Your Jewelry Could Be Causing Your Laptop to Sleep


Your Jewelry Could Be Causing Your Laptop to Sleep


Whatcha got on your wrist today? Is it an activity tracker? A watch? Your grandmother’s bracelet that she left you? Does it have a magnetic closure? If it does, then it just might be the reason why your laptop has been going to sleep while you’re using it.

Last week, a user approached me with the issue that her new company issued laptop was falling asleep unexpectedly as she actively used it. The laptop only entered sleep mode while it was in use and only while it was undocked. That is, while it was not attached to the “dock” which is a device that allows her laptop to function similarly to a desktop PC with an attached keyboard, mouse and monitor. Of course I updated her BIOS and her drivers and checked her power settings, etc. But I couldn’t find anything clearly wrong that would explain the seemingly random sleeps. This user was about to travel internationally for work and I didn’t want her leaving with an unreliable laptop. So I got busy googling and found that many other users with Dell Latitude laptops manufactured in the last few years had experienced the same thing. Read More

The (used) New Laptop

Shocked Monkey

I went to a client’s business in Northeast DC this afternoon to set up a brand new laptop that had been ordered directly from a major manufacturer. I’ve done this a million times. I opened the factory sealed box and removed the laptop and AC adapter from their respective plastic bags. I opened the laptop and put the little styrofoam sheet neatly back in the box with the other packing materials. I plugged the laptop in to a power outlet and turned it on. Everything is good so far. It boots in to Windows 10 and I’m prompted for the password of an email address I’ve never seen before. Weird… perhaps our client paid the manufacturer to preconfigure their laptop (unnecessary since they’ve already paid us to do that for them as part of their service contract). So I called over the location’s supervisor and asked if she knew the password to log in to the laptop. “There shouldn’t be a password. It’s a new laptop!” she replied. I showed her the mysterious user account. She took a photo on her phone to show her boss and we packed it back up to ship it back to the manufacturer.

I’ve been providing IT service professionally for fifteen years and this is the first time I’ve ever come across a manufacturer shipping a laptop that someone had already logged in to with a personal account (at least without covering their tracks).


Copyright Shaun Whelden 2019
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