I am using Ubuntu 14.04. Today all of a sudden when i turned on my laptop the battery was critically low and it logged off but i remember charging it to 100% the night before. When i logged on this is what the battery menu shows enter image description here

$ acpi
Battery 0: Discharging, 0%,  remaining

My laptop worked fine with this status for about 3:30 hrs and then shut down without any warning(probably because the battery drained out completely). Any idea how to fix this? Thanks in advance!

  • Do you have a spare battery to check with? That would help narrow down whether the (presumed) sensor failure is inside the battery or in the computer itself. – Zeiss Ikon Jun 9 '16 at 12:32
  • No i don't have any spare battery with me. – Chaythanya nair Jun 9 '16 at 12:57
  • someone please respond, i really need help. – Chaythanya nair Jun 11 '16 at 10:27

What you're describing has to be a failure of either the battery voltage sensor, Ubuntu's driver or handler for that sensor, or of the battery itself. Long run life rules out bad cells that would display as a dead battery, so it's either a sensor failure or a software issue. Try booting from live media (DVD or USB) and see if the battery display still reads zero. If it does, you have a hardware problem; otherwise, it's an issue with the software that reads and displays the output of the sensor and can likely be corrected with software solutions (reinstalling one or more packages, or worst case reinstalling Ubuntu clean).

I'm guessing it's the sensor (a software failure would likely give some result other than a consistent zero reading, such as loss of the battery icon entirely), but I don't know, for that machine, if that's inside the battery housing or on the machine's motherboard. If the battery is removable, you may be able to buy a replacement battery at a reasonable price from a third party (not Apple).

With bad cells ruled out, the only harm you'll risk by running with the machine as is, is not knowing how much run time you have left, so that's an option (adding a countdown timer widget set for less than your tested battery life would help avoid unexpected shutdowns).

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