July 4th, 2003, 12:37 PM
Bizarre Fix for IBM Thinkpad
I have a Thinkpad T23 laptop from my employer.
Apologies in advance to any IBM fans but I have had problems with it since it was brand new out of the box and wish it would fall into the bathtub or something so I could trade up for a Dell.
In any event, one of the issues it has always had is that it would crash seemingly out of nowhere. You would just be typing along and then you'd get a blue screen of death.
Over time this crash has come to be associated with hitting the bottom left most key on the keyboard which is a blue "Fn" key that allows you to execute special keys for the laptop like hibernation, switching video output to an LCD projector or whatever. Turns out it was a common problem and not just my laptop.
So, someone somewhere worked this out and this is the fix we were given:
So far, it seems as if this works.
1. Open the Task Bar settings
2. Click on the Advanced Tab
3. Make sure all boxes in the Start menu settings window are checked
4. Shut the PC down and undock it if it is docked
5. Power on the machine. Press the F8 key to choose how to boot Windows
6. Select "Safe Mode". No network support is needed so just plain Safe Mode will do
7. Once the PC is booted press the blue Fn key. You do NOT need to log in for this to work. You will NOT see any messages or be able to tell anything has happened- but this will fix the problem.
8. Press CTRL-ALT-DEL and select Shutdown
9. Power the machine back on. Boot into Windows normally and resume normal operation
I am curious if anyone can explain why though. How would you even go about figuring out that this was the fix for this problem if "You do NOT need to log in for this to work. You will NOT see any messages or be able to tell anything has happened"?
You can't accidentally go into Safe Mode and press the Fn key which results in nothing noticeable happening and then say "wow! that crashing problem went away!".