Sager np8625/p150-sm combination hardware/software issues

logical2u

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Apr 14, 2007
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My laptop is getting pretty old, and it's developed some interesting quirks. I would appreciate a solution or at least advice!

-- System --
Sager np8625/p150-sm base
Intel i7-4800MQ
16gb of RAM (unknown make/model)
250gb Crucial SSD (CT240M500SSD3)
750gb Western Digital HDD (W7500BPKT-75PK4T0)
HD8970M videocard + hybrid graphics
Blu-ray disk drive, USB mouse + cooling fan
Realtek ALC892 HD Audio
Windows 7 Home x64

-- The (current) issue --
Sporadically (sometimes after 10 minutes of use, sometimes after hours of use) and usually during a video-intensive application (VLC watching a film, Youtube watching in high quality) the system will begin to stutter, both graphically and audibly. Stuttering usually only lasts 15-30 seconds, and then they system recovers.

After this, some applications work normally such as my web browser, but most other complex applications - ranging from a standalone game launcher, to Steam, to Discord - will not launch. The task manager will indicate their processes have started in the background, but they will not ever launch (after 15-30 minutes of waiting).

The solution to this is to restart the laptop - but the system does not shutdown normally. I have to manually power it off. It hangs at "Shutting down..." and never progresses (after 10-15 minutes of waiting). During normal operation the system shuts down in about 30 seconds.

RARELY - and it may have stopped in the past week - the system will appear to reboot from this shutdown normally, but multiple Windows services and Drivers will not start up properly, resulting in a blank desktop, a mostly unusable computer, and a variety of weird errors. But then rebooting from this state normally takes me back to my 'normal' laptop.

-- Things I have checked --
RAM - Using Windows' built in boot memory test, 2 passes - no issues
Hard drives - SMART values seem normal and during normal use no applications fail and no known data loss
Video card *drivers* - updated to new drivers

-- Possibly relevant past issues --
The hybrid graphics had problems when the laptop was shut down on battery life. It was like it forgot the HD8970M was there and would only give me a black screen on normal boot. Safe mode would allow me to recover by uninstalling and reinstalling the drivers. However, the battery is quite dead on this laptop now and so this is not a very relevant issue these days.

-- To the wisdom of crowds --
My suspicion is that this is a CPU or GPU problem, but I'm unsure how to test that. Answers/suggestions?
 

logical2u

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Apr 14, 2007
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I poked around the event log and noticed many errors from the Wifi card. I disabled that, turned off the associated services. It didn't stop the hangs at shutdown, but I then noticed there was a system message about the hotkey/function keys app was "vetoing shutdown". Disabling that too seems to have helped - need to do some more testing, probably, but a good first start.
 
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