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  Sony Vaio laptop wont boot? 
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Jake T Apr 04, 2005, 12:51am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Well i am also experiencing same overheating problem. After my sony pcg-grz630 started to shut down i got software to monitor temperature, well i don't know what is normal temperature but my HDD is running at around 115F, but the worst part is p4 goes to 150F and sometimes to 180F then it shuts down.

So after reading this thread i decided to clean the fan, the hard way. I opened the case, just that part where the speaker is and there was my fan. I was expecting and praying for it to be filled with 3 pounds of dust, but actually it was pretty clean, i did find some dust under the fan but don't think that is why its overheating. So now i don't even know what to do, after i boot it up temperature stayed at 97 for HDD and p4 at 118F but after i started really using it at at least 50-60% it went up to 148F in just 3 sec, so i stooped for a while to see what would happen, it did drop to 138F and that was it it didn't go any lower.

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Graham Bryant Apr 04, 2005, 08:12am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
"Of course not - but if Sony didn't run a prototype of every model with the CPU redlined for two years, how would they know they would eventually overheat?"

I would hope that based on Sony's experience with electronics and computers, they would build in a factor of safety that was appropriate to ensure this didn't happen. A safety factor of 1.25 to 2 is standard in engineering practice. But that wasn't even my main point. People make mistakes and as I said I wouldn't be upset if Sony came clean and admitted some responsibility in the matter and helped consumers when they experienced a common problem. This list indicates that this is not the case. I see this the same as the car industry, there should be notifications to registered owners and/or hidden warranties for items that are determined to be a design/manufacturing flaws that are not caught/anticipated prior to bringing the product to market. Most companies bring products to market that have a problem or two. The best companies stand behind their products to make sure the consumer isn't the one who pays for their mistakes.

Tom Pappas Apr 04, 2005, 11:57am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
1) I understand fully that modern processors generate much more heat than older ones, so I'm assuming this is a "modern" problem. Why wouldn't millions of laptops then be affected by similar overheating problems (if their owners placed the CPU's under equal stress)?

-> Because individual CPUs from the same batch generate more or less heat? Because it's problematical to mimic an instruction mix? I don't know.

If these other laptops haven't failed, then doesn't it prove that Sony's soldering process (for this very specific line of GRX laptops and a couple of other lines) is different from, and thus inferior to these other ones?

-> Absolutely. Ipso facto.

2) If high heat created by VAIO processors in these product lines ARE a problem, then why doesn't every minutely soldered component on these laptops also work loose and fail? According to your analysis, many parts of our motherboards will be failing sometime in the near future.

-> I think the SODIMM slots are particularly vulnerable because the spring arrangement that holds the contacts tight places mechanical stresses on the solder joints that other components don't experience.

3) How close to the RAM clips is the processor?

-> The RAM is on the other side of the circuit board and inches away.

Tom Pappas Apr 04, 2005, 12:16pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
"The best companies stand behind their products to make sure the consumer isn't the one who pays for their mistakes."

-> I agree. But I also know that many companies make calculations along the lines of:

Let X = the amount we will save by stonewalling the problem.
Let Y = the amount we will lose in good will and image if we do.

If X > than Y, then go with the stonewalling.

Sony's masterful touting of the Vaio line has given it a certain cachet that makes prospective buyers think they're getting the best technology, cost be damned. If the problem discussed here (and on a dozen other forums) gets enough exposure, the Vaio reputation might be tarnished to the point where Sony will respond.

But I think the stonewalling strategy is short-sighted. If any chance exists that they will have to own up to the problem eventually, why not address it now and avoid the bad will? Is the chance of being exposed as money-grubbing hustlers willing to screw their loyal customers worth whatever X minus Y turns out to be?

Tom Pappas (not a multinational electronics manufacturing empire)

Tom Pappas Apr 04, 2005, 12:39pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
"...i did find some dust under the fan but don't think that is why its overheating."

The dust under the fan isn't the problem. The fan pulls air in through slots on the top, bottom, and side, blows it through a radiator connected to the heat sink, and exhausts it out the back. The dirt buildup at the front of the radiator is where the clog occurs. Try this:

1. Loosen the speaker panel by removing the screw at its left-hand end and sliding the panel 1/4" to the left. Carefully lift it up (it is attached to the mother board by one or two ribbon cables) and fold it back against the LCD.

2. The fan is powered by a pair of wires that plug into the mother board. Unplug the connector by gently pulling it upwards (do NOT pull it out by the wires).

3. Seal off the inlets on the bottom and side of the case using masking tape.

4. Use a vacuum cleaner to suck on the inlet on the top of the fan. If you watch carefully, you might see fairly large blobs of dust and hair being pulled through the fan and into the vacuum hose.

5. Shine a flashlight into the slots on the back of the laptop and repeat step 4. until you see light coming into the fan.

6. Remove the masking tape.

7. Replace the fan power connector.

8. Turn the speaker panel face down and jiggle it until it slides to the right into place. DO NOT press down on it to force it into place; this will break off the plastic tabs that hold it down. Replace the screw.

Tom Pappas, CEO and Janitor

Steve Minter Apr 04, 2005, 04:03pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Hey all, just thought I'd update from my last post.

Now I'm able to get the laptop to turn on the last few times I tried, but there's a catch. And it's a very annoying one. In order to get it to power back on fully isntead of flashing the lights and failing I have to remove the screw to the speaker panel, lift it off, and unhook the power button's cable and rehook it up. Then after closing everything and screwing it back up the laptop will power on again. I've tried this four times after shutting the computer down and it has worked every time. This leads me to believe its not a SODIMM socket problem but rather a power supply problem. One of my theories was that maybe the computer was overheating and causing something to temporarily short out, or that there is a short in the power connector on the speaker panel. Any thoughts?


Walter Mel Apr 04, 2005, 10:06pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I have an FX340 that will only work with the battery. The power supply and DC jack are good. It also does not charge the battery. What is the fix for this situation and does a component on the motherboard have to be replaced? Any help would be much appreciated.


Tom Pappas Apr 04, 2005, 10:20pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
If it will only work on battery, but doesn't run or charge the battery on AC, what makes you think the DC jack is good?


Denis Luzin Apr 04, 2005, 11:14pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?

This may be caused by blown fuse on motherboard. Doublecheck your AC adapter first, fuse may had been blown by overvoltage came from AC adapter.

The fuse usually located near to DC jack. If you're familiar with screwdriver, soldering iron and DC voltmeter/ohmmeter and also know how to check fuses you can probably fix it by yourself. Otherwise you should bring your laptop to computer repair shop.


Jake T Apr 04, 2005, 11:27pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I was thinking what if you keep that top part where the speaker is open at all time? this way you get air in and out.

Sony people are saying that overheating problem can be fixed in most cases for 299 i think, and what they will do is replace few chips probably including p4, but seems to me the problem comes back after 6 month. I don't even know what to do now. I just talked to one of my friends and realised that he has almost exactly the same laptop as wee all do sony pcg, so he said that after almost 2 years it gets too hot, but thats about it. Well thats how it started with mine too.

One thing we can all benefit from is by installing a free temperature monitor, please do so and share your stats with us. This way we'll know at what temperature you laptop is shutting down and what is the normal temperature, also we can monitor if it is getting worse in a long run.
here is a link:
the download is very small i think its only 1.4mgb

Walter Mel Apr 05, 2005, 12:15am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Tom & Dennis
Just found the problem. I resolder the jack before and didn't check for continuity. I check it now and 2 legs were open so I added more solder and it working fine now thanks for the info.


Chris DeVitto Apr 05, 2005, 06:04pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Sorry about the blank post I forgot my password I thought, guess I am getting old...

My GRX 520 runs great with all memory slots showing up with the correct amount of ram my question is why the heck does the processor run at really slow speeds on battery even with Sony's power controls shut off, most of the time I am getting a speed of 897mhz when the sony info screen says this thing should run at 1200. When the battery is drained and the unit plugged in I get a speed of 1189 mhz or something like that. Once the battery is charged over 10% the unit runs at 1597mhz. Is this a function of the speed step stuff or am I missing something.

Thanks in advance for all the help Tom and Joe have been invaluable with their help. Many Many thanks.


Mark Weiss Apr 05, 2005, 10:02pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Regarding the clock speed, I am having constant problems with that too, particularly when on AC power. The CPU always runs at 1.19GHz, instead of 1.59GHz. I have to fiddle with Power Panel and sometimes open the Power Management properties in the desktop properties several times. Sometimes the clock speed goes to 1.59GHz, other times I can't get it to change.

Does anyone know how this editor for Power Panel works and how it relates to the profiles in Screensaver... power management attributes?

One of the things that plagues me is PowerSuite Scheme, which keeps coming back to be the default, even when I set my own default power profile.

And today, for about the umpteenth time, somehow all my power profiles got deleted and I couldn't create any after that happened. I had to use System Restore, again, to get them back.

Does anyone understand the relationship between Power Panel, it's editor program and the power management profiles in Screensaver ... Power management attributes? I have not been able to sort out this mystery in over 2 years of ownership. Drives me nuts having to run at 2/3 speed when on AC power!

Chris DeVitto Apr 05, 2005, 11:54pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I sure hope this speed reduction is not related to the bad memory slots.... Any help out there appreciated..

Hector Silva Apr 06, 2005, 06:46am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
For those of you ladies and gentlemen that have a Sony VAIO PCG-GRZ660 or any of it's brothers in that line, those being the PCG-GRZ610 and PCG-GRZ630 or anyone who has a model PCGA-ACX1 AC power adapter. Is it normal for the adapter to be making a ticking noise? When checked with a voltmeter the voltage is fluctuating between 17.2 and 19 V. This particular laptop was given to me by an acquaintance of mine to check out for her, her problem is that the Laptop doesn't power up. I have already desoldered the legs of the DC jack and cleaned up the area and resoldered the legs. Upon assembly I thought to myself that I should check out the Power supply and system relationship closer. So I plugged in the power adapter with the mainboard in place in the lower chassis and the other main components in place... when plugged up... I could hear a ticking noise from the laptop... it followed the same pace as the power adapter and seemed to be ticking in unison. Has anyone seen an issue like this? If so... perhaps some of the Power up problems people are experiencing are Power adapter related. If possible can those of you that have this model laptop or similar one or who have one or access to one of the mentioned model of Power adapter... please check what the voltage readings are for your power adapter and report your findings here.



Jim Moore Apr 06, 2005, 09:16am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Mark Weiss,

I too have the problem of my GRX-560 posting a 1.19Ghz on the panel instead of 1.59 (1.60Ghz) P4. it sometimes takes rebooting several times for the correct processor speed be read. I only have 1 profile and set my power suite scheme to AC power only.

I suspect it wasn't the PowerSuite causing the problem - I was leaning toward the MoBo screwing up since I'm now having fits getting my external HDD to be read by the USB. It makes the attachment noise when I plug it in, it also is recognized as a USB hub because it asks me if I want to get greater speed by using a 2.0 USB hub ( which the GRX-560 doesnt have! ) then the "#%#&" thing wont see it on My Computer as a drive (set up as Z drive ). I'm about to give up on it and do without the external or run it til it dies and hope the wife will let me get another one before this Christmas....

Greg Pugliese Apr 06, 2005, 01:04pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?

Just stumbled across this thread after a Google search and I can't believe how many people are having the same problem I am - bought a PCG-GRZ630 two years ago, and the past few months it's been a real pain to turn it on. The 'Sony' screen comes on, then I get a 'ERROR: Fixed disk failure 0' message and it stops booting. It takes sometimes 20 resets to finally come up.

Then the other day I noticed the machine was reporting 256MB RAM instead of 512. Found this thread and it all makes sense - I'm guessing my second RAM slot is screwed up like everybody else. However, I tried removing the 2nd stick of RAM last night and it didn't help, I still had the bootup problem.

I don't know what else to do, short of sending it off to Jim for repair. But I'll be following this thread and the lawsuit carefully from now on; it's at least a little comforting to know this is known (well, to the USERS) problem and I'm not alone.

Last time I buy or recommend a Sony laptop though, that's for sure.

Kenny D Apr 06, 2005, 06:15pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
Hello. I posted about this problem approx 1 year ago. Just another victim. GRX-550. Had an extenden waranty from where I bought it. After procrastinating for a while I sent it in for repair. About 10 days later it came back the same. (showing 256Mb ram/not 512Mb) (and showing 8 hundred something Mhz processor speed). Next day brought it back for repair again. BTW they resoldered DIMM slot (allegedly). Needless to say they took it for repair again. That was alittle over aweek or so ago. Saw the UPS delivery guy today and said a quick "God please let it be my laptop prayer" It was my laptop indeed. Now who would figure that it would return screwed up again? Sure enough!! You lose, you get nothing, good-day sir. (Alittle Willy Wanka Chocolate factory line) They replaced the whole board. While doing so failed to neatly put the damn thing back together. Around the screen is a plastic border which (at the bottom only) is about 1/8" away from the screen now. Maybe it was glued but the glue wore off? I don't know. Well the bottom line is that my nightmare seems to have come true. BTW I predicted this close to a year ago. Here it is: I ASSUMED that the replacement boards available were manufactured at the same place and/or around the same time as my original board. See what I'm getting at? I have always feared that even if I got a replacement board that the same problem would plague the new board. (If not sooner than later) For me it seems sooner than later since I just recieved it today and I can confirm that it is still an untrustworthy doorstop. It is really hard to take my frustrations out on the Retail store that keeps "fixing" it. After all they are dealing with a product that has some inferior manufacturing techniques. However I will bring it back today after writing this. Honestly I was really hoping to have this back by the time I went on my Honeymoon. 4-11-05 The good news is that I did indeed get it back TWICE before my honeymoon. UNFIXED!! BOTH TIMES!! I use it to clean up our Compact Flash cards when we go on vacation. A 30GB Harddrive is much better that a 128,512 or even 1GB CF Card. The thought of running out of room for pictures on you card never comes to mind if you got your laptop in the hotel. Oh well Thanks Sony for giving it to me deep & un-lubed. Just thought I'd let you guys know my little story.

I was shocked to see how many people signed the petition. 1090 People!! And we still aren't heard!! I signed it so long ago. I'm #5 on the signature list. I have been contacted by lawyers claiming to be putting a class-action suit together. And the following is to you lawyers. WHERE THE HELL ARE YOU !! I get contacted and never hear a thing again. No update. No "sorry sir, your screwed" No nothing!! WHY WHY Tease me then dissappear?

43 pages in this forum...1090 Signatures Worldwide..And were all here like helpless fools with Ice packs on our asses. And the bonus of Sony always saying (on the phone w/me) that they NEVER HEARD OF THIS PROBLEM!! They are UNAWARE of it. Scumbag corporation. Its Wednesday now and I'm pretty tempted to contact Joe K to see if I can (I doubt it) send it out and get it back to New Jersey by SUNDAY 4-10. I have no doubt from what I have read that he can fix it, but the time frame is probably not do-able.

If you are reading this. I honestly feel bad for you. I know how helpless you all feel. It's probably a feeling similar to a prison rape.

Thanks Sony for keeping my sarcasm alive.

Kenny D

James Guess Apr 06, 2005, 06:47pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I have a GRX550 and i seem to be having the same problems everyone else is having. Im going to try some of the solutions that you guys suggested. If anyone hears of some legal action, kindly post it and i will be glad to join the bandwagon.

Kenny D Apr 06, 2005, 07:18pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Sony Vaio laptop wont boot?
I appolgise for the part in the above message about the lawyer part. I read back a couple pages and did indeed see an update. I am sorry. I took my frustration out on the wrong individuals.

Kenny D

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