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Problems | Latitude D400


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#1
Tal

Tal

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Hi there,

One of my relatives works in a large international company, and he gets (obviously) a laptop from work, which he also uses for private surfing. Now the problem is that he's on a long vacation, and he can't really bring it to Tech Support right now, but he does want to use it for his personal needs.

So the problem as follows: It's a Dell Latitude D400, which has been replaced for him not a long ago (replaced as in totally replaced, new harddrive, etc). It was working perfectly until today. It has to be mentioned that the laptop was on a long flight and might have been hit accidentally (although it's not really possible, since it was hand baggage and on Business Class). When the laptop boots up, it goes through the Dell screen as usual, along with a Hard Drive Encryption (Pointsec) Password Check. However, when it gets to XP boot, the hard drive access light is not flashing -- it's lit all the time! It doesn't manage to boot to XP Normal Mode and XP Safe Mode doesn't work either.

Our initial speculation was that a RAM stick was disconnected somehow and the computer tries to access the Paging File on the hard drive. However, I've checked the memory in the BIOS and it shows up as 512 @ 266, so that aspect is OK. The hard drive doesn't make any noise (it's practically new, as I said), and it's safe to exclude a malware issue -- the computer is secured by multiple programs and nothing dangerous has been downloaded to it, nor it accessed dangerous websites.

If anyone has any suggestion on what to do I'll be grateful :whistling:
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#2
fleamailman

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hi, just some questions,
- is safemode possible
- is repair with XPcd possible
- is there a restore point to return to
- does it do the same thing if one takes out the battery(no idea why that works at times)
- does it boot normally on any linux live CD, pinpointing os or harddrive as the problem
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#3
Tal

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Hello,

I've answered some questions you posed, but I will reply nevertheless. I'll also add that sometimes it does manage to boot.

1. No.
2. Company PC, they don't have a restore CD and I can't use mine.
3. I can try, if I manage to reach System Restore.
4. Yes, the battery is having problems so we took it out, with or without it the problem persists.
5. I'll try it out if it's possible, I'm not sure I'll be able to.
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#4
fleamailman

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number 3 is not system restore, repair with XPcd can be anybody's copy as long as it is the same flavor, example xp home service pack 2 needs just that, and also one has to change the boot sequence to start from cdrom.
http://www.geekstogo...ws-XP-t138.html
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#5
Tal

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I don't know, it's a company laptop... We prefer it to be something that doesn't mess around with the XP setup. He has a Dell XP and I have an ordinary one...
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#6
fleamailman

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hard to solve this one without it mending the system, the repair as pointed out in the link does not mean you lose any data, it only checks and restores microsoft's system folders only. perhaps someone else here as some idea on this, I pass
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