Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Inspiron 1525 Sleep / Hibernation Issues

As you all know, I proudly proclaimed myself to be a proud owner of a DELL Inspiron 1525 couple of months back here. Little did I know that it was infamous for it's sleep and hibernation issues. Apparently, this model has had this problem for a while and it's amazing that DELL are still rolling out new models without fixing it! :S

The problem has been reported in Inspirons that have been rolled out pre-installed with Vista SP1. For some reason, I did not come across it until after a couple of weeks of using it. The problem is that whenever I tried hibernating my system, it would hibernate and then wake up immediately; if I tried putting it in sleep mode, the system would restart and take me to the screen with safe mode options that come up as a result abnormal windows shutdown. Also, this problem did not occur everytime and was sort of random at first (at least thats what I thought). Apparently, the problem lies with the 1395 Dell wireless adapter and turning it off manually seems to solve it.

Therefore, to save other people some distress and hours of scouring the web for possible solutions to this annoying problem, I'm listing some helpful web pages that describe the problem in detail and offer other users' accounts of the problem and how they solved it. Don't get me wrong though, the laptop is still fantastic and worth every single penny, it's just that you'd expect a company like Dell to do away with such problems quickly or maybe it's more of a Vista problem than Dell's - frankly, as an end-user I don't care!

Browsing the Dell forums, you'll find posts by people venting their frustration over the same problem here, here and here. There's even a Microsoft TechNet article about the problem here. The solution that worked for me can be found here and here, and I'm reproducing it below. So, here's what you need to do:

Go to Control Panel > System > Device Manager. Expand the node that says 'Network Adapters' and look for Dell Wireless 1395 WLAN Mini-Card under it, as shown below. Right-click on that, and from the context menu that appears, click on Properties.

You'll find yourself on the window shown below. Click on the Power Management tab, and uncheck the option highlighted in the screenshot below.

This is of course a workaround to a problem that shouldn't really occur on a Dell system, and even if it did, should have been fixed by now. There are other solutions to it, like reverting the BIOS to an earlier version (A09) but I didn't wanna get into the hassle of that, especially with so much important data on my system. So, here's a quick way of fixing this problem but it does come with some side effects. You'll notice a slight power drain on the batteries since the Wifi-card would never be automatically turned off by Vista now, hence the extra power consumption. You could still manually turn it off though when you're not using it, to save yourself some power.

Hopefully, this saved you considerable time in debugging the problem and finding a fix for that. I know I could've done with a straight-forward answer since I ended up playing with the settings of all hardware that could potentially wake up my computer. Anyway, alls well that ends well I guess. I'm a bit disappointed at Dell about marring this great laptop with a nasty problem like this. Hope this solution helped!

Update: Turns out it is a Vista issue - specifically an issue with SP1 - and has been witnessed on other laptops as well. Here's one example.

25 comments:

Asma said...

And I'm gonna buy one shortly :s

YH said...

my roommate's inspiron crashed...we tried to reinstall windows but the drivers had to be dowloaded...and most of all, dell tech support sucked.

Razz said...

@Asma
Don't worry, the laptop is great performance-wise.

@YH
Why'd it crash? Faulty hardware? Agreed about the tech support though. I remember reading on the Dell forums somebody's account of how tech support asked them to format their HD, re-install windows, drivers and what not for the aforementioned problem when all that was needed was a simple tweak of settings in control panel!

Tanveer Badar said...

Its a problem with Vista SP1. My desktop (*gasp*) used to sleep well before I installed it.

Then, after SP1 it lost its well earned sleeps. Not even hiberation worked. The symptoms were similar to yours.

Then, after installing some magic update, of which I forgot the reference number, things are almost back to normal. I can hibernate it now, but sleep is still an issue for the poor thing.

My own guess is that something's wrong with Vista's USB stack.

Imen said...

Hi,

I also have an hibernate problem on my Inspiron 1525. However, I have XP installed. When I click on the hibernate button, nothing happens.

Do you have an idea how to fix this issue?

kathleen said...

I found your blog with the fix for my 1525, waking on sleep or hibernate. I cannot thank you enough, as I knew it was a fixable glitch,I just had to find it and I was not going to reinstall Vista! which I am not a huge fan of. anyhow I just wanted to thank you. K

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the concise and clear advice on fixing this issue. I'm trying it now...

Anonymous said...

thank you for the advice. It totally worked. I had spent over 12 hours with Dell service technicians, including a technician coming to my home to replace the motherboard and reformatting my hard drive. All not necessary.

Razz said...

@Tanveer
Yup, definitely a Vista problem.

@Imen
Can you try tweaking similar settings in WinXP to see if they work?

@Anonymous, Kathleen
You're welcome. Glad to be of help.

Tinnieman said...

Joehe!

fixed my problems!

Thx, Martin from the Netherlands

Anonymous said...

guys.. all is ok.. but where is the sleep buton????....
and my home buton doesnt seem to do anything either..

Razz said...

@Tinnieman
Sure thing

@Anonymous
There is no SLEEP button on the Inspiron. You could, however:
a) Close the lid, or
b) Set the power button setting to 'Sleep' instead of Shut Down or Hibernate by going to Power Settings under Control Panel

Hope this helps

Alex H said...

I'm glad to find a site detailing this problem, I've been meaning to look for a while. I'll try it out, hopefully it will turn out for the best! :)

By the way, I completely agree with you - it's a fantastic laptop, and worth every penny spent

Anonymous said...

FIX is found here:
http://www.vistaheads.com/forums/windows-vista-home-premium/292062-dell-inspiron-1525-restart-problem.html

Anonymous said...

I have a question, if i reinstall windows vista sp1 to my pc, do i also need to use the drivers and utilities cd to install drivers or are these drivers still installed in my laptop? hope to hear from you soon. :)

Razz said...

@Anonymous
If you do a clean install then yes you will need to install new drivers; otherwise, no. As a precaution, you can download DriverMax (http://www.drivermax.com) to make sure that your PC has the latest set of drivers.

Hope this helps.

Lady X said...

Thank you soooo much!!! This really helped!

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I have the same laptop, DELL inspiron 1525. However, the Hibernate option is somehow missing. It is not one of the shutdown options. Is it something to do with certain setup? Could somebody help? I have tried the power option in the control panel. It is not there.

Razz said...

@Anonymous
Try and follow the steps here to turn on hibernation:
http://www.mydigitallife.info/2007/10/25/how-to-enable-and-turn-on-hibernation-feature-in-windows-vista/

Hope that would resolve your problem

Anonymous said...

Thanks I've got it working this morning. Somebody advised me the same. Hibernate option is back.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the information. Sadly for me, however, the solution isn't a solution for my delinquent 1 Year-old Inspiron 1525. Anyone any thoughts?

emsee said...

I have a Dell Inspiron 1501 which is over 4 years old now and no major complaints except I have had to change the power supply unit under warranty, and I've had to change the battery. However, it has now developed its own nocturnal life if I leave it in sleep mode. So the next day, sometimes, I come to switch it on and find the battery is flat. Sometmes when it's asleep, I only need to touch the machine for it to wake up, so it's a very light sleeper! So I must conclude the fault is a physical one, perhaps the microswitch that senses the opening of the laptop lid has failed.
BTW Razz, the Sleep or Stand By button is a function of the Esc button.

Chris said...

i really have no problem with the laptop, except for the fact that it implies that it has a "sleep" button (in control panel--button options), but clearly doesn't. just seems foolish. otherwise, all is well.

Anonymous said...

I found my fix for the hibernation problem. You just have to uncheck share my files on windows media player in the tools setting.

Tools>Options>Library>Configure sharing>Un-Check share my media

Problem done!

Anonymous said...

Before you make any changes to your laptop, the 'sleep' issue might be as simple as you're wearing a magnetic bracelet. If you are, change the 'close the lid' settings to Never and that may do the trick.

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