Home > /dev/null > Dusty tadpole

Dusty tadpole

November 2nd, 2006

For the past few months I’ve been a disgruntled laptop owner.  My beloved Dell Inspiron 700m was having the case of the freezes, and was verily unstable.  It was so bad that even booting the machine was hit-or-miss, and letting it stay on, or do some heavy processing was too much for it.  It is out of warranty and I had just changed out the motherboard in the last week or so of the factory warranty, so it should be working better.

I suspected faulty memory module, but the errors never mapped to a memory problem, and memory problems if they are present are usually consistent, and this was hit or miss.  I spent a few hours on the phone with Dell trying to get them to replace my memory module (lifetime warranty on that) but since the problem wasn’t consistent they couldn’t swap out modules.

So I’m stuck with a laptop that can’t go an hour without simply freezing, or if I moved it a bit here or there, it would freeze… I’d read here and there about dust and heat causing this kind of behavior, so I tried to change my processor throttling (easy to do in Linux) and use my fans more to blow the heat out.  Accoring to dkrellem the normal heat was over 50 degrees celcius and if it popped in the upper 60s or over 70, then a freeze would happen.

That worked for a while, but last night the latop (tadpole I call it) really hit the wall, couldn’t get it to boot up normally, to either Ubuntu Edgy Eft, or Windows Vista Beta 2.

This morning, I started to disassemble the laptop to get to the fan and see if I could make that work better.  A little daunting taking apart a laptop rather than a desktop.  But I got it apart, and the fan… she was DUSTY.  Blew it out with a can of air, and reassembled it… and ended up with the right number of screws…

Did some torture testing and normal temps are now dow in the low 40s, a full video transcode (100% processor for about 25 minutes) brought the processor into the low 60s, then it came back down to the low 40s.  It is mucho stabler, and I can even move it around while working on it.  The true test comes with booting up at home, on the couch.  That will be later tonight.

Categories: /dev/null Tags:
Comments are closed.