IBM T21 Laptop problem

  jrdunn78hawk 13:40 18 Jan 2011


I have an IBM T21 laptop which is having problems. Sometimes it powers on fine, boots up XP and will work for hours. Even if you restart it, it is ok. However, sometimes when you press the power button the hdd light flashes for less than a second then nothing, it just doesn't do anything (doesn't get to BIOS).

Tried running directly on power ac adapter (battery out of laptop), tried booting without ram and/or hdd. Tried removing CMOS battery. Have reapplied thermal paste to CPU and heatsink, have looked at mobo and can't see any obvious burn marks.

There is no pattern as to when it will or wont work. It doesnt relate to overheating i.e. there is no correspondence to the issue being more frequent after the laptop is used.

Also fyi - when the laptop is working the battery will charge and hold charge and allow me to work on it unplugged for over an hour.

Anybody got any idea as to what this problem could be?

Thanks in advance.


  howard64 11:20 20 Jan 2011

this could be a bios problem - have you looked at the version number of yours versus that on the makers site? I had 1 pc with the problems you describe. This has not reoccurred since flashing the bios with the latest version and upgrading to Windows 7. I do not know which of the two things cured it but I did the bios first and used the pc for about two weeks before upgrading from XP and the failure to start did not occur. My failure to start was approximately after about thirty reboots.

  jrdunn78hawk 21:03 20 Jan 2011

Thanks for your response howard64 but I have already checked the BIOS version and it matches the recommended on the website.

Where your problem was failure to start approx after every 30 reboots, my problem is more like - it only boots once in every 30 attempts at booting.

I'm thinking it could be a problem on the mobo but that's where I'm out of knowledge and experience. Hoping someone may be able to help me.

  howard64 07:07 21 Jan 2011

I would download a memory test prog and run it for a long test. After that I would go to the makers site for your hard drive and download their diagnostic tools. If all this tests ok the next thing I would do is to obtain a replacement power supply. Power supplies are very complex and a low value on the hard drive line could be the problem. Worth trying the no cost options first. Good luck.

  jrdunn78hawk 12:08 23 Jan 2011

Hi howard64,

Thanks again for your response but now Im finding that the laptop won't turn on at all so I can't get to the BIOS.

When you press the power button the hdd light flashes for less than a second then nothing. Must have tried over 100 times in the past few days but it just won't boot. Have tried every combination of battery in out, running on mains etc all without success.

FYI - I have also tried different hdds in the laptop which I know work but still had no joy.

I will have a look at getting a replacement power supply but if the battery was charging and holding charge it should still now power on as the battery is fully charged.

Can anyone help further with this?

Thanks in advance

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 14:18 23 Jan 2011

Have you tried to power on with DVD drive removed and or hard drive removed?

  jrdunn78hawk 17:42 23 Jan 2011

Hi Fruit bat,

Yes tried to power on with both hdd and dvd drive removed. No joy.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:34 23 Jan 2011

1. Turn off the computer,
2. Take the battery out
3. Take out the power supply
4. Push the power button down for 30 seconds.
5. Reconnect power supply
6. Then the battery.

  jrdunn78hawk 19:50 24 Jan 2011


Already tried this, tried again but still no joy.

Thanks for the response though.

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