Windows will not start up at all on laptop

  honey chops 15:42 20 Oct 2009

Firstly, sorry for the long winded message but I had to type everything it says on the screen.
My daughter's laptop will not start up, a message comes up saying "We apologise for the inconvenience but windows did not start successfully. A recent hardware or software change might have caused this. If your computer stopped responding, restarted unexpectedly or was automatically shut down to protect your files and folders, choose last known good configuration, to revert to the most recent settings that worked. if a previus start up attempt was interrupted due to a power failure or because the power or reset button was pressed or if you are not sure what caused the problem, choose start windows normally" It then offers safe mode, safe mode with networking, safe mode with command prompt and last known good daughter has tried all of these but it still will not start up. She said the last time she used it was when she downloaded a film, the film would not open until she downloaded something else, she downloaded this (I think it is a virus?) and she now can't start up her laptop at all. Can she just download her windows xp cd again?

  BurrWalnut 15:49 20 Oct 2009

As you can’t start the computer because of a possible virus, try the Linux Avira Antivir Rescue system click here

Download it on a working machine, then insert a blank CD-R in the drive, double-click on the filename and follow the prompts to burn it. The file is/was about 50MB in size. On the infected machine, boot from it and when the loading has finished, click on the UK flag, then Start Scanner. Depending upon your computer, the scan will take about 30 minutes.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:42 20 Oct 2009

Do you have or can you borrow a XP CD?

Repair XP by install over the top of existing system

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

  honey chops 19:21 20 Oct 2009

Many thanks to both messages posted so far. I will be getting my daughter's laptop on Friday and I will do what Fruit Bat has advised and then possibly download the anti virus link suggested by BurrWalnut.
Fruit Bat - hopefully my daughter will still have her original Windows XP CD from when she purchased the laptop a couple of years ago. Will the system information be contained in a book to enable me to change the boot order? As the laptop does not turn on in the first instance, will I still be able to change the boot order so the CD boots before the hard drive?
Thanks again
Honey chops

  honey chops 19:26 20 Oct 2009

sorry, just re-read BurrWalnut's answer and read the other page from "click here" and could see that it is a download, what is best to do, this one first and then Fruit Bat's or other way around?
Honey Chops

  woodchip 19:28 20 Oct 2009

Remove the Battery from the Laptop and try just Starting it with the Mains Power from laptop charger

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:31 20 Oct 2009

Do you really think you have a virus?

If so scan for virus using BurrWalnut's post.

If not so sure use my method to get XP to run again and then you can scan for virus with your own virus scanner.

  honey chops 19:34 20 Oct 2009

Thanks Fruit Bat, I just get the feeling it is a virus....once I get the laptop (on Friday) I will run the anti virus suggested by BurrWalnut and then do what you suggest. Are you able to answer my query as to whether I will be able to access BIOS to change the boot order before the XP CD kicks in?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:51 20 Oct 2009

It sounds as if its turning on because you can get to the "safe mode menu" its just not completing the boot into windows properly so probably a corrupt windows file that needs replacing and will be done by the repair procedure.

To get into BIOS
when the machine is first switched on a mesage appears that says something like "ESc for setup"
typical keys to get into BIOS are Del Esc F1 F2 depending on the make and model of the machine.
Pressing the appropriate key gets you into the BIOS pages you need to navigate to Boot order and set the DVD drive to first boot device

Some models even allow you to press a key to select the Boot order directly from the first screen.
I.E. F2 setup F12 change Boot device

so press F12 and change the boot device to DVD

  honey chops 20:03 20 Oct 2009

Many many thanks for the information. I will advise of the outcome over the week-end.

  honey chops 13:46 24 Oct 2009

Fruit Bat, I now have my daughter's laptop and it won't even accept the Esc command, it just opens up in the "we apologise for the inconvenience" page and won't let you get past that, I have tried esc delete F1 or F2 or even F12 mentioned in your message and it won't accept any of the commands. Even when I press Start Windows Normally, the screen goes blank and goes back to the "sorry for the inconveience" page again? One thing I did notice when the screen goes blank is that it says in the corner press esc to change boot order but, as I said, it won't accept the esc command, so, at present, I cannot even get it to accept the Microsoft Office DVD to re-set up. What do I do now?
Honey Chops

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