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Windows won't boot/ invalid partition table


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#1
endersen

endersen

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Hi everyone,
first of all, English isn't my native language so I may make some mistakes, sorry...


I have a dell inspiron 1525 laptop, working on XP, and a problem that came up when I switched the laptop on. It was working 20 mn before.

the error was: invalid partition table

I tried to watch around the web for similar problems
As some people advice to run Partition Table Doctor, I did, found an error and it fixed it (or at least it said so).

Then, when I boot the computer, the error is gone, but I still cannot access to windows: it keeps on going to the dell diagnostics service.
I checked thoroughlly hard disk drive, with no error. Still no boot possible!
I have some very very important data on this HDD, does someone has an idea about what my problem could be, and then how to save data / launch windows ?

Ask for more information if needed,
Thanks

edit: cannot repair existing windows, for some reason the OS is named as unknown, I am trying now to install windows on another partition that I can lose...

Edited by endersen, 31 March 2010 - 05:47 AM.

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#2
Macboatmaster

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Your English is very good.
I would not have advised you to run Partition Table Doctor on a Dell or any other OEM computer.
Either the MBR - Master Boot Record has been corrupted OR possibly the hard drive is failing.
You mention that it now goes to the Dell Diagnostics screen.
Have you run the Dell Diagnostics.
If not I suggest you do so.
Here is the User manual for your Inspiron 1525

http://www.notebook-.....Dell 1525.pdf
Please make a note of any error messages.
This can occur when the computer is trying to boot from the wrong partition on the drive, ie: a partition that does not have the Operating System., but UNLESS you have changed the boot priority in Setup, that is unlikely to be the cause.
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#3
Macboatmaster

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Just re-read your post, what was it doing when it was working 20 minutes before.
Have you downloaded any program just before, the fault.
Particularly any registry scan, booster, cleaner etc.
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#4
endersen

endersen

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Hi,
thanks for reading my request,

20 minutes before, the weird fact is I didn't do anything special, any major modification of the system, nor download, etc. I was just working using different softwares like illustrator, rhinoceros 3d...

I noticed that it was very hot, that's why I shut it down.

Then, I have to say I finally found a good solution to keep my data, by creating a new partition on HDD unused space, installing a windows xp os on it, and I was then able to access my data, which I copied on external hard drive.
So my huge problem is kind of solved: saving data.

However, I'd be intezrested to understand what happened, could it be the heat?
Although if it was hardware problem, it wouldn't have worked with reinstallation of XP...
Or should I still think about buying a new harddrive?

Kind regards
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#5
Macboatmaster

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There are a few ways of establishing this - if the laptop Processor is running to hot.
Firstly I take it the laptop was on a hard flat surface.
Many have been damaged by running them whilst they are lying on soft furniture or for instance on a bed. The laptop I mean, not the operator.
You can either download this (link below) and run it, after the laptop has been on for sometime OR you can enter setup and have a look at system monitor, where running temperatures for the CPU and hard drive will be provided.
You will find the instructions in the manual I posted before.
A NOTE OF CAUTION - DO NOT alter anything in setup. JUST have a look and exit.
http://www.cpuid.com/pcwizard.php
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#6
endersen

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I am doing like you said with PC Wizard,
computer is on for two hours now.

It says:
Hard Disk TOSHIBA MK1252GSX (Assembly) : 37 °C
Intel Core 2 Duo Mobile (Core 1) : 54 °C
Intel Core 2 Duo Mobile (Core 2) : 54 °C

Which does not seem to be really warm...

but actually I am screwing the test since I use now an additional cooling device;
I would like to try to keep my PC working as long as possible :)

Edited by endersen, 03 April 2010 - 08:46 AM.

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#7
Macboatmaster

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http://www.computerh...es/ch000687.htm

Not right up to date, but a rough idea.
Certainly nothing is too warm there.

My advice at this time is WHEN IT GOES TO DELL DIAGNOSTICS, run them BUT BE CAREFUL ONE of the options is a full critical restore, which will delete ALL YOUR data, file etc. and restore to how it was when DELL shipped it.
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#8
endersen

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Hello,
I made the full restore of the system. :)
who knows, maybe I did actually download something without remembering.

Regarding hardware, I might still have a problem, but for that I will ask a computing technician in my school, because this is really weird and I have to show somebody.
On bottom left corner of my screen is now a small (translucent-)black zone, which is literally burning hot when I put my finger on it :/

I don't know whether this topic should be considered as solved or not;
to me it is, even if the cause is not determined 100%.
Thanks Macboatmaster for your support.
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#9
KeshTan

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Hello there,

This is a known problem reported by many Dell laptop users.This is caused when you push the Dell media direct button by mistake for booting up.Press the button again ,it might help! I had this issue and it worked for me after pressing the media direct button again to start the computer.

See this link for more info:

http://www.vistax64....tion-table.html
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#10
endersen

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Hello KeshTan,
so I might have reinstalled everything while I could have just pressed a button :)
However thank you for the tip, maybe I'll need it an other time.
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#11
Lamott

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Hello KeshTan - Unbelievable ! I had same issue awhile ago - pressed the Dell media direct button; then laptop (Dell Vostro 1500 running Windows XP; not VISTA) wouldn't boot - invalid partition error .

I fixed it then (but forgot how - restarted with windows boot cd or something) -
but pressing the dell media direct button (after pressing power off button )
WORKED !!! thanks for saving me the time ....
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