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Thread: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

  1. #1

    Default laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    the issue: My wife's laptop has a "stuck" key, but not stuck in the sense that it is down all the time, it just appears to be "on"

    the story: The dog was not put in her crate, jumped onto the kitchen table with nobody home, knocked over the vase of roses I had bought the day before for he wife's birthday, thereby dumping a quart of water or so directly onto the laptop, sitting on the seat of the chair at the table, where it soaked for 6 hours.

    After drying out under a fan overnight, it came on (!!!!). The keyboard just beeped though, and I finally found out that it thought the "control" key was being pressed. At some point the key became unstuck and let me log in and back up the hard drive to an external hard drive I have (!!!!!!!!!!!!!).

    Within minutes, though, it became stuck again, and three days later it is still stuck. I reboot, try to log in, hit any key and it just beeps. If I hit C, it says "copying is not allowed into a password field" or something like that, so that's how I know that the control key is engaged. The rest of the keyboard seems to work.

    Any ideas on unsticking this?

    It's a 3-year old Compaq/HP that would be readily replaced (and upgraded) by the cheapest of all possible laptops out there today.

    But still, it used to work fine and I'm cheap.

  2. #2
    Denim Chicken duke dynamite's Avatar
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    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    Well, there may be a short inside the circuitboard of the keyboard caused by the water spill.

    At first I thought that it was a key that wouldn't pop back up after being pressed down.

    What I would do is search eBay for a new keyboard for your laptop, they shouldn't be too expensive.

    Basically all you would do is pry the old keyboard off gently and pull out the ribbon cable that comes from the keyboard and plugs into the mainboard of the laptop. (It is a very simple task.)

    This may fix your problem and may keep you from having to purchase another laptop/computer.

  3. #3

    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    OK- thanks- I found keyboards in the $20 range.

    I'll try to figure out how to get it apart to get the old one off.

    There are some web pages that look informative, though not on my exact model (Compaq Presario M2000)

  4. #4
    Cheeseburger in Paradise Los Angeles's Avatar
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    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    Well, it might still be a mechanical problem.

    Depending on what kind of computer you have, sometimes the key mechanism has three parts - the top of the key, a spring, and a piston that goes down to engage the sensor. While the flat key part is being sprung back up by the spring, the piston portion might still be stuck down (when dirty water dries it can leave a thin glue-like film).

    Slide a small flathead screw driver under the key and pop it off (don't worry -usually it pops right back on). then use needle nose pliers and see if the piston portion of the mechanism underneath can be dislodged. If you break it, you were headed towards replacing the keyboard anyway.
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    Denim Chicken duke dynamite's Avatar
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    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    Quote Originally Posted by Los Angeles View Post
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    Well, it might still be a mechanical problem.

    Depending on what kind of computer you have, sometimes the key mechanism has three parts - the top of the key, a spring, and a piston that goes down to engage the sensor. While the flat key part is being sprung back up by the spring, the piston portion might still be stuck down (when dirty water dries it can leave a thin glue-like film).

    Slide a small flathead screw driver under the key and pop it off (don't worry -usually it pops right back on). then use needle nose pliers and see if the piston portion of the mechanism underneath can be dislodged. If you break it, you were headed towards replacing the keyboard anyway.

    Yeah, try prying off the key first. The piston should be white or gray. It looks like it is made of rubber and is very flimsy.

    It never hurts to have an extra keyboard for the laptop, though.

  6. #6

    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    thanks everyone--the $25 keyboard off e-bay came in yesterday and we are up and running.

    An odd thing is happening with the home desktop though. With internet explorer, a few weeks ago I came to Pacers Digest and got the error that "the site only works with java scripting enabled" so I couldn't see a thing. I made sure all the scripting was turned on in internet options/security, all the java was up to date, etc. but still got the error.

    I downloaded the Mozilla Firefox browser and all was well.

    I still have the IE probem, so I re-downloded and installed IE 7. No effect. I don't mind using Firefox, but the one thing that seems to only work in IE, not Firefox, is the viewer from Netflicks. It only works with IE and Windows media player.

    Any suggestions for fixing IE?

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    Denim Chicken duke dynamite's Avatar
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    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    Quote Originally Posted by pacertom View Post
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    thanks everyone--the $25 keyboard off e-bay came in yesterday and we are up and running.

    An odd thing is happening with the home desktop though. With internet explorer, a few weeks ago I came to Pacers Digest and got the error that "the site only works with java scripting enabled" so I couldn't see a thing. I made sure all the scripting was turned on in internet options/security, all the java was up to date, etc. but still got the error.

    I downloaded the Mozilla Firefox browser and all was well.

    I still have the IE probem, so I re-downloded and installed IE 7. No effect. I don't mind using Firefox, but the one thing that seems to only work in IE, not Firefox, is the viewer from Netflicks. It only works with IE and Windows media player.

    Any suggestions for fixing IE?
    Do a "reset" of IE.

    Tools>Internet Options>Advanced Tab

    Click on the Reset button at the bottom of that window. It should reset IE to it's "Factory" defaults.

    That may work. If not, go to http://www.java.com/en/ and download the latest version of Java. That should help.

  8. #8
    Jimmy did what Jimmy did Bball's Avatar
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    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    Quote Originally Posted by pacertom View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    thanks everyone--the $25 keyboard off e-bay came in yesterday and we are up and running.

    An odd thing is happening with the home desktop though. With internet explorer, a few weeks ago I came to Pacers Digest and got the error that "the site only works with java scripting enabled" so I couldn't see a thing. I made sure all the scripting was turned on in internet options/security, all the java was up to date, etc. but still got the error.

    I downloaded the Mozilla Firefox browser and all was well.

    I still have the IE probem, so I re-downloded and installed IE 7. No effect. I don't mind using Firefox, but the one thing that seems to only work in IE, not Firefox, is the viewer from Netflicks. It only works with IE and Windows media player.

    Any suggestions for fixing IE?
    This reminds me of the old joke:
    Patient: "Doc, it hurts when I do this"
    Doctor: "Then don't do that!"

    IOW... Why are you using IE anyway?
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  9. #9

    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    Quote Originally Posted by duke dynamite View Post
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    Do a "reset" of IE.

    Tools>Internet Options>Advanced Tab

    Click on the Reset button at the bottom of that window. It should reset IE to it's "Factory" defaults.

    That may work. If not, go to http://www.java.com/en/ and download the latest version of Java. That should help.
    Neither of those worked,

    but I found a Microsoft JavaScript update that fixed it:

    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/d...displaylang=en

    I still hate internet explorer, but the wife and kids like to stream the Netflicks movie viewer, so I needed to get it running.

    Wow, last night I fixed her laptop, tonight I fixed the home desktop, I need to collect some rewards.

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    Denim Chicken duke dynamite's Avatar
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    Default Re: laptop stuck key issue, computer people, help me!

    Quote Originally Posted by pacertom View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    Neither of those worked,

    but I found a Microsoft JavaScript update that fixed it:

    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/d...displaylang=en

    I still hate internet explorer, but the wife and kids like to stream the Netflicks movie viewer, so I needed to get it running.

    Wow, last night I fixed her laptop, tonight I fixed the home desktop, I need to collect some rewards.
    Yeah, JavaScript can be troublesome at times. Congrats at being your house's computer guy.

    There really is no reason to hate IE. It does everything I need to do, and is the only browser that works well with a lot of academic plugins (MathXL, MyEcon\Math\Physics Lab)

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