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Dell XPS 13 acting weird

by nino8888 / September 5, 2009 8:04 PM PDT

I posted this problem in Dell Forum but got no response. Maybe some of you have idea on what steps I should take to eliminate this issue.

The notebook is
Dell XPS 13 Intel Core 2 Duo P8600
Vista 64
4GB DDR3 memory
320GB HD
GeForce 9400M

Ok, forget about warranty because I bought it in US and it said that if I bring it outside US, the warranty is voided. I use it in other country.

The laptop if working fine and fast when it's either on battery OR if connected to adapter only (without battery). BUT when I plug both battery and adapter (basically using it while charging), after 30-60 seconds, it will act like in slow motion. It's really obvious especially when I switch between windows or opening a folder. It's like some huge process is going on in the background. BUT when I check the task manager, the CPU is not busy at all. I tried system restore, even clean install my Vista 64 with no help at all.

So, now I only use it without battery and this one becomes desktop replacement sittin on my desk.

Anyone has any idea on what I should check?

Thank you

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So if it isn't the OS ...
by Kees Bakker / September 5, 2009 8:28 PM PDT

it's hardware. The only thing you can do yourself (but it IS rather expensive) is to try a new battery. If it's not that, back to Dell.

If the battery is OK (you've got 2 then), and you don't like the repair scenario, see if you can buy another charger. Either a full Dell XPS (rather expensive also, you now have got 2 laptops and 3 batteries) or something like http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/products/Power/productdetail.aspx?c=us&l=en&s=biz&cs=555&sku=A1214550 but than for YOUR type of laptop battery (this particular one is for some Inspirons and Latitudes).

Kees

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What are you willing to do?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 5, 2009 11:11 PM PDT
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Re
by nino8888 / September 6, 2009 8:26 PM PDT

Thanks Kees and Bob. Well, getting another battery or adapter without knowing it's gonna heal the problem is not worthed. I did reload the OS and didn't work and kind of figured that must be hardware problem.

Well, I'll just leave it on the desk plugged with adapter. I still have other laptop I can carry with me.

I've never appreciate warranty until now. This is the first time I got bad batch. Unlucky start with Dell (my first Dell).

Thanks again

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What you don't want to know.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 6, 2009 10:30 PM PDT
In reply to: Re

1. The battery is rated for 300 cycles. That's one year of daily use or two of weekly use. Not to open a discussion about battery life but you will find a lot of angry posts about batteries.

2. There are all of three parts in play here. One of them is unlikely to be the cause. Ready? a. motherboard (holds the battery management and charging circuits), b. battery and c. the power brick.

What many want is an assurance that replacing one part will fix it. But here we know the battery has a short life so how to get this plus the other 2 replaced so you know you have a good set? Also how to pry the old battery away from the customer so they don't use it with the new motherboard in case it's the cause of the failed board?

These are issues facing the growing laptop repair industry.
Bob

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RE
by nino8888 / September 7, 2009 12:08 AM PDT

Thanks Bob.

Bob, I don't wanna start another thread and only have a simple question. Do you know any good software (freeware preferably) that do what system restore does? Some computers in my office (XP) somehow cannot do system restore and always comes back saying cannot restore setting to earlier... and asks to pick another restore date. And then fail again. I searched thru this forum and read those problems (mostly few years back) and couldn't find the solution. I ran all antivirus, malwarebytes, superantispyware, spybot and just found nothing. The computers works fine. I just tried to restore one of them first because it didn't want to update the windows. I fixed that problem thru the registry but the system restore still fails.


About the laptop, I kind of dissapointed and give up with this XPS. Many weird things happened beside that issue like:
1. On another thread I replied to someone about the Wifi suddenly dissapeared. I know I one way to turn it on besides the wifi button is by the Quickset. The quickset however kept telling me that's it's ON when the computer said it couldn't find the network adapter. That's why I mentioned about reinstalling the driver and also did the system recovery the second time around.
2. The optical drive (CD drive) won't play CD that's not in mint condition. It's really sensitive.

I know I didn't do or install or use any questionable softwares. I also have cleaned install the OS twice just incase I screwed up something. So, this laptop is just under my expectation. It comes with kick a$s CPU and DDR3 memory but not as great as I thought it would be.

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About System Restore.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 7, 2009 12:23 AM PDT
In reply to: RE

The number one reason I encounter is the antivirus software's product tamper protection. Its a shame that Symantec and others don't tell you up front and often how they break system restore and what to do about it.

1. On another thread I replied to someone about the Wifi suddenly dissapeared. I know I one way to turn it on besides the wifi button is by the Quickset. The quickset however kept telling me that's it's ON when the computer said it couldn't find the network adapter. That's why I mentioned about reinstalling the driver and also did the system recovery the second time around.

There are rather LONG discussions about this. I'll keep it short. I disable and/or remove the onboard wifi card and slip in some PC-Card like the 10 buck WPNT-511 to take over.

2. The optical drive (CD drive) won't play CD that's not in mint condition. It's really sensitive.

Another area where you find long discussions. For less than 50 I replace the drive. These are 2 year devices and once you hit 2 years and see trouble you replace that part.

I know people want 10 year machines but everything I see is a 5 year design with failures showing up just after year 2.
Bob

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Is the drive replacable?
by nino8888 / September 7, 2009 12:33 AM PDT
In reply to: About System Restore.

It's the slot in type, not the regular one that has the tray comes out to feed the disc.

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So far, all drives.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 7, 2009 12:34 AM PDT

Without exception can be replaced.

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Ok,
by nino8888 / September 7, 2009 12:38 AM PDT
In reply to: So far, all drives.

Thank you, I'll look into it. FYI, My XPS is only 2 months old, that's why it pisses me off. I didn't have enough time to test it before bringing it back home or else I would have returned it to the store.

Thanks for your help Bob.

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At 2 months old that changes my answers.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 7, 2009 12:57 AM PDT
In reply to: Ok,

Such machines are ones we don't fix. We call it in and get them to deal with it.

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