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Just joined this forum after several Google searches yielded no helpful results.
Anyway, I have a 2007 Acer Aspire 5100 (it's running Windows Vista Home 64-bit, if that makes any difference; and yeah, I know - old laptop is old) which, over the past several months, has developed a peculiar "quirk" which has gotten progressively worse.
Basically, when I turn it on and it starts booting, it will "forget" that the AC power supply is plugged in and then switch to battery power. Once it does this, there's no way to make it "remember" that it's plugged in (disconnecting the cord and then reconnecting it doesn't work, and neither does anything else I've been able to think of), and when it's running on battery power, it dies within a couple of minutes (because the battery is as old as the computer is). The only solution is to shut the computer down by hitting the power button, and then power it back on again and keep doing this until eventually, it makes it through the boot sequence without issues.
I've never encountered this issue beyond a certain step. It only occurs during the boot sequence - never when I'm fully logged in and actually using the computer. Basically, this means that once I've made it past a certain step, I'm safe - until the next time I have to boot. Also, because the issue only occurs during the boot sequence, I don't believe the power supply is the source of the problem (although, if your experience says differently, please speak up).
Like I said, the problem has gotten progressively worse, and yesterday, for the first time, it was impossible for me to get the computer to make it all the way through the boot sequence without switching to the battery. The power supply light would go out almost immediately (i.e., within a couple of seconds after I hit the power button), and then when I shut the computer down (again, by hitting the power button) the battery light would go out, too, and the only way for me to make it "remember" the battery was connected would be to remove and then reinsert the battery.
I've experimented with various things, naturally. I've tried different wall outlets, which doesn't appear to make a difference. I've tried removing the battery and then hitting the power button (it powers on for about a second and then shuts down again). And I've experimented with the amount of time I leave it plugged in and charging before turning it on. When this problem first started occurring, leaving it to charge for a good long while before powering on seemed to make it more likely to make it all the way through the boot sequence without switching to battery power, but lately, this doesn't seem to make any difference, either.
So what are your theories? Could this problem be battery related somehow? Or perhaps motherboard related? If there's a cheap and easy way for me to fix my computer, I could see myself doing that. If, on the other hand, the fix involves throwing lots of money and/or time at it, I'll probably just bite the bullet and buy myself a new laptop.
Thanks in advance, guys.