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rumpty
14-02-2018, 11:07 AM
My Toshiba Satellite Pro 300 occasionally throws a wobbly these days when it boots. It will just turn off entirely part way through the process (accompanied by a relay click sound inside), but will probably boot ok on a second try. Much more occasionally it will turn off entirely soon after completely booting up. Again, it will behave itself after another boot-up. It has been 100% for years, but recently started this strange behaviour.

It is running on the mains, no battery in it. OS is LinuxMint.

Went through the User manual for ideas - should I be attending to the state of the Real Time Clock battery, as one does on a desktop motherboard? It seems to have a rechargeable lithium-ion battery doing this job.

Thanks for any thoughts.

1101
14-02-2018, 03:09 PM
The click sound may just be the HD's read arm getting a kick when it looses power
First thing todo : backup any data

Could be : well anything really. Most likely hardware
failing power supply, failing internal power circuitry,bad chipset, etc etc etc . Could even be shorted out/broken USB ports giving issues

many many many years ago dead cmos batt could cause issues on some laptops , I somehow doubt thats the issue for yours
Maybee try just removing that CMOS batt & see if that helps, assuming its easy to get to , assuming it actually has one. :-)

If its not the power supply, it wont be worth cost of repairing anyway.
Try booting off a CD/DVD a few times to see if the issue is only when it boots from HD (It doubt it)
Make sure fans are working & not clogged up with dust.
Burn a Ram test CD (Memtest86+) and leave that running overnight
check the power socket is OK, not loose & woobly

Prognosis : its old. Its dying . Chances are it wont be a simple fix

1101
14-02-2018, 03:19 PM
I bought a used laptop for $120 a few weeks back : Win7, i5 , 4G RAM.

So buying another may just be the easiest option. They can often be bought dirt cheap .

rumpty
14-02-2018, 05:48 PM
Thanks for the ideas, 1101. I have backed up anything that is important to me. Tried another power supply, but the fault was still there.

The HD is a relatively new one which I'm using for Linux, so I've replaced that with the original Drive that has W7 on it, for now. Also unearthed the original battery for the laptop, to try it on battery power (with the Linux drive back in). We'll see what happens.

I haven't found the RTC backup battery yet!

KarameaDave
14-02-2018, 06:28 PM
It may be the NEC/TOKIN capacitor is on the way out, if it is your problem
will only get worse, here is a video on how to repair it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4W2AljjOUYQ
I probably wouldn't bother.
Good luck

rumpty
15-02-2018, 11:03 AM
Many thanks for that link KarameaDave. The YouTube videos certainly describe the fault pretty much as I see it.

Replacing the faulty cap would normally be a simple fix, but what a pain it looks to be to take the laptop apart! I'll think about it for a while.

rumpty
15-02-2018, 04:38 PM
I would like to know exactly what this NEC/TOKIN capacitor does. Reading a few forums dealing with the subject, it looks like the laptop will run with no problems on battery, but things go bad when the mains supply is plugged in instead, or as well. And then there is talk of disabling one CPU core to stop the random shutdowns occuring. Overheating?

KarameaDave
15-02-2018, 04:59 PM
It is a multi-value VRM capacitor used to smooth power for the CPU
http://www.capacitorlab.com/basic/index.htm
It may be right that it only is needed when power supply is plugged in.
Overheating is a different issue and may be dealt with by cleaning all dust from the cooling fins and/or applying fresh thermal paste.
But your description appears closer to the capacitor issue.

piroska
15-02-2018, 06:38 PM
[QUOTE=rumpty;1273094 It will just turn off entirely part way through the process (accompanied by a relay click sound inside), .[/QUOTE]

Sounds like a click of death.
Thats hard drive failure. Do a HDD test on it