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  Sony Vaio laptop wont boot? 
 
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Joe K Feb 09, 2004, 11:18pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Apr 14, 2004, 02:12pm EDT

 
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Jared,

The Speedstep "controller" IC sometimes acts up and at other times fails. It could be the case here. One way to check is go into the BIOS setup and set the CPU Performance for "None" or something to that effect.. in essence you're turning off the speedstep function all together.

See if that produces somekind of change in the speed reporting?


Joe K

AQS Computer Services
aqs12@adelphia.net

Joe Kabalan
http://www.AQSTech.com
Laptop / Notebook BIOS Repair
Motherboard Defect Solutions
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Eric Conklin Feb 10, 2004, 10:08pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Feb 10, 2004, 10:11pm EST

 
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I am a proud owner of a PCG-FX340 that is currently in the shop being looked over for a minimal $75 diagnostic fee. The problem was diagnosed as a bad motherboard that the shop would gladly replace for a measely $570. Considering this to be a bit ridiculous--a new laptop that is much better than the ol' Sony is available for a hundred bucks more--I decided to hold off on the replacement (I cannot afford either a new laptop or a new motherboard).

After reading this very helpful forum, I have some questions for anyone who can answer them. When I get my still comatose computer back from the shop, is the "good" slot going to be slot 1 (the rear) or slot 2 (the front)? Furthermore, should I expect the computer to work fine if I remove half of the memory (presumably from the bad slot)? If that is the case, could I double the RAM in the "good" slot and expect the computer to function properly? Finally, is diagnosing a motherboard as "faulty" mean essentially that one of the components of the motherboard (i.e. the memory expansion slots) has gone bad? If so, it must be a temptation for most shops to opt for the most expensive solution to replace, rather than repair. I have to hand it to Joe K for having offered a solution that seems to be both cost-effective to the consumer and permanent. By the way, Joe, do you also fix the faulty soldering?

Eric

Joe K Feb 11, 2004, 12:16am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Feb 11, 2004, 12:21am EST

 
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Eric,

You bring up a good point that I would like to focus on. When a shop states "the motherboard is faulty" and then offers a repair cost that entails the replacement of the motherboard, they are simply doing their job.

You see, there are different levels of "computer repair". They pretty much fall into the following categories:

1) Retail and Online stores / part suppliers. - These folks do repairs, but that is not their specialty. Sure, they can replace hard drives and do typical upgrades.

2) Computer Repair Shops - These folks do repairs, they also troubleshoot and replace any failed device within the system, they also usually repair various manufacturers and models. When a "board" is bad, they offer to replace it.

3) Component Level Repair Facility - These folks troubleshoot and repair failed motherboards and various circuit board designs and applications. (on occasion you will find an example 2 shop that also performs example 3 work, if you find them, never leave them, consider yourself lucky)

4) Rework Facility - These folks repair damaged circuit boards and components, they usually do not troubleshoot, they repair specified problems that are already pointed out by the sender.


Typically, you'll never get in contact with anyone (by "anyone" I mean, an actual technician) at example 3 or 4. We (AQS) fall in between 3 and 4. We started out as a computer repair shop (3) but advanced to where we are now over the past 3 years.

You will never find an sole entity that does all of the above. It's impossible to be that versatile.

=====================================

Now for your questions,

I have no idea if removing the RAM from slot 1 (back of system) will bring your system back to life.

Slot 1 in the MBX-49 is located toward the back of the system.

"Can I double the RAM in the good slot"

-----) ....Well that depends, make sure if you're going to install 256mb into slot 2 that you get double sided RAM, PC100.

"is diagnosing a motherboard as "faulty" mean essentially that one of the components of the motherboard (i.e. the memory expansion slots) has gone bad?"
----) If your memory slot is bad, I would hope the shop knows enough to remove the RAM from both slots and test each slot separately. Chances are you have a different problem. A good shop would test each component (ie CPU, RAM ect ect) in another system to verify they work properly.
"it must be a temptation for most shops to opt for the most expensive solution to replace, rather than repair"
----) They really don't have a choice, actually they are doing their job.
"Joe, do you also fix the faulty soldering?"
----) umm... yes :)



Joe Kabalan
http://www.AQSTech.com
Laptop / Notebook BIOS Repair
Motherboard Defect Solutions
John Doey Feb 11, 2004, 12:54am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Well.....

I think my troubles with sony have ended in a very definite and sad way.
I spilled the tiniest bit of liquid onto my laptop keyboard and it turned off instantly
and cannot be rebooted.

I realize the chances are infintely slim, but does anyone have any
last ditch suggestions of what I should try to do?

Thanks.


Steve Leininger Feb 11, 2004, 01:03am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Liquid in the keyboard is not good....

But try this: Unplug the power supply. Remove the battery. Turn your laptop upside down and shake any remaining water out. Let your computer air dry for at least 24 hours. Put it back together and good luck.

If it powers back on, you still may have some problems. I did the same thing to a Dell laptop. The keyboard would seem to have a mind of its own (wrong characters and other spooks). I had to order a replacement keyboard from Dell for less than $50.

Hope this helps.

Justin Matthews Feb 11, 2004, 02:16pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I spilled a small amount of liquid on my keyboard as well and Sony charged me $250 for replacement. If you know how to open up your computer I have seen new keyboards for less than $100 and it is a couple of screws and a ribbon connector to fix.

Rita Dorn Feb 15, 2004, 01:24pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I've read every page in here and I just had to register so that I can add my comments. First of all, I would like to thank ALL of you for these posts as I had some digital video editing issues that ALMOST made me go TOTALLY SONY, and I was looking at some of the models that were mentioned here! Now, that will never happen. Second, I've recently quit my very lucrative job as a Systems Analyst to stay at home and raise my infant daughter and I've been tinkering here and there with laptops and I think I've just stumbled across the greatest of all challenges! Basically, last year or so's line of Sony laptops NEED WORK! I'm just dumbstruck by all of these pages. I am a fan of the SR series and my heart broke when they put the Celeron chip in them (SR33) and eventually quit making them. I stick pretty close to Dell and Toshiba laptops ever since. The first laptop I ever worked on was a PCGA-505FX and I found in it what I considered to be a design flaw and that was the end of tinkering on the older Sony laptops period. My former place of business was very close to the Sony office in Woodcliff Lake, NJ. The class action lawsuit is a nice idea, but anyone thats within a few hundred miles of that location should plan a day to picket their offices in Park Ridge and Woodcliff Lake just for starters. Has anyone considered contacting 20/20 or Dateline NBC? How about as many small independent network investigative reporters as you can find? Get at least 50 people together and let them demo the same problem 50 times on national tv, including dismantling one and demonstrating the tape or paper fix. Never underestimate the power of the press. That AND the mention of a class action lawsuit, might get a BUNCH of free repairs or laptops!

Eric Conklin Feb 15, 2004, 05:56pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Feb 15, 2004, 05:59pm EST

 
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I got my computer back from the shop. When I picked it up, they clarified that the motherbard was bad, and sent me home with an invoice. When I got back to my apartment, I took out the memory from the rear slot and the computer booted up fine. Does it seem odd that the shop would not have mentioned this possibility at all? I would hope that a shop that mandates a $75 diagnostic fee would give more options than simply "replace the motherboard."

Eric

Robert Taylor Feb 16, 2004, 01:17pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I just want to add that this is apparently not a new problem. I purchased my FX150 in March of 2002 and about two months ago it started going through periodic reboots and BSODs. Last week it became impossible to deal with (every 30 minutes). I've lost over a thousand dollars in lost income now because of this problem and I decided that the machine was costing me more in lost work with my client than it was worth. I took out the back DIMM and the reboots and blue screens stopped, but the single slot left only supports a maximum of 256MB of memory.

I will never buy a Sony laptop again. I've had problems with client Sony desktops before and now I'm convinced, their computer's are very short lived. I spent $3000 on this laptop, and I expected to have to replace it when it became too slow to be bearable, not because of Sony's poor workmanyship.

I've ordered my Dell and from now on, that is all I'm going to buy.

Robert

Belinda Marchand Feb 16, 2004, 01:34pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Well, this is the fourth time I send my laptop back for repair with Best Buy. I've been without it for over a month now. First they replaced the motherboard. That didn't fix the "won't boot problem". Then they replaced the processor. Supposedly it burned out... whatever. Anyway, so I get the laptop home and start it up and it actually stayed on and SEEMED to run just fine except for one little detail. I think those idiots forgot to physically connect the touchpad to the motherboard because it wasn't even being detected at all. Since I can't fix it myself, because I don't want to void the warranty, this would be the fourth time the laptop goes in for repair over the past six months. Now, this is where it gets interesting and some of you may have something to say about this.

When I brought this up with the Best Buy clerk, at the service desk, and asked about the Lemon Policy, he said that Best Buy made a MODIFICATION to that policy. He claims that the store NO LONGER has the power to decide wether or not the product gets replaced. It is the service center who now has complete decision making power over what THEY think is a qualified repair. So, even if you've sent it in for repair FOUR times, they may not think those are FOUR qualified repairs and they will continue to fix it until THEY feel it should be replaced.

Apparently, they were getting burned because too many people were demanding replacements or something. I'm thinking, well if it's a good product you shouldn't need the warranty in the first place. Has anyone gotten a similar story before? Do you think the store is giving me the run around? I think I'll call the 800 Best Buy number and speak to someone there instead.

--B.


William James Feb 17, 2004, 01:35pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I may have a lower order problem with my daughter's PCG-Z600LEK. Bought second-hand, it
had reports of not booting occasionally, but we had no problems with it for 2 months. Now we have
no signs of life at all - not even the green power light. I've checked the adapter and the volts are OK.

I guess the beast should work with or without a battery? I can only find 1 pin on the battery that has any
substantial volts on it - then only 4.5v so probably not been charging for a while. Is this a fundamental power problem, or is there a possible bad contact/loose connector that could cause this?

William

R Simms Feb 17, 2004, 03:38pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I just sent my GRX560 to Joe K. w/AQS Computers in NY for the memory slot repair (only 1 slot was working) and they did a great job. Joe got my laptop on Monday (2/16) and I have it back today (2/17). The service was 149 +shipping (i paid extra for next day air), and as promised it brought my Vaio's memory slots back to life.

Jeffrey Sides Feb 18, 2004, 01:27am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I too want to put in a good word for Joe Kabalan and AQS Computer Services. My Vaio FX-215 was exhibiting the same symptoms as many others in this thread. I thought it must be the same memory slot problem. I tried some of the fixes suggested here, but none worked. So, I pulled out the motherboard and sent it to Joe at AQS. He told me that my problem was not the memory slots (these are, in fact, quite good in the FX-215 according to Joe), but some other component failures likely due to poor cooling of the system. Joe received the board on Friday, and by Monday it was ready to be sent back to me. I received it a few days later, stuffed it back in, and now my Vaio is as good as new. The whole affair only cost me $129 + $8 shipping. Joe and his folks are skilled professionals and very pleasant to deal with. I'd highly recommend their repair services to anyone facing the dreaded $700 fee Sony wants to repair their defective products. Thanks Joe and AQS for all your help.

Jeffrey Sides

Scotty Scott Feb 19, 2004, 07:59am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I have put in my comments several times on this forum and tried various remedies but had to give up and send it off to Joe K. It cost me US$ 149.00 for the repair and US$ 300 for shipping plus insurance from Spain and back.
Joe repaired the laptop in around 2-3 days but unfortunately FedEx screwed up and the laptop remained in Spanish Customs for over 2 weeks.
My mantras are now:
1. Don't buy a Sony!!, which is being echoed around my local computer club, (700 members) and the largest in the EU.
2. Don't use FedEx!!.

Thanks, Joe, for your swift repair and I am now back with 512 MB of RAM.

Any sign of a class action movement??.

All the Best,
Scotty
SPAIN

Ryan Christopher Feb 19, 2004, 04:06pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I had the same problem, the computer is completely dead.

Does anyone know of any class action lawsuits that I can join.

Ryan

Ryan Christopher Feb 19, 2004, 04:59pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I just files my case at http://www.bigclassaction.com
If anyone else knows anywhere else to file, let me know.

If you have suffered from the same problem, please fill out the form at this site, it costs nothing to file.



Ryan










Heather Warner Feb 19, 2004, 05:23pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
File a complaint with the Better Business Bureau as well. They have a form similar to the one on the class action site and they actually guarantee some sort of reply within 30 days.

Good luck!

DJ Aquarius Feb 22, 2004, 03:32pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Hello fellow Sony laptop users,

Boy am I glad I discovered this thread. Thanks to you guys I have my RAM back (at least for now) for the cost of a rubber band (whether this jerry rig fix will last I have no idea). I have a PCG - FX340 Sony Vaio laptop that has been working fine for the last two years and then a couple weeks ago I noticed things slowing down significantly all of a sudden. Turns out my RAM had suddenly dropped from 256MB to 128MB!

I swapped the RAM sticks and found that they both worked fine, so the problem had to do with the slot. Well, this forum tells the rest of the story. I'm in Zurich, so I unfortunately can't send my laptop to Joe for soldering without paying horrendous shipping costs. I've settled for the "heatsink" fix for now (albeit with a rubber band), and since I'll be using my laptop as a spare it's not a tragedy if the fix doesn't last.

I do hope, however, that we successfully are able to take some type of action against Sony to prevent happless future customers from suffering the same fate. Prior to this incident I thought highly of Vaio's, but Sony's reaction (not necessarily the problem itself) has definitely put a damper on my enthusiasm.

Good luck everyone and thanks for all the information,
Alex
http://www.projectaquarius.info



Chris A Feb 22, 2004, 03:48pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Add me to the list.

Sony VAIO PCG-GRX570

Symptoms:

Initially: Would not boot with second chip of ram in secondary slot.

Did a quick search and found this place. Read all of this, and knew that was why it wouldnt boot. I was still happy however that it worked w/ 256MB chip so I hung in there.

Two days later, in the middle of windows, begin getting memory_dump errors at random.

5 more days later:

Today, I come into work, plugged in my laptop, and GEE WIZZ!
The laptop is doing exactly what it did when I had the second memory chip in; not booting / battery lights flash when the power button is hit.

Luckily, I read this site and knew it had to be something with the physical position of my ram. I flipped the latoptop over, have it a good thump right on the ram cover, push the power button and WALAA! Boots!

These things are horrible. I have always liked the way Sony markets their products. Slick adds and smoth product appearances. Stupid me for assuming SONY would apply the same initiative in the design of these boat anchors. I need to get this thing fixed. A few pages back I read that someone did repairs for 150$. Im definately interested.

Last Sony product for me. Perhaps VAIO is "boat anchor" in a different language.

Rob Cox Feb 23, 2004, 09:44pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Wow! I've been pulling my hair out for a couple weeks trying to figure out what happened with my PCG-FXA36.

Thank god I stumbled across this forum.

A folded business card under the slot seems to be doing the trick for now. We'll see how long that fix lasts though.

I think this might be my last Sony.


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