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Toshiba Satellite A25 laptop issue

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Johnny-be-Good, Nov 20, 2016.

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  1. Johnny-be-Good

    Johnny-be-Good Thread Starter

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    I bought this new, obviously some years ago.
    XP Home and all original hardware.
    Gave it to my sister about 4 years ago to run to run scientific apps that won't run on anything newer than XP.
    In her possession, It was not used on a network---no internet at all.

    It's screen went blank but the lights on the front of the case showed it loading/booting up.
    So I attached it to an old CRT monitor. As the computer booted the screen filled with a few hundred colored vertical lines but finalized with the regular background, but no icons or start menu. Right clicking on it did nothing.

    So I booted to an Acronis Boot disk and installed a known drive image I made 4 years ago that I knew was good. Same issue.

    I then installed the factory image from my Toshiba Install disk and, with the CRT attached, it boots up normally with no apparent issues.

    I still need to check the wiring connections of the laptop monitor but at least it's still useful with the external monitor.

    I'd like to hand this back to my sister with confidence as she uses it at home to do scientific data analysis for her employer.


    Any thoughts on what this issue might be, have been?


    SysInfo to follow.


    John :)
     
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  3. Johnny-be-Good

    Johnny-be-Good Thread Starter

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    SysInfo:

    Tech Support Guy System Info Utility version 1.0.0.4
    OS Version: Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Service Pack 3, 32 bit
    Processor: Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 2.80GHz, x86 Family 15 Model 2 Stepping 7
    Processor Count: 1
    RAM: 991 Mb
    Graphics Card: Trident CyberALADDiN-P4 v6.4612.22ICD_SE_NP, 32 Mb
    Hard Drives: C: 30 GB (23 GB Free); D: 25 GB (24 GB Free);
    Motherboard: TOSHIBA, Portable PC
    Antivirus: None
     
  4. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

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    To me the primary difference between the 4-years-ago image and the factory version is size. Four years ago implies SP3 and even if the factory version has SP3 there were a lot of additional Windows updates.

    Size difference implies to me that the problem is a disk or memory problem--one that is not being encountered with the smaller factory version. I'd run RAM and hard drive diagnostics.

    I could, of course, be way off. Remember that you asked for "any thoughts." :)
     
  5. Johnny-be-Good

    Johnny-be-Good Thread Starter

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    Thanks, Terry :)

    I installed Acronis Drive Monitor along with the fresh install and all looks good. No Issues there.

    I checked the Event Viewer and the only red flag was 'mrtRate service won't start' which relates to Quicken, but I deleted it several days ago and nothing flagged since.

    I've just downloaded Memtest86+ v5.01 and will start a memory test soon.


    Thanks for the suggestions :)


    John
     
  6. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

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    You're welcome. :)
     
  7. Johnny-be-Good

    Johnny-be-Good Thread Starter

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    Did 6 passes with Memtest86+.
    All good.

    Will attempt a stress test today with Prime95 and report back.



    John :)
     
  8. Johnny-be-Good

    Johnny-be-Good Thread Starter

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    6 hours of Prime95.
    No errors.
    Temps seem normal for a P4.
    Max CPU temp under 100% load....50c
    Down to 45c when Prime95 was turned off.

    Still open to comments :)

    John
     
  9. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

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    No more ideas here. :( Now I wouldn't even hazard a guess between hardware and software.
     
  10. Johnny-be-Good

    Johnny-be-Good Thread Starter

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    I wish I could post more info on how it 'died', but that's just all I was initially told and all I tested didn't point to anything.

    Thanks for responding, though.

    It does seem to be operating correctly, for now.


    John :)
     
  11. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

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    The Toshiba Satellite A25 series laptops appear to have been introduced in 2003, so that one is pretty old.
    I agree that it could be a hardware issue or a software issue or both.
    Have you considered a refurbished desktop with Windows XP Professional SP3 32-bit for a replacement?

    --------------------------------------------------------------
     
  12. Johnny-be-Good

    Johnny-be-Good Thread Starter

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    Hi Frank :)

    Good suggestion.
    I've recommended to my sister, she look for a replacement.
    Since she requires some mobility, It'll be a laptop. Otherwise I'd give he my old Acer WinXP desktop.
    I'll see what's available in refurb XP laptops.

    In the past, her IT department where she worked even tried Winxp mode on a Win7 Pro 64 bit laptop, but her XP specific scientific programs would crash. Unknown if this would have worked on a 32bit version of Win7 Pro with XP mode as her company had none to try it out on.

    I'm going to try some extended time on this machine with Prime95, on the order of a week or so just to see how it holds up to an extreme amount of stress testing.

    Up to recently, it's been rock steady.
    Maybe it was just bad electrons LOL!
     
  13. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

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    Before I posted my last reply, I checked out refurbished Windows XP laptops, but they seem to be hard to find at a cheap price.

    When you said you connected a CRT monitor to her laptop, I assumed she uses it in a stationary location, so that's why I suggested a desktop.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------
     
  14. Johnny-be-Good

    Johnny-be-Good Thread Starter

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    Sadly, it's the only way I could see the computer boot up as the laptop screen is totally dark all the time.
    Maybe a loose wire? Maybe a bad monitor?
    Haven't had the time to take it apart and check.
    If That can't be fixed with some thing as simple as a wiring connection, she'll be needing a replacement.
    Fortunately, while very convenient for her work, it's not critical.

    But first, IMO, the rest of the hardware has to prove it's worthy of putting more time into a disassembly. Thus an extended stress test. :)
     
  15. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

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    Never tried Winxp mode, but I have had occasional success with running a program in compatibility mode (right click the program and select "Troubleshoot compatibility") in Vista, Windows 7 and 8.1. I suspect that has already been tried.

    I also run XP in a virtual machine (VirtualBox), now on a Windows 8.1 machine but previously on Windows 7. Works well. Downsides are that you need a Windows XP that you can install (just as if it were a real machine) and you have very little control of the real hardware (so can't test Wi-Fi or special old equipment).
     
  16. managed

    managed Trusted Advisor

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    Have you tried shining a flashlight onto the laptop's screen ? If not try it and see if there is a faint image. If there is the problem could be the inverter which is quite easy and (usually) cheap to replace (or the cable between screen and motherboard although that is less likely if there is a faint image).
     
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