HELP!...My Laptop DIED! What do I do?

By IT2MD · here is the deal...I purchased a Gateway Tablet Laptop a little over 5 years ago...and it has been a pretty good experience for the most part...until last night!!!

I am currently a pre-professional student taking Calculus, Physics, and Chemistry. I was getting ready to study for a calculus exam and turned on my laptop. As it booted up normally, I was unwinding the power cord. It was on the Win.XP Prof Log-in Page when I plugged it in. I turned to enter my password and the laptop had gone totally BLACK! screen, no charging light, no power, NOTHING!

I swear I almost cried in desperation! My entire life is on that laptop! I have intentionally been extremely careful with this laptop. To have this occur NOW, is really frustrating to me.

Anyway, I tried everything I know, and even googled it, with no success. I left it plugged in all night, and still nothing. It appears to literally have died!

So, my question now is what do I do? Is it possible to resolve this? And if so, HOW?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance for that help.

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All Answers

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Catastrophic Failures

by TheChas In reply to HELP!...My Laptop DIED! W ...

If you are lucky, the battery choose that exact moment to fail. It is not uncommon for a bad battery to make a laptop appear dead.

Or, it could be the power supply inside the laptop.

If this is a power supply or battery failure, the good news is that all your files should be recoverable.

I would determine what type of hard drive you have (IDE or SATA) and use a USB drive adapter to recover your data and files. Either copy them onto a desktop hard drive, or a USB backup hard drive.

Now, you need to decide if you want to have the Gateway repaired or buy a new computer.

If going the repair route, check for either a local warranty center, or get recommendations on reliable repair shops.


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Reponse To Answer

by IT2MD In reply to Catastrophic Failures

Thank you. I was/am actually planning on updating my desktop and laptop this year. But being a student I am waiting for Black Friday, due to financial reasons. The only reason I was or sounded so desperate was because I am in the middle of the fall semester and everything related to my classes is on my Gateway. Thanks to your reply and others, I am calm now, and know that everything will be ok. Thanks again.

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And if you do not want to pull the HDD and see what type it is

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to HELP!...My Laptop DIED! W ...

Prior to buying a USB Adapter you can get a USB to HDD Adapter that will fit most of the common drives it's called a USB 2 to SATA/IDE Cable.

You'll still need to pull the HDD out of the unit to recover your files though.

Though have you tried pulling the Mains Adapter out of the NB? It's possible that isn't working properly and simply by plugging it in it's overridden the battery.


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Reponse To Answer

by IT2MD In reply to And if you do not want to ...


Thank you very much for this link. I will be ordering this cable this weekend and try very hard to recover my necessary files for this semester.

Thanks again.

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5 years - replace it

by oldbaritone In reply to HELP!...My Laptop DIED! W ...

In the world of technology, 5 years old is a dinosaur. You may get lucky and a replacement power supply will get everything working again, but your laptop has given you good and faithful service for a long time. It's probably time for something newer.

That said, and as Col mentioned, IDE/SATA cables are readily available so you can pull the drive out of your system and recover your data. When you described your laptop as "Totally black, no screen, no charging light, no power, no nothing" that usually means that the failure is totally unrelated to the HDD, so I would be optimistic that you would be able to recover everything.

And the million-dollar question: Since the data is so important to you, when is the last time you backed it up? "My entire life is on that laptop!" If so, isn't it worth protecting it? Whether on optical media, or subscribing to one of the cloud-based backup services, regular data backup is always a good idea. You just found out why.

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Reponse To Answer

by 34R7HQU4K3 In reply to 5 years - replace it

Dude, it's simple. My old laptop does that quite a lot. Just unplug it, then plug it back in. Leaving it powered is the WORST thing you can do. Trust me, it probably shorted out, thats the cause of mine all the time. Just unplug, then plug back in. Simple.

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Reponse To Answer

by seanferd In reply to 5 years - replace it

Yep. "Extremely careful" would certainly include "backed up".

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Reponse To Answer

by IT2MD In reply to 5 years - replace it

You are right, and as stated in my reply to the first post, I am upgrading my technology later this year. But not until around Thanksgiving. Therefore, I will be recovering my data for now until after this semester ends. As for the backup, yes I do back it up. But since I'm the only one who uses it and i had never had any problems, it is only necessary for me to back it up/archive it once a year. Therefore, all the data from this year is not backed up, BUT that is actually the data I need the most. And really, it's only almost 3-months of data; because this computer's annual backup is in July. But those three months of data are very, very important to ME, right now!

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So here's one for you.

by _Papa_ In reply to HELP!...My Laptop DIED! W ...

This Lenovo R61i I'm using to write this died a year or so ago, just out of warranty. Same Symptom: just no power at all - no boot, no power light, no charge light, no drive noise, nothing. Charger checked good even under load. Twelve volt charger, also good, wouldn't run it either. Battery showed rated voltage. Continuity test at input connector showed reasonable resistance.
Fortunately, most of the files I really needed were backed up, but I desperately wanted a working laptop right away, so I sucked up my wallet an bough new. I set this one aside.

Some weeks later, I pulled this one out again to do some internal troubleshooting. First thing I did was to hook it up again. You're probably ahead of me, now...Yes, you're right, it booted. It has not failed since. Same hardware, charger, battery, everything.

So if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Just scratch a bald spot into your head and move on.

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Reponse To Answer

by keywest784 In reply to So here's one for you.

I am not sure if this helps, but I bought a nre HP laptop right when Vista was released. A day after the one year warranty expired it would not power up. Doing the same thing as described problem. I was lucky to have my old Dell with XP. Put the HP in the closet and after six months I pulled it out and turned it on just to see what happened. Poof, it powered up and worked fine for another 8 months before it just "died" agian. Then I get an email telling my that the NVIDA chipset is defective and that's what caused my laptop to die out. Luckily I got that email just in time to get a replacement laptop from HP. I due know that there were more than just HP laptops affected by NVIDA defects in the chipset. I hope this helps.

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