If your Lenovo Ideapad 100 won’t turn on, you’re in good company. I have a friend who has that problem with his Ideapad 100 laptop a lot. Incredibly, nobody I know of documented this fix before. Here’s the secret.

My favorite trick doesn’t work since you can’t pull the battery. Just holding the power button for 15 or 30 seconds didn’t work either. I’ve seen other crazy fixes like holding the computer at a 45 degree angle. Forget all that.

The key is something called the Novo Button. It’s in different places in different models. On my friend’s Ideapad 100-15IBD, it’s a recessed button next to the power plug. When I pushed that button with a paper clip, the laptop roared to life and brought up a boot menu.

Don’t pick system recovery unless you have a really good reason to do it. Pick the first option, which is normal startup. Your computer will boot normally. Or, in this computer’s case, it booted and then immediately crashed, but the second boot worked normally.

Why not pick system recovery? The problem isn’t Windows. It’s a hardware problem. Just doing a normal boot will restore it to working order. There’s no need to wipe out your data in most cases.

How do you prevent this in the first place? As best I can tell, these Lenovo Ideapads don’t like it when their batteries run down. Plug it in after a long day’s work and don’t let it sit unattended and unplugged for a long time and it’s less likely to give you finicky powerups. But if it ever does, you can fix it with a paper clip, and knowledge of where your model’s Novo Button is.

It’s certainly more convenient than pulling the battery, but maddening when you don’t know the trick. It’s still a bit of a hassle so if I owned one, I’d keep it plugged in quite a bit.

That said, if it does happen, use the Novo Button to save yourself an unnecessary and potentially costly trip to the repair shop. I have no idea why Lenovo didn’t document this fix anywhere but I’m glad to share my discovery.

Why are Lenovo computers prone to this? Truth is, they aren’t the only ones. HP computers are. Dells don’t seem to be, but they have their own quirks. It’s all about what you’re used to.