A lot of us are remoting into our work PCs these days (for safety WFH reasons), but what do we do when our computer inadvertently shuts down and can't be rebooted without a physical power button press? Take a look at the BIOS settings and search for power management options. Locate a setting for "Reboot/Restore On Power Loss" or something similarly named. BIOS settings depend on the manufacturer of the personal computer, so you might have to wiggle around for the exact name of the option.
Steve is having issues where his computer turns back on after he shuts it down. Leo says to look in your settings for "wake on LAN" and turn it off. It's a feature designed for IT networks to be able to turn on the computer remotely. You also want to be sure everything is shut down. There may also be a scheduled wakeup. Both features are in setup (BIOS). Turn on your computer and his F12. Once in the setup, go through the settings for those options and disable them. Could a hacker be turning it on? Leo says once it's shut down, nothing is running. So no, it isn't that.
Kurt replaced the hard drive in his Lenovo laptop and now it won't boot up. It stops at the boot screen. 24 hours later, it booted up no problem. What gives? Leo says that's common and usually results in a hiccup in the BIOS or UEFI. Leo suspects that the battery on the motherboard has failed. Also, underneath the splash screen could show if the computer tried to boot into Windows and failed. That could indicate a faulty hard drive. Leo suspects a failing power supply could also be the issue.
Mario recently replaced his hard drive with a Samsung Solid State Drive. Then he upgraded to Windows 10. The computer went to sleep. And now it won't come back on. He managed to get a boot menu by pressing F12. But nothing else. Leo says that means the screen is still good. But it could also mean that the hard drive died. Even though it's new, they can die out quickly. If your computer is old enough, it could be the CMOS battery has died and needs replacing. Check the date/time in the setup. If it thinks it's 1969, then that's what happened.
Tom has a Dell Laptop that has an administrator password he doesn't know. How can he get into Windows? Or should he just wipe the drive and start over. Leo says wiping the drive is definitely the easiest way to do it if he doesn't need the data from it. Use the Microsoft Media Creation Tool and install it via USB. But he can't get past the firmware password. Leo says that won't get fixed with a hard drive reset. If he can't call the company for the password, then he'll have to do some serious googling to try and break it. PCUnlocker is a program that can do it. But it's not free.
Alan has an Asus laptop that's stuck in bios during bootup. Leo says that is called the boot loader. It's called the bootstrap process. If it's stopping, then that means the hard drive has failed. The master boot record in the hard drive could be damaged. Try booting to a USB drive. If that works, then you know that it's the hardware. If not, then it's a software issue.
GScott is having issues with rebooting to USB on his computer and his USB Key isn't booting up. Leo says to make sure your USB key is properly formatted and made. Turn off secure boot, then try changing the boot order in BIOS to check USB first.
Leo advises to buy multiple smaller hard drives over one extremely large hard drive. The bigger the size, the higher the error rate...which can be catastrophic in the worst case scenario. In any case, move away from old spinning drives to faster Solid-state Drives (SSD), where the cost per gigabyte is getting conveniently cheaper. You may have so much storage in the future that you could forget to discipline yourself on cleaning out files!
Bob is having issues with booting up a few of his computers. He gets a message that says "press F1 to continue" and then it doesn't do anything - it just crashes. Leo says it's usually related to the keyboard. The computer can't see it, and pressing F1 wakes up the keyboard and lets the computer recognize it. It could also be a failed keyboard since Bob is using a really old PS2 keyboard.
Josh built his own computer, but when he turns it on, sometimes it stalls on the POST (Power On Self Test). Leo says that it could be a cold solder connection, which needs to heat up a bit before the connection is made and the motherboard boots up. But that is rare these days. It could also be a flakey power supply. Another thing to check is if the RAM is properly seated.
Leo thinks the most likely cause is that the BIOS is corrupt. He should try and refresh it. If that doesn't work, he can try and reinstall the BIOS firmware. It could also be physically damaged, though.