After fussing with (installing and configuring with poor resets) splashtop server (to extend my desktop to an ipad mini) I changed my screen resolution to a lower setting and restarted the computer. I have Not booted the operating system since.
I want to say, that periodically, upon bringing the machine out of sleep mode, perhaps when starting up as well, the device starts to come back to life (windows 8 swirly thingy) then the screen goes black - like it goes back to sleep. I hit enter, tap a few keys, press and depress power in somewhat random ways, and it comes to life. I've never thought too much about it as it always works.
I have Not made a recovery Or backup disk. I have my files on an external drive. But there is some critical work in there. A movie for a kickstarter project I am ready to upload and publish.... I'm nervous.
Windows 8 made it a challenge to read the post and get into the bios but I've figured out how. I thought I would get into safe mode and take out the splashtop and be on my way. But my problem appears to be serious. I've created a bootable Hirens bootable USB drive which works on other computers, but Not mine. No matter how I configure the BIOS boot directive; hard drive Or USB I get:
PXE-E61 : Media test failure, check cable
PXE-M0F: Exiting Broadcom PXE ROM.
No bootable device -- insert boot disk and press any key.
I've figured out the PXE is used to boot over a network, I've disabled it, and just get No bootable device.... Why do I get no bootable device from the USB drive tht clearly is bootable? Makes me think my hard drive is ok.
I have Not tried a CD/DVD Yet. But the problem seems elsewhere.
I've taken the laptop apart (removed screws and lift the top plate/keyboard - inspecting all the connections, reconnecting a few ribbons. It's been about 36 hours. At some point during those 36 hours I have decoupled a new symptom - perhaps after I opened it? Not sure; namely the battery does Not charge. I must have the AC plugged in to get a power light. Weird right?
I sure hope I get some ideas. I've read a few forums and found one where a slough of folks with similar no boot device found problem, fixed it by hitting the hard drive with a hammer Or slamming it on a counter..... Or some other variation of physically shocking the unit. Not good. I'm Not going there.... Yet..
Me again - after reading a few more forums, I want to add that I see all the drives both in the BIOS and during the initial post. If I remove the bootable USB it does not show up in the BIOS or the initial post. The USB is bootable and works on other machines....
1 HOUR LATER - some good news.
I was able to verify the hard drive is ok . I read it an external drive on Windows Vista. I can't get to the files because of permissions, but this is not the priority yet. I put the HD back in Aspire M and in the BIOS eneable D2D recovery (alt -F10) and got into safe mode!
So the drives work, and it boots in safe mode. Does this mean the hardware is all ok? Can I assume the MB and everything is ok?