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Laptop shuts off randomly and has become unusable


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7 replies to this topic

#1 aeonise

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 01:08 AM

It's quite a bit more complicated than just that, but I couldn't think of a more descriptive title that would fit.  I had another thread about this, but the title is no longer accurate and I haven't gotten any responses in over a week.

 

I'll try to list everything in as much detail as possible, but please ask if there is something I leave out that might be relevant.

 

Here's my speccy output.

 

The laptop simply shuts off without any sort of warning or notice.  There is no BSoD, no error message, nothing.  It's basically like what happens when you pull the plug on a desktop.  There is an audible noise along the lines of "glck" that I believe to be the hard disk coming to a stop without power, and no lights or anything stay on.  A few seconds later, the laptop turns on and attempts to boot up, starting with the "improper shutdown" menu with options to start in the three safe mode variants or startup normally.

 

Looking in the Event Viewer under Windows Logs > System, I see one "Critical" event that accompanies every attempt to start up after a shutoff:

Log Name:      System
Source:        Microsoft-Windows-Kernel-Power
Date:          5/31/2013 12:04:27 PM
Event ID:      41
Task Category: (63)
Level:         Critical
Keywords:      (2)
User:          SYSTEM
Computer:      Seijiro
Description:
The system has rebooted without cleanly shutting down first. This error could be caused if the system stopped responding, crashed, or lost power unexpectedly.
Event Xml:
<Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">
  <System>
    <Provider Name="Microsoft-Windows-Kernel-Power" Guid="{331C3B3A-2005-44C2-AC5E-77220C37D6B4}" />
    <EventID>41</EventID>
    <Version>2</Version>
    <Level>1</Level>
    <Task>63</Task>
    <Opcode>0</Opcode>
    <Keywords>0x8000000000000002</Keywords>
    <TimeCreated SystemTime="2013-05-31T03:04:27.722812700Z" />
    <EventRecordID>110143</EventRecordID>
    <Correlation />
    <Execution ProcessID="4" ThreadID="8" />
    <Channel>System</Channel>
    <Computer>Seijiro</Computer>
    <Security UserID="S-1-5-18" />
  </System>
  <EventData>
    <Data Name="BugcheckCode">0</Data>
    <Data Name="BugcheckParameter1">0x0</Data>
    <Data Name="BugcheckParameter2">0x0</Data>
    <Data Name="BugcheckParameter3">0x0</Data>
    <Data Name="BugcheckParameter4">0x0</Data>
    <Data Name="SleepInProgress">false</Data>
    <Data Name="PowerButtonTimestamp">0</Data>
  </EventData>
</Event>

I can pull more of the logs if needed.

 

 

I've been trying to narrow down the possible causes by observing these shutoffs in controlled circumstances over the past several weeks.  I am enumerating my observations below for clarity.

  1. When the the shutoffs first occurred approximately 2.5 months ago, they only happened during graphics intensive games and very rare, perhaps once in a week.
  2. They seem to be getting more common as time goes on, to the point where I am usually unable to use the computer normally, but there have been periods as long as three days (one such period ended two days ago) without any shutoffs.
  3. The shutoffs have been observed with the battery removed (running on the AC adapter alone), with the AC adapter unplugged from the wall outlet and/or the laptop (running only on battery power), and with both the battery and AC adapter attached.
  4. In contrast to #3, the shutoffs have not seemed nearly as prevalent when starting and running the laptop on the battery alone.  I have only observed shutoffs while on battery power alone in the past week.
  5. In addition to #4, most of the laptop's periods of functionality longer than an hour seemed to come after I started the laptop only on battery, started a game or other program, ran the battery down to below 20% capacity, then plugged in the AC adapter.  In those situations, the laptop usually* functioned without suffering a shutoff until at or shortly after the time I either closed the primary program I was running or opened another program of high complexity (such as opening my web browser while playing a game).  *I estimate 50% of the time, rising to 80-90% if including a single shutoff followed by immediately restarting and continuing what I was doing, though those estimates are subject to the possibility of observer bias.
  6. Shutoffs have occurred as soon as Windows begins to load after the BIOS screen and any startup/recovery options have been navigated.  I previously thought I had observed shutoffs before the laptop completed the BIOS portion of starting up, but turning off the quiet start option and observation have yielded no shutoffs until Windows begins to load.  What I had likely seen previously, and have seen since, was a shutoff within a fraction of a second of Windows beginning to load.  The Windows 7 animated logo barely registers onscreen part of the time when this happens.
  7. I have watched my system temperatures (4 on CPU-1 per core, 1 on GPU, 1 on hard disk, and 3 additional case readings) through SpeedFan, GPU-Z, Core Temp, and HWMonitor.  I have seen up to the second before a shutoff on several occasions and taken logs from GPU-Z and Core Temp over a dozen times.  Shutoffs have occurred when no temperature was above 50C as well as within a minute of a cold start after the laptop had been off for hours.  The system has functioned perfectly fine with CPU/GPU temps above 80C for hours or days before the shutoffs began and during periods of stability such as mentioned in #2.
  8. In addition to #7, I have cleaned out the laptop's fan and vents.  This did not appear to impact the prevalence of shutoffs.
  9. I normally use the laptop while connected to a monitor, wireless keyboard, wireless mouse, and my cable modem (direct ethernet connection; wireless radio is turned off).  I also use the laptop's speakers for music or a headset with microphone during most gaming.  I have experienced shutoffs with all combinations of those externals connected, including all of them disconnected.
  10. At this time and since midday yesterday, I have been unable to keep my laptop functional in normal mode for more than a few minutes before suffering a shutoff, and the laptop fails to even reach the Windows login screen roughly 80% of the time.  I have experienced similar failure levels previously, and they generally drop off after a day or two.  I am uncertain what causes the heightened failure levels or the return to what passes for normal operation now (only suffering shutoffs 1-3 times in a full day of use, typically when starting or closing a graphics-intensive application).
  11. The exception to #10 is that the laptop appears to function fine when started in any variant of Safe Mode.  I am currently typing this post while in Safe Mode with networking and the laptop has been functioning in such mode for over two hours despite the condition noted in #10.
  12. I have run Western Digital's Data Lifeguard Diagnostics on my hard disk and detected no problems.

If I recall or make any further observations, I will try to add them here or in a response.

 

Now, based on my observations, I think there are a number of possibilities that can be excluded:

  • Heat does not seem to be a factor unless there is a detector somewhere in the case that is thoroughly insulated from the rest of the system and not detected by any of the four programs I have used to observe temperatures or the system is detecting temperatures completely differently from those four programs.
  • Power source does not seem to be a factor, either, given that the shutoffs occur with all possible combinations of power sources available to me.  I don't have another compatible battery or AC adapter to test the unlikely possibility that both my battery and AC adapter are damaged in some fashion as to cause identical problems.  Observations #4 and #5 suggest that power is somehow related to the problem, though.
  • User-started applications don't appear to be a factor since shutoffs have occurred well before Windows reaches the login screen much less the desktop.
  • As per observation #12, the hard disk does not appear to be failing.  In addition, I would expect some sort of errors to be logged if that were the case.
  • I have not been able to test my RAM yet, but I have a hard time seeing that as the culprit.  Does Safe Mode make use of a system's RAM, still?  I would assume so given that I am running FireFox with a dozen tabs open and 40 more in the unloaded state.  If it seems likely to any of the experts out here that the RAM is faulty, I can go buy a flash drive and run Memtest86+.

 

Right now, I am wondering if a bad/corrupted graphics (or other) driver could be at fault.  I don't believe I've ever heard of a driver causing shutoffs like this, but I'm running out of ideas.  Graphics in specific since the problems started with, and are still most prevalent around, graphics-intensive games, the laptop alters how it handles graphics based on the power source (which could account for observations #4 and #5), and Safe Mode—which I understand does not load the primary graphics drivers—seems to function just fine.  If the graphics driver is at fault, I could use some advice in the best way to go about fixing it.  I've never had much luck messing with drivers beyond routine updates.

 

I'm at a loss here, so, if anyone has any ideas or suggestions or even requests for more data, please let me know, and thank you for your time.

 

EDIT:

To test out my theory about the graphics drivers, I uninstalled all of NVidia's drivers except PhysX (can't be uninstalled in Safe Mode), ran Driver Sweeper 3.2 and cleared out the remnants, then booted up normally (did this about 5 times with the drivers removed and had no shutoffs) and uninstalled PhysX.  There were no shutdowns with the drivers uninstalled, but that could just be coincidence.  Upon installing the 314.22 drivers from NVidia (the newest version has a lot of reported issues), I experienced shutoffs consistently at the "Starting Windows" screen with the animated logo.  I uninstalled and reinstalled the drivers twice with the same results.  Next I tried repeating the process with the newest (320.18) driver version.  This time, the laptop started up normally, and I logged in.  After opening several applications, looking over NVidia's new control center, and finally starting up XFire and Borderlands 2, I experienced another shutoff approximately two minutes into the game.  I don't really see any point in trying older versions of the drivers.

 

Three different sets (I had an older version of the drivers from the beginning of this year installed previously) of the drivers have now yielded the shutoffs, but I have not yet experienced one with the graphics drivers uninstalled.

 

Is it possible that the GPU or other part of the graphics card has gone bad such that it would cause the shutoffs only when the drivers are accessing it?  The fact that the shutoffs have increased in frequency suggests degradation, which suggests failing hardware rather than faulty software, and the fact that the shutoffs both focus on graphics-intensive operation and seem to disappear when the graphics drivers are removed suggests the graphics card in particular.

 

I'm still at a loss as to how to proceed.


Edited by aeonise, 31 May 2013 - 05:16 AM.


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#2 dc3

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 08:35 AM

Please download MiniToolBox  , save it to your desktop and run it.
 
 Checkmark the following checkboxes:
 
  List last 10 Event Viewer log
  List Installed Programs
  List Users, Partitions and Memory size.
 
 Click on Go to start the scan.  Once it is finished highlight the text, copy it and paste it in your next post.

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#3 aeonise

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 10:15 AM

I've had the laptop on for over five hours in normal mode after uninstalling the NVidia graphics driver a last time.  It seems to be perfectly stable despite not being able to even reach the login screen in normal mode when said driver was still installed.

 

Here's the result from MiniToolBox, though the event viewer log looks like unrelated errors have filled in during the Safe Mode startup and normal startup (after uninstalling the graphics driver):

MiniToolBox by Farbar  Version:21-04-2013
Ran by TR Nale (administrator) on 01-06-2013 at 00:00:56
Running from "C:\Users\TR Nale\Desktop"
Windows 7 Home Premium Service Pack 1 (X64)
Boot Mode: Normal
***************************************************************************

========================= Event log errors: ===============================

Application errors:
==================
Error: (05/31/2013 09:00:16 PM) (Source: System Restore) (User: )
Description: Failed to create restore point (Process = C:\Windows\system32\rundll32.exe /d srrstr.dll,ExecuteScheduledSPPCreation; Description = Scheduled Checkpoint; Error = 0x80070422).

Error: (05/31/2013 08:01:07 PM) (Source: Application Hang) (User: )
Description: The program vlc.exe version 2.0.5.0 stopped interacting with Windows and was closed. To see if more information about the problem is available, check the problem history in the Action Center control panel.

Process ID: 103c

Start Time: 01ce5dee0f2d40ea

Termination Time: 10

Application Path: C:\Program Files (x86)\VideoLAN\VLC\vlc.exe

Report Id: 624a3504-c9e1-11e2-9b57-6c626d374167

Error: (05/31/2013 06:56:43 PM) (Source: Winlogon) (User: )
Description: Windows license activation failed. Error 0x00000000.

Error: (05/31/2013 06:56:43 PM) (Source: Software Protection Platform Service) (User: )
Description: License Activation (slui.exe) failed with the following error code:
0x8007043C

Error: (05/31/2013 06:01:40 PM) (Source: Winlogon) (User: )
Description: Windows license activation failed. Error 0x00000000.

Error: (05/31/2013 06:01:40 PM) (Source: Software Protection Platform Service) (User: )
Description: License Activation (slui.exe) failed with the following error code:
0x8007043C

Error: (05/31/2013 05:42:24 PM) (Source: Winlogon) (User: )
Description: Windows license activation failed. Error 0x00000000.

Error: (05/31/2013 05:42:23 PM) (Source: Software Protection Platform Service) (User: )
Description: License Activation (slui.exe) failed with the following error code:
0x8007043C

Error: (05/31/2013 05:39:36 PM) (Source: Winlogon) (User: )
Description: Windows license activation failed. Error 0x00000000.

Error: (05/31/2013 05:39:35 PM) (Source: Software Protection Platform Service) (User: )
Description: License Activation (slui.exe) failed with the following error code:
0x8007043C


System errors:
=============
Error: (05/31/2013 07:32:41 PM) (Source: Service Control Manager) (User: )
Description: The atksgt service failed to start due to the following error:
%%1275

Error: (05/31/2013 07:32:41 PM) (Source: Application Popup) (User: )
Description: Driver atksgt.sys has been blocked from loading.

Error: (05/31/2013 07:31:21 PM) (Source: Service Control Manager) (User: )
Description: The Computer Browser service depends on the Server service which failed to start because of the following error:
%%1068

Error: (05/31/2013 07:31:21 PM) (Source: Service Control Manager) (User: )
Description: The Computer Browser service depends on the Server service which failed to start because of the following error:
%%1068

Error: (05/31/2013 07:31:21 PM) (Source: Service Control Manager) (User: )
Description: The Computer Browser service depends on the Server service which failed to start because of the following error:
%%1068

Error: (05/31/2013 07:31:13 PM) (Source: DCOM) (User: )
Description: 1084wuauserv{E60687F7-01A1-40AA-86AC-DB1CBF673334}

Error: (05/31/2013 07:27:21 PM) (Source: Service Control Manager) (User: )
Description: The Computer Browser service depends on the Server service which failed to start because of the following error:
%%1068

Error: (05/31/2013 07:27:21 PM) (Source: Service Control Manager) (User: )
Description: The Computer Browser service depends on the Server service which failed to start because of the following error:
%%1068

Error: (05/31/2013 07:27:21 PM) (Source: Service Control Manager) (User: )
Description: The Computer Browser service depends on the Server service which failed to start because of the following error:
%%1068

Error: (05/31/2013 07:25:59 PM) (Source: Service Control Manager) (User: )
Description: The Computer Browser service depends on the Server service which failed to start because of the following error:
%%1068


Microsoft Office Sessions:
=========================

CodeIntegrity Errors:
===================================
  Date: 2013-05-31 19:35:26.538
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 19:35:26.286
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 18:49:24.849
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 18:49:24.610
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 18:38:55.239
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 18:38:55.023
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 18:28:44.423
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 18:28:44.236
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 18:10:42.368
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.

  Date: 2013-05-31 18:10:42.181
  Description: Code Integrity is unable to verify the image integrity of the file \Device\HarddiskVolume2\Windows\System32\dsound.dll because the set of per-page image hashes could not be found on the system.


=========================== Installed Programs ============================

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Adobe Flash Player 11 ActiveX (Version: 11.7.700.202)
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DownTango (Version: 1.0.716)
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FTL: Faster Than Light
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Hamlet or the last game without MMORPG features, shaders and product placement
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Microsoft Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable - x86 9.0.30729.17 (Version: 9.0.30729)
Microsoft Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable - x86 9.0.30729.4148 (Version: 9.0.30729.4148)
Microsoft Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable - x86 9.0.30729.6161 (Version: 9.0.30729.6161)
Microsoft Visual C++ 2010  x64 Redistributable - 10.0.40219 (Version: 10.0.40219)
Microsoft Visual C++ 2010  x86 Redistributable - 10.0.40219 (Version: 10.0.40219)
Microsoft XNA Framework Redistributable 3.1 (Version: 3.1.10527.0)
Microsoft XNA Framework Redistributable 4.0 Refresh (Version: 4.0.30901.0)
Mount & Blade
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Zafehouse: Diaries version 1.1.82 (Version: 1.1.82)

========================= Memory info: ===================================

Percentage of memory in use: 33%
Total physical RAM: 8169.5 MB
Available physical RAM: 5396.99 MB
Total Pagefile: 16337.19 MB
Available Pagefile: 13462.92 MB
Total Virtual: 4095.88 MB
Available Virtual: 3978.65 MB

========================= Partitions: =====================================

1 Drive c: (OS) (Fixed) (Total:174.66 GB) (Free:1.48 GB) NTFS
2 Drive d: (Data) (Fixed) (Total:502.49 GB) (Free:68.8 GB) NTFS

========================= Users: ========================================

User accounts for \\SEIJIRO

Administrator            ASPNET                   Guest                    
TR Nale                  


**** End of log ****


#4 dc3

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 10:23 AM

If you uninstall the Nvidia driver you need to uninstall all of them in the Control Panel.  You need to uninstall the graphic driver last in order to successful.


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#5 aeonise

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 05:42 PM

If you uninstall the Nvidia driver you need to uninstall all of them in the Control Panel.  You need to uninstall the graphic driver last in order to successful.

I'm a little confused.  I've already uninstalled only the graphics driver and had no problems since my previous post.  Are you recommending I install the drivers again so I can uninstall everything else first and remove the graphics driver at the end?  Also, do you want me to try running the MiniToolBox directly after a shutoff?

 

EDIT:  I've tried doing the above, so I currently have no NVidia drivers installed except for "NVIDIA Install Application (Version: 2.1002.124.810)", which only shows up in MiniToolbox's logs and I can't find any options to get rid of it.  I've also uploaded a clipped portion of the event log from shortly before a shutoff (at approximately 9:34) until present.

 

What should my next step be?


Edited by aeonise, 31 May 2013 - 09:14 PM.


#6 aeonise

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Posted 04 June 2013 - 06:07 AM

I'd still like another opinion on this problem.  It looks to me like some part of the graphics card has been damaged.  Assuming that is correct, what options do I really have? 



#7 dc3

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Posted 04 June 2013 - 09:20 AM

Your graphic card is an integrated circuit on the motherboard.  If it is failing you would have to replace the motherboard to replace this chip.

 

As for the reason for uninstalling the Nvidia graphics driver last, if it isn't the last of the drivers to be uninstalled it can result in problems with the new installation of the driver.

 

If you look in the Control Panel under Uninstall a program you should see a list of drivers similar to the ones in the image below.

 

Nvidia_zps01e691da.png

 

The graphics driver outlined in red should be uninstalled last.

 

You should reinstall the driver and then uninstall the drivers leaving the graphics driver to be uninstalled last.

 

You will find that some of the drivers can't be uninstalled unless the computer is restarted.

 

I would also suggest that you not download the driver/s from any other location than the Nvidia website.  

 

Just so you are prepared, after you uninstall all of the drivers you will be using a native Windows 7 graphics driver which will have a poor resolution.

 

After all the drivers are successfully uninstalled, install the driver.

 

Hopefully this will resolve your graphics problem. 


Edited by dc3, 04 June 2013 - 09:31 AM.

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#8 aeonise

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 09:01 AM

No such luck.  It was somewhat difficult to uninstall everything else first when PhysX cannot be uninstalled in Safe Mode and the shutoffs happen every few minutes now, but I managed to get it done and reload the driver package.  Upon rebooting after the load, it lasted about 20 minutes before shutting off again.

 

In other news, I got quoted $500-700 for the repairs from the manufacturer, not including shipping.  Kinda disgusted with XoticPC if this is the quality of their builds.  I've barely had this laptop more than a year and I am extremely careful with my electronics.






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