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Offline macnext1

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Laptop Failure
« on: April 26, 2010, 07:17:41 AM »
Ok, I think I am snake bit. The other day we had a pretty bad electrical storm and later that evening I shut down my Dell laptop to do a reboot. The system hung after closing a bunch of stuff. It just sat there with the system light on so I powered it down. When I powered back up it went right into chkdsk. Chkdsk ran a long time but never finished, it just sits there with the system light on saying it is fixing file 9. I tried powering down and up several times with the exact same result. Soooo,  I tried bypassing chkdsk and it got to the point where it brought up the logon screen. I logged in as "Owner" (with password), it says restoring personal settings but never makes it past that point.  I did that twice with same result so I had the bright idea to login with one of the other ids. Unfortunately, it has now degraded to the point where when it brings up the logon screen I can't move the cursor -- so scratch that idea. Last night I brought it up and let it sit there with chkdsk running (?) all night, this morning still sitting in the same place. So at this point I am totally without ideas of how to proceed.

I REALLY need that bootable diagnostic disk now. Shane, have you got another link or is it possible for you to provide me a link to your copy?

Mac

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Laptop Failure
« on: April 26, 2010, 07:17:41 AM »

Offline Shane

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2010, 08:29:09 AM »
Remember the power reset trick I told you about before? After a storm is when it really comes into play.

Remove the battery and power cord, then try to turn the system on a few times to drain the rest of the electricity out.

Then plug it back in a give it a try.  :wink:

Shane
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Offline macnext1

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2010, 05:30:10 AM »
I haven't tried the POR yet and I'm kind of afraid to try it right now. I was finally able to login with an id different than 'Owner'. Now that I can use the console, etc. I'd like to try to fix it with whatever tools I can find without shutting down. So a few questions.
1. Is there a way to bring up the 'Owner ID without going through it's startup 'stuff' since that appears to be where it hangs?
2. Can you recommend some tools I can find on-line (or on my system that I don't know about) to try to address (locate/correct) the 'possible' disc failure?
3. After going into 'Setup' and changing boot device to cd/dvd the system still goes straight to the hard disc and never tries the dvd -- any ideas of why that would happen? If I can't get it to go the the dvd then there goes any shot at using standalone diagnostics.

Probably an answer to number 2 would negate need for the other 2 questions.

Mac

Offline Shane

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2010, 08:38:08 AM »
You need to do the power reset. Its the only way to properly reset hardware. Until you do the problems will always be there.

I had a friend who's internet was going good awful slow and the system was acting very strange. He rebooted, checked everything but couldn't fig out what was going on. I had him do the power reset trick and he gave me a look of "Yeah sure Shane, whatever you say"
Then he did it, booted back up and was shocked :-) I made him buy me a cigar for that look LOL

After a storm and your computer starts acting strange, you need to drain all the power out to let the hardware reset. Don't try to fix things with it acting this way. Reset the hardware first. Then if you still have the problem then you start trying to fix things in Windows  :wink:

Shane
(My weekends belong to my wife and kids, I will try my best to answer all posts daily during the work week)

(About Shane)
Site Owner, Top Admin, Lead Programmer, Wife & 5 kids, Needs a lot more coffee.

When people ask "Why fix what isn't broken?" I reply "To make it better."
"Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile"
Honor & Respect is all that matters.

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Offline macnext1

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2010, 04:49:07 AM »
Update. Yesterday (before I made my last post) I had removed AYSysRestore and did a point restore to about 2 weeks ago. So after I saw your reply I was all prepared to go ahead and do a POR but I said well I will just do a regular power off and back on to see if perhaps the 2 changes I made would have some effect. Well it booted up to the logon screen and I told myself "in for a penny, in for a pound", let's see if it will go ahead and come up under 'Owner'. And "lo it came to pass", it restored personal settings (had always hung at this point before) and just kept on chugging. Brought up all my junk. I went to the internet and did some other 'stuff'. So Ima thinking it's ok.

Discovered why I couldn't boot off the D Drive -- it's not a cd/dvd. It's a cd only so my dvd restore disc just wouldn't hack it. However, this leads me to another question. Is it possible to boot from a USB connected DVD drive? And if so -- how? When I was in 'setup' nothing jumped out at me.

This also begs the question about the availability of on-line tools for diagnostics. ???

And the question of a link to that great bootable cd that was supposed to be free but I can't seem to find the free version. ???

Mac


Offline Shane

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2010, 10:10:28 AM »
I emailed you the download link, just try one of the other mirrors.
Did you not get the email?

Shane
(My weekends belong to my wife and kids, I will try my best to answer all posts daily during the work week)

(About Shane)
Site Owner, Top Admin, Lead Programmer, Wife & 5 kids, Needs a lot more coffee.

When people ask "Why fix what isn't broken?" I reply "To make it better."
"Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile"
Honor & Respect is all that matters.

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Offline macnext1

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2010, 03:42:53 PM »
The last link you sent me on 4/21 pointed me to a site that was for sale and looked like they probably dealt in food at some time. Nothing since 4/21.

Mac

Offline Shane

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2010, 05:07:46 PM »
(My weekends belong to my wife and kids, I will try my best to answer all posts daily during the work week)

(About Shane)
Site Owner, Top Admin, Lead Programmer, Wife & 5 kids, Needs a lot more coffee.

When people ask "Why fix what isn't broken?" I reply "To make it better."
"Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile"
Honor & Respect is all that matters.

Owner & Programmer of: www.pcwintech.com & www.tweaking.com

Offline macnext1

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2010, 05:58:35 AM »
Thanks. That is in fact the same link you already sent me. However, when I tried it this time it gave me a different page to look at which then took me to a WebCrawler page and about the 5th one down took me to a FREE site. Downloaded and will try a burn and test this afternoon(?).

Thanks again.

About the question on booting from a USB device???
Question on on-line diagnostics???

Mac

Offline Shane

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #9 on: April 29, 2010, 10:02:21 AM »
There are a lot of tools to make USB bootable, its how I do reinstalls on net books (which don't have cd drives).
Just Google bootable USB and you will find all the info on it. I can also give you some links.

Also I don't know of (because I wouldn't use them) of any online diag.
When you need to test hardware you don't want to be in windows, so online wouldn't be of any help. Thats why there is the bootable cd :-)

Shane
(My weekends belong to my wife and kids, I will try my best to answer all posts daily during the work week)

(About Shane)
Site Owner, Top Admin, Lead Programmer, Wife & 5 kids, Needs a lot more coffee.

When people ask "Why fix what isn't broken?" I reply "To make it better."
"Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile"
Honor & Respect is all that matters.

Owner & Programmer of: www.pcwintech.com & www.tweaking.com

Offline macnext1

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2010, 01:33:59 AM »
I printed  the instructions for the build (5 pages worth) of the UBCD. Got stumped before I got started good. First off it says to use my Windows CD -- only thing I have is a Restore DVD from Gateway -- is that going to be the right thing? Then it says to look at the root of the CD to determine if it is SP1 or SP2 -- following the tip I see no files with an extension of Sp anything.

So right away I'm confused -- I'm only 2 instructions deep in a 5 page instruction sheet -- Man this is gonna be fun.

Mac

Offline Shane

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2010, 10:13:10 AM »
You shouldn't need those. I will download it later (Finishing my 2nd iPhone app before I get started on my first Android app) and take a look for ya.  :wink:

Shane
(My weekends belong to my wife and kids, I will try my best to answer all posts daily during the work week)

(About Shane)
Site Owner, Top Admin, Lead Programmer, Wife & 5 kids, Needs a lot more coffee.

When people ask "Why fix what isn't broken?" I reply "To make it better."
"Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile"
Honor & Respect is all that matters.

Owner & Programmer of: www.pcwintech.com & www.tweaking.com

Offline macnext1

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #12 on: May 05, 2010, 03:32:05 PM »
Let me bring you up to date. I went ahead and downloaded the UBCD build code. Transferred my Restore DVD to a folder on the laptop. After all the extractions and hash checking was done I tried to do a build (pointing to the folder where the 'restore' code was). No go. It (the builder) went looking for a file -- i386\setupldr.bin and I no gotta. So evidently a 'Restore DVD' is NOT the same as a Windows CD. And yes I did a full search of the DVD just to verify it t'aint there.

Suggestions?

Mac

Offline Shane

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2010, 04:03:17 PM »
Not sure since I am not 100% on what you did.

I really think you should do a reinstall. You already have a good key you just need the xp cd. In this case I would just download the cd off the internet. Its not piracy when you already own it. Your just trying to get the media you need.

Shane
(My weekends belong to my wife and kids, I will try my best to answer all posts daily during the work week)

(About Shane)
Site Owner, Top Admin, Lead Programmer, Wife & 5 kids, Needs a lot more coffee.

When people ask "Why fix what isn't broken?" I reply "To make it better."
"Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile"
Honor & Respect is all that matters.

Owner & Programmer of: www.pcwintech.com & www.tweaking.com

Offline macnext1

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2010, 03:24:19 AM »
I'll have to give that one some thought. It irritates me to think I'm going to have to pay to get a cd so that I can build something (UBCD) that is touted as being free. I don't think I need to reinstall my OS -- it's running just fine and I know that the 'Restore' DVD works to rebuild the system since I had to do that several years ago on the desktop. In the case of the laptop I would need to boot from a USB device but you pointed me towards a way to fix that.

BTW on the site where they have the UBCD build code they have a link to what sounded like just what I needed -- it was for poor folks like me that only have a 'restore cd' and was supposed to build you an XP CD from your restore cd so you could do the UBCD build. I tried going there to get it but I could only link to a German language version. Gave up (tried it twice since it said English). Perhaps if you have some time you could take a look at that, probably just something I didn't understand (didn't read right).

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Re: Laptop Failure
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2010, 03:24:19 AM »

 

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