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Is my older Dell XP Pro dead?


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#1
silvermine

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My old Dell laptop is very ill. :)

After booting it will only display the background pic for many minutes. Cannot bring anything else up.

I cannot do any scans for viruses or malware now. Did those quite recently though, they were ok.

I did a system restore which said I needed more virtual memory and it fixed that, supposedly.

I attempted to do a repair per your pinned instructions. I encountered an error message: viaide.sys corrupted. Unable to continue.

Also, BTW, to get the machine to boot from the CD I had to disable the other choices in the BIOS setup. Just bringing the CD choice to the top did not work. It still booted from the HD. (Don't know if that's relevant.)

After the repair attempt I did a defrag in safe mode (which took at least an hour) and it was unable to defrag the files from the failed repair.

Where do I start from here to see if it is salvageable? Or have I completely screwed things up?
Thanks.
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#2
Broni

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I'd, most likely, backup all data and go for clean installation.
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#3
silvermine

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I'd, most likely, backup all data and go for clean installation.

I don't seem to be able to bring up the files.
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#4
Broni

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Slave the drive in another working computer: http://articles.tech...11-5160538.html
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#5
silvermine

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Slave the drive in another working computer: http://articles.tech...11-5160538.html

I do not have a desktop working, just a Mac laptop.
Those instructions may be too complicated for this little ole grandma....
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#6
123Runner

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Are you able to still get in to safe mode?
If so you can back up most of your data from there.

What is the model of the Dell?
If at all possible can you get the service tag? It is on the bottom.

There is most likely a recovery partition on the drive (depending on age).
We might be able to do a non destructive recovery of the OS.
But we need to try and save your data (if you want to) before we do anything.
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#7
Broni

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Also, you may ask around. You may have a neighbor, a friend, or a family member, who has a PC and knows little bit more about computers...
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#8
silvermine

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Thank you for your answers.
I managed to save the important data from the PC. I was a backup to my main machine, a Mac, so it didn't have a lot of essential files on it.
It is a Inspiron 600m.
The service tag is CHY1X61.
If we can save the existing data, great. If not I am willing to do a reinstall.
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#9
silvermine

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A new problem today. Avast antivirus will not turn on. A "PhysX Properties" box opens and says
"No AGEIA PhysX Processor installed."
I was hoping to uninstall and reinstall but the add or remove programs will not even work. Same box appears.
edit:
In my searches it appears to be related to the problem mentioned in #1, - viaide.sys corrupted

Edited by silvermine, 08 August 2010 - 03:38 PM.

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#10
Broni

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IF your Dell has recovery partition....
Press F10 key at the Dell's logo and you should enter recovery process.
You should see two options: non-destructive recovery (this is what you want) and destructive recovery.

If that doesn't work, you'll have to call Dell to order recovery CD.
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#11
silvermine

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IF your Dell has recovery partition....
Press F10 key at the Dell's logo and you should enter recovery process.
You should see two options: non-destructive recovery (this is what you want) and destructive recovery.

If that doesn't work, you'll have to call Dell to order recovery CD.


At F10 I get 2 choices:

XP Pro or Recovery console

also press F8 - advanced options -- NA

Is ordering CD worth it? or just do a reinstall?

Edited by silvermine, 08 August 2010 - 05:40 PM.

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#12
Broni

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At F10, see what happens, when you press "XP Pro"

Is ordering CD worth it? or just do a reinstall?

You have to reinstall, using something.
Usually, you can get recovery CD rather cheap. 20 bucks?
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#13
silvermine

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At XP Pro it does a standard boot. I'm not willing to spend even $20 on a maybe.
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#14
Broni

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It doesn't look like your computer has recovery partition then.
Other, than getting recovery CD, I don't see any other solution.
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#15
silvermine

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It doesn't look like your computer has recovery partition then.
Other, than getting recovery CD, I don't see any other solution.


Thanks, I'll give it a try.

BTW - are you allowed to give me some ideas about cheap or used or re-manufactured computer ideas?
I will still want a backup if this reinstall fails.

Thanks a lot!
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