Compaq Armada 1750 will only boot from XP Pro CD

  cyberphobic 23:38 19 Jul 2008

I have just loaded XP Pro on to a 20GB HDD in a Compaq Armada 1750. I am very familiar with these laptops and don't normally have any problems doing this. However when I then loaded SP2, the machine failed to restart once it had finished loading and instead gave a Non System disk error.I then found that the only way I can get the laptop to boot into Windows is to insert the XP CD. Now if this was a more conventional machine I would just go into the BIOS and change the boot order, but trying to access the BIOS on these laptops is anything but straightforward - it is possible to reset the BIOS (System Options) by tapping the Fn button and the F11 buttons when the machine is booting, but the boot order is not accessible. Crucially, this doesn't work on this laptop as the option to press F1 to confirm new settings never appears. Once the machine has booted into Windows with the CD it behaves completely normally - what could be causing this problem?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 00:08 20 Jul 2008

Boot options Boot order
Notebook hard drive First
Notebook Floppy Second
Notebook MultiBay Third
Notebook Ethernet Fourth

To Enter the computer setup and change to a CD-ROM boot
1. Turn on the computer. When the Compaq logo displays, press F10. Or,
2. During Power On Self Test (POST), and after the memory check completes, press F10 as soon as you see a small white square flashing on the top right corner of the screen.
3. In the computer setup, use the right arrow to move the selection to the Advanced menu.
4. Use the down arrow to move the selection down to Boot options, and press Enter. The Boot options menu pops up with four boot order as described above.
5. Use the down arrow to move the selection down to Third (Notebook MultiBay) under Boot Order.
6. Press the left arrow twice to change the order of Notebook MultiBay to First.
7. Press F10 to accept the change.
8. Press ESC to jump back File menu, and then move the selection down to “Save changes and exit”.
9. Press Enter. If asked to save changes and exit, press F10.
10. The computer is restarted. If you already have a bootable CD-ROM in the drive, it will boot from the CD-ROM.

When you are done with loading or reinstalling operating system, and you want to reset the boot order to the default setting, follow step 1 thru 5 above. Then press the right arrow twice to change from First to Third order. Again, follow step 7 thru 9 above to complete the change.

  cyberphobic 10:56 20 Jul 2008

Many thanks for your suggestions - to my surprise, I managed to solve this problem another way. I remebered that with a previous password protected 1750 I disconnected the CMOS battery for 12 hours which reset the BIOS, I did the same again and on restarting, the laptop immediately booted from the HDD without the XP CD being in the machine.

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