My new laptop has been causing me some trouble!
Like most people (I presume), I like the idea that my laptop is portable (I can use it in bed) and I don't want it plugged in all the time, only when the battery needs to be recharged. Over the last few days I've been getting a weird error whenever the gnome power manager tells me that the battery level is critical. If I plug in the charge cable in while the laptop is running, the system shuts down and refuses to restart properly. Rebooting the machine results in an error message telling me that I have a corrupted file system and opening a recovery terminal (rather than booting to the GUI).
Googling the problem didn't meet with much success. It seems that various problems with the Ubuntu gnome power manager have been reported but I couldn't find either a specific or generic solution to my problem and I started to think that my Christmas present was likely to end up at the recycling centre after all! Then it occurred to me that the problems started shortly after I swapped the cheap crappy battery in the machine at the time of acquisition for a genuine DELL product from my other laptop.
Swapping the batteries back seems to have resolved the problem, but I'm not sure why. What I do know is that I'm glad that I didn't pay nearly £80 for a replacement battery a few months ago!