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I received a 'new' manufacturer refurbished laptop from Microsoft a few days ago. Yesterday I ran into an issue with the laptop entering hibernate mode in the middle of my playing games without warning. An error message of some sort came up at least once when this happened, but the computer hibernated too fast for me to read the message.

Given that it's new with almost no software on the computer to cause conflicts, and was refurbished, I'm strongly inclined to believe the issue is due to hardware. However, before I demand a replacement I was hoping to narrow down to the exact hardware issue so I can better express what is wrong.

I tried checking my event logs and none of the error messages I saw after a shutdown appear to be relevant. There is a generic error message about an 'exception' (no details) From Heroes Of the Storm, the game I was playing at the time of the shutdowns; but it doesn't provide anything useful and I'm assuming it was caused by the hibernation happening mid game, rather then the cause of the computer hibernating.

My current presumption is that the computer is overheating. This is because I played hours yesterday without issue of a different game, Paladins. Also I was able to play a decent amount of Heroes Of The Storm before the first hibernation occurred, but afterwards if I turned the computer back on It would hibernate within one game (less then 20 minutes). This suggests to me the hibernation isn't completely random, the idea of overheating leading to it would explain why it only happened after serious playing of one game (assuming HoTS is producing more heat then Paladins). The spontaneous hibernation issues persisted across a reboot.

What can I look for to provide definitive proof of this issue, such that I can provide evidence that the provided laptop is defective and demand a replacement? Is there a specific event I should be looking for in the event logs I may have missed? Surely a shutdown due to overheating would be recorded somehow? Is there a different hardware issue I should investigate as the cause of the random hibernation events?

edit: While downloading some software to monitor system temp tonight the computer went into hibernate mode. I hadn't done anything resource intensive prior to this, which suggests that overheating isn't the issue.

Also I forgot to add it to my original message, but the built in hardware scan found nothing.

  • What model laptop is this? Is the laptop getting good airflow, by having it placed on a hard surface? – DrZoo Dec 18 '18 at 20:06
  • @DrZoo The laptop is resting on a computer desk. The model is: Dell E6540 Intel Core i7 4th Gen 4800MQ (2.70 GHz) 16 GB Memory 750 GB HDD 15.6" Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit – dsollen Dec 18 '18 at 20:22
  • I wonder if the psu isn't providing enough power and the battery is discharging. – djsmiley2k Dec 18 '18 at 20:27
  • @djsmiley2k The battery was my other theory. But it was reporting close to 100% charge when I wake it. The close to part confuses me since I had it plugged in but once it was at 85%, once 98%, and once 100% after waking. That being said I learned the day prior it was easy to unplug the laptop by accident due to the design of the plug, so I'm guessing the 85% charge was just a case of the plug coming temporarily unplugged (I had double checked all the plugs before trying to take it out of hibernate, so it if was unset I had already fixed it) – dsollen Dec 18 '18 at 20:34
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    @dsollen a good 'test' you could run is make sure the laptop is connected properly, take a note of the battery - run the game for around half an hour, immediately checking the battery again - if it's dropped, at all, while being on charge this shows you're not getting enough power to charge it under load - This maybe by design however. – djsmiley2k Dec 18 '18 at 20:36
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Diagnosis that is installed in the new models of laptops and Dell desktops, can be executed as follows:

When turning on the computer, press the [F12] key during the boot process (Dell Logo), to access the BIOS boot menu. Use the arrow keys to select in the menu and press the Enter key. Within the diagnosis you can find the components of the equipment (hardware) that can verify the operation, you can run a test of all at the same time or select them individually. The devices that are selected with a green box to the left of the device image will be the ones that will be evaluated. If the diagnosis finds an error it will show a window informing the situation and presenting the error in a code in format of 2000: XXXX where the "X" will be numbers; in addition to a validation code that must be informed to the technical support when the problem is reported.

  • Thank you for the suggestion. I forgot to mention I had already tried this and the diagnostics did not find anything. – dsollen Dec 19 '18 at 0:28
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The problem was with my battery.

Further googling told me that I need to look for a kernel-power source within the System event log. These were all information level, but looking through them I saw events indicating the sleep mode was being triggered due to a trigger from the battery.

In fact after some further experimentation I discovered that if I removed the battery, while staying plugged in, The computer wouldn't try to spontaneously enter hibernate mode. This tells me the batter was bad and triggering spurious power errors. new egg is willing to ship me a replacement thankfully, but since I've 'fixed' the problem for the time being I'll be keeping the computer so I have something to use during Christmas vacation before shipping it back for a replacement.

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