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unbootable pc... Help urgently needed


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#1
queentracy

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Hi, can any of you clever people help me out? I have a friends pc here, which was running slow, so the tried to defrag to sort out the probs. It froze, and they couldnt do anything with it so they switched it off at the wall. Since then, it goes to the screen with all the data, with a flashing cursor on the bottom, and does nothing else. When I got it I decided as they have no antivirus or antispyware on the machine, that I'd be best to do a fresh install of windows. When I went into the BIOS there was a password, which my friend didnt know, so I removed the battery for 15 mins to get rid of that, then into the BIOS to set it to boot from CD... It will not do it. I have tested the ram, its fine, I've put in a hard drive with a good copy of windows, but that wouldnt boot neither, the cdrom drive is working, but it wont boot to it to load windows. I have gotten stuck as to what to do next... Any ideas? I'm getting desperate XXX
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#2
Fenor

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Is the CD-ROM drive even being detected in the BIOS?
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#3
queentracy

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Thanks for your reply... yes, it is being detected in the BIOS
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#4
Tyger

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When you pulled out the battery you likely reset the BIOS defaults. You will need to go into the BIOS setup and change the boot order to boot from the CD first. You might want to check the other settings while you are there. You can try to do a repair of the OS first. From your description it sounds like the Windows installation has been neglected, no deleting of unused files, no disk check and no defragmentation until it is almost too late to rescue the operating system. You might want to ask your friend if they were doing those on a regular basis. Also it might be a good idea to go to the hard drive maker's website and download and run a diagnostic floppy or CD.
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#5
queentracy

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Thanks Tyger, yes, I did reset the BIOS to default settings when removing the battery, but I couldnt get into the BIOS before that because of the password, so the boot order was changed after the BIOS reset. It didnt help. I swapped the hard drive with another hard drive but it wouldn't boot to that neither, so I doubt a hard drive diagnostic would help.

Any more ideas, guys n gals? I'm really desperate !!
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#6
Fenor

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I would check and make sure the CD-ROM drive is jumpered to MASTER. Many a times I've seen computers not boot from a windows cd when the drive was set to cable select (CS). If that still doesn't solve it, then continue below:

To rule out a bad CD, try booting from it on another computer. If it boots fine, then you are looking at either a bad CD drive, bad IDE cable or bad ide port on the motherboard. You can start to test this by changing the IDE cable used. Change the ide slot used, meaning set it as slave on the primary ide along with the hard drive (which is the master). Use a different CD-ROM drive and see if the computer boots from the CD when using that drive.

*EDIT* -- A last action, which SHOULD NOT be attempted by someone not totally comfortable with doing it, is updating the BIOS of the motherboard.

Edited by Fenor, 25 October 2007 - 10:19 AM.

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