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marianm
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Posts: 16
Registered: ‎04-23-2013
Location: Belgium
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Message 1 of 10

T61 failing to start up

Hi,

 

I have a Lenovo T61 Laptop on a docking station with an external monitor. Operating system is Windows XP.

Last week the laptop shut down when electricity was cut. Afterwards I got it back running but since then it went to 'sleep' suddenly twice, and now it does no longer seem to be starting up.

 

 

Thanks in advance for all input here.

Kind regards,

 

Marian

 

 

Lenovo Thinkpad T61p Type 7661 - 20V.

TuuS
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Message 2 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

Hi,

 

With the info you posted I was able to confirm that your system has Intel graphics, so the common GPU problems are highly unlikely on this model.

 

By the way, if you don't remove your serial number from the post, one of the forum mods will remove it. Since they have enough work to do already it would be kind of you to remove it yourself since it's a violation of forum rules.

 

Since your failure happened right after a power outage my guess is you had a power surge that could have damaged some of the electronics, most likely the system board, but I'd try the following.

 

1. remove battery and ac power and press power button 10 times holding a few seconds each and 30 seconds on the last, then replace power and test.

 

2. remove hard drive and optical drive and see if you can get it to post.

 

3. remove ram, without any installed you should get beep codes when you attempt to start. If none you probably have a bad system board (assuming your power supply is working of course). If it does beep try installing the ram modules one at a time or substitute for known good ram.

 

If it won't post no matter what you remove but there are signs of it getting power, then you probably have a bad system board. 

ThinkPad W-510 i7-820QM(1.73-3.06GHz) Quad Core... ThinkPad T500, T9900, 8gb SSD...FrankNpad T-60p/61p (X9000 2.8ghz) 8gb SSD ips FlexView...ThinkPad T-61p (T9300 2.5ghz) 8gb ram...Thinkpad X-61 Tablet 8gb ram.
marianm
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Location: Belgium
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Message 3 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

Hello TuuS,

 

Thank you for this feedback. Sorry I violated the SN rule by now, could you please let me know how to get it out there myself? I have been looking to find out which way, yet failed to find...

 

I will get on with the 3 points listed below, but I am not familiar with the inside of the laptop, though. Is there some way to find out which part is where in this machine?

 

Many thanks again!

An IT-lay(wo)man,

 

 

 

Marian

TuuS
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Message 4 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

Marian,

 

I see you managed to edit the post and remove the serial number. The rule is for your protection, but on older systems it really not a security risk, yet still a rule that we must follow.

 

For test 1, no disassembly is required, only removing the battery.

 

Test 2 requires removing the drives,the optic CD/DVD drive requires no tools, just a button to release the ejector. The harddrive has one screw to remove the cover (next to optical drive) and there is a plastic tab that you use to pull the drive out. Remember which way it fits for reassembly ("label faces table" is an easy way to remember). 

 

Test 3 requires removing the palmrest, there are 4 screws across the bottom that have to be removed...

 

 

 

 

The red circles are for the palmrest, the yellow is for the keyboard. The harddrive screw is on the left side just below the red circle.

 

You can then lift the palmrest off from the bottom of keyboard, lifting up then off and unplugging one cable. You don't need this installed to test if the laptop will boot.

 

The ram modules will be in two slots, there could be one or two modules installed, usually two.

 

 

 

Close up can be seen here: http://www.eweek.com/imagesvr_ce/eweek/images/slide/207324_2.jpg

 

 

Avoid static electricity when working on computers. Avoid carpeted areas, plastic bags, woven sweaters, fresh laundry etc. 

 

These tests are pretty simple to do and will help to eliminate the simple repairs. If this was indeed caused by a bad power surge the odds are the damage is severe, but you could get lucky. and have only a bad ram module. It's definitely a good idea to check.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ThinkPad W-510 i7-820QM(1.73-3.06GHz) Quad Core... ThinkPad T500, T9900, 8gb SSD...FrankNpad T-60p/61p (X9000 2.8ghz) 8gb SSD ips FlexView...ThinkPad T-61p (T9300 2.5ghz) 8gb ram...Thinkpad X-61 Tablet 8gb ram.
marianm
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Registered: ‎04-23-2013
Location: Belgium
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Message 5 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

Dear TuuS,

 

 

Thanks a lot, this enables me (or my husband in the end) to also work through 2. and 3. to figure out what is damaged or hopefully not).

In fact, this old (good) laptop had a fan error couple of years ago, so we opened it up then to clean out dust, however the fan error kept in coming. By pressing Escape for a couple of times, the system kept on working.

Also, I struggled through a BSOD in April last year, by updating the BIOS, but then the machine seemed not to reboot anymore, this was overcome by pushing the button ON/OFF for seconds for a couple of times.

 

All this background info, in order to check out about this: could potentially heating issues have played a role here too, seen all this?

 

However, now or tomorrow we'll open up the machine first and for sure this "thermal paste injection" as I read from your 'sounding as gospel' replies here and there will be taken care of, if applicable here. What material could do for this, or should this be an original "PC bought material"?

 

Thanks a lot once again - from a Lenovo T61 lover

Marian

TuuS
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Message 6 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

The fan problem could have caused this in which case you may need a new system board as well as a fan. You do have the most reliable model, unlike the nVidia graphic models these rarely fail, but fan problems really need to be properly fixed or the high temps will damage the motherboards.

 

For the fan there are two models, Toshiba and Furukawa. The Furukawa are rare and virtually never fail but the Toshiba is cheap to replace, the fan motor alone can be purchased for about $10 but they are usually generic parts. I've found they usually work well but extra care is needed to make sure they are properly alinged when installed, or you can get the whole fan assembly in which case I'd get the furukawa if you can find one. They can be distinguished by having 3 heat pipes instead of 2 like the toshiba. 

 

For the thermal paste I'd recommend Arctic Silver #5 brand, it does an excellent job of conducting the heat

ThinkPad W-510 i7-820QM(1.73-3.06GHz) Quad Core... ThinkPad T500, T9900, 8gb SSD...FrankNpad T-60p/61p (X9000 2.8ghz) 8gb SSD ips FlexView...ThinkPad T-61p (T9300 2.5ghz) 8gb ram...Thinkpad X-61 Tablet 8gb ram.
marianm
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Registered: ‎04-23-2013
Location: Belgium
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Message 7 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

Hi TuuS,

 

we're back after trying out listed 1. 2. 3. as advised.

No good outcome, so it looks like the system board is not working any longer as no beeping was heard at all.

Would you recommend such a replacement in this system?

Might there be a chance that updating BIOS might still help in any way or another or is it definitely a lost mother board?

I saw the "10 min. baking videos" online, assume this is not applicable to my model, as this nVidia chip is certainly not inside mine? Or could we make sense giving this a try anyway?

 

Lots of questions - thanks again in advnance for any input given further!

Marian

TuuS
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Message 8 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

Baking will never fix anything. When done properly it can be used as a diagnostic tool to confirm a bad gpu, but it will never fix it and you can be pretty certain it will do other damage. It would be about as effective as treating a brain tumor with a microwave oven  lol  

 

Also, with Intel graphics this woudn't even help to diagnose. 

 

If you're getting power to the board and you have the LED lights showing that but you get no post on the screen and no beeps when ram is removed then it's pretty conclusive the board is dead. A bad cpu chip could cause this but they rarely fail like this and if a cpu was fried from power surge or overheating, the board would have likely fried also. The board is much more complex and suseptable to damage like this. 

 

If you wanted to try replacing the CPU I could send you a compatible one for the cost of postage, but it's pretty obvious that it's looking like you're going to need a motherboard. I can source them if you'd like one in fact I think there may be a brand new NOS (new old-stock) board available for your model, new boards haven't been available for years but every now and then some surface that have been on the shelf but never used. If you were to order one today through official channels it would be a refurbished used part. These boards have become very popular to convert laptops with nVidia graphics because the Intel boards rarely fail. When one does fail it's usually a result of liquid spills, power surges or severe overheating. If you'd like my help sourcing one you can send me a private message, or if you want to source a used board yourself I'd recommend getting one from a working laptop. Many used boards sold online have problems and you could end up with a huge headache if you get a bad board or perhaps one that is partially working or improperly repaired, so I always source boards from fully working laptops, but it can be difficult if you don't have access to a warehouse full of liquidated laptops. 

 

The only other thing I can suggest trying is removing your wifi card and if you have a card in your secondary pcie slot like a WWAN or Turbo memory card you can try removing them. You might also try unplugging the video cable from the motherboard and see if you get the beep errors when the ram is pulled. These are long, Long LONG shots, but in theory any part that is connected to your board could cause it to malfunction going by experience. We are probably talking more than 10,000:1 odds here but if you want more tests this would be the next logical step and if you were in the usa I'd send you a cpu to check since the postage would only be about $2, but it would probably be about $12 minimum to ship one to europe, but again even if the cpu was bad the event that killed it would likely kill the board too.

ThinkPad W-510 i7-820QM(1.73-3.06GHz) Quad Core... ThinkPad T500, T9900, 8gb SSD...FrankNpad T-60p/61p (X9000 2.8ghz) 8gb SSD ips FlexView...ThinkPad T-61p (T9300 2.5ghz) 8gb ram...Thinkpad X-61 Tablet 8gb ram.
marianm
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Posts: 16
Registered: ‎04-23-2013
Location: Belgium
Views: 2,496
Message 9 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

Dear TuuS,

 

Thanks really for all of this feedback!

I copy/paste you this one you really desserve. I have sent a PM as well (after searching for a while how to do so!

Great Job, TuuS

 

Regards

Marian

marianm
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Posts: 16
Registered: ‎04-23-2013
Location: Belgium
Views: 2,369
Message 10 of 10

Re: T61 failing to start up

Dear Lenovo Community,

 

a last reply you owed from me, on how this T61 story ended.

Well, allthough TuuS was so kind to provide all his expert input and even offered me shipping over from the States a T400 from which the motherboard could serve, or alternatively a lower chassis of a T61, to fix the one I have, I didn't want to take the shipping risk and looked out for a T400 second hand around here in Belgium.

That worked out fine, all data from my good old T61 were copied over to the "new" T400.

 

So allthough requested so, I cannot click any of the above posts for being the final solution to my problem; however, replacing the dead motherboard would have been the perfect solution here - I must say not many Belgians open up their PC and just do this ...

Thanks once again for all support provided here!

 

Keep in touch!

 

Spoiler
 

 

 

Smiley HappyMarian


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