So, thanks for posting this. I got a new laptop a few days ago with Widnows 7.. I don't know if it's the computer or what. Anyway, this is very frustrating, right? Something someone posted helped me, but I had to search around myself.
I JUST found how to make it so that the computer will not g o into sleep mode.. I suppose that is the current best solution while holding the power button breifly doe s not work. Here's what I did:
control panel > (click the arrow in the tool bar, after control panel) all control panel items > power options > change plan settings (first link) > set it so that it never goes into sleep mode instead of the "15 minutes" or whatever it is currently set to.
Hope this helped. IT HELPED ME. Thanks for posting.