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Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

I have a Satellite U400 that recently started frequently displaying "Not responding" error messages in multiple programs. The OS is Windows Vista Home Premium. This is occurring over and over again and often the computer also freezes up and beeps. The cursor won't move and the only option is to turn it off with the power buttom. I can't find a solution anywhere and, of course, it is out of warranty. I am afraid to try the recovery disk because I am not sure what I will lose in the process. Any solutions would be greatly appreciated.

Ace Advisor
Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

Which Satellite U400?

 

Can you make it happen on demand?

-Jerry
Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

I don't see a model number on the bottom of the computer, but the part number is PSU40U-Demo 1F. Is there somewhere else I can get the model number since it is not on the outside of the recovery disk either? Or is there other info that would help you? Regarding your "on demand" question, I'm not sure what you mean. I don't know how I would make the problem occur. The screen kind of goes milky-white often before the "not responding" message appears. The freeze up comes with no warning and frequently the computer beeps shortly thereafter. Sometimes this is following by a long beep or series of beeps and then the system resumes normally. Other times I must shut it down with the power button to regain control.

Ace Advisor
Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

[ Edited ]

the part number is PSU40U-Demo 1F. Is there somewhere else I can get the model number...?

Go here and see if you can find the part number. It should look something like PSU40U-016013.

 

   Start > All Programs > Toshiba > Utilities > PC Diagnostic Tool

 


Regarding your "on demand" question, I'm not sure what you mean.

I want to know how long it takes to discover that the problem no longer exists. We want to make experiments.

 

So find a way to make it happen.

-Jerry
Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

I followed your instructions and see that I was incorrect about the part number before. The correct one is PSU40U-0EM01F. As far as making these problems occur, I don't know how to do that other than opening a window, any window. The "not responding" message just happened when I opened the diagnostic tool to get the part number. It occurs when I open programs like IE, Outlook, Excel, etc. I cannot determine any pattern for this. The freeze up and beeping happens out of the blue, as well, but obviously when I am moving the cursor because that it when I notice it. It doesn't matter it I have just started the computer or been working on it normally for several hours. There is no warning before this happens.

Ace Advisor
Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

 

Satellite U400 (PSU40U-0EM01F)

 

I don't see that on Toshiba's site.

 

Maybe similar to this one (which has 32-bit Windows Vista Home Premium)?

 

Satellite U405-S2817 (PSU40U-016013)

 

 

Best to find a way to make the error occur. I want to know, for instance, if it occurs when you boot into Safe Mode.

-Jerry
Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

The bottom of mine & the diagnostic tool you had me look at both list U400 and the part number I noted. I am not sure where else to look for this info? I will have to run it in safe mode for a while and respond to that question. Thank you.

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Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

What is your version of Windows? Please be specific.

-Jerry
Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

Windows Home Vista Premium 32-bit SP 1, according to the recovery disk.

Ace Advisor
Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

Let us know what happens in Safe Mode.

 

   Start your computer in safe mode

-Jerry
Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

I did start and run it in safe mode for about an hour yesterday but need to do so for a longer period. I noticed audio wasn't available in safe mode and usually need that. I will find a window of a few hours when I don't and then test it again. Thank you.

Ace Advisor
Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

If Windows runs okay in Safe Mode, we need to test after booting clean.

 

1. Open the System Configuration utility (msconfig.exe).

2. On the General tab, click Selective startup and clear the Load startup items check box.

3. On the Services tab, click the Hide all Microsoft services check box and click Disable all.

4. OK out and restart the computer.

 

You can understand the value of finding a situation or sequence that makes the problem occur on demand - or which at least makes it more likely to occur.

-Jerry
Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

Okay, I will have to find a few hours when I can do without the audio to try the safe mode.

Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

I ran my laptop in the safe mode for quite a few hours with none of the "not responding" or freezing up problems I was experiencing. Now I have followed your instructions and restarted it. Is there anything else I should do at this stage other than wait to see if the problems continue?

Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

It didn't take long for the problems to occur again after I did the restart. I had a "not responding" message while I had Explorer open and twice the computer locked up, beeped and I couldn't move the cursor. The first time this happened, a series of beeps occured after a few seconds and it quickly became usable again. The second time, there was just one beep when it froze and I utlimately had to use the power button to shut it down. What do you suggest I try next?

Ace Advisor
Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

If Windows runs okay in Safe Mode, then we know the problem is introduced by something loading automatically with Windows. The next step is to test after booting clean, which prevents almost everything but drivers from loading.

 

1. Open the System Configuration utility (msconfig.exe).

2. On the General tab, click Selective startup and clear the Load startup items check box.

3. On the Services tab, click the Hide all Microsoft services check box and click Disable all.

4. OK out and restart the computer.

 

If it runs okay that way, we'll start adding in things until we discover the culprit.

 

You can understand the value of finding a situation or sequence that makes the problem occur on demand - or which at least makes it more likely to occur.

-Jerry
Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

These are the same instructions you gave me before, right? I already took those steps after it ran okay in Safe mode and the problems quickly occurred again. That's what I was noting in my last post. I only ran it several hours - maybe 4 - in Safe mode and the problems didn't occur. Once I took your next steps, the problems resumed within an hour. I didn't change anything after that and shut it down last night. When I powered up this morning, the beep/freeze problem occured within 15 minutes and then almost immediately again after I had powered down and up with the power button. So that's where I am now.

Ace Advisor
Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up


Once I took your next steps, the problems resumed...

So you're saying that after the clean boot (i.e., after shutting off all non-Microsoft services and after shutting down all the items on Msconfig's Startup tab) the problem occurs.

 

If that's really the case (i.e., the problem does not occur in Safe Mode, but it does occur after a clean boot), then we're dealing with a bad driver.

 

If you're proficient with these sorts of things, try Driver Verifier to find the driver that causes the trouble. If not, it's best to restore the hard disk to its original out-of-the-box contents using Toshiba recovery media.

 

   Using Driver Verifier to identify issues with Windows drivers for advanced users

-Jerry
Regular Contributor
ruffian
Posts: 61

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

This verifer looks over my head, but I'll read through it because the only thing worse than buying a new laptop would be having to restore this one to the original state. I'll try using it again in safe mode for a longer period just to be sure the problem doesn't occur in that. Sometimes I can go a couple of hours in the normal mode without the problems, so it is possible that I just caught the right window in safe mode. What do you think causes the computer to beep like it does when it locks up? I had a Gateway a few years ago that suddenly beeped right before a total crash and this scares me. 

Ace Advisor
Jerry_Lippey
Posts: 40,295

Re: U400 Not Responding / Freezing Up

[ Edited ]

What do you think causes the computer to beep like it does when it locks up?

I don't recall your mentioning that.

 

Sounds to me like the hardware complaining (but I'm not a hardware guru).

-Jerry