Sunday, December 26, 2010

Microsoft investigates laptop battery drain with Windows 7

Get the Most Out of Your Laptop's Battery

A Gizmo addict acknowledges that the most unprotected component of their laptop is purely and simply the battery. Although nearly all of the laptop battery producers brag of producing batteries which are capable of lasting for up to five to six hours, they neglect to stress that such life can be afforded solely when you apply it in the most idealistic stipulations (Dell XPS M1210 Battery) .

Therefore our batteries come up short of supplying our laptops with the necessary power more and more often. The cause is simplistic - we do not recognise how to use it judiciously to lengthen its life.The following tips are aimed at helping you get the most out of your battery (Dell Studio XPS 1340 Battery) .

1. Apply the Power-Saving Option

All laptops have a power-saving setting in the control panel. Applying this setting assists to cease the uninvited use of varied parts such as the disc drive, screen etc. In addition to bringing down the time limit for your screensaver approximately one minute aids a lot (Dell Studio XPS 1640 Battery) .

2. No Externals

Do not use a mouse with your laptop, use the built in one instead this reduces the usage on your battery. Another tip is to use headphones as they take up less power than your laptops speakers.. (Dell Vostro 1710 Battery)

3. Turn Off the Internet

If your laptop has wi-fi then, when you're not using it, turn it off so its not using your battery trying to find a connection you're not using (Dell KM958 battery) .

4. Daily Defragmentation

Daily defragmentation of the hard disc has 2 visible benefits. First, it accelerates your processor, and second, it keeps all the files in order reducing the time in locating files (Sony VGP-BPS13 battery) .

5. Shut Down Processes

You're not compelled to use all the processes whilst using your laptop. So shut down all the processes which bring an uninvited load on the laptop (Sony VGP-BPS13/B battery) .

6. Clean the Battery

Keep cleaning, applying a cotton bud, the metal contacts of your battery at least once a month. Getting rid of the dirt betters the flow of energy (Sony VGP-BPS13/S battery) .

How to Replace a Toshiba Laptop Battery

  1. Purchase a replacement battery for your Toshiba laptop model. To be sure you have the right battery, go to Toshiba's laptop battery finder website, or another laptop battery site with a good search feature (Sony VGP-BPS13A/B battery) .
  2. Step 2

Turn off and unplug the laptop.

  1. Step 3

Battery compartment with latches on a Toshiba Satellite (Sony VGP-BPS13B/B battery)

Turn your laptop upside-down, so you are looking at the underside of the laptop. Locate the battery. The size and location will vary depending on the model of the laptop, but it is generally a large, square or rectangular area with one or two latches that lock it in (Sony VGP-BPL9 battery) .

  1. Step 4

Unlock the switches and slide the battery out.

  1. Step 5

Place the new battery in the same way you pulled the old one out, and secure the latches (Sony VGP-BPS13B/B battery) .

Microsoft investigates laptop battery drain with Windows 7

One of the Windows Vista problems that Windows 7 was supposed to solve was the drain on laptop battery life, but while Windows 7 has made a number of significant improvements, Microsoft is now investigating reports its new operating system reduces battery life even more dramatically when installed on some laptops (Sony VGP-BPL11 battery) .

Users have reported on Microsoft's TechNet forum reductions in battery life from two hours down to 30 minutes or less, with batteries failing to recharge fully. The battery life appears to decline over a short period, with another forum poster reporting the battery life dropped from 45 minutes to 15 or less over a couple of weeks (Sony VGP-BPL15 battery) .

Some Windows 7 users claim their laptop batteries have been permanently damaged by drainage problems occurring after they installed the new operating system. Other users report the appearance of error messages suggesting they replace their laptop battery, even though it had been working well before the installation (Dell Inspiron E1505 battery) .

Microsoft said it was investigating the issue in collaboration with their hardware partners. A spokesman said the problem of the error message appears to be related to the firmware (BIOS), since Windows 7 uses data derived from firmware to determine if the battery needs to be replaced (Dell Latitude E6400 battery) .

Battery problems were noted by some users during the Windows 7 beta testing period, especially by those using Netbooks, but the complaints began to pour in after the official release of Windows 7 for general consumers in October last year (HP Pavilion dv6000 Battery) .

Microsoft announced last Thursday it has so far sold about 60 million Windows 7 licenses, but it is unclear at present what proportion of users is affected by the battery drainage problems. Microsoft said it would update its TechNet forum as soon as the root cause has been identified, and will post information and guidance when it is available (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ Battery) .

The Microsoft TechNet forum and community is intended to support IT users of Microsoft products.

Smaller And More Efficient Nuclear Battery Created

Batteries can power anything from small sensors to large systems. While scientists are finding ways to make them smaller but even more powerful, problems can arise when these batteries are much larger and heavier than the devices themselves (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ18 Battery) .

University of Missouri researchers are developing a nuclear energy source that is smaller, lighter and more efficient.

“To provide enough power, we need certain methods with high energy density,” said Jae Kwon, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at MU (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ180E Battery) .

“The radioisotope battery can provide power density that is six orders of magnitude higher than chemical batteries.”

Kwon and his research team have been working on building a small nuclear battery, currently the size and thickness of a penny, intended to power various micro/nanoelectromechanical systems (M/NEMS) (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ220E Battery) .

Although nuclear batteries can pose concerns, Kwon said they are safe.

“People hear the word ‘nuclear’ and think of something very dangerous,” he said. “However, nuclear power sources have already been safely powering a variety of devices, such as pace-makers, space satellites and underwater systems (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ340E Battery) .”

His innovation is not only in the battery’s size, but also in its semiconductor. Kwon’s battery uses a liquid semiconductor rather than a solid semiconductor (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ430E Battery) .

“The critical part of using a radioactive battery is that when you harvest the energy, part of the radiation energy can damage the lattice structure of the solid semiconductor,” Kwon said. “By using a liquid semiconductor, we believe we can minimize that problem (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ460E Battery) .”

Kwon has been collaborating with J. David Robertson, chemistry professor and associate director of the MU Research Reactor, and is working to build and test the battery at the facility. In the future, they hope to increase the battery’s power, shrink its size and try with various other materials (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ480E Battery) .

Kwon said that the battery could be thinner than the thickness of human hair. They’ve also applied for a provisional patent.

Kwon’s research has been published in the Journal of Applied Physics Letters and Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry(SONY VAIO VGN-FZ4000 Battery) .

Silicon-Coated Nanonets Could Build a Better Lithium-Ion Battery

A tiny scaffold-like titanium structure of Nanonets coated with silicon particles could pave the way for faster, lighter and longer-lasting Lithium-ion batteries, according to a team of Boston College chemists who developed the new anode material using nanotechnology (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ31E Battery) .

The web-like Nanonets developed in the lab of Boston College Assistant Professor of Chemistry Dunwei Wang offer a unique structural strength, more surface area and greater conductivity, which produced a charge/re-charge rate five to 10 times greater than typical Lithium-ion anode material (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ31B Battery) ,

a common component in batteries for a range of consumer electronics, according to findings published in the current online edition of the American Chemical Society journal Nano Letters.

In addition, the Nanonets proved exceptionally durable, showing a negligible drop-off in capacity during charge and re-charge cycles (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ31J Battery) .

The researchers observed an average of 0.1% capacity fade per cycle between the 20th and the 100th cycles.

"As researchers pursue the next generation of re-chargeable Lithium-ion battery technology, a premium has been placed on increased power and a greater battery life span," said Wang (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ31M Battery) .

"In that context, the Nanonet device makes a giant leap toward those two goals and gives us a superior anode material."

Lithium-ion batteries are commonly used in consumer electronics devices. This type of rechargeable battery allows Lithium ions to move from the anode electrode to the cathode when in use (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ31S Battery) .

When charged, the ions move from cathode back to the anode.

The structure and conductivity of the Nanonets improved the ability to insert and extract Lithium ions from the particulate Silicon coating, the team reported (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ31Z Battery) .

Running at a charge/discharge rate of 8,400 milliamps per gram (mA/g) -- which is approximately five to 10 times greater than similar devices -- the specific capacity of the material was greater than 1,000 milliamps-hour per gram (mA-h/g) (SONY VAIO VGN-FZ38M Battery) .

Typically, laptop Lithium-ion batteries are rated anywhere between 4,000 and 12,000 mA/h, meaning it would only take between four and 12 grams of the Nanonet anode material to achieve similar capacity (SONY VGP-BPS8 Battery) .

Wang said the capability to preserve the crystalline Titanium Silicon core during the charge/discharge process was the key to achieving the high performance of the Nanonet anode material. Additional research in his lab will examine the performance of the Nanonet as a cathode material (SONY VGP-BPS13 Battery) .

Battery Of The Future: New Storage Material Improves Energy Density Of Lithium-Ion Battery

High-performance energy storage technologies for the automotive industry or mobile phone batteries and notebooks providing long battery times -- these visions of the future are being brought one step nearer by scientists from Graz University of Technology SONY VGP-BPS13/S Battery .

Researchers at the Institute for Chemistry and Technology of Materials have developed a new method that utilises silicon for lithium-ion batteries. Its storage capacity is ten times higher than the graphite substrate which has been used up to now, and promises considerable improvements for users SONY VGP-BPS13A/B Battery .

The new findings -- which came to light in the "NanoPoliBat" EU project -- have been recently submitted to the patent office by researchers together with their co-operation partner Varta Microbattery SONY VGP-BPS13B/B Battery .

Modern electronic devices need more energy and even the automotive industry is hankering after increasingly powerful energy storage systems. The technological development of battery research has been inadequate for some time now. "A real revolution is needed for the development of the next generation SONY VGP-BPS13A/S Battery .

We need new storage materials for lithium-ion batteries," explains battery researcher Stefan Koller, who is familiar with the topic from his doctoral thesis. Together with colleagues from science and industry, he has managed to develop such a substrate material for electrochemical reactions at a low price SONY VGP-BPS13AS Battery .

Silicon gel on graphite

In the newly developed process, researchers utilise a silicon-containing gel and apply it to the graphite substrate material. "In this way the graphite works as a buffer, cushioning the big changes in volume of the silicon during the uptake and transfer of lithium ions," explains Koller (Dell Inspiron 1320 Battery) .

Silicon has a lithium-ion storage capacity some ten times higher than the up-to-now commercially used graphite. The new material can thus store more than double the quantity of lithium ions without changes to the battery lifetime (Dell Inspiron 1320n Battery) .

This method is far cheaper than the previous ones in which silicon is separated in the gas phase. The challenge lies in the poor storage density of materials in the counter electrode in the whole battery, something which we have been doing intensive research on," says Koller (Dell Inspiron 1464 Battery) .

Laptop's batteries lose power

Q: When I lost power last weekend, my six-year-old laptop shut down abruptly, even though its battery supposedly had a full charge good for three hours. Does the battery have a problem (Dell Inspiron 1564 Battery) ?

A: Yes. The lithium-ion batteries in most laptops lose a little capacity after each charge/discharge cycle.

How much?

Hewlett-Packard estimates that its models will drop to 80 percent of their original capacity "after 300 cycles or about one year of use (Dell Inspiron 1764 Battery) ."

Dell advises that most people will see "noticeable" declines in battery life after 18 to 24 months. And Apple says its batteries will fall to 80 percent capacity after 300 cycles, while the inaccessible units in its newest laptops will take 1,000 cycles to reach that point.

I've seen major reductions in run time with batteries just a couple of years old (Dell Studio 1450 Battery) .

After six years? Forget it -- the battery's gone. Get a new one, and consider buying from an aftermarket vendor that may charge less than the original manufacturer.

Q: I may need to move files between a Mac and a PC. What are the disk formats I should consider (Dell Studio 1457 Battery) ?

A: The simplest option is the one used on most removable disks in Windows, FAT32 (those letters stand for "File Allocation Table"). Macs and PCs can read and write disks in this format. Almost all internal Windows disks, however, use a higher-capacity version called NTFS ("NT File System") (Dell Latitude D610 Battery) ;

Macs can read that but need help from extra software, such as the free MacFUSE, to write to it.

Macs, in turn, employ a disk format known as HFS ("Hierarchical File System") Plus. Windows can neither read nor write to it without the assistance of such software as the $49.95 MacDrive (Toshiba NB100 Battery) .

How Batteries Work

Ba­tteries are all over the place -- in our cars, our PCs, laptops, portable MP3 players and cell phones. A battery is essentially a can full of chemicals that produce electrons (Toshiba Satellite M65 battery) .

Chemical reactions that produce electrons are called electrochemical reactions. In this article, you'll learn all about batteries -- the basic concept at work, the actual chemistry going on inside a battery, rechargeable versions, what the future holds for batteries and possible power sources that could replace them (Toshiba Satellite M60 battery) .

If you look at any battery, you'll notice that it has two terminals. One terminal is marked (+), or positive, while the other is marked (-), or negative. In an AA, C or D cell (normal flashlight batteries), the ends of the battery are the terminals. In a large car battery, there are two heavy lead posts that act as the terminals (Dell Latitude D830 Battery) .

Electrons collect on the negative terminal of the battery. If you connect a wire between the negative and positive terminals, the electrons will flow from the negative to the positive terminal as fast as they can (and wear out the battery very quickly -- this also tends to be dangerous, especially with large batteries, so it is not something you want to be doing) (Dell Latitude D620 Battery) .

Normally, you connect some type of load to the battery using the wire. The load might be something like a light bulb, a motor or an electronic circuit like a radio.

Inside the battery itself, a chemical reaction produces the electrons (Dell Inspiron Mini 10 Battery) .

The speed of electron production by this chemical reaction (the battery's internal resistance) controls how many electrons can flow between the terminals. Electrons flow from the battery into a wire, and must travel from the negative to the positive terminal for the chemical reaction to take place (Sony VGN-FW11S Battery) .

That is why a battery can sit on a shelf for a year and still have plenty of power -- unless electrons are flowing from the negative to the positive terminal, the chemical reaction does not take place. Once you connect a wire, the reaction starts. The ability to harness this sort of reaction started with the voltaic pile (Sony VGN-FW11M Battery) .

Next, we'll check out how a voltaic pile works and look at other types of batteries.

Troubleshooting Laptop Battery Problems If you have laptop battery problems check out a few simple tips before replacing your battery, not only could it help to revive or prolong the life of your current battery but also any new battery your purchase (Sony VGN-FW139E/H battery) . Just to clarify when we refer to a laptop battery in this article we are referring to the main battery and not the CMOS type (if your computer is losing date and time settings frequently checkout our other article on this) (Dell Latitude E5400 Battery) ? Laptop battery problems are amongst the most common issues with laptops, this could be one of the reasons most laptop manufacturers may offer 3 or 4 years warranty on a laptop, but if you check you’ll find the battery may only be covered for a year, so it indicates that manufacturers also know that the battery is in most cases the part which is most likely to fail, or need replacing (Dell Latitude E4200 Battery) . As laptop batteries are not cheap, its worth trying a few things to make sure the battery cannot be revived before replacing with a new unit (Dell Vostro A840 Battery) . The first way to resolve many laptop battery problems is to completely discharge the battery, simply let you laptop drain it completely, you may need to disable the power saving settings in both the Windows control panel and your laptops BIOS to stop the power saving preventing the battery discharging completely (Dell Inspiron 300M Battery) . Once done allow it to charge fully for around 12 hours, its worth repeating this 2 or 3 times to make sure any battery memory is completely removed. This method should only be used onNiMH type batteries and not LiION (Dell Studio 1737 battery) . Next and the easiest way is to download software from your laptop manufacturer which will reset or run maintenance on the battery, for example IBM uses power manager which is part of it’s Think vantage software suite, this has a nice little option called Battery Maintenance (Dell Inspiron E1505 battery) . this tells you the condition of the battery as it currently is and how much charge it can hold, this also offers options such as resetting, optimizing the batteries lifespan. Having tested the software ourselves I can confirm it can make a large difference, a battery holding a charge of around 15 minutes can now hold a charge of around an hour (Dell RM791 battery) . This type of software is available for many mainstream laptops, but for some reason it does not usually come bundled with the laptop and needs to be downloaded separately from the manufacturers website (Dell XPS M1530 battery) . The most extreme way to resolve laptop battery problems is to replace the actual cells or batteries within the batteries plastic casing, many laptop manufactures use common battery types so they are easy to find replacements, this is not for everyone though, as it does require soldering as well as a certain amount of know how as if wired incorrectly could result in damage to your laptop (Dell XPS M2010 battery) . Its generally accepted that when a laptop battery begins to hold less and less charge it’s a good indication that the battery has reached or is reaching the end of it’s life and will need replacing (Dell Vostro 1000 battery) . A laptop battery should last between 18-24 months its impossible to be more accurate than this due to the way a laptop uses its battery, how often the battery is used, and how much of a load is required of it and how often the battery is almost fully discharged (Acer Aspire One battery) .

Why Is Laptop Battery Not Holding A Charge?

T his tutorial would help you solve the problem to press power button even when there’s no power on. I will explain how to find the failure reason for system shutdown of a laptop, but the tips are not aiming for some special brands or models, they should work for most laptops (Toshiba Satellite P10 Battery) .

Laptop is completely dead, and new laptop battery cannot charge!

When you plug in the oower adapter and press on the power button, but the laptop has no response, no starting sound, no LED light, no fan rotating, except black screen, there’s nothing else….in all, the laptop is completely broken, then under this circumstance, what can you do (SONY VGN-FZ210CE Battery) ?

1.Ensure your wall outlet is working, which laptop AC adapter could get power from the outlet. But how could you know whether there’s power or not? You’d better find a reading lamp with plug to monitor it, check whether the bulb was lit when you press power button. If you cannot assure, then try another wall outlet (Dell Precision M70 Battery) .

2.Unplug power cord from an AC adapter for laptop, and then plug in the power cord back forcibly, to try turning on the laptop again.

Most power cord has a bad connected with power adapter’s outlet, which caused the problem, so you should ensure that the two ends of the cord are completely plugged into the wall outlet and AC adapter power outlet (Toshiba Satellite L305 Battery) .

3.If the power lights still off, then you must change a new power cord and test the AC adapter laptop again, ensure the input voltage is normal, you could use voltage meter to test the power adapter (Toshiba Satellite T4900 Battery) .

4.All right, now our adapter is good, and it could output correct voltage. In this circumstance, unplug the power adapter from the laptop, and remove the battery, then holding press the power button to wait for about 1 minute, after that, plugged into the adapter and attempt starting on the laptop again (Toshiba PA3399U-2BRS battery) .

5. Now, your test result is: the laptop still cannot start. Suppose the AC adapter was bad, if you decide to replace it with a generic one, you would have to follow the next rule:

the voltage output of your new adapter should be exactly same as previous one’s (Toshiba Satellite A200 Battery) .

Such as 19V hp AC Adapter, you’d better only use it of 19V, and the amperage of your new adapter also should be the same or even a little higher, such as 4.74A, you should use 4.74 -4.9A.

If the measure above is useless, and the laptop is still at dead state, then probably motherboard gets something wrong, or DC power Jack has a problem (Toshiba Satellite 1200 Battery) .

Actually the latter one stands a good chance, so the motherboard cannot get any power from the AC adapter. In this case, you’d have to disassemble the laptop and replace the DC power Jack. Please take a look at this article: Tips of Laptop DC Jack Repair (Toshiba Satellite M300 Battery) .

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