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Time to reinstall Windows XP?


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#1
xzmattzx

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My parents want me to take a look at a computer that has a bunch of problems. I've used it on occasion, and here are the problems that I've encountered in the last couple of months, in this order:

Couple months ago:
~Computer started running slower
~Computer occasionally shut down (Getting too hot? Running too many programs?)
~No one bothered to update Norton Anti-Virus

Within last two weeks, in this order:
~Computer running even slower
~CPU makes clunking noise before shutting itself down
~Computer shuts itself down more often (sometimes just watching a video on Youtube will cause it to shut down
~Some photographs are corrupted
~Screen is squeezed into smaller space on monitor (Have an old monitor lying around somewhere, planning on testing to see if monitor or CPU is problem)

Should I reinstall Windows and start over? Or, is this situation still solveable? Would I be able to fix it myself (I'm not the greatest computer guy), os should I take the CPU into a computer shop and have them take care of it?
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#2
Neil Jones

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The slowness may be being caused by one of two things: Heavy virii infection (which isn't uncommon if the system's being protected by an out-of-date anti-virus of any kind) or a hard drive on the way out. Cut-outs may be being caused by an issue with the power supply.
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#3
gclipse02

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You should try using SpeedFan to check whether your internal fans are working properly and if your internal temps are too high. Also, if you can find out the manufacturer of your hard drive, you can download a utility from their website to test it to see if its failing or not.
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#4
happyrock

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go here and see if you can find your hard drive noise...
if it were me, I would image the drive using HDclone onto a new drive if it would hold together long enough...
the free edition works great but slow...

Edited by happyrock, 09 December 2008 - 07:38 AM.

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#5
xzmattzx

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I'll check the hard drive first. Where do I find the manufacturer's name and the type of hard drive?
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#6
happyrock

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go here and get HD tune to see what hard drive/s are installed...would be good to test the drive using their tools too...
did you take Neil Jones advice and scan for malware...if so what programs did you run and what did it/they find
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#7
xzmattzx

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Haven't checked for Malware yet. I'm kind of worried that the computer will shut down as the search is going, since this thing can't handle too much at once anymore.

I'm looking at some of the stuff that we can run. Is ATF Cleaner alright?

Edited by xzmattzx, 10 December 2008 - 02:35 PM.

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#8
happyrock

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run them in safe mode...
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#9
xzmattzx

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I haven't had a chance to get over there and take a look at the computer and check for malware and whatnot. Apparently it has gotten worse. I'm told that now the computer usually won't even boot up anymore. It gives a message along the lines of "ERROR OCCURRED, __?__ failed. Service computer immediately. [more stuff]".

My main concern is just getting my parents' pictures onto an external hard drive, and any other stuff. If the computer is done, or everything needs to be reinstalled at the least, that is fine, as long as sentimental stuff like the pictures can be saved.
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#10
happyrock

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to save the data...
you can remove the drive and slave it to a working system to get your data...

or you can try puppy linux...
get puppy linux...Get puppy-2.16-seamonkey-fulldrivers.iso download it and burn it to cd
..
if you don't have a burning program that will burn .ISO files go here and get burncdcc ..a small FAST no frills iso burning program...

NOTE...do not put a blank cd in until burncdcc opens the tray for you
1. Start BurnCDCC
2. Browse to the ISO file you want to burn on cd/dvd ....in this case its puppy-2.16-seamonkey-fulldrivers.iso
3. Select the ISO file
4. click on Start

make sure in the bios the cd drive is the first boot device....

put the cd in the cd drive..boot your computer....puppy will boot and run totally in ram...if your hardware is is good working order you will know...
after you get it running and your at the desktop...you take the puppy linux cd out and then you can use the burner to copy all your data to cd/dvds
you can also use it to backup your data to a external usb harddrive or flash drive ..just have it hooked to the computer when you boot up with puppy...
==========================
quick guide for saving data...music..files on a system that will not boot using puppy Linux..


after you get to puppy desktop..
click on the drives icon...looks like a flash drive...top row..it will list all the drives connected to your computer...

click on the red icon for the drive you want to mount...in this case its a flash drive ...puppy will
mount the drive..the drive icon turns green when its mounted...

minimize the drives mounter window..you will need it again in a few minutes..

drag the right edge of it sideways to shrink it to a narrower size...about half the width of the screen...then drag the window to the right edge of the screen...

now click on the icon that looks like a filing cabinet (kind of yellow) on the main drive...it should
already be green..
you will see a list of all the folders on the main drive Usually your C: drive..shrink that window to
about half the width of the screen...drag that window to the left side of the screen...
at this point you should have 2 windows open on your desktop..the flash drive on the right side..
go back to the folders on the C: drive...click on the documents and settings folder...then your user
name or all users..find the folders that has your data..
drag and drop the folder with the data you want to make copies of to the flash drive window...

your options are to move ..copy ect...JUST COPY..if its to big you will have to open the folder and
drag and drop individual files until the flash drive is full...(I have a 120 GB external USB drive for
big data recovery jobs and a 4 GB flash drive for the smaller jobs)..after you get the files copied to
the flash drive...
Click on the drives mounter you minimized earlier
UNMOUNT THE FLASH DRIVE by clicking on the green icon..you will once in awhile get error messages when
unmounting the drive..ignore them..when the flash drive icon turns red again its safe to remove the
flash drive..trot on over (stroll if you want to look cool) to another computer and plug in the flash

drive and copy all the data files ( I drag and drop) to the other computer..
make sure the other computer can read them...

now delete the data on the flash drive...take it back to the misbehaving computer and plug it in

again..click on the drives icon again and repeat until you have all your data transferred to the working
system..
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#11
xzmattzx

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Thanks, I'm going to print this out and take care of that when I get a chance.

In other news, I found out that there is yet another problem with the computer. Now, the start button doesn't work. The wiring inside the computer has disconnected from the button on the outside. This thing really is a piece of crap.
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