware scans, tried running in safe mode, nothing works. The other strange thing is that, when I'm in BIOS setup or installing the O/S, it doesn't shut down, it runs perfectly normally. I don't get any errors or warnings before it shuts down.

Can ANYONE at all help me? I'll be eternally grateful, plus give you a Gold Star and a Scooby Snack! :-)


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by BobDank In reply to Computer randomly suspend ...

I had a similar problem with an eMachine notebook, and it turned out to be the cooling of the CPU was not working properly. It would work fine in BIOS, or off of a CD, but soon after launching Windows (hard drive being worked and adding heat to the unit) it would "shut down". I verified this by pointing a small desk fan at the CPU cooling intake and raising the laptop off the desk using post-it note pads under the feet. Then the laptop would work all day long w/o a hitch. Remove the fan or post-it risers and it would "power off" exactly as you describe. Funny thing was I could hear the cpu fan working just fine inside the laptop. I suspect the user was a bit rough on the unit and may have jostled the cpu heatsink & fan combo loose. Thankfully it was repaired under warranty.

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by EStreetJerseyGirl In reply to

Sounds almost exactly like my problem, only the computer will run for hours if ScanDisk or Defrag are running. I have the back of the notebook propped up with an ashtray, but I don't think heat is the cause, since the computer will stay on for hours running a thorough scan. I checked out the heatsink and fan, and there are no problems with them being loose. Thanx for the suggestion, though!

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by willcomp In reply to Computer randomly suspend ...

I'm rather sure at this point that you do have the problem described in link you posted in original question.

When you re-installed Me on new HDD, did you follow his instructions for a clean install using OEM CD instead of Sony CD?

May be helpful to contact him, provide your experience, and see if he has another solution for you short of replacing caps on motherboard.


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by giannidalessismo In reply to Computer randomly suspend ...

[not an answer just a comment (per answer 11)] it's amazing how
many problems are addressed (in one form or other) with a
reinstall of the OS. cos it's windows.

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by virden In reply to Computer randomly suspend ...

Hi folks
I just had this fault on a F305 (=F350 in U.S.). Having Googled for advice, and as an electronics tech, I removed and checked all the large capacitors around the processor for charge/discharge time & leakage. All were within spec. Having replaced them, I measured the A.C. ripple across the top left cap at 5V, way too high. I hung a 2200uF electrolytic across it, and the ripple & fault dissapeared. I have soldered this new cap on leads, and tucked it behind the speaker etc connector. The processor now runs much cooler, and the fan does less work.
I suspect there is a capacitor dying in the 5V regulator circuit on the motherboard somewhere, and these 'around the processor' caps are trying to do the job and not quite making it. P.S. The processor / video heat sink can be removed without major disassembly if you unhitch the left screen hinge & 'bully' the case parts a little.

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by EStreetJerseyGirl In reply to Computer randomly suspend ...

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