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Fixing a Dell Laptop Stuck in Hibernate Mode
Ed Kohler
I keep an old Dell laptop around the house for random chores where a PC outperforms a Mac, and as a guest computer. Some people have special towels for their guests. At the Kohler household, you get a computer to use (and towels).

However, the Dell has had a problem for a while with the hibernate pin. I don't know if that's the technical name for it, but what I'm referring to is the small plastic pin that, when compressed, tells the computer that the lid is shut. Around a year ago, I managed to shear the pin down to half its normal size which led to the pin often becoming stuck in the computer. This was a problem because the computer would get locked in hibernate mode. Digging the pin out of the hold with a fingernail each time I opened the lid was becoming a major pain.

My pin related pain became much worse yesterday when I managed to push the pin deep into the computer, making it impossible to retrieve.

The pin was obviously a liability. I could decide for myself when I wanted the computer in sleep mode if I could only get the pin out of the picture. So, I decided to open up the laptop one screw at a time to go after the darn thing. This turned out to be a bigger pain than I imagined as I removed screw after screw after screw only to find out there were still more screws holding it together.

Only then did it occur to me that I OWNED this computer and had no plans to ever sell it. In fact, selling it would hardly be worth the effort since it's three years old. That's when I realized I should stop being so delicate with the thing and start cutting.


IMG_0193.JPG

I drilled a few small holes, then used a scissors to snip out a piece of the case to gain access to the pin. Problem solved. It looks like my F4 key has taken a beating from Alt-F4'ing so much.

Here is the removed sheared pin:
IMG_0196.JPG

My theory on tech products: You own the product. The product does not own you.

The guest computer is back from hibernation with three months of winter left to go.



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Comments

1. Posted by: Dell Customer Advocate on January 22, 2007 3:39 PM:

I am not sure from the article if you were aware of it or not, but the service manuals for all Dell computers are available on the Dell support website (http://support.dell.com). They include the instructions for a complete teardown of the computer to allow anyone with even a small bit of technical skill to replace any part, including the motherboard.

While I don't think it would have been much help with this particular problem, it would definitely have made taking the system apart a bit less annoying for you.


Larry
Dell Customer Advocate




2. Posted by: Ed Kohler on January 22, 2007 5:06 PM:

Larry, thanks for pointing out that resource.




3. Posted by: kris on June 5, 2009 11:15 AM:

I have a dell PC and it is in hibernate mode and I cannot get it to come on now. UGH ANy suggestions with a dell PC

thanks




4. Posted by: kris on June 5, 2009 11:15 AM:

I have a dell PC and it is in hibernate mode and I cannot get it to come on now. UGH ANy suggestions with a dell PC

thanks




5. Posted by: kris on June 5, 2009 11:16 AM:

I have a dell PC and it is in hibernate mode and I cannot get it to come on now. UGH ANy suggestions with a dell PC

thanks




6. Posted by: used computer on June 17, 2009 5:45 AM:

i like dell laptop so i want to buy new laptop and sell my pc i ll be happy when i buy the good look laptop




7. Posted by: Susan on December 23, 2009 9:51 PM:

Reading your article made me smile :)

My Dell laptop sometimes swtiches to hibernation mode, but the problem is that I can't get it back up without having to turn it off and on again, I was searching for solutions when i came across your aritcle.




8. Posted by: renee on April 12, 2010 12:27 PM:

My Dell laptop is stuck in hibernation mode and I don't think the pin is the problem. What else could it be and how do I fix it?




9. Posted by: renee on April 12, 2010 12:27 PM:

My Dell laptop is stuck in hibernation mode and I don't think the pin is the problem. What else could it be and how do I fix it?




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