Windows XP has died

  [DELETED] 13:31 16 Nov 2003

I thought i had shut down my PC as normal last night, but this morning it has failed to boot into XP.

After the bios POST beeps i get a boot option screen with options like Safe Mode, Last Known Good Config, and Boot Normally.

In choosing any of these options the same thing happens, it will show the XP boot screen for a few seconds and will then power cycle and start again.

I have used Linux live CD's in the past like Knoppix and Morphix, so i thought i would try booting into that to see if the HDD has become corrupt.

I can see all my files on the HDD from within Morphix, so corruption isnt an option.

I have also tried using the XP cd to boot. I tried the repair console where i tried chkdsk - it told me there are problems.

What can i do to get my system working properly again, i really dont want to have to format.

Please help.

  [DELETED] 13:37 16 Nov 2003

What are the problems that CHKDSK reported ?

If you've bad sectors or a failing drive, you could be in trouble.

Try putting your Windows CD in and booting from it. Let it detect your hardware then ignore the options you first get to Repair and so on. Hit F8 to agree to the licensing, then follow the prompt to install Windows.

You then get an options to repair your existing Windows installation when it highlights Windows on your partition. Run the repair utility from that point. many people choose the very first option to Repair and it is not anywhere near as easy from that point. Running the repair from this point will reinstall Windows and preseve your personal data files and programs.

If there were specific CHKDSK errors then it might help to post them in here and one of us will be able to advise further.



  powerless 13:43 16 Nov 2003
  [DELETED] 13:53 16 Nov 2003

Thankyou for the quick reply. You dont realise how much you miss PC's until they are broken.

Do you think i should try to use the link Powerless provided first? Then if that doesnt work i can try the first suggestion?

  [DELETED] 13:55 16 Nov 2003

Also, when you say:

"Running the repair from this point will reinstall Windows and preseve your personal data files and programs."

Will the system be completly as i left it? Or will there be lots of broken shortcuts and programs not wanting to load?

  powerless 13:59 16 Nov 2003

You'll have to install any updates again for example Service Pack 1.

In my experience runnng a repair can corrupt programs.

To me a repair is like a dodgy install, but thats just me talking.

Up to you.

  [DELETED] 14:09 16 Nov 2003

"If you've bad sectors or a failing drive, you could be in trouble."

I fear this is the case now.

When i got to that point the option was:

C: Partition 1 [Unknown] 30169MB ( 30168MB free)

So does this mean it is beyond repair? The "unknown" bit should say FAT32 or NTFS.

What should i do now?

  [DELETED] 14:43 16 Nov 2003

The only thing i can think of is that for some reason the XP CD doesnt recognise the partition as Fat32 or NTFS.

So is it possible to force it to know what FS it is?

  [DELETED] 16:08 16 Nov 2003

I thought i would have a go at using my old Window98 CD, as this can boot from the CD.

I can get to a command prompt using the CD, and after typing 'dir' in, it seems all my files are still there, so the drive cant be corrupt.

Also i have booted back into Knoppix/Morphix and played a few of my DivX films. They play perfectly.

So it is a problem with XP. Would fixing the MBR solve it?

  powerless 16:26 16 Nov 2003

Try it.

When you tried check disk did you use to command to fix the errors?

  [DELETED] 16:56 16 Nov 2003

What switch fixes it, i did /r but that didnt fix it.

What would you recommend i do?

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