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#31
NOTEVER

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Thanks happyrock. I already visited the MS site and read about code errors but they're right over my head. I originally ran a chkdsk but can only do it by taking the drive out and connecting it to my desktop via a ide-usb cable as an external drive. Cannot get into recovery console either way
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#32
happyrock

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Thanks happyrock. I already visited the MS site and read about code errors but they're right over my head. I originally ran a chkdsk but can only do it by taking the drive out and connecting it to my desktop via a ide-usb cable as an external drive. Cannot get into recovery console either way

slave the drive to the working system and run CHKDSK /R
If the drive is recognized in My Computer and in Disk Management...
Right click on the drive in My Computer and choose Properties...
select TOOLS button.. select Error Checking...
choose to have both errors fixed and check for bad sectors...

another way is click on START...RUN and type in...chkdsk ? /r
where ? is the letter of the drive you want to check.
If you get a message saying the drive is in use, from either method...just reboot and it should schedule the chkdsk to run before starting Windows.
While chkdsk is running you will see a light blue window with a dark blue band at the top and bottom. or a black dos box ... Chkdsk will display the specific stage it is checking as well as the percentage of completion of the stage. You cannot do anything else on your computer while chkdsk is running. When chkdsk is finished, it will automatically reboot your computer.

NOTE this can take a long time to complete..it may even appear to hang or get stuck at a certain % for a couple of hours...then complete...it may even back up and go over the same area...this is normal...let it run...there are 5 stages
DO NOT TURN OFF YOUR COMPUTER WHILE RUNNING CHKDSK or you can have severe problems...
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#33
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Ran the chkdsk then put the drive back into the laptop.Tried installing XP via the USB then tried via an external floppy both resulted in the same problem the BSOD as before. Is there anyway of checking the motherboard as I don't know what I can do now to get this machine up and running again
Thanks
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#34
happyrock

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no way to test the mobo yourself...you could take it to a shop and have them test it for you
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#35
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Is that the only option now with all other avenues exhausted. Any final suggestions welcomed before I just bin this thing and get on with my life
Thanks to everyone for all their help
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#36
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Ok...going thru the whole thread again...you may only have a bad cd drive...if you are unwilling to replace it and are unable to install any os then its just a large paperweight at this point...
one last thing to try though...go here and get puppy linux...its a live cd...you will have to do this on your desktop and then once your at the puppy desktop you will copy it the a usb flash drive instructions here...then set the bios on the laptop to boot from usb and then plug in the flash drive and power it up...you should get to the linux desktop...if it won't the the laptop is officially junk..
NOTE...it says you only need a 128MB flash drive...use a 1GB drive instead...
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#37
makai

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I was finally able to attempt creating the USB XP install flashdrive, and found there is an error in both the Geeks Guide and PCTipBox tutorials. The line where they tell you to type in bootsect information is wrong...

Type in the following: ( bootsect /nt52 :R ) Replace R with the drive letter of your USB drive

I don't know if you caught this or not, but it should read...

Type in the following: ( bootsect /nt52 R: ) Replace R with the drive letter of your USB drive

They have the red items reversed. If you don't have them entered correctly, then the creation may not work. I didn't try to see what will happen if I left the error, so I can't confirm what will happen.

In any case, after correcting the error, I succeeded in creating the bootable flashdrive following the rest of the tutorial. I then tried to install XP on a blank hard drive, and chose the first option to see what would happen... which by the way was numbered "#2" and called GUI mode. I immediately got the same HAL error you saw, and judging from the error, it made sense since there is no Rootdrive/Sytem32 folder yet.

I then rebooted (ctrl+alt+del), specified the flashdrive to boot from, and chose the second option (curiously numbered #1), Text mode, and windows began installing.

After the first auto-restart of the install, I again got a HAL error upon bootup, so I rebooted (ctrl+alt+del), specified the flashdrive and this time selected GUI mode, which incidentally has "Continue Setup" listed in the text, and windows continued with the installation.

Eventually, I was asked for the license information and after supplying it, XP continued with the install and auto-restarted again. And, again, I got the Hal error and had to restart, specify the flashdrive, and again chose GUI mode to continue setup.

Finally, XP installed fully and I was able to boot the computer via the new installation off the hard drive.

So... this thing works, but not without caveats...

1) You need to set bios to boot from the flashdrive first, or constantly specify the flashdrive via the boot device menu (F12 on the Thinkpad laptop I'm using... may be different on yours).
2) For the first boot off the flashdrive, you need to specify "Text" mode (this is stated in the tutorial, but thought I would mention it here for relevancy)
3) For any auto-reboots, you need to specify the flashdrive and select GUI mode so XP will continue to install
4) After XP is fully installed, the boot.ini file actually contains the flashdrive as a bootable device, so Windows will ask what to boot from... the flashdrive, or the hard drive. You need to choose the hard drive. Eventually you can edit the boot.ini if you don't want to have to flashdrive included in normal bootup.

In any case, I wanted to report what I found out about this process. I don't know if you discovered the error, and if you did, but were still unsuccessful after creating a valid flashdrive, then I'm still not sure what direction to take. I hate thinking it's the motherboard, but it's possible.
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#38
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Thanks Makai I might give it another go but I'm sure I spotted the error and it made no difference. I'm trying to follow happyrock and his puppy linux sugestion. Downloaded the iso and then burnt it to cd changed BIOS to boot from cd first but my desktop still boots straight into XP and bypasses (although reads ) the cd. What am I doing wrong now? Should I have extracted the files first?

As for the cd rom on the laptop I didn't think that was an issue in getting it back running again. I don't know how to change it as its actually part of the laptop its not one you can just withdraw the drive bay by unlocking it. Do I just pull out the tray when its open ?

Thanks again
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#39
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you have to burn the cd as a image...
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 by clicking on BurnCDCC.exe
2. Browse to the ISO file you want to burn on cd/dvd ....in this case its puppyxxx.iso...the xxx stands for what ever version you downloaded
3. Select the ISO file
4. click on Start..
if after you get it burned properly and the laptop still won't boot to puppy...take the cd back to the desktop and boot into puppy and make make a bootable usb flash drive and set the laptop to boot from the usb drive first...fire up the laptop and see if it will boot into puppy...
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#40
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Can things get any worse. Dowloaded burncdcc as instructed now I'm getting a power calibration error on my desktop cd/dvd burner so I can't even burn it. Its a NEC ND-2500A
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#41
happyrock

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its not the end of the world...get someone else to burn it for you...
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#42
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Followed instructions and the USB worked fine on my desktop loading up PUPPY. Booted up the laptop from the usb and the screen showed
Loading drivers to access disk drives.Then Searching for Puppy files in computer disk drives... pup-430.sfs not found. Dropping out to initial-ramdisk console...
/bin/sh: can't access tty; job control turned off.
#
Attempted this a number of times in different usb ports to no avail
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#43
makai

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I recently created a puppylinux bootable USB flashdrive and it was able to boot my Thinkpad without a hard drive. Since puppy loads to ram, maybe your ram is the problem. If you have more than one stick of ram, pull one out and try again. If it fails, swap modules and/or ram slots and try again.
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#44
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I recently created a puppylinux bootable USB flashdrive and it was able to boot my Thinkpad without a hard drive. Since puppy loads to ram, maybe your ram is the problem. If you have one more than one stick of ram, pull one out and try again. If it fails, swap modules and/or ram slots and try again.

:)
and if that doesn't work its probably something on the mobo and if thats the case... its not worth fixing...
you could try to sell it for parts to someone with the same model...
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#45
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Only one stick of RAM took it out and reseated in its original slot then in the spare slot but same problem.
Oh well its a new machine then. Can I just say many thanks for all your help happyrock and makai its been an education. I really appreciate the time and patience you've shown in your responses
Cheers
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