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Old laptop post-mortem


#1

I’d like to preface this by saying I’m not trying to get help for the problem. I’ve already used this an excuse to buy a much nicer laptop. I am just curious as to what actually happened to my poor laptop.

Secondly, I don’t know that much about computers so this might be a run of the mill failure and I would have no idea, sorry to waste your time. It just seems interesting to me.

My old Acer laptop had an I5 5200U and an Nvidia 940m. Basically what I think happened was is the INTEL HD graphics portion of the chip failed while the rest of the chip remained functional. Is that common or possible? It took me a lot of troubleshooting and time to come to that conclusion. Basically what happens is the screen will start having graphical glitches for a couple seconds then the computer will turn off. This happens as soon as you get to the windows log in the screen. It does NOT happen if you boot in safe mode or Boot Linux from USB. After a clean install of windows, the computer worked fine until the Intel drives installed. After the update the same problems presented. So, I went into safe mode and uninstalled the drivers and computer has been running fine using the “Microsoft basic display adapter” drivers. So something about the Intel drivers causes the computer to fail.

Is my diagnosis correct? If not what do you think is happening?

Thanks for helping satisfy my curiousity


#2

With Acer, overheating would be among the possible causes.


#3

exactly laptops are infamous for lint buildup in the cooling fins and can dry out the thermal paste/pads between the cpu and gpu chips and the heatsink.
a common maintenance that we did at work was a semi annual disassembly and clean-out of the cooling fins and re application of the thermal paste.
acers and toshibas both are touchy with heat issues.


#4

to a certain extent it is possible but usually not probable.
because it is working under linux from usb but then again during a live boot the distro itself will use a basic driver.
unless you are getting serious heat issues it sounds a lot more like a driver incompatibility issue
the fact that its shutting down the computer concerns me
this is indicating that something is happening that could cause potential damage to the equipment and windows or the system bios is forcing shutdown.
excessive heat can indeed cause this.

generally speaking driver and resource conflicts either show as distortion, error messages or the dreaded bsod.

I could tell you a lot more if i had the system here in my shop and could give you a definite answer
but with not having it here its just an educated guess based on the description of the problem.


#5

i am using the same laptop Acer aspire 5 like your old one. it has the same problem. seemly the laptop doesnot know how to switch back between onboard and intergrated graphics card. so when i jump into something graphics-demanding it will struggle witth laggy in 20-something seconds before taking off. so it’s not an issue about thermal, i would say it’s the system flault caused it. if you want to make it cool, you need to choose the use the graphics manualy.