The Secret Thinkpad Powerbutton Code To Bring Dead Laptops Back To Life

Two months ago, I got a new laptop. It’s a Lenovo Thinkpad z61t. I actually ordered a t61, but I accidentally got the z61 instead — and, I actually really like it. It’s quite similar to the t61, but a little smaller and lighter. I was worried that the smaller part would be a problem, but I’ve gotten used to it. I really like the fact that it’s much lighter than my old t42. It just makes it seem so much more usable on the go. Lugging out the t42 was always a chore.

Anyway, I was at the Office 2.0 conference today, where I was giving a little presentation on the Techdirt Insight Community, and about an hour before the presentation, I went to find a quiet place to practice the presentation… and discovered that my brand new laptop wouldn’t work. I knew something was wrong when the “sleep” light wasn’t lit. I started to get worried when I plugged in the laptop and the battery light didn’t light up. Then I noticed that even though the machine had been asleep, it was really really hot. Pushing the power button did nothing. No lights were on and nothing seemed to get them to turn on. I pulled out the battery and put it back in and that did nothing as well.

So I called up IBM support and explained the situation. The guy on the other end then let me in on the secret power button code to revive your dead Thinkpad. After assessing the situation (totally dead laptop) he warned me: “Okay, this is going to sound totally bizarre, but I want you to give this a try…” He then had me unplug the AC adapter and take out the battery. Then, you push the power button 10 times in a row at one second intervals. Next, you push and hold the power button for 30 seconds. Then you put the battery back in and push the power button… and she lives. The computer came back, good as ever.

I asked the guy what the power button pushing incantation did and he said “static discharge” so apparently there was some sort of static that caused a short or something. I tried to get the guy to explain in more detail what happened, but he said “dude, you know as much as I do… but your machine is working.”

And so it is.

So, if you happen to have a Thinkpad that suddenly drops completely dead for no reason, try the power button trick.

Forget up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A. This little code is now the coolest “cheat” code I know…

190 Comments

David Churbuck  on January 29th, 2008

worked for me and I work for Lenovo! Thanks

Rubber Chicken Tech Support at Churbuck.com  on January 29th, 2008

[...] This morning I idly Googled “dead ThinkPad” and found one of the wackiest solutions ever seen proposed for reviving the dead. This was on Masnick.com “So I called up IBM support and explained the situation. The guy on the other end then let me in on the secret power button code to revive your dead Thinkpad. After assessing the situation (totally dead laptop) he warned me: “Okay, this is going to sound totally bizarre, but I want you to give this a try…” He then had me unplug the AC adapter and take out the battery. Then, you push the power button 10 times in a row at one second intervals. Next, you push and hold the power button for 30 seconds. Then you put the battery back in and push the power button… and she lives. The computer came back, good as ever.” [...]

armani  on April 29th, 2008

That rocked, dude! I had almost lost hope. My laptop was plugged in and working. I put it in sleep mode. 30 minutes later it was dead as could be. I figured the power unit was blown and the battery had completely discharged. I tried the magic incantaction above and presto! Thanks.

Jhot  on May 11th, 2008

googled dead thinpad. lead me here, and by golly, it worke. thx a million. Leaving on holiday for 4 weeks tomorrow, and need my lap with me.

Jim  on May 23rd, 2008

No way! I can’t believed it worked. I thought this was a goof but it actually worked! Yesterday my x41 just went dead, no sign of life what so ever. I did this and it lives. Thanks.

gaby  on July 8th, 2008

This happened to my laptop [not thinkpad] after a 2 week holiday. Thanks to this tip, my laptop is fully restored. A big thank you, saved me time and money

gmace  on January 12th, 2009

My almost new T61 went dead for no apparent reason. I just spent the last several evenings getting it loaded up. Figured great! Have to send it back and start all over.

This tip worked and so far so good… it seems fine. Thanks for posting this!!

viji  on February 3rd, 2009

yep! it worked for me too!! mine was a T60. i was carrying it from one room to the other without hibernating when it died on me.

David Martinez  on February 16th, 2009

OMG, totally worked. My laptop just came back from lots of servicing at Lenovo (replaced HD, 1 piece of ram, and part or all of the video card). Spend the week loading it with all my fav programs and one morning it just would not charge or take on any LED lights with the power cord in.

…but SHE LIVES AGAIN! thanks mate!

catgrrl  on April 11th, 2009

WOW! My T41 suddenly went completely dead today when I plugged in a new set of headphones. Completely dead, no battery light or anything. So I Googled “dead thinkpad” and found this page. I tried this and it WORKED! Thank you so much!

Wendy

adams888  on June 24th, 2009

The button pushing solution did not work for my T60p with this exact problem. It sounds implausible that it would work, but if all the posts are true, I guess it does for some people. In my case, what resolved the problem was simply removing the battery, diconnecting the power cord, and unseating and reseating the RAM memory. Once I plugged it back in it was as good as new.

Ian  on July 10th, 2009

This has brought my x200 tablet back to life after trying just about everything else. Thank you! It really does work.

neotel  on August 9th, 2009

It sounds really crazy, but this worked for me also!
Great work thanks a lot.
I have a t61 by the way.

jana  on September 9th, 2009

Brilliant! My IBM t43 laptop just died, and I found this suggestion. Amazingly… it worked! Thanks a lot!

JJ  on November 16th, 2009

This is NOT working for me… why oh why… anyone else have this fail and find another solution?

brainstorm003  on November 24th, 2009

Amazing, it worked for me. Thanks to your “state of art high tech secrete code”, my think pad is back to life. Thanks.

Believer  on December 1st, 2009

Well, shiver my timbers, it worked! My faith in the internets has been renewed!

Amazed Tech  on December 3rd, 2009

I cannot believe this worked
Great tip
sent to all my workmates as well

yul  on December 7th, 2009

Whoaa!!!!! It worked. Saved my life. Thanks!

Andrew  on December 16th, 2009

My t21 went dead on me. I had a deadline to meet. I tried everything i could think of. I went to sleep. When i woke up, it was still dead. I turned to google and stumbled on this weird solution. I was skeptical. So i read all the testimonials first. I then tried it and….It worked! Thanks for sharing.

Don  on December 18th, 2009

Thank You Mike

Chris  on January 3rd, 2010

Wow, this totally worked. I am so thankful!! I have so much on there that I could not afford to lose.

Thanks!!! :)

Eric  on January 20th, 2010

My wife’s Lenovo T400 came back to life and I am a hero. Can’t believe it. Thank you so much for this great trick, Mike. Still works after all these years!

chewygood  on February 16th, 2010

T42p dead and all of a sudden too! Tried this but no luck. Wonder, mine is all apart save for mobo, keybrd, basic necessities for it to at least power up. What dif would it make to put the wireles module, pcmcia, memory, heatsink/fan, HDD, cdrom unit all back in for this nutty tip to take off and work ? Again, I tired asis, no go!

oldbeechnut  on February 21st, 2010

Grandkids spilled milk on the t43, totally dead..5 hours later tried reset, got flicker of dash lite. {one} 10 hours later, got all lites for 2 seconds…going for 24 hours…will let you know..Joe

oldbeechnut  on February 22nd, 2010

Amazing it has worked! It has been 30 hours ago that the Grandson spilled milk on the laptops keyboard. It was totally dead but by pulling the battery, tilting the t43 to allow drainage of the milk, {which was about 2 ounces} Letting it dry out under a 60 watt lamp about 7 inchs from the keyboard, then doing mikes powerbutton code reset it has came back from the dead…with no data loss…I’m still in shock! Amazing, thanks Mike for sharing this great tip…..Joe/Obn

Alyosha  on March 11th, 2010

Wow, first shot out of the box! I googled “dead thinkpad R61″ and got your blog. I thought my R61 had screwed the pooch, until I followed your revival steps.

Worked like a charm!!!

Thanks a million!

Za

Matt  on March 20th, 2010

That’s some voodoo right there… Thanks a lot for that mate.

amazed  on March 21st, 2010

Saved me $700 for a replacement and the aggravation of moving the files. Thank you!

Alex  on May 16th, 2010

God Bless you. Thanks :)

It worked on my Thinkpad T61 :)

davemc  on June 30th, 2010

Stunned – it worked on my T43 after it got a little damp in the rain. Nothing else was working – drying, battery removal, holding the power button.
Thank You!

jaznups  on July 1st, 2010

Whew!! Thank you so much! This still works and worked on my T61p. I started to panic because I hadn’t backed up my system for a few months.

-Jaz

anchie  on July 10th, 2010

thnx… it worked….

ram008  on July 14th, 2010

Wonderful Wonderful!! Just when I thought all was lost! Excellent advice from Mike and from all those above me in this thread! A godsend indeed!!!

rutteger  on July 14th, 2010

Sounds like a load of tosh but worked a treat on my dead R61. Chapeau monsieur! Interested to know why it actually works…

divedave  on July 15th, 2010

Absolutely amazing. It worked like a champ first time I tried it. Thanks very much for the information, you have obtained lots of good karma for sure!

serranochili  on July 26th, 2010

Yes indeed, I have a Lenovo 300 Y410 and it suffered from a complete death. After I recovered from my two days of mourning, I popped onto my husband’s computer and found this little tip. Alas, I am up and running again! Thank you for posting your solution – it’s helped many!

ak  on August 3rd, 2010

This solution didn’t work for me. After the motherboard was replaced to no effect, it turned out that the problem magically disappeared when the CD drive was removed. Glad it was at Lenovo’s expense, and not mine. :-)

moonwalker  on August 17th, 2010

The term “static discharge” is incorrect, it’s residual charge that this power button trick dissolves. And there is no need for “up, up, down, down”, enough just press and hold it for five-ten seconds. Never had this issue with my ThinkPad, but had plenty of occurrences with Asus Eeepc, removing all power sources and just plain holding power button for five seconds always does it.

MadDog  on August 28th, 2010

Aug 28 2010. Wow! You can find ANYTHING on the internet! I can’t believe this worked, but it did. Thank you so much!

Mad Dog

GC  on September 2nd, 2010

Hi , my t61 died, found this ans the 5×10 secounds power button trick worked for me. Thanks

Mjlascas  on September 4th, 2010

I hvae to say that i was way beyond skeptical about this recommendation, but against all odds, it actually worked! Thanks for the tip.

michele  on September 25th, 2010

OMG!!!!!!!!!!!
this really worked. i am flabergasted to say the least. amazed! truly amazed. thank you.
this little crazy trick saved me a lot of money.
wow. it really works!!!!!!
i was beyond skeptical. OMG

mikewen  on October 10th, 2010

mike, that up up down down left right left right B A, that is nintendo’s contra secret code right? lol

Alex  on November 11th, 2010

Wow, it worked. I am so confused.

What does the ThinkPad “power button trick” do? Drija  on November 13th, 2010

[...] disconnecting power to the machine. At first I thought it was a joke or a troll, but there are other reports suggesting the same thing — or very similar variations, at least — as a solution for a [...]

Fluxboy  on December 8th, 2010

THIS WORKED!!!!

I really messed things up. I inserted the wrong end of my Blackberry USB cable into the USB port. Instant death. Nothing, no lights. I figured I had fried the motherboard or something.

Oh well, off to get another laptop.

But I googled “dead t42″ on my blackberry, pulled the battery, hit the button ten times, then a final time for 30 seconds, put the batter back in, plugged it it …

And she fired right up. Even returned me to the webpages I was viewing before … and my half finished post.

Unbelievable.

It’s just fucking eerie.

Sharat Jaswal  on February 13th, 2011

Shocking! But true. It works!!!!
Thanks a lot mate. I almost gave up hope

ravon  on March 7th, 2011

Big thanks! It really work! I was working on my assignment and my T61 suddenly blacked out and the power indicator light went out too. I tried reseating my battery but nothing happened. I googled “dead thinkpad T61″ and reach your page. Tried the method and it really works!

Leion  on March 13th, 2011

My 2 hour new T410 died. This did not work :(

reaton  on March 18th, 2011

This “Gobling power touching” revived my apoptoed T500, thanks to all, especially the first poster!!!

Steve  on March 27th, 2011

WOW WOW WOW

You described the problem to a tee. I have already ordered a replacement!….but thought I would see if there was any solution.
FIRST TRY…..This revived my computer.

UN-BELIEVEABLE

Thank You!

jrb1946  on April 10th, 2011

Button pushing did not work on my T43. But taking out the CD/dvd drive did.

steve4321  on May 15th, 2011

This trick did not work on my T61. It went dead and would only show power and battery light but would not turn on. I tried removing memory, drives, etc, but nothing worked. What finally did work was just leaving it sit. I let it sit for a couple days and then it started up for about 15 minutes. I let it sit another week and now it has been running all day without any issues.

It sure seems like moisture got into the machine some how even though I had no accidents. I do recall leaving the machine in the bathroom while I took a shower, but the machine was not even powered on at the time and the lid was closed. I wonder if that was enough to give it problems?

I would also like to know if it is just the keyboard that causes this problem. (Since the power switch is on the keyboard.) I did not have a spare keyboard to test when my machine wouldn’t start. The trick of pressing the on switch 10 times might just be loosening up a bad switch. :)

Ace  on May 30th, 2011

It Worked!

mFraggin  on June 18th, 2011

Put me down as yet another satisfied customer. ;-)

Now someone should explain why the one interior keyboard screw always gets screwed up on these–the one that inevitably pulls out the receptor thing from the foundation….

Jeffwith2fs  on June 21st, 2011

WOW! Working on the road away from the office IT team. I thought for sure I had lost everything on my c: drive….

But the trick worked!!!! Great!

Thanks!

Ras  on July 6th, 2011

Thanks for this tip. I followed your exact tip and my laptop sprang back to life. My battery life is terrible and I wondered whether that is the cause.

But I really appreciate this tip. Hope good karma comes back to you for being this information source.

DaveEdi  on July 6th, 2011

Thanks a million. Worked first time.

millergal  on July 13th, 2011

I was dreading calling IBM hardware support and was certain the very few drops of coffee I’d spilled on my laptop at the same time it died had fried it. I’d taken the palm rest off and didn’t find anything wet or damp. Had let it air out.

I was very skeptical and am shocked that this worked, but my T61 is alive. Thank you!!!

Marcus  on July 15th, 2011

Thank you! What a felief! I ran a heavy program on my T400. As I expected it to last for a few hours, I left the room. When I got back the computer was dead — absolutely, utterly deceased. I saw months of un-backedup (“I’ll do it tomorrow, before I go to bed”, you know?) thesis work going up in smoke.

Half-crying, in sheer desperation I googled absolutely dead Thinkpad. And you saved me!

Marcus  on July 15th, 2011

s/felief/relief/

s/absolutely dead Thinkpad/”absolutely dead Thinkpad”/

Piet  on July 29th, 2011

Thanks! My T60p is back alive!

MuadDave  on August 7th, 2011

Another satisfied customer! I thought it was a goof as well, but it brought my niece’s T61 back to life.

Thanks for sharing this tip!

williamon  on August 17th, 2011

I almost lost any hope. Even authorized service couldnt help me. Then I tried this procedure and my T61 is on again. Thank You for sharing!

Charlotte  on September 4th, 2011

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! My son and I just got back from a trip and he rushed inside to plug in his T61. Dead. Nothing going on, no lights no anything. We had had it with us during the trip, in sleep mode, but had not used it. The battery is poor but not that poor. I am so happy I found your tip. It brought the machine back immediately. What a relief. Thank you!!

Jon  on September 16th, 2011

May the gods bless you. It happened to my R52 and I thought the thing was so old that some part of the motherboard must have blown. I was feeling really miserable and then, on a whim, I did a google search and found your page. It worked!!

Cory  on September 27th, 2011

Will this work for other laptops?
My friend has a MSI netbook.

Thanks

Dave  on September 28th, 2011

What relief. This totally worked. Thank you! :)

A Konami Code for My Laptop? « Marc F. Bellemare  on October 4th, 2011

[...] is what Mike Masnick, who runs the famous Techdirt blog, had posted on his personal blog in [...]

guyp  on October 9th, 2011

Thanks, you saved my day!!!!!!!!

addikt  on October 13th, 2011

Dude you’re a life saver! WOW WOW WOW WOW it works lol… saved me a week of my life, thank you :)

L Ireland  on October 13th, 2011

Thank you – this worked for me too. I oversee a shared office laptop and some users do not know how or forget to “shut down” and therefore the battery runs down completely. Couple that problem with the static issue and I have a situation to resolve. I don’t think I am going to tell anyone and let them think I am a hero. :)

Jen  on October 15th, 2011

wow this sorted 2 dead laptops out THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!!!

Alana  on October 26th, 2011

OMG IT WORKED yessssss. Thank you!

Narin  on October 27th, 2011

For my R60, the trick is not work, still same. any other trick?

Reviving a Dead Thinkpad « The Greg Jones Blog  on October 27th, 2011

[...] Mike Masnick’s Blog » The Secret Thinkpad Powerbutton Code To Bring Dead Laptops Back To Life. Share this:EmailFacebookTwitterPrint [...]

TechS  on October 28th, 2011

I tried this on my dead thinkpad. Booted up and went dead again. Tried again several times. Same result. Any other suggestions would be most welcome.

Jonas  on November 2nd, 2011

Hi,

Your trcik worked for me but with something more. As anybody knows now, this problem is caused by residual charge which prevent the Thinkpad to boot (is it a BIOS bug?). The solution is to drain complety the electricity off the Thinkpad and to reboot it.

For me it happened that the button trick wouldn’t work alone. I have to connect my T60 (without the battery) to my *unplugged* maxi dock, and wait for the “eject” LED to lit. Then I let my Thinkpad as is, the dock’s LED consuming the residual electricity (I let it as is a few hours). When the LED turend OFF, I did the button trick to ensure that no electricity would stay and I replugged the battery. The Thinkpad rebooted, good as new!

NM  on November 10th, 2011

Thanks! Googled “Thinkpad dead” and found your “incantantion.” It also has just worked for me on my 3 year old Thinkpad x200. Had the fan replaced earlier today and was running a Norton virus check on the million plus files on the hard drive. Wasn’t nearby when it died, but perhaps it overheated (never happened before… the previous fan was replaced because it was making lots of noise).

Tam  on November 15th, 2011

There are no words to express my appreciation. My thinkpad x40 just died and I didn’t know why. This trick worked! I just started a new career and I need my computer.

Thanks!

Tam  on November 16th, 2011

I tried this trick on my x40 thinkpad and it worked fabulously (see above) and on a whim I decided to give it a whirl on my old t23. I spilled ice tea on it back in April and it hasn’t worked since. I figured that I must have fried my motherboard, but couldn’t bring myself to get rid of it.

I tried this trick on it and it sprang to life. I nearly cried! Truly, truly AMAZING.

jiji  on November 25th, 2011

Had a similar problem, but the key sequence did not work.

After I calmed down, I took the keyboard off the next day, I unplugged the BIOS battery and plugged it back in.

Voilá.

Thanks for the tips though.
Cheers.

ruudj  on December 7th, 2011

I had this same problem. My wifes R40 ‘died’.
She’s lost without it.
Slowly everything began failing. First no hard drive, so I swapped drives, with no luck, but I managed to save all the documents.
I tried booting with CD and floppy..no luck. Then lastly even BIOS startup failed.
I used the manual, which did’t get me further.
I thought I needed a new laptop.

Two days later I found this solution. First it didn’t work, but after removing and reinstalling the RAM, the machine slowly came to life.

Nice!

Gonzasco  on December 9th, 2011

It worked and it’s my B day today! I love you & thank you!

Credo  on December 20th, 2011

NO WAY!! .. thought this was an april fools! just booted up my x40 after a month of wondering whether to bin it or not.

Dude .. THANK YOU!!!

kylie  on January 8th, 2012

lord knows how or why this worked -but it did!!!! thank you!!! (on r51)

lostjohn  on January 26th, 2012

T43 dead as a door nail this morning, I have several, tried all batteries and adapters no luck. found this fix, tried it and eureka, up and running . Thanks so much.

alpac  on January 29th, 2012

Worked for me on my T42 that went dead after connecting it to a usb printer that had a short. Big thanks!!

Saved  on February 12th, 2012

The procedure works after the additional step of removing RAMs and putting them back. Mine is a T60. Thanks a lot.

CJ  on February 13th, 2012

I just tried this on my previously trustworthy T61, which was well and truly dead… and it has now worked!!!
I was just about to buy another machine, so THANK YOU!

jojo  on February 28th, 2012

This is insane- it works! You saved my money!!

Praz  on March 1st, 2012

You saved my laptop! I couldn’t find a donate button so instead I send you my cosmic good will–may luck find you.

Vic  on March 5th, 2012

Thanks you, thank you , thank you. I have worked for 45 years in the computer industry and never seen anything so unusual. We were on our way to the computer store to replace out three year old R61!

nathan  on March 7th, 2012

Brilliant!! 2 month old, X220 laptop – exact same symptoms, (was very hot yesterday, it was sleeping in a laptop bag all afternoon with another lenovo that didn’t die), solution worked perfectly.

thanks!!

rip  on April 12th, 2012

thanks, it worked great on my x220!

rayfazey  on April 20th, 2012

Well Well.. would you believe it….Thinkpad T43 died not lights no nothing.. desperandum..
i searched and found this forum – didn’t believe, thought worth a try before i send it back and go through all the trouble of postage and waiting … – IT DOES WORK !!
fantastic.. There is a God !!

ripat  on April 29th, 2012

I worked for me as well but only after I removed the CD and HD drives.

Nice trick.

Thanks.

Amie  on May 1st, 2012

It worked on a dead lenovo think pad. WOW – I was about to throw it away. Thank you very much.

whocares  on May 5th, 2012

THANKSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS WORKS YOUR THE BEST!

aquachild  on May 25th, 2012

The thinkpad died all of the sudden, i was bombed and actullay, had already started looking for a new used computer if you know what i mean, then tried this and it worked!! Thank you very much for your post!

exibmer  on June 20th, 2012

Our dog had come flying out from under the table getting caught in the laptop’s power cord. The laptop went flying off the table and hit the floor with a loud BANG! At that point the machine was dead–only good to be used as a paper weight. I tried the “incantation” and lo and behold—it came back to life!
Thank you very much for the post!

rosst  on June 27th, 2012

Improbable though it seems – it works ! My sons T41 died and was not responding to battery or AC, tried this a few times and got a glimmer of life, left battery out all night and tried the routine again in the morning, now back to full operation.

mecenas  on July 17th, 2012

worked for my T500. Thanks a lot!

majorcynic  on August 10th, 2012

And this crazy method is still working – 5 years later — thought I was gonna have to finally take out the trash but tried this and the old horse is back on the track…

Gurian2  on August 24th, 2012

Same story … my ThinkPad just died. I Googled and found this … and you revived it! Thanks so much for posting this!

Aniruth  on August 27th, 2012

Thanks a ton.
I thought my laptop had died. Last night I put my laptop in sleep mode(or whatever you call it when you just close the lid of the laptop without shutting down)
In the morning, the power button was active but the screen would not turn on. I tried several things. I then called customer care. That guy told me to press/hold the power button for 30 seconds continuously.

That did not work and I stumbled upon this. i tried it and it works like a charm. My laptop is back to life.

2SMART  on August 28th, 2012

JUST PRESS 1 TIME with the battery and power removed.
Forget all the 10 presses/ hold for 30 BS, you’ve been duped.

ONE PRESS will do it.

uhg, stop proliferating this myth

nayab  on September 23rd, 2012

Omg you are a genius … thank you so much … it worked on my laptop tooo :)

Smartimartie  on October 10th, 2012

This still works! Very cool. I’ve got a IBM T42 Thinkpad that’s been a workhorse for me, slow by today’s standards but still dependable UNTIL today when it just died. I was ready to pull the hard drive and recover what I could. Then I found this posting. Thanks.

max  on November 13th, 2012

Great – thanks Mike, it worked for me too. Thinkpad T420S. I had removed the battery and was using the computer, running on AC only when I mistakenly disconnected the AC to carry off the laptop, forgetting the battery was removed.
I subsequently tried many combinations of pressing the power button with AC only / Battery only / both… etc. Each time it partially powered up (power light lit, caps lock temporarily lit, HDD light for a couple of seconds), but failed to get to screen on and BIOS routine. Tried many short and long power button presses to try to force a ‘deeper’ reset, but nothing doing. Used the browser on the phone and found this page. Tried it, worked fist time! It could be that a slight variations on this approach might also work, if the goal is releasing static build up.
However, in my case, 2SMART’s claim is incorrect – just pressing the power button 1 time without anything connected did not work (nor did pressing a couple of times / a couple of random long/short iterations). So, no we have not ‘been duped’ – there is some real functionality to the routine that Mike outlines here. (2SMART is apparently not in fact 2SMART).
Thanks again Mike!

ThinkPad problems...  on December 19th, 2012

[...] back in and push the power button… and she lives. The computer came back, good as ever. From – http://www.masnick.com/2007/09/07/th…-back-to-life/ Reply With [...]

Jack  on December 19th, 2012

Thank you . Amazingly it worked!

Bery Mngoya  on December 21st, 2012

Not work it’s crash yesterday, can i leave it for manydays then do it? Or any other working solution

Sam  on January 3rd, 2013

This worked for my Thinkpad R61, I had lost all hope.

Thank you so so much!!!!!

Andy  on January 7th, 2013

Great- it worked for me. Thinkpad x31

Nina  on January 16th, 2013

Thank you so much!! I have had the same happen 2 years ago from using a USB port which must be faulty I put it in the shop he charged me £50 & I have just fixed it myself for free!!! Fabulous!! Xxx

Josie  on March 4th, 2013

Thanks loads! I dropped my laptop on the floor and thought it was dead. This brought it straight back, leaving a room full of people standing around with their jaws open. Wow!

syed  on March 7th, 2013

when i was formatting my ibm t43 it suddenly got dead. now no lights turns on nothing is happening. plz mail me solution on nabisyed84@gmail.com

PeteD  on March 14th, 2013

Thanks so much – worked a trick on my daughter’s school laptop which she needed to use to study for a test.

RickyJo  on March 26th, 2013

I think 2Smart is right. It’s not entirely uncommon for one to have to press the power button once or twice with no power attached to release the residual charge built up in capacitors. When the unit attempts to start it will use up the remaining power in the unsuccessful attempt. From there, you can sometimes start the machine. A common manifestation of this problem is fans spinning but no display. This can manifest after a power outage or other unexpected shut down.

It sounds to me like this particular system board has issues discharging properly.

Having worked phone support myself I know how these sort of myths can spawn and grow–people do what has worked for them without a full understanding of why–which is totally cool most of the time. In the end, it doesn’t matter; regardless of if people press and hold it a few moments or ten times it will still work the same.

Mcccartjt  on March 26th, 2013

Same here. Called into IBM support told to do the 10 times button push wonder and then I plugged in the power cable and up came the T420

I’ll leave Dead Lenovo Laptop in this story so some other poor unfortunate can get this solution too.

JM

Phillip  on March 27th, 2013

Far out and thank you
Just worked on my T500

Susan  on April 7th, 2013

Thanks, Mike. Amazing.

Hello  on April 8th, 2013

Burried out my laptop – checked this “reanimation” sequence. My Laptop is running again.
However. I did the 10 times buttom pressing sequence. I like the thinking that it was a digital hart reanimation which brought life back to my Laptop. Pressing the buttom just once does not have the same spirit ;-)

Hello  on April 8th, 2013

Burried out my laptop – checked this “reanimation” sequence. My Laptop is running again.
However: I did the 10 times buttom pressing sequence. I like the thinking that it was a digital heart reanimation which brought life back to my Laptop. Pressing the buttom just once does not have the same spirit ;-)

tony  on April 15th, 2013

Thank you.
Service center replaced cmos battery, keyboard, billed me $$ and then returned it unrepaired.
Used your magic and …behold !
Thank you

DatumIT.com.au  on April 18th, 2013

Yes is is all smoke and mirrors, as 2smart noted, you only need to hold power button in to discharge the caps. Put power and battery back and all will be ok. This works on every laptop

Lebottomiszed  on April 21st, 2013

Golly, this worked on my Acer C300. I thought it was dead for sure. Caused by forcing a firewire cable into the USB port (reaching behind machine without looking)

john  on April 27th, 2013

You the MAN!!! Outstanding. Thank you!!!

Cryadis  on May 4th, 2013

OMG i love you!!! left battery uncharged while on holiday (never will do again) and now it tells me plugged in a charging! YAY!

RattusRattus  on June 11th, 2013

OK so like most people who commented on here I was *very* skeptical about doing this, but hay there are lots of people who have posted replies and all are different – surely to many to be a hoax. Besides, with the battery removed and no power adapter fitted what damage could this do (to an apparently dead laptop)?

And lo, 1 min later my lappy was charging again…

It hadn’t occurred to me that static buildup could be the problem (still not 100% certain that this isn’t a sequence to reset some NVRAM powered from the RTC battery) but hay IT WORKS!

Many thanks

michelle  on June 16th, 2013

thank you! thank you! thank you! you literally saved my laptop’s life. i have researched the entire day and tried every trick that did not require taking out my laptop’s screws but not one tip worked. then i stumbled upon your article and it worked perfectly!!! more power to you!

Atli Jarl  on June 18th, 2013

Holy Moly!! The most awesome trick on the Interwebs! T61 revived and as beautiful as ever! Thank you!

hal8100  on June 27th, 2013

I’m delighted :-) Thanks for posting such a simple solution. I was worried for a while. The joys of internet solutions!

Catbag.  on July 7th, 2013

My T43 is dead as described here. I tried the trick and the power light lighted a very short interval but it does not turn on my laptop. I presume my battery is dried but I cannot charge the battery in this laptop. I tried to plug in the power supply but it does not work. I am sure my power adaptor is working because I can measure 16.7V DC on the outlet. Is there any other idea?

noorkey5  on July 15th, 2013

wow. Wonderful technical idea . I had the same problem with my ibm thinkpad T40, it run out of charge and It could not start even on direct power and I removed the battery. Luckly I come across this site after hunting for ideas. I did try the same procedures and I brought it to life on the first attempt thanks a lot

ashish  on July 16th, 2013

it also worked for me thanks a lot but secret still remains

Sofie  on July 16th, 2013

Thanks a lot!

dalp  on July 25th, 2013

Wow …like magic, it worked. T61 just died in sleep mode. Like a kiss from a prince, she’s awake, (does that sound gay? )

helentangon  on August 2nd, 2013

it did work!thanks

helentangon  on August 2nd, 2013

it did work thanks

invader  on August 4th, 2013

Thank you so much! This revived my old T500. \o/

colehoffmann  on August 13th, 2013

THANK YOU! REALLY EASY AND IT WOTKED,♡

Amartya  on August 18th, 2013

thanks a lot …. it really works . you save me $200

Eric G.  on August 19th, 2013

I screwed up my laptop by shorting out something underneath the docking port – long story as to why I was dumb enough to do that! Anyway, I had SERIOUS doubts about this but gave it a shot, and it worked!! My lifeless laptop came back to life! Thank you so much for this!

speersharp  on August 22nd, 2013

Still not working on my T22. Tried the start button procedure NO LUCK!
Tried removing the modem card No Luck.
Tried removing the DVD drive no luck.
Will try removing the memory.

speersharp  on August 22nd, 2013

OK I removed and re-installed the main memory and the HDD. Removed and re-installed the new 3V CMOS battery. Voltage at 3V and properly plugged in both coming out and going in. Checked all contacts, all clean and tight. The main battery is new and at full charge. Still only a short blink of the HDD LED after doing the ‘start button’ procedure.
I have a new HDD coming. How will I format and install W-XP PRO if the system refuses to boot????

taouz  on August 23rd, 2013

whoohaa! t42o was dead as a rock, but it worked! I guess a MSc in Computer Science didn’t teach me everything!

Sunny  on August 31st, 2013

Turned on ThinkPad T43 this morning and immediately shutoff without any warning. Even the power light did not lit. I thought the power adapter died. I read your blog,and tried your power button code, and it worked. Thanks for your help, and definitely made my day.

yoga  on September 2nd, 2013

Awesome, this helped me to revive my dead T61. I want to thank you very much.

lgsaturno  on September 3rd, 2013

Worked on a Thinkpad T400. So there is such think as a CPR for Thinkpads huh!

lgsaturno  on September 3rd, 2013

Worked on a Thinkpad T400. So there is such a thing as a CPR for Thinkpads huh!

Honeybank  on September 11th, 2013

Thanks, worked great on my E520.

sgoldx  on September 15th, 2013

You’re the best for posting that procedure. It brought my 5 year old T61p back to life after a couple of months of being dead. I had given up hope and was actually searching the internet for a replacement internal power unit when I came across your solution.

raymond  on September 16th, 2013

shit works though i was a bit hesitant about it but it saved me the hussle. thanks folks

Iman Oldman  on September 20th, 2013

R52 FIXED! Thank you.

Patsy  on September 27th, 2013

Had to remove battery from laptop,to switch it off, switched it back on ,but nothing would move, it was just frozen. I thought I would have to buy a new laptop, or pay a big bill for repair, But I found your blog and did exactly what you said, Thank you , Thank you, Thank you, it worked perfectly. ABSOLUTLEY TOP CLASS, information. I know where to look in the future, if I have any problems, Great site.

warhola  on September 30th, 2013

I was is such a bad mood and then it totally worked…thanks!!

leavamealone  on October 5th, 2013

crapp my levano just died when i slightly yanked cord. heres the deal, i been using it with no battery and just the power cord. will the code work if i dont have battery :-/ ? thank you!

Muhammad Hasnain Ali  on October 7th, 2013

At first I did not believe it but it really worked. Thanx for posting. My Thinkpad T60 would boot up with three lights blinking i.e. AC power, battery and the one with Z in a circle but no display. I waited on it for two days and tried everything I could. I tried all those tricks mentioned on other websites. I even banged it with light fists. Smashed it on the table but situation remained the same. It just took two mins to light it up again half hr ago.

Erla  on October 8th, 2013

This is crazy and it worked ! Thank you so much :)I got my R61 back from the dead.

sungato  on October 9th, 2013

how the hell did this work.
Genius!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanx man

Regina C  on October 18th, 2013

Amazing! It really sounds like a joke, but it works like a charm. So I glad I found this before unnecessarily buying a new battery. Thanks so much!

crinket  on October 23rd, 2013

IT WORKED FOR ME TOO!! My wife was freaking out about her T500 and low and behold she’s got power!! THANKS!!

Larry  on October 29th, 2013

Is the point here that on a ThinkPad, the power management circuit can get into a state where you are deadlocked from enabling power to the system,
and so if you remove all power sources and activate the power button in enough ways, it’ll fully reset it ?

Needs2Cash  on November 18th, 2013

Your total discharge trick worked for me on my x200 too.

Many thanks!

kide777  on November 25th, 2013

My Acer Aspire 4738 was totally dead after all of the lamps in my house flicked for a moment. (unstable voltage? – it’s raining hard, btw)
There was no sign of life at all. And there’s no light even when I used the AC adapter.

Just when I lost all hope, I removed the battery and AC adapter, then pushed the power button for around 30 seconds and… magically it did the trick. She came back to life.

Godwin  on November 30th, 2013

Wait a minute. Everybody’s seems to have been sorted, but mine is on…..yet its still “black”

Godwin  on November 30th, 2013

hey. somebody sort me out. it didn’t help my ThinkPad 3508

Ibm i think  on December 2nd, 2013

OMG thanks so much

KonstantMotion  on December 9th, 2013

Wow this just worked, thanks so much!

Rroseivan  on December 10th, 2013

Also works for dead ideapads!!

Jim  on December 15th, 2013

Thanks for posting this advice. It brought me back from the dead too!

Woodstockgurl  on December 31st, 2013

Thank you SO much! Husband’s computer quit for no apparent reason when he plugged it in last night, and this brought it back from the dead! Zombie computers, unite.

johnm  on January 1st, 2014

Unbelievable. It really did work for my T60.

Maren  on January 2nd, 2014

Wow, that did the trick. Thanks a lot !!!!!

Cawesome  on January 3rd, 2014

Holy amazing! Thank you for the secret code

I have class starting back up and started dreaming out that my think pad wouldn’t work

Crazy solution but it worked

Byronnie  on January 4th, 2014

mine wont work. I have an old IBM think pad x41, when u power it on, the lights shine, the fans when the immediately goes off, without showing anything on display.. help please

munchulli  on January 5th, 2014

Thank you!!

This trick worked on ACER laptop, too. Strange, but it saved us great deal.

Manoj SHETH  on January 18th, 2014

I am speechless with overjoyed. It worked. My support was at least 36 hours away and my project deadline much sooner. Thank you, thank you, thank you

tb  on January 19th, 2014

Work for my Lenovo S10!Great!!!!

ean18_  on January 22nd, 2014

. does it work with any laptop such neo. ? i have the same problem with you guys. and i want to know it. i try it many times but it doesnt work. !! help me g
uys. thanks.

Frustrated  on February 3rd, 2014

Unbelievable!! It worked. I too, thought this was a bizarre remedy but it did the trick. It lives :)

marino  on February 8th, 2014

Thanks for suggestion. It works !
IBM T60p.
Did you had to do the trick every time, on my side it happens often :-) not every power on but often

Any additional suggestion ??

Ron  on February 16th, 2014

Unbelievable! worked for me on T420s.

umar  on February 17th, 2014

it works !! big thanks.

millekn  on February 18th, 2014

God bless you! I was so upset and confused. I started to pray and praise the Lord. Then, I Googled my problem and found this article. I used the code and now it works. Thank you so much!

Crackerjack  on February 21st, 2014

Didn’t work for me. Could this mean that my motherboard is stuffed.

Thinkpad x201  on February 22nd, 2014

Thanks a lot!

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