Win XP - Stuck in continual reboot loop

  Cal 20:09 03 Jan 2010

Had blue screen of death moment with error code but system rebooted before I had time to do anything. Stuck in a continual reboot loop ever since.

System reboots shortly after BIOS but before XP splash screen. Using F8 I can access the Win Adv Options Menu but trying to reboot in Safe Mode or Last Known Good Config has no effect. Also, selecting the Disable Auto Restart on Sys Failure makes no difference.

I should add that I already have Win Recovery Console installed from a previous unrelated incident about 12 months ago but selecting this option as opposed to trying to boot with XP also makes no difference as the system simply goes back to the reboot loop.

I have been into BIOS to reorder the boot sequence to force the system to start from the XP CD and to try and access the Recovery Console from there but after starting, all I see is a black screen and nothing happens.

No unusual noises coming from HDD, all dust cleaned from unit, all connections checked, memory sticks removed and cleaned, all unnecessary hardware disconnected - just monitor and keyboard left. No luck.

I am desperate to access my files and my only other thought was to remove internal HDD and connect to my laptop with HD enclosure and USB connection to see if my files are there.

Would be grateful for any further guidance with this.


  woodchip 20:57 03 Jan 2010

Driver Problem, Start in Safe Mode, by tapping F5 as computer is starting. in safe Mode go to Start\Run type MSCONFIG press enter on the startup tab make a note if you can of all box's with a tick, Write them down go back to General Tab Tick Diagnostic start box then try restart you computer normal. if ishuts down and starts ok look at the list at tick one box at a time restart comp until you find the problem. After each restart you will need to tick the little box bottom left on the box that pops up. See how it goes

  Cal 21:05 03 Jan 2010

Hi woodchip

I can't start in safe mode. When selected, the system simply goes back to the loop when rebooted.


  VoG II 21:06 03 Jan 2010

click here and scroll down to Logon - Logoff loop, also caused by BlazeFind

  Cal 21:16 03 Jan 2010

Hi VoG

Sry but the reboot loop occurs well before the log-on screen and as I mentioned I am having trouble acessing the windows recovery console.

  Strawballs 21:27 03 Jan 2010

Find out the make of Hard Drive and download their diagnostic software and burn to disc, you should be able boot from this and if it has developed a bad sector it should be able to correct it.

I had the same problem with a laptop with a Hitachi drive and doing this sorted the problem.

  Cal 21:34 03 Jan 2010

Hi Strawballs

Thanks for the suggestion, I'll have a look into this and get back.


  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 21:49 03 Jan 2010

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

  DieSse 21:53 03 Jan 2010

If a Windows CD won't boot up the system to at least the Recovery console state, then there is likely a hardware problem, for example a bad RAM module. You can run a (basic) RAM test in the boot up phase, from the BIOS, by setting "Quick boot" (or similar) to Disabled.

Your thought about removing the hard drive and recovering data from it on another system is a very wise move. I would do so before you do too much else, or you may corrupt things past the point of no return (if they aren't there already.)

  DieSse 21:56 03 Jan 2010

"Boot the computer using the XP CD." -

He already said he couldn't do that - otherwise that would have been my first suggestion.

  Strawballs 21:57 03 Jan 2010

If you put drive into another PC then you could run chdsk from there

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