Computer Help forum


My laptop freezes after only a few seconds. What do I do?

by EmmayRose / March 21, 2012 6:44 AM PDT

I don't have all my system info just now as I am having to use a library computer and didn't bring my laptop, but it is an HP with Windows 7. I purchased it in August of 2010. I use Norton ... security suite, or something along those lines.

And first off, this may not be related to the problem at hand, but I've had an ongoing issue with my computer trying to do an update when I shut it down every now and then, and it will be stuck on "Update 1 of 1" for such a long period with no sign of progress that I usually have to force close as I don't have time to wait and see that it completes, and because I don't want it stuck on the screen while I'm away for hours as it has done before.

But that whole issue has only ever been a minor annoyance, so I don't know if it is related to what happened today. The reason I bring it up is because that is circumstance under which I had to shut my computer down last night before going to bed.

When I woke up this morning, I turn on my laptop, logged in, and left to shower. I came back about 20 minutes later and found that it was off. I turned it on again and got the message that the computer had overheated. This is the first time that has ever happened.

So I continued to the log on screen and went about it all like normal, but when my desktop came up and I sat waiting for it to finish doing all its start-up loading, I went to move the mouse after about 15-20 seconds and found it frozen. Everything was frozen; I couldn't even ctrl-alt-del. So I had to force close.

This exact situation has happened every time I've tried to use my computer today, minus the over-heating message. It even happens in Safe Mode, so basically I have zero use of my laptop right now.

I have no idea where to begin trying to fix it since I can't access my files or anything on the computer with it freezing like this.

What am I supposed to do?

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All Answers

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The overheating message is a fine clue.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 21, 2012 7:12 AM PDT

Let's go with that.

Did you try using CANNED AIR on the vents? Here this is a 6 month ritual.

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No canned air handy.
by EmmayRose / March 23, 2012 7:19 AM PDT

I unscrewed a few panels and blew. Didn't appear too dusty.

I then took the laptop to some tech people in the library who work with this kind of thing (didn't even know they were there until my roommate mentioned it) but unfortunately the guy who was going to look at it won't be in till Tuesday. Someone found that I still had a version of Macafee installed conflicting with my Norton, and my Norton was outdated. They uninstalled the Macafee but didn't do anything with Norton. And my computer seems to be running ok in safe mode. Or at least for longer.

But anyway, I really don't think I can wait till Tuesday just to get a diagnoses (they can't actually do any work on hardware; they can only find the problem and give advise).

Back to square one.

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If you can't wait and ...
by Edward ODaniel / March 23, 2012 8:55 AM PDT
In reply to: No canned air handy.

think the problem might be software related as you don't seem to think blowing it out helped as much as removing McAfee then you might consider saving all your data off the computer that you haven't backed up then making use of HP's recovery options to restore the laptop to factory specs.

If it still will not stay running long enough to back up your files see if using a bootable Ubuntu CD works (using a live CD also helps determine whether the problem is hardware or software as if you have hardware problems the CD probably will not boot into a usable OS).

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