This is what happens.. I'll be using my computer when suddenly it freezes. Nothing can be done except to hit the power switch. Then, when I switch it back on, it skips the "Windows did not end normally (whatever).. do you want safe mode" screen and will get to the Windows logo screen, but the meter bar remains empty and the screen is dim, maybe about 1/4 the normal brightness. (see the attached picture, but much dimmer and without any bars in the meter bar) I've waited several minutes at this screen, but nothing further happens. Subsequent power off/ons will give me that "Windows did not end normally" screen (normal brightness!), but followed again by the dimly-lit, non-moving Windows logo screen that goes nowhere. No matter what my choice, safe mode, last known good config., start normally, same thing.. dim Windows logo screen and nothing more.
However, each time this has happened, if I just leave it off and just wait for 10-30 minutes and then come back, it starts normally again!
So, could this be a hardware issue, something overheating perhaps? Maybe caused by dust? If so, I could start by having it opened up and cleaned out well. Is it possibly the hard disk? Any chance it's a software issue?
Techs are cheap here in Peru, so if it might be a dust issue I'll start by having it cleaned out good.
It's an older Thiinkpad.
This first happened a few months ago while living in a humid, moldy apartment. At the time, I was afraid that mold was starting to affect the hard disk or other parts of my laptop. It happened around 3 or 4 times within a 2 week period then.. I took it to a sunny cafe a few times a week for the next couple of weeks until we found a new place and moved. (and I kept it sealed in a water-proof bag when off) Now I'm using it in a room that stays pretty dry, although I do occasionally use it in bed and keep it (closed) in the bedroom overnight here, which we have just noticed has a mold problem as well! We've been in the new place for a couple of months, and I hadn't seen this problem since the move until yesterday when it froze. Then it happened again today, only difference being, instead of freezing, it spontaneously rebooted (and gave the same dim Windows screen).