Question Laptop turning ON but no display & not booting to Windows most times ?

Tim042

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Sep 10, 2020
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Hi everyone , i have a tricky Laptop problem that as a repairer myself , i cant quite nail. and love some help.. Problem is the usual "wont start and blank screen- but for months!! sometimes start normally and most not- so intermittent!!! worst fault haha

OK- What it isnt- I have switched out ram and PS and its not over heating ect as i service it but that would be once it s hot and OH. I have also changed SD HD with another and fresh windows install so its not windows or t the HD!!

Problem-- Push Power button (3 volts ok?) and power light and mouse comes on each time but nothing on screen OR i see 'windows starting" but then nothing. So kill power a couple of times and after 1-4 tries finally get into windows and DESKTOP and if that far, NO failure or blue screens or shutdowns and runs OK all day.... , no error mesgs and faultless , its just getting to desktop sometimes and then perfect all day.

So my electronics and M/B knowledge is leaning toward Weak Caps that are loaded harder? on start but less once computer on and thus runs all day-
Laptop is 13 years so YES, caps will be worn Maybe Bios chip ropey or super IO BUT by now they should have failed totally? Super IO is keeping the mouse on and power on so not a board short plus i checked all that when pulled M/B to check obvious shorts and burnt components Also Power button not always work to force shutdown to try 1-4 restarts so m/B not always responsive, so i pull plug.

Battery and bios battery also removed and replaced . When i try to duplicate this fault HOT, i cant do it, only seems to happen after cold night then start- leading me to think weak cold caps not already ran and warmed ? when i pulled board and tried restarts they worked every time as M/B was warm and voltage filled generally. Is the Power button 3V needed AFTER the board is on, if not then that cant be it as mouse is on every time just wont get going to windows My next step is to monitor the 19V main rail and maybe even scope it for A/C noise when i turn it on cold and see if i can detect weak voltage and ripple from bad caps but not bad enough to have it run all day without fault? hmm Screen problems detected? but screen works perfectly all day and everything else too for months with this problem so i dont want to start reballing chips and make it worse perhaps.

Of course dumb Windows says it need repair when it does start after restarts as thats it default position but it NOT Windows or the drive.. This is M/B related as all else has been replaced or substituted to rule that out....

Inspection- no corrosion or anything obvious. now it hot here in AUST, it might start each morning first time leading me to think warm nigh warm caps?
or simply a chip that is intermittent and hasnt failed yet. Any ideas appreciated as its my mums and valued to her and i like learn what this is or could be...

thanks for any help..
 

NameChanged38

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Tim, my ASUS K55A was doing exactly this. If our problem is the same, the issue will get worse and worse. Mine went from intermittently POSTing to almost never POSTing. After trying various things, tearing the laptop to the ground, I determined it had to be the BIOS. Well, I learned BIOS's can degrade over time (moreso the data on them, not as much the chip itself.)

Try hunting down the BIOS for the laptop and performing a BIOS flash. For me, finding the particular BIOS for my specific K55A was not an easy feat. I was resorting to some real dodgy websites as ASUS did not have it. After the flash though, the K55A went back to POSTing. Every. Single. Time. It's still working 'til this day.
 

Tim042

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Hi its a old Toshiba and the BIOS flash idea i wanted to try but finding a file and all that was a murky area and it has the latest so flash downwards? it wont let me flash the same file again . My weak caps idea may be it but bios and weak chips also front runner. i need to try again to find old bios for this laptop
Think it is satalite pro A200 from memory , will try again to try find bios to flash but hit brick walls so far. i think you are very possibility right and was my first think then the caps and yours obviously shows a weak flash can last for a while ? then you reflashed and all good..
 

Tim042

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Sep 10, 2020
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Tim, my ASUS K55A was doing exactly this. If our problem is the same, the issue will get worse and worse. Mine went from intermittently POSTing to almost never POSTing. After trying various things, tearing the laptop to the ground, I determined it had to be the BIOS. Well, I learned BIOS's can degrade over time (moreso the data on them, not as much the chip itself.)

Try hunting down the BIOS for the laptop and performing a BIOS flash. For me, finding the particular BIOS for my specific K55A was not an easy feat. I was resorting to some real dodgy websites as ASUS did not have it. After the flash though, the K55A went back to POSTing. Every. Single. Time. It's still working 'til this day.
Also, if i'm getting to "windows starting" sometimes does that mean the bios chip is working or is it Needed to get all to the desktop and can still be bad even with windows starting message"?
 

NameChanged38

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Hi its a old Toshiba and the BIOS flash idea i wanted to try but finding a file and all that was a murky area and it has the latest so flash downwards? it wont let me flash the same file again . My weak caps idea may be it but bios and weak chips also front runner. i need to try again to find old bios for this laptop
Think it is satalite pro A200 from memory , will try again to try find bios to flash but hit brick walls so far. i think you are very possibility right and was my first think then the caps and yours obviously shows a weak flash can last for a while ? then you reflashed and all good..
ASUS has a similar system. It wouldn't allow me to downgrade or install the same BIOS. Within the BIOS flash screen, if you physically typed "risky", it would bypass everything, Toshiba may have a similar bypass. You may have to dig for it, though. Deep.
 

NameChanged38

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Also, if i'm getting to "windows starting" sometimes does that mean the bios chip is working or is it Needed to get all to the desktop and can still be bad even with windows starting message"?
In my particular situation, when it POSTed, it functioned flawlessly for as long as I wanted. Until the moment I powered it off/restarted it.
 

NameChanged38

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If you can find no such bypass, you could alternatively try either purchasing a new BIOS chip and soldering it on, or getting a USB BIOS Programmer and forcibly injecting a fresh BIOS.
 

Tim042

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Sep 10, 2020
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Tim, my ASUS K55A was doing exactly this. If our problem is the same, the issue will get worse and worse. Mine went from intermittently POSTing to almost never POSTing. After trying various things, tearing the laptop to the ground, I determined it had to be the BIOS. Well, I learned BIOS's can degrade over time (moreso the data on them, not as much the chip itself.)

Try hunting down the BIOS for the laptop and performing a BIOS flash. For me, finding the particular BIOS for my specific K55A was not an easy feat. I was resorting to some real dodgy websites as ASUS did not have it. After the flash though, the K55A went back to POSTing. Every. Single. Time. It's still working 'til this day.
Flashed the bios from disk as it didnt like doing it from windows which is what i tried the first time months ago then lost interest!! So it did a 2016 version and Bios liked the flash from disk and it still boots hot now so havnt bricked it. Will try each morning and see if i can get 3 clean morning boots without problems and that will be that otherwise have to drag out the oscilloscope and try to trace this down EEK!!
Will mesg you again if you want in a few days with outcome?

Tim.
 

Tim042

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Sep 10, 2020
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Good news so far. Let me know what results you get.
will do. got a question on Win 11 Hardware requirements. Have MS considered the CPU 2017? onwards wont work thing and load landfill with computers older than 2017?
Is win 11 fully released yet, i havt been keeping up as still love win 7 and win 10 a bit eventhough better i guess.
 

NameChanged38

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will do. got a question on Win 11 Hardware requirements. Have MS considered the CPU 2017? onwards wont work thing and load landfill with computers older than 2017?
Is win 11 fully released yet, i havt been keeping up as still love win 7 and win 10 a bit eventhough better i guess.
Apparently first generation Ryzen chips can use TPM 2.0, but "require" the addon chip to do so. The Intel 7000 series CPUs and onward appear to have it built in. Personally, I'll be sticking to Windows 10 for the time being. Windows 11 has little appeal to me at the moment aside from the more matured HDR support.
 

Tim042

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Sep 10, 2020
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Apparently first generation Ryzen chips can use TPM 2.0, but "require" the addon chip to do so. The Intel 7000 series CPUs and onward appear to have it built in. Personally, I'll be sticking to Windows 10 for the time being. Windows 11 has little appeal to me at the moment aside from the more matured HDR support.
Yeah , the BIOS flash went smoothly but no change. Still 1-4 starts to get to starting windows.
After months of this behaviour, it starts first go or have to force off and on up to 4 times till screen gets going and "windows starting" Laptop works faultlessy all day so what ever is wrong with M/B it has to be small and not effect normal operation as i have tested mem and CPU and worked the computer and no blue screens or any glitch once working normally.
Today was interesting. Pushed button and as always mouse and power light ON but mouse cycled 4 times on off till finally windows starts and desktop and normal. So Bios chip weak but refuses to quit after 6 months? or i swapped ram a number of times and it doesant like any ram BUT windows works perfectly so that cant be it or i would have blue screens for ram ect.
PS faulty around the bios and super io causing signal problems? maybe but when chips start to go they fail quickly or even caps ect but 6 months?? So bad cold solder joints? sort of passing power and signals and that could go on for ever if not get worse and may explain start up to windows issue for so long?
Not windows as i said i swapped H/D with fresh install and made no diff.
IS Super io detecting small problem and refuse to stat sometimes? M/B is ON every time just screen blank.
Weird one this one as it should be getting worse but not really, it has to be bios related in that area but next thing to try is solder on another bios chip if that even available. Dont know what i have missed if not bios related and LT word faultlessly all day once IN to desktop??
 

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