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Help - can't reformat or reinstall windows


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#1
curtwalker

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I'm trying to reinstall windows XP on my desktop, and I would like to do a complete reformat of the HD rather than just repair windows.

Here's what I did:
- Popped in the media disc and booted from the CD drive.
- Pressed any key to proceed with Windows setup

Here's what happened:
- The text string at the bottom of the Windows setup screen (blue and empty) flashes what the PC is doing - DLLs, Kernels, etc.
- The text string gets as far as saying "windows is starting" (this is still on the blue screen, not the typical windows startup screen), and then that is as far as it gets.

Multiple attempts produce the same result. I have tried other media discs to see if my CD was just bad and I get the same result with all. My past experiences with reinstalling windows have all been smooth sailing. I just boot from CD and let it take the rest.

Is there another way in which I can reformat my HD to get rid of the problem and then start fresh with the windows CD?
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#2
Dragon

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this sounds like you might have a dirty CD. Look on the install disk and see if there are any scratches, of fingerprints. if there are, take the disk to your sink, and wash it with mild soap and warm water. I have found that dish detergent does a great job on that.
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#3
curtwalker

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this sounds like you might have a dirty CD. Look on the install disk and see if there are any scratches, of fingerprints. if there are, take the disk to your sink, and wash it with mild soap and warm water. I have found that dish detergent does a great job on that.


I checked that right away and the media appears to be fine. Just to be sure I tried another XP disc and got the same result.

What would be great is if there is a way to reformat my HD without bringing windows into it. Isn't there a way to boot in DOS and run FDISK?
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#4
Tyger

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It may be that windows is installing the wrong drivers for your video card so the screen is blank. What kind of video/agp card do you have, and is it very recent?
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#5
curtwalker

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Tyger, I'm using an EVGA 7600GT. This system is self-built.

Going on what you are saying, let me give an update here:

I currently have two WD 80gb hard drives in the PC, both SATA. These problems started happening after I installed the second one as a slave. Every so often I would turn the computer on and the Windows screen wouldn't come up. Using system restore was always unsuccessful. Believe it or not, only time seemed to make it go away. I would shut the PC down and several hours later Windows would load correctly.

My present situation: Windows XP would not install on the original hard drive. I removed it entirely and proceeded to install Windows on the additional HD. The installation worked up until the very first restart. Upon rebooting, the Windows screen loaded but only very dimly. That is the best way I can describe it. You know how the Windows screen fades in? It was like it started to but didn't ever fade in completely. That is as far as it gets everytime.

Subsequent attempts to install windows on both hard drives have failed. I only get as far as "Setup is starting Windows".

Do I need to trash these hard drives and get new ones?

Could it be my motherboard is blown?

To truely eliminate both the MB and HDs as being the problem, I feel like I need to reformat these HDs using DOS or something. If that doesn't work, then I know the HDs have issues.

I would really appreciate some help with this, as I'd rather not buy new HDs if I don't have to. I'm dead in the water. Thanks for your help!

Edited by curtwalker, 31 March 2007 - 07:39 AM.

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#6
123Runner

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If you use Fdisk, that might get you going. That allows you to wipe the entire disk.
FDISK requires a floppy. You can get a 98 boot disk at BOOTDISK.com
Have you tried testing the hard drives with the manufacturers utilities? or formating with their utility?
You can get the utilities HERE
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