Computer Startup Problem

Lenovo Ibm thinkpad t40 cpm
August 10, 2009 at 22:58:06
Specs: Windows XP
When i turn on my laptop, it shows a black screen. The fan and hard drive spins and functions properly. the battery is fully charged and the AC is plugged in.

When I was using it, the whole laptop froze and nothing worked so i turned it off, and now it won't turn on.

When the computer is off and i have the AC plugged in and the internet cable plugged in, the light on the laptop flashes. without AC, the light is off


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#1
August 11, 2009 at 09:40:04
If you get no display but the computer seems to be working otherwise....

Try plugging a monitor into your VGA port, when the computer is shut down, then booting to see if the display is then normal on the external monitor.
See response 1 in this:
http://www.computing.net/answers/ha...
........

I found a review of thinkpad t40 cpm dated October 2006, so your laptop may be that old or older - your laptop probably has been used a lot.

"When I was using it, the whole laptop froze and nothing worked so i turned it off, and now it won't turn on."

If your cpu is overheating, your laptop will work fine for a while after it has been booted after having had a chance to cool to room temerature, but when the cpu has gotten too hot, the laptop will mis-behave, and most more recent mboard's bioses will shut down the computer eventually, and in that case the computer will not start up again until the cpu has cooled to below a specific temperature.
Make sure there are no obstructions that prevent air from getting into or out of openings in the base of the laptop. If that doesn't help, there may be too much mung (lint, dust, etc.) inside the laptop in the air passages, or on the cpu heatsink, or the fan that cools the laptop may have too much mung on it or be be failing or not spinning at all (laptop fans are usually temperature controlled, though they may come on for a short time when you first boot in any case) . You are wise to consult a service manual for your laptop in order to find how to properly open it up and check for those things.

You can find the current cpu temp in most bios Setups. Of course, the computer has to be working and have video in order to check that, and you should check that after the computer has been running a while.
.......

If the laptop freezes at random times even when the cpu should be cool, lots of things can cause freezes.

Sometimes that's caused by a hardware problem other than overheating.

Make sure the main battery is properly seated and making a good connection in it's socket. E.g. unplug it, plug it back in; examine the connection on the laptop.

It may be you may have a ram connection problem

A common thing that can happen with ram, even ram that worked fine previously, is the ram has, or has developed, a poor connection in it's slot(s).
This usually happens a long time after the ram was installed, but it can happen with new ram, or after moving the computer case from one place to another, and I've had even new modules that needed to have their contacts cleaned.

See response 2 in this - try cleaning the contacts on the ram modules, and making sure the modules are properly seated:
http://www.computing.net/hardware/w...

For a laptop, you must remove both its main battery and AC adapter before you do that.
Consult your User manual for your model if you need to.
........

If you have not replaced it's original battery, you probably should do that.
Your main battery may be too old and/or defective, and/or there may be something wrong with the AC adapter, or the AC adapter's connection to the laptop.
See response 1 in this:
http://www.computing.net/answers/ha...

Correction for that:

The jack in the laptop should move when you wiggle the plug in the jack.

should have been

The jack in the laptop should NOT move when you wiggle the plug in the jack.

The power jack in the laptop may have a mechanical switching device that switches the laptop to main battery only use. If the jack is damaged, that feature may not work and the computer won't start up when the AC adapter is disconnected even when the main battery has a sufficient charge and there's nothing wrong with the battery. In that case you must replace the jack.
.........


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#2
August 11, 2009 at 15:25:32
Could a broken USB slot be the problem? One of my USB slots broke recently with the black piece holding the 4 pins falling out. One of the pins are jammed inside while the other 3 pins are still there.

I havn't taken the laptop apart to check yet but i will do soon.

I tried plugging in an extra moniter and switching between them but nothing happens


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#3
August 11, 2009 at 15:30:53
The the pin you can't see is shorting out against one of the other s that could cause a problem.

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Related Solutions

#4
August 11, 2009 at 17:15:29
"Could a broken USB slot be the problem? One of my USB slots broke recently with the black piece holding the 4 pins falling out. One of the pins are jammed inside while the other 3 pins are still there."

The purpose of the plastic piece inside the port is primarily to prevent you from plugging in a USB plug into it upside down, Most USB plugs have that too.
As OtheHill has said, if something is shorting because of that, that could be.The outer metal shell is usually also connected, to ground - nothing other than a pin for ground should be shorting to that. Did the laptop work for a while when you booted after that happened?
You could try disconnecting the batterry and the AC adapter, and bending the USB port's pins so they aren't touching anything.

"I tried plugging in an extra moniter and switching between them but nothing happens"

The laptop should enable the display on external monitor automatically. If you get no display on that either, something other than a failing or dead backlight or voltage inverter or broken wires between the base and the display in the lid is wrong..
If you haven't tried re-seating the ram, try that.

Most more recent latops will not start up on the AC adapter alone. If there's something wrong with the battery or the mechanical switch on the power jack, it probably won't start up. If the battery is shorted internally, which is common for an old battery, or if it can't be charged to at least a minimal voltage or capacity for whatever reason, the laptop probably won't start up. The voltage of the battery can be checked with a voltmeter.



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#5
August 11, 2009 at 21:03:59
I have resetted the ram but no changes. out and some of the screws are busted so i can't unscrew them.

"Did the laptop work for a while when you booted after that happened?"

tried to pull out the pin from the usb but the pin won't come out back to its original state. it seems that the pin is stuck in its own slot. (inwards, making it look shorter than other 3 pins)

"The voltage of the battery can be checked with a voltmeter."

I checked the battery and it was fine.

Would it be preferable to buy a new laptop or send it out for diagnostics and repair. since seeing my laptop is second hand and pretty old.


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#6
August 12, 2009 at 08:21:29
How much you're willing to spend is up to you.
It isn't important whether the laptop is older and not worth much - it's a matter of what it's value is to you.
E.g. the SS7 mboard of the computer I am typing this on was made in Aug 1999. The system is worth almost nothing on the open market, but I'm still using it and it's worth something to me.
You could phone local places that repair laptops and ask how much for an estimate.

If you're handy, if you can find a service manual you could try opening it up and repairing it yourself, or you could just try opening it up.If it's not available free from the Lenovo site, try searching the web for one - there are some sites that have them free or for a reasonable fee.

".....some of the screws are busted so i can't unscrew them."

Better description needed.

E.g. Laptops and computer components in general may use japanese standard phillips head machine screws. They're a little different from the north american standard and standard north american phillips head screwdrivers or bits don't fit them 100% the same. In any case, if the screw is tight and someone didn't press down enough with a tool when trying to loosen the screw, or used the wrong size of tool, the phillips or other style socket in the screw head may be stripped - ruined. You could clean the head and a tool tip and try using a small drop of epoxy glue such as 5 minute epoxy to glue it to a tool or an allen "wrench" (hex; hard steel; L-shaped) - that sometimes works fine. If the socket in the screw is not completely ruined , simply using the right size of tool may allow you to remove it - if you don't have such, buy it! Places where you can buy lots of computer and electronic component related pieces may have japanese style phillips head tools.

If nothing else, you could buy a used working laptop of the same model quite cheaply, such as without a hard drive and ram, and transfer you ram and hard drive to it, or just a used mboard if you can eventually take it apart - however make sure it has no password required that is unknown BEFORE you buy it, because you probably won't be able to remove it - it probably can't be removed because it's stored on a chip other than the bios chip that can't be erased by removing all power to it.



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