So I inherited a Sony VGN-S170 (PCG-6C2L) laptop.
It randomly shuts-down, regardless of the activity.
First, I thought it was the damaged DC power jack - replaced it, but still shuts down.
The battery is completely dead - won't do anything on just battery power, so I've ordered a new battery. But, the shut-down occurs whether the battery is in the bay or not, so I don't believe its a battery issue. I'm using a new adapter, so don't believe that to be an issue either.
I've opened the machine, and completely cleaned it out - this brought the temperature down about 15.C, but still hits peaks of 75.C sometimes, but usually hovers around 40-45.C on the CPU, and 30-34.C on the HD. I've read that heat can be a reason for the shut down, but the laptop has shut down on me even when its cold. Sometimes, it even shuts-down within seconds of pressing the "on" button in the morning, after hours of no activity. So I'm not convinced its a heat issue here, but who knows.
I've notices that if I press F2 at start up, it goes into BIOS with no problem, and stays there until I exit BIOS (which again leads me to believe its not a heat issue...otherwise, why won't the heat shut it down at this stage?)
When I exit BIOS, it will either shut-down immediately, or work either for a few seconds or for several hours until I shut it down myself. RANDOM!!
I've swapped the HD and reloaded everything on the machine (updated the BIOS, XP Pro, and all service packs/updates).
Should I revert to the original BIOS? Could this be an issue with Windows?
As you can tell, I'm not very knowledgeable about computers...hoping someone can shed some light.