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Both keyboard and safe mode don't work....


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#1
Sayz

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I was uninstalling some programs I don't use anymore today. I uninstalled one program (A trial of VMWare Workstation, if that helps) and it prompted me to restart my computer, which I did manually after taking care of a few things. On restart, Windows loaded normally and I got to the login screen, but my keyboard doesn't work anymore, so I can't enter my password.. I have tested several USB ports and that makes no difference. The keyboard itself is actually fine, as I can enter the BIOS and I am typing this post on a Linux boot cd. I thought I would be able to inspect the drivers for my keyboard in safe mode. However, to make matters worse, safe mode doesn't work. I can enter the boot menu, but when I select safe mode, the usual text scrolls down the screen, and then my computer restarts. I have to say, I really have no idea how to even approach this. I know that another keyboard might work, as would reinstalling Windows. However, I don't have another keyboard and I don't want to lose files right now. Does anyone have any ideas.

I'm using a Dell XPS 410 with its original keyboard and mouse. The computer is running XP Media Center Edition 2005 with the latest updates.
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#2
Tyger

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Borrow a PS/2 keyboard from someone, boot into Windows with it, in Device Manager remove the USB keyboard and the Human Interface Device Keyboard. Then shutdown the machine and boot it with your USB keyboard. It should rediscover the hardware and install the drivers.

If that doesn't work, using the PS/2 keyboard go to the computer maker's site and get the drivers for the USB keyboard, or if you bought the keyboard separately install them from the driver disk.
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#3
Sayz

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Ah, but see, there's the problem. I have a few PS/2 keyboards. However, Dell is a genius and didn't give me a PS/2 port to plug them into. I would see about borrowing a USB keyboard, but at this point I'm not sure if that would really make a difference. I'm pretty sure mine is plug and play, so I don't think it would change anything.
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#4
Tyger

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That certainly makes it interesting. You might try a PS/2 keyboard with a PS/2 to USB adapter, there might be enough difference that the machine would pick it up as new hardware and install it. Also, for goodness sake, go to the Dell website and see if they have any help on this issue. They have very good documentation so you may find something.
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#5
Ztruker

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Only choice I see is to use the built in Symantec restore to put the system back to it's factory state. This will lose all data so you need to back it up first. There are a couple ways to do this.
  • Boot Puppy Linux from a CD (link is to a post by Happyrck on how to do this).
  • Install your drive in another computer
  • Put the drive in an external USB 2.0 enclosure, connect it to another system
  • Connect it to a Universal IDE/SATA cable
The directions for using Symantec restore are in your Users Guide.

[attachment=20218:xps410.gif]

Depending on the age of the PC, you may need to install SP2 then all updates (or see if you can get SP3 instead of SP2, whole lot less updates to install then).

Not a fun thing to do but sometime necessary.

You also need to think about backup. Now is a great time to implement a good backup strategy that will protect you from a hardware or software failure in the future.

I'd recommend getting an external USB 2.0 drive enclosure, with fan and at least a 250GB hard drive (IDE). The you can buy Acronis True Image or Norton Ghost or again go the free route as I do and use DriveImage XML.

If you go the DIXML route then you will want to also get and build Ultimate Boot CD For Windows (UBCD4WIN),. It is a bootable CD that you create on your computer using your own copy of Windows XP. One of it's included tools is DIXML so in the event of a hard drive failure you just replace the drive, boot the UBCD4WIN CD and restore from your external USB drive.

Keep the backup current. I keep two full backups and replace the oldest. I do this usually once every two months unless I've made some significant changes to my system in which case I do it immediately.

I just switched from DIXML to Acronis 10 (hated Acronis 11) for my main computer, it is a great program.
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#6
Sayz

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Alright, well, here's an update. I went out and got a PS/2 to USB adapter, but no luck there. Chances are that Windows just falls back on the same driver, which I suspect has failed. Dell's website hasn't been much luck either.

Ztruker, I've already considered using the Symantec restore, and it is a valid solution, and one that I have a feeling I'm gonna end up doing, I'd like to try to fix this install first. I'm already running off an Ubuntu live cd, so I have read access to the C drive. Here's what I was thinking. Would it be possible to replace the driver in the Windows folder that controls the keyboard? I think it might be corrupt or something. Failing that, maybe a restore of just the system files would work? It would be a little messy, but at least it would keep data intact. If I could at least get access to the keyboard, I could work on getting safe mode running from there, since the lack of a safe mode concerns me.

Edited by Sayz, 26 April 2008 - 03:11 PM.

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#7
Ztruker

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Hmmmm, since you can get to the Boot Selection Screen, try Last known good configuration. That's very much like a System Restore.
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#8
Sayz

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Unfortunately, Last Known Good Configuration is the one where my keyboard doesn't work. Also, I'm not talking about a system restore, I'm talking about completely reinstalling the system files from the recovery disc while keeping the files intact.
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#9
Ztruker

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The built in Symantec restore that you get to at boot time does not support a Repair Install that leaves your data intact.

Are you saying you have a Recovery CD or a Windows XP CD you can use?
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#10
Sayz

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Yeah, I have a recovery CD that came with the computer.

Also, if it's any extra help, when booting, safe mode hangs on mop.sys and then reboots. From what I've read, it's very likely a coincidence, but I'm just throwing that out there.
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#11
Ztruker

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It will still be wise to backup your data before doing any kind of repair install. Things can go wrong. Doesn't happen often but it does happen. Great peace of mind if you know your data is safe first.

As for mup.sys, if it's displayed on the screen, that means it loaded successfully, so it's the last device driver that did load. I don't know if there should be others after it but I don't think so.
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