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Insufficient Memory to Initialize Windows


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#1
bez3bz

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Hello, My son has an Acer Extensa 5420. He was downloading "something" and ended up with a blank screen.Instead of telling me he got his younger brother and the two of them started "working" on the computer. From what they told me...they believe they reformated the hard drive and tried to install Windows XP. The computer came with Vista. They continued to get this error message " Insufficient memory to initialize windows. Quit one or more memory-resident programs or remove unnecessary utilities from your Config.sys and Autoexec.bat files, and restart your computer. Press any key to continue." If you wait your next screen says "It's now safe to turn off your computer". They then tried to install Windows 98...or so they tell me. Now I have no idea what they have really tried. What I can tell you is that when I turn on the computer it shows the Windows 98 screen then the error message I posted above..." Insufficient memory to initialize windows. Quit one or more memory-resident programs or remove unnecessary utilities from your Config.sys and Autoexec.bat files, and restart your computer. Press any key to continue." If you wait your next screen says "It's now safe to turn off your computer". If I wait the computer shuts itself off. :)

Please help me! On top of all of this, my son leaves tomorrow morning to work at a children's summer camp. He really needs his computer. If there is any way to this working before he leaves I would be forever grateful. I will check this site during the night in hopes someone reads this and can help me.

Thanks so much! :)
Kathy
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#2
FNP

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bez3bz-

Hi and welcome to Geeks to Go! :)

Let's start by checking the memory on your system. Follow this guide and post back with the results. :)
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#3
bez3bz

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I cannot get to my desk top on the Acer. When I turn on the computer it looks like it is going to open Windows 98 thenI get the error message and after a brief time the computer shuts itself off. I did download the zip file from the computer I am using to communicate with you but have tried and failed to get the Acer to see the storage devise I used to save the file.
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#4
FNP

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Right, we're not trying to get to the desktop just yet. We just want to make sure the memory (which I suspect at the point is faulty) is ok. To do that we're creating a bootable CD and booting from the hard drive.

Can you confirm that you:
  • Extracted the ZIP file
  • Downloaded and installed a program to burn ISO files
  • Burned the ISO file onto the CD using the ISO burning software
  • Changed the boot order in the broken computer so that the system is set to boot from the computer
If that's done correctly, you should be able to follow the rest of the steps in the MemTest guide.

Edited by FNP, 20 May 2010 - 12:39 AM.

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#5
bez3bz

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Oh, ok...I will do that now...thank you!
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#6
FNP

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No problem. Just another case where reading the directions all the way through is vital. :)

Edited by FNP, 20 May 2010 - 12:42 AM.

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#7
123Runner

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I am wondering if you kids somehow got multiple OS's installed also.

Check the memory as instructed.

Acer has a built in recovery partition.
It is Alt plus F10 at start up. This of course will only work if they did not reformat the entire drive.
If they blew away the recovery partition you will have to buy the recovery CD's from Acer or go the long way with a Vista OS cd and then find all the drivers.

123runner
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