Purchased a refurbished Dell Latitude D800 off eBay two+ years ago. Have two 'situations'.
Screw for securing hard drive in place was missing and after a while the hard drive worked itself 'loose' enough to break connection. After I re-seated the hard drive, I was confronted with a screen asking for hard drive password. Apparently this was/is some kind of security feature built into the laptop to prevent theft of hard drive, but I never could confirm that, and I also never could determine the required password. No help from Dell as I was not original owner and eBay seller wouldn't answer email. So, I had to trash the hard drive and install a new one. And the computer has worked fine until now.
A couple of days ago, I was running the machine and everything was fine when suddenly everything froze. Display remained the same but mouse pointer froze. Three-finger salute (Ctrl-Alt-Del) wouldn't bring up Task Manager, so the only way out was to shut down by holding the power button down a few seconds. Then, on attempted restart, power light and three lights alongside it blinked on but went out with no further activity. And that's all it would do. Eventually, I put the whole thing in a freezer for a few minutes, and afterward it booted up okay and ran for about four minutes, then froze again as before. I have repeated those actions many times, and it is always the same. Once it freezes, the only way out is to kill power (hold power button), on attempted restart the power light and three lights alongside it blink on and right back off, and it won't boot up again until I put it in the freezer for a few minutes.
In troubleshooting, I have so far:
Started up in safe mode (after taking it out of the freezer), same results.
Started up in 'Enable VGA mode' (after taking it out of the freezer), same results
Replaced the CPU Fan, same results
Replaced the CPU, same results
I am reluctant to remove the hard drive and put it in the freezer by itself because I don't know if I will run into the 'hard drive password' problem if I remove the drive.
Does anyone know anything about the 'hard drive password' scenario and how to get around it?
Does anyone know what I should try next to solve the freeze-up problem?
The D800 is an old machine, but it serves my purpose very well (when it works).