New Surface Pro 2017 shuts off unexpectedly? Return it while you can.

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If you have a new Surface Pro 2017 and it keeps dying unexpectedly, the best current advice is to turn it in for a replacement — while you still can. For reasons as yet unknown, and not discussed by Microsoft, newer hardware doesn’t seem to have the same problem. Or at least, the problem isn’t as marked.

Forums are ablaze with complaints about the new Surface Pro — the one that doesn’t have a model number but is generally known as Surface Pro 2017. Becca05 on the Microsoft Answers forum says:

For some reason my new Surface is shutting off randomly. I check the setting and a few other things but [it] still randomly turns off without warning. I’m losing some of my school work because of it.

That thread has 231 replies, and 250 people marked “Me Too.”

Over on Reddit, srkhannn says:

Just picked up the Surface Pro I5 Friday. At random intervals the screen goes black and the device seems to power off while I am actively using it (typing). Pressing the power button presents the black and white windows logo and a few seconds later a login screen with the desktop in the exact setup before the shutdown.

And dozens of posters echoed the complaint.

On a different Reddit thread, YogiTye says:

Hey all, I just got a i5 256gb 8gb ram surface pro last Thursday and 5 times it’s randomly turned off and went to sleep on me. I’ve installed a minimal amount of apps and I can check the event log and see a “”reason: application API”, ” log entry indicating that my surface went to sleep with very little other context. Has this been happening to any of you? Any ideas how to determine what App may be causing it and what I might be able to do about it?

Microsoft employee BryanH has responded:

We are aware of a small group of customers reporting a scenario with their new Surface Pro in which the device inadvertently hibernates. We are investigating this issue.

Which left many Surface Pro 2017 customers fuming. Calling hundreds of active complainers a “small group” tends to raise all sorts of hackles.

Microsoft Answers Forum moderator, MVP, and long-standing Surface guru Barb Bowman has taken Microsoft to task:

Based on the fact that it has historically taken Microsoft months and months to identify issues and come out with a fix and since these devices are still eligible for return for full refund, you may want to consider returning for a full refund and repurchasing. If you do that, you get another 30 days of being able to return and repurchase, etc. The reason I say this is that 6 months down the road, Microsoft will exchange for a refurb if they determine it is a hardware issue and the quality of the refurbs has not been consistent.

Additionally, if it IS a software issue, customers should not need to perform multiple wipe and reimage’s and bare metal trouble shooting. These devices should just work properly out of the box.

I’m not trying to be deliberately negative, but the track record Microsoft has of fixing issues is slow. You’ve all spent a lot of money. Sure it costs in time to set up a new Surface, but if the advice is to wipe and reload a device that has this issue, in MY opinion, it’s best to spend the time doing this with a different, new Surface Pro in case it is a hardware issue.

Bowman’s been around the block with Surface issues, including outspoken support for customers affected by the Surface Pro 3 battery problems and the Surface Pro 4 driver madness, both of which took more than a year to resolve.

Do we have another Surface lemon in the works?

Discussion continues on the AskWoody Lounge.

This article was written by Woody Leonhard from Computerworld and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.