Sleeps despite settings, can't wake it up


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I'm running Windows 11 22h2 on a Dell XPS 8950 desktop.

My power settings specify Never sleep and never turn off screen. I run a screen saver app. I shut down my computer every night and power up (so boot) the next day. Many days I'm at my computer most of the day, or at least on-and-off. Some days I turn it on in the morning, then leave it untouched for the bulk of the day. I stay up-to-date on updates, so am on the latest build.

Three times in the last 2 weeks or so I've returned to my computer after being away for several hours to find the monitors black, as if the computer had gone to sleep. However, when I attempt to wake it up, nothing I do works. I've confirmed in Device Manager that both keyboard and mouse are set to wake it up. I've tried pushing the power button briefly, but that also has zero effect.

So, my only recourse has been to hold the power button down until it shuts down. Except that it doesn't shut down, it restarts. At the point Windows usually comes up, I get blue screen with an error message "Windows didn't load correctly" and giving me the option to restart in Safe Mode or Start Windows. I've always chosen the Start Windows option, and everything is fine from there. Until the next time.

This is definitely new behavior and I haven't loaded any new apps for at least a couple of months (though several do update themselves . . .). The screen saver kicks in correctly.
I am wondering if your laptop came with windows 11 or did you upgrade to it and if you upgraded, did you have these issues before?

Also, have you tried checking your RAM with Memtest just to rule that out?

The last thing I would ask is if you can run a virus / malware check with a Windows independent and updated virus scanner such as Bit Defender?

Oh, I thought of one more thing. My laptop once behaved similarly and it turned out to be an overheating issue. Maybe ensure the laptop is well ventilating with no obstructions near the heat outlet and fresh air intake. Over time, dust can accumulate in the cool air intake especially if you have pets
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My computer is a desktop, not a laptop. It was new in December 2022 and came with Windows 11 22h2 installed. As I mentioned, the OS is always Microsoft's most-current build.

I have not had the issue before 2 or so weeks ago.

I have not yet had the time to try Memtest, though I do have it loaded to a thumb drive and will run it as soon as I can.

I ran a virus/malware scan with Malwarebytes and it found nothing.

I do not believe overheating could possibly be an issue. As I said, the computer is new, and the tower is located in the same place as I've always kept my towers. The vents are well away from the wall and there is good circulation there.

I also have a laptop that I used extensively in December and January. I used it when migrating from my older desktop to the new one, comparing settings for apps, etc. The laptop is on Windows 11 21H2. I had two or three instances of things behaving differently (and incorrectly) on the new desktop but working perfectly correctly on the laptop. One of those was that the screen saver did not come on on the desktop, despite a very careful and extensive review of Windows and the screensaver app settings. After I'd spent too many hours chasing it, I finally gave up and accepted that the black screen I was getting was going to have to be good enough. Then one day in early February the screen saver starting working correctly, without me doing a thing. I believe that a Windows update caused the change in behavior. Similarly, until a couple of weeks ago (about the time this "sleep" problem started, in fact), my Background photo had random issues. Some days it would appear when I booted up, but disappear a short time later - or hours later, or stay with me all day. Other days it would not load even when on boot. Then one day it started being there all day every day.

Although I have searched Windows' lists of know issues and what was fixed in various builds, I have never found that sounds anything like any of these problems. Yet I strongly believe that the two issues that "resolved themselves" in the last month were Windows 22H2 issues, and I also suspect that the current "sleep" problem is also inside 22H2 somewhere, somehow.

But if anyone has any other suggestions, I'll gladly entertain them.