I was using my computer at the airport the other day and it suddenly powered off as though the plug had been pulled. I unplugged its AC plug, plugged it into a different outlet and the computer functioned fine. A couple days later, it did it again, I did the same thing, and it was fine.
Two days ago, I use the computer at home. I’m sitting on the couch with it, and I shift my weight slightly and the thing powers off (it has no battery in it, as the battery died 2 months ago and won’t hold a charge – gives the “Battery is defective, contact Dell” sequence of light flashing). No amount of plugging in, wiggling of cords, checking the connections in the power cord, holding down the power button on the laptop, etc would bring it back. There was no sound, no sparks, no smells. To check if there’s power going into it at ALL, I plugged in the dead battery. The battery light showed that it was trying to charge it, and then settled into its usual error flashing sequence. I don’t know anyone else with a Dell laptop, so I haven’t been able to swap power cords and see if that was the problem. The computer shows no signs of life at all unless the battery’s in there, and it’s telling me the battery’s toast.
I was told to do a hard reset on the machine, but I don’t know how to do one other than the “hold the power button down” trick on the Inspiron 8200. Does anyone have any ideas, or does it sound like my little senior finally kicked it (it’s five years old this year).