Help, I cannot start my pc.

  The Dazza 21:29 17 Feb 2005

Up until a few months ago my windows & office xp machine had 2 HDD's and a cd writer working fine. One of my hard drives intermittently disappeared and then re-appeared in explorer and I was unable to access any files on the drive when it disappeared from explorer. Then exactly the same thing happened to my cd writer drive, which is on a different cable than the hdd that is missing. Yesterday when I tried booting up my pc I got the message "we apologize for the inconvenience, but windows did not start successfully. A recent hardware or software change may have caused this. If your computer stopped responding..." then 5 options Safe mode, safe mode with networking, safe mode with command prompt,last known good configuration & start windows normally come up. I have tried selecting each of the 5 options after reboots but it just keeps going into the same screen. What's happening?

  hugh-265156 21:48 17 Feb 2005

what exactly happens after you select safe mode please? does it just restart again?

all i can suggest is to run a full diagnostic on the hard drives with something like seatools desktop (works with all makes of ide drive) click here

if the above says your drive is healthy then if you have a windows xp cdrom i would try a repair install which will re install windows and keep your data intact hopefully. click here

  trevpearson 21:57 17 Feb 2005

Hmm, I had this a wee while ago. It turned out that the IDE plug had "moved" in the IDE socket on the motherboard. I re-seated all the cables and, voila, everything worked fine.

I'm told, that after a while, the heat generated within the computer case can cause expansion and contraction and "movement" of the plugs.

Either way, re-seating everything worked for me.


  Jak_1 21:58 17 Feb 2005

Have you tried System restore? Take it back to the day before the last known date it was working. If that fails, swap the drives round and re-install the system on to that drive. Don't forget to backup any data first though.

  the-george 22:01 17 Feb 2005

Have you tried looking in the BIOS to see if your drives are still being recognised?

If you do not have a diagnostic disk or cannot easily download one then try an older emergency boot disk to boot into DOS and see if the drives are picked up by DOS and that you can see the file structure.

This will give some idea as to the state of the drives. If all appears ok with this then a repair/install as suggested above should be tried.

  The Dazza 22:06 17 Feb 2005

The problem is I can't get past the screen I mentioned earlier. It just reboots no matter what option I choose. I have been inside my tower unit, previous to posting the topic, and the cables look like they are seated properly. As it is at the moment my computer can only boot to the screen stage I keep going on about.

  Jak_1 22:15 17 Feb 2005

Try my suggestion of switching your hdd's round, not forgetting to re-configure the master/slave jumpers and then install windows on to that drive from the cd.

  THE TERMINATOR 22:24 17 Feb 2005

Do you have an original XP disk? If so then chosse the CD-Rom as first boot option in the BIOS, boot again and launch the recovery console on the CD(make sure you have the disk in the drive when you boot up). This will see if your cd drive is working and also allow the console to check your system and repair XP....

  The Dazza 22:25 17 Feb 2005

..currently in the process of re-installing windows as suggested.

  Jak_1 22:26 17 Feb 2005

Hope it works for you

  THE TERMINATOR 22:27 17 Feb 2005

Your suggestions of a system restore and re-installing windows are not possible when Dazza can't get windows to load. He has to run the repair console....TT

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