Cannot boot, not sure what's dead

  Picklefactory 16:34 05 Jan 2008
Locked

Hello folks. I'm struggling here, hope someone can help.
Been having PSU issue with desktop for weeks now. 1st one died for resons unknown (It was Q Tech silent 400w, had great reviews when I bought and has worked superbly for past couple of years), anyway, it died, have since replaced with cheapo from Ebuyer, which is intermittently cutting out, as though there is a loose connection, it dies if it gets knocked. Was in process of ordering yet another replacement (Thought to return faulty and keep that as spare), when pc simply failed to complete boot sequence. I get through mem test OK, shows my IDE CD and DVD drives, then shows my WD SATA hard drive, as usual, but then I get DOS file missing or corrupt error, \windows\system32\config\system you can attempt to repair by typing 'r' at startup with XP CD
I've Googled and tried to get to repair console from XP CD, but that gets to selection screen where I type 'r' and then it tells me it cannot detect a hard drive on my pc, and cannot continue. I don't know if that is because I have hard drive problem (I suspect I have) or that I'm doing something wrong due to my drive being SATA and not IDE, (I have to have bios set to SCSI for boot sequence to fine SATA drive). I have laptop here and working, so I've since downloaded WD Data Lifeguard Diagnostic for DOS (Floppy) and tried to boot pc from that to run diagnostic on hard drive, but that fails to load giving'Cannot load DOS!' error. Don't know what to try next. I have an old desktop I have cannibalised that still has an old IDE drive in it with Win 2000 on it, but I seem to remember that had some bad sectors on it, so don't know if it's worth throwing in.
Any suggestions folks?
Thanks
PS running XP SP2 with Athlon XP2600, 1.5Gig RAM, WD 120 Gig SATA through raid PCI card in case any of that helps. Always keep my virus checks up to date and have recently ran all I have (AVG, A2, spybot S&D, adaware etc, all clear) so I'm pretty confident I have no virus issues.

  Picklefactory 20:13 05 Jan 2008

bump
anyone?

  lotvic 20:52 05 Jan 2008

I think you should do it this way (as per Fruit Bat /\0/\ click here detailed)

Repair XP by install over the top of existing systm

1. Boot the computer using the XP CD. You may need to change the boot order in the system BIOS so the CD boots before the hard drive. Check your system documentation for steps to access the BIOS and change the boot order.

2. When you see the "Welcome To Setup" screen, you will see This portion of the Setup program prepares Microsoft Windows XP to run on your computer:

To setup Windows XP now, press ENTER.

To repair a Windows XP installation using Recovery Console, press R.

To quit Setup without installing Windows XP, press F3.

3. Press Enter to start the Windows Setup.

To setup Windows XP now and Repair Install , press ENTER.

DO NOT choose "To repair a Windows XP installation using the Recovery Console, press R", (you Do Not want to load Recovery Console).

4. Accept the License Agreement and Windows will search for existing Windows installations.

5. Select the XP installation you want to repair from the list and press R to start the repair.

6. Setup will copy the necessary files to the hard drive and reboot.

Do not press any key to boot from CD when the message appears.

Setup will continue as if it were doing a clean install, but your applications and settings will remain intact.

Repair XP
click here

  lotvic 20:57 05 Jan 2008

Hope someone else posts to advise about the HDD

It might be worth trying the old IDE drive you have.

  Picklefactory 21:09 05 Jan 2008

OK that makes sense, I've been trying to load recovery console and hadn't tried XP setup as I kinda thought that would just erase all my hard drive data and do fresh install. While I've been waiting, I've also installed my old HD (Win ME) and I'm currently fiddling about with drivers on that. I'm not sure I have things quite right, as I've never had more than one HD in a pc before and I'm just loading ME Raid driver to try and get both drives visible, as I only seem to be seeing old HD so far. I'll try and finish this, then go through your suggestions. Thanks for the advice, I'll post back when I have some results, but getting late, so maybe tomorrow, we'll see how I go.
Cheers

  Picklefactory 21:38 05 Jan 2008

Got pc up and running with old HD, then disconnected it to try lotvic's suggestions, but unfortunately got exactly the same result. Got to Windows set up page OK, after it finished loading various files/drivers, but when I pressed enter to start install, I get same message, that it did not find any HD drives installed on my pc.
Stuffed again for now. Any further ideas folks?
Thanks again.

  lotvic 22:45 05 Jan 2008

I put Sata in the 'search forum' box at the top of this page
have a read of this thread click here it may help

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 23:49 05 Jan 2008

You need to load the SATA drivers for XP at the F6 prompt during the repair install.

  Picklefactory 20:35 06 Jan 2008

Thanks folks, sorry for late reply, been busy all day and just got chance for another go. OK, my next confusion. My mobo is not SATA compliant (Asus A7N8X-X)so I had to add a PCI SATA adapter when I built it (about 2 years ago now), I don't remember having a driver disk with the adapter, and I've been busily scratching through all my CD's looking for one, found an EIO driver CD, which has some raid and SATA drivers on, but not certain it is the correct disk. I was going to look on Asus site for drivers, but not sure if they would be correct as it's an adapter not mobo, I need SATA drivers on floppy as that's what F6 is looking for on Setup. Sorry to be thick, but still very much an amateur I'm afraid. So basically not sure where to find required drivers or whether there are some on that disk I could copy to floppy. Hope some of that makes sense, I do ramble I'm afraid.
Cheers

  Picklefactory 09:11 07 Jan 2008

OK, back again, have found and downloaded SATA Silicon Image 3112 controller drivers to floppy from Western Digital site. At work now, but will try setup procedure again later, and re-post.
Cheers folks

  Picklefactory 18:02 07 Jan 2008

OK back again.
I'm getting there but I'm not seeing quite the same choices as you list, Fruitbat. I've got the drivers to load, hit enter on welcome screen, accepted license agreement, but then I get a selection screen for 2 partitions, not Windows installations and I have no 'R' option. I have main partition of C:Partition1 [NTFS] and 8mb of unpartitioned space. My choices are on C: Enter to install, D to delete partition or F3 to quit/ on unpartioned space, it's install, create partition or quit. No 'R'. When I hit enter I get warning screen telling me it will install XP onto another OS which could be dodgy, again, no 'R' option, only continue or cancel. As yet I have cancelled, as I don't want to wipe all data from HDD. Have I done something wrong?

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