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Master Drive Failure

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My son's 2001 HP Pavilion, running Windows XP, won't boot up. When the computer is turned on the drive makes horrible little clunky sounds. The first error message was "Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt System32\drivers\ntfs.sys. I pressed F2 to continue, and it goes through the boot process, has a series of normal bootup messages, but ends in Primary Master Drive Failure.

The master drive would be the hard drive, right?

Two questions.....

1) Am I right about it being a hard drive failure? Are they simple to replace? I cannot find a system restore disk for this computer anywhere, although I do have one for a new HP running Windows XP media edition. No important data has been lost if the hard drive is dead.

2) Is it cost effective in terms of time and cost of the hard drive to replace the hard drive on a 5 year old nothing special computer? Is it a better use of my time to research new computers (this is for a 10 year old).

Thanks much... I'm not quite sure where to go to for help.
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Sounds like ur hard drive went bad. You could buy a new HD. or you could buy a new pc since it is 10 yrs old. Rember if you buy a new HD you will need the reinstall disk for XP and will need a Cd Key. Also if u have another HD laying around just throw it in and make sure it boots. If u get the same error it is something else

Edited by Longhorns242, 07 August 2006 - 09:07 PM.

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It sounds like the drive is somewhat working, but it may have problems. If you know the maker of the disk, go to their website and get their diagnostic program and test the disk.

You can get new disks pretty cheap, much cheaper than a new computer. If your current machine is working well enough, then you may not need to buy a new computer.

You would need an install disk, so that could be a major issue and would be expensive to buy a new one.

Longhorns242: His computer is 5 years old, his child is 10 years old.
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