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Old 01-06-2011, 10:53 AM
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Toshiba A205 Problems

Howdy Yall,
Normally I'm pretty good with computers having worked in various IT departments in the past and having been a computer engineering major for a while, but this one has me stumped.
I have a Toshiba A205 that is a few years old (out of warranty) that I'm having big problems with. It takes me several attempts to start it up. Sometimes it freezes on the Windows loading screen and sometimes it appears to start all the way to the desktop but is actually frozen and requires a hard shutdown. Often times, when I actually DO get it functioning, it'll freeze in the middle of what I'm doing and require a hard shutdown. If I ever put the computer to sleep, it'll guaranteed be frozen when I open the lid again to try to wake it up. It came with Vista but I did a complete hard drive format and installed Windows 7 Ultimate and that didn't fix anything. I did a memtest86 and all came back normal. Does anyone have any ideas? Thanks!
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:12 PM
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I experienced something similar to what you are on my HP Elite, and it turned out to be a combination of issues. First off, for some odd reason, Windows 7 does not like certain USB devices plugged in at bootup. I have a few Lacie ruggedized portable HDDs and if one of those is plugged in at boot, I get the black 'Starting Windows' screen, but the windows logo never comes up (essentialy frozen). The second issue was my video card was going bad (daughter board in the laptop). This would cause all kind of hokey things to go on with it. Random freezes, not getting past POST, and return from sleep or hibernation was a lockup. I say all of this to mention what I think your problem is. I believe it is a HDD issue though. My brother-in-law has a dell that exhibited almost the exact same thing you are talking about and it turned out that his HDD had some bad sectors on it and had to be replaced. You might want to run a disk checker on it (chkdisk will do ok if you do not have anything better). At first, his would not report anything amiss, but when the issue became really bad, chkdisk finally said it had some bad sectors.

Anyway, best of luck, I know how much a PTA it is when your own stuff isn't working right when you have to deal with other ppls issues all the time.
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Old 01-15-2011, 03:53 PM
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Thanks for your reply. I finally physically got back to the computer. The computer boots up fine in safe mode with a USB mouse plugged in and hasn't frozen yet, granted the sleep service isn't started. I disabled all startup software (not services) and the problem still persists. I can get it guaranteed if I put the computer to sleep and wake it back up. It won't immediately be frozen but 1-5 minutes after that it'll lock up so I have to do a hard shutdown. Chkdsk reported 0 bad sectors so far. The fact that safe mode runs fine makes me think it's a weird Windows service or something like that. What do yall think?
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Old 01-15-2011, 04:17 PM
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I have an HP and have similar issues. Nine times out of ten it won't wake up from sleep, and I'd have to do a hard shut-down (remove the battery), and reboot. I just put it in hibernate mode now and it works fine that way.
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Old 01-15-2011, 09:03 PM
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When I'm dealing with pc problems, I like to narrow my field of possibilities as much as I can. I would suggest booting a linux live cd (either cd or usb) and try running that. If that runs with no problems, it is probably either a windows (ie software) problem, or a hdd problem. If it wont work, you have eliminated software and hdd from the possibilities.
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Old 01-16-2011, 08:02 AM
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I agree with monkeyman, the linux live CD is a good idea. One question also, how old is the windows install? I have seen allot of older windows desktop installations that start having weird issues also. If you can eliminate the Hardware, it could be a massive amount of things within windows. Not worth my time to track it down unless you get a blue screen or something in the event log that helps you pinpoint the issue. If you exhaust yourself on possibilities, I would just reinstall windows (fresh install, not overlaid).
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Old 01-16-2011, 08:13 AM
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He said he wiped vista and installed win 7, so the age of the install should not be an issue. However I do agree, I too have seen strange problems crop up on older win installs.

Although, TexasAggie09, were these problem present with the vista install or did they begin after installing win 7? I ask because on laptops that were not designed for win 7, it can have very serious issues with hardware compatibility. I encountered this on my wife's vista laptop that I installed win 7 on.
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Old 02-04-2011, 03:03 AM
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I had something very similar happen on a Compaq laptop.
We started grasping at straws one day and pulled the memory out of it and put it in another laptop. The problem transferred to the other laptop.
We ran memtest on it more than once and it didn't find anything. The tech ran a different memory testing software (sorry, can't remember which one) and it found bad memory addresses.
The laptop would boot into safe mode and run all day because it would never use the bad memory addresses.
Replaced the memory and as far as I know the laptop is still going strong.
Sounds like you are soon going to be at the straw grasping stage.
Good luck.
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