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XP doesn't boot: Black screen, blinking underscore


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#1
Doddi

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Desktop "A": Athlon on MSI KT3 Ultra2; RAM 2x256MB; HDD IBM 40GB; Video card ATI Radeon 7000 64MB; OS Windows XP home edition; 8 years old.

Desktop "B": Pentium IV on P5S02-VM; RAM 1x1024MB; HDD Samsung 160GB; Video card GeForce 8400GS 512MB; OS Windows XP home edition; 2 years old.

Hello everyone!
The issue is on desktop A: the BIOS detects everything right but as it tries to boot from the HD, a black screen with blinking cursor on the top left corner shows up and nothing happens.
I can boot from the original XP CD but after the first checks on the HW it goes on the same black screen, right before loading the screen in which you choose whether to install or restore windows; I can't even boot the safe mode by pushing F8.
Now things get weird:
-by connecting HD "A" into desktop "B", the OS is correctly loaded and everything works just fine, so I guess it is not a SW issue.
-by connecting HD "B" into dsktop "A"...the OS is correctly loaded and everything works just fine, so I guess it is not a HW issue.

I have the feeling that something's wrong with deaskop A video drivers: it gets stuck right when the video card should kick in and besides, during the "crossed tests" everything is ok just using the basic VGA; for this I have uninstalled ALL ATI drivers and programs while logged in through pc B, but it still doesn't boot using pc A.
It doesn't make any sense to me (I'm not considering the possibility that desktop A and HD A are asking for a divorce)...any tip?

Here's what I've already tried:
unplugged and plugged back in everything,replaced the IDE flat with a brand new one, BIOS reset through its jumper, booting the safe mode by ticking it in the msconfig console while using PC B (doesn't work either), all possible combinations of the two RAM sticks into the three slots, running some bootable diagnostic utilities for HD and RAM (no errors nor warnings were detected), several punches on the case.

Thank you in advantage!
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#2
Alzeimer

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Desktop "A": Athlon on MSI KT3 Ultra2; RAM 2x256MB; HDD IBM 40GB; Video card ATI Radeon 7000 64MB; OS Windows XP home edition; 8 years old.

Desktop "B": Pentium IV on P5S02-VM; RAM 1x1024MB; HDD Samsung 160GB; Video card GeForce 8400GS 512MB; OS Windows XP home edition; 2 years old.

Now things get weird:
-by connecting HD "A" into desktop "B", the OS is correctly loaded and everything works just fine, so I guess it is not a SW issue.
-by connecting HD "B" into dsktop "A"...the OS is correctly loaded and everything works just fine, so I guess it is not a HW issue.


I do not understand how you can boot the hard drives on different motherboards, unless you mean they were put as slaves and not as the boot drive because if it is not the original motherboard no os will not boot on another motherboard with different specs and hardware.

Edited by Alzeimer, 13 January 2011 - 06:40 PM.

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#3
Doddi

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The machine actually boots the OS but, since it detects strong HW differences, it asks you to repeat the XP activation process whithin 3 days.
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#4
Doddi

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News: I am now sure that it isn't a video card issue: I happened to find another AGP card and even using this one it gives exactly the same problem.
I downloaded the rc.iso from this website in order to give a shot to the restore panel: it loads correctly from CD, it does the first checks on the HW but it frezes at the "setup is now loading windows" (or something).
I don't know if it means something, but as I boot the HD A on PC B it automaticly opens up two wordpad documents called simply "desktop" with the following lines:

[.ShellClassInfo]
LocalizedResourceName=@%Systemroot%\system32\shell32.dll,-21787

Edited by Doddi, 15 January 2011 - 08:51 AM.

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