I have a Compaq Presario C300 that I dropped. I broke the LCD screen. I replaced the screen and the laptop now works ... sort of.
Each time I use the laptop I must power it either 4 or 5 times before it works. It's nearly identical each time. The first one or two times I hit the power button I hear the fan and hard drive start spinning, but the screen doesn't come on. The next one or two times it gets past the bios to the windows XP status bar or desktop and freezes. Considering that I dropped it, I don't find that so strange, but what I do find strange is that after these 3 or 4 times it will work for hours without any problem. It's almost like starting an old car. It always has problems right at the beginning when I haven't used it for a while (overnight or a few hours). The other thing is this. After I've used it for hours and go to shutdown through the start menu it freezes almost every time during the shutdown process and I have to manually push the power button.
That being said, please don't tell me to just get another laptop. Obviously I know that's an option, but I'm a recent IS graduate so I'm looking at it also as a project and learning experience. I have also already backed up everything to an external hard drive. I have also already completely disassembled, cleaned and checked for physical damage. There is no visible damage internally.
I have a few guesses. My first guess is that the motherboard is damaged and some of traces that provide power or others were damaged and need to warm up or build up some amount of electrical charge before they will work correctly. In that case I will eventually just replace the laptop. My other guess would be that the video inverter card is damaged and is causing these problems. This is what I'm hoping it is because its cheap and easy to replace.
Please let me know if I'm close and what you think it could be.
Thanks a lot