My Surface RT is Frozen

coip

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My Surface RT was acting a little strange in the previous weeks, sometimes locking up (freezing on the start screen). I would hold down the power button to restart it and usually this did the trick. Finally, it seemed to be getting worse so I did a system refresh from the settings menu (which, by the way, took longer than I expected). Although it seemed to help a little bit, at first, now my Surface RT is totally locked up. Whereas before if it froze I'd hold down the power button to restart it and the reboot would generally fix the problem, now if I do that every time it reboots to the Start Screen it just freezes again, so I can't get to the Settings menu to do another system refresh (or a complete re-format). I did a soft reset similar to Windows Phone (volume down + power button), but when it reboots from that it still freezes on the start screen. I contacted Microsoft support and they said they'd exchange the device, but do any of you have any other ideas?

Edit: working more with Microsoft tech support, we found a workaround. From the account log in screen, if you hold Shift and tap the power button in the lower right corner and then select restart, it will take you to a blue options screen where you can Troubleshoot your PC and Refresh or Reset it from there. I will try the full reset.
 
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Derausgewanderte

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You did do the right step and refresh. The fact it comes back to me indicates that it is a hardware issue. I would contact MS for a warranty replacement, either online or in a near by store. I have done this myself twice already because of issues with the screen.
 
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coip

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You did do the right step and refresh. The fact it comes back to me indicates that it is a hardware issue. I would contact MS for a warranty replacement, either online or in a near by store. I have done this myself twice already because of issues with the screen.

I did a full reset. It has been a chore re-setting up everything (lots of updates to download, etc.), but it seems to be running as smooth as it ever has. Here's to hoping it holds up.
 

Guzzler3

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Hope it holds up. It almost sounds like the SSD is having issues. I just went through similar symptoms on a different device. Found out that once the SSD goes, it's done. Practically impossible to recover data.

So keep an eye on it. If it acts up again, definitely send it in for warranty.
 

coip

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Hope it holds up. It almost sounds like the SSD is having issues. I just went through similar symptoms on a different device. Found out that once the SSD goes, it's done. Practically impossible to recover data.

So keep an eye on it. If it acts up again, definitely send it in for warranty.

I've been wondering about this market shift toward SSDs. All of the tablets and ultrabooks are using them now even though they seem to be less reliable and also way more expensive. What exactly are their benefits? They are faster?
 

Guzzler3

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Speed. Definitely speed. You can see it with the RT from a powered down state, and how fast it comes up when powered on. Or coming out of sleep/hibernate. If it was a spinning drive, you would be waiting quite a bit longer.

The other benefit is durability. That is, you don't have to worry about head crashes if you jostle or bang the device around. Example: My sister is rather rough with her laptops and goes through a spinning HD almost once a year or two. I just can't get her to try to be gentle with her stuff when powered up. When her current laptop dies (which should be any day now), I'm going to try to get her to buy something with a SSD.

Generally, SSD should last as long as a spinning drive. But there are mainly two things that kill SSD's:
  1. Heat. Just like all solid state stuff, heat kills. This is how my laptop SSD ran into issues. I put the laptop down on a bed that covered the vents and it overheated. Fortunately it was only the SSD that died, not the mother board.
  2. Quality Control. SSD's are still new, relative to spinning disks, and manufacturers are still working the kinks out of their QC. But they are improving faster than expected.

The big thing that sucks with SSD's, is when they start going bad, compared to spinning drives. With a spinner, you usually have a chance of running some sort of recovery software to extract data off of it while the drive is limping along, or swap out components, then run some software. With SSD's it isn't as easy, at this time.

There is some specialized software to recover data off SSD's, but it's really expensive, and from what could gather not as good for getting the data off (similar to how it was many, many years ago with spinner disks). But give it time and people will find better ways of getting the data off dead/dying SSD's.
 

coip

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Gotcha. I will admit that I've always been impressed with how fast the Surface RT wakes from sleep. So, that is why. Good to know.
 

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