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Start Up Problems Windows XP


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#1
Berocca

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PROBLEM
Acer Travelmate Laptop will not start

MACHINE DETAILS
Acer Travelmate (said to be 3 years old)

SOFTWARE INSTALLED
# Windows XP and Service Pack2
# Windows Office Professional

BACKGROUND
I bought a second hand Acer Travel Mate with Windows XP installed 2 days ago. I took a risk and bought it without the discs. It worked well and I have been using cable internet and playing music CDs without any problem. Today when I started to load a few Word small files it jammed while in Windows Explorer.

I did the Control Alt Delete. No response and then tried to turn it off. Nothing. Still jammed with the message displayed. The message that was displayed on the black screen I cannot remember but it eventually switched itself off after a few minutes.

Now on trying to restart it, it goes into a never ending loop as follows:

1. A black screen appears with a long message starting with:

"We apologize for the inconvenience but Windows did not start successfully. A new hardware or software change may have caused it. It then mentions the possibility of starting it in

# Safe Mode or
# Safe Mode with Network or
# Safe Mode with Command Prompt or
# Start Windows Normally

I tried all those modes but with no success. The situation that occurs then is:

2. After a few seconds it tries to start

3. The Windows XP logo blue screen appears and tries to start but stops and then-

4. A black screen appears and seems to go through a memory test. It is headed:

# BIOS V3.3 and below that

# Numbers changing quickly and beside that - KB Memory Good - at bottom of black screen it shows

# Bypass Memory Testing - press Esc key

5. It then tries to start again with the blue Windows XP logo page again appearing, but then goes thru stages 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 again and again until after a number of tries a black screen appears with:

# Insert system diskette and press key to reboot.

QUESTION
I do not have any discs. So have I done my money or is there some inexpensive way to fix the problem?

When I try to turn it off it comes up with a black screen with this message:

# BIOS V3.3
# 0253568 KB Memory Good

# IDE Primary Channel Master Drive Error
# Equipment Configuration Error


Press F2 to Enter Setup, F12 to enter Multi Boot Selection Menu
Press F2 to enter Setup Utility or F1 to continue

# ACRD5000-MIA-000016-RO1-AOB5-EM
Copyright © Acer Incorporated 1990-2001. All Rights Reserved.

PLEASE HELP.
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#2
Retired Tech

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Without discs the options are limited, you can borrow a same version (as installed, excluding additional service packs) XP CD to run repairs

You can boot the PC and keep tapping the delete key (possibly F2) until it enters set up, look for and load BIOS defaults, press F10 to save and exit, type Y to confirm then press enter

Then

Start the System Restore tool at a command prompt

1. Restart your computer, and keep tapping F8 during the initial start-up until you get options, select Safe Mode with a command prompt then press enter.

2. Log on to your computer with an administrator account or with an account that has administrator credentials.

3. Type the following command at a command prompt, and then press ENTER:


%systemroot%\system32\restore\rstrui.exe

4. Follow the instructions that appear on the screen to restore your computer to an earlier state.

Look for a recent system checkpoint to restore from

For additional information about the Safe mode with a command prompt, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:


http://support.micro....com/kb/315222/


A description of the Safe mode boot options in Windows XP
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#3
Berocca

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Thank you Keith for the prompt reply. Great service.

You said:

You can boot the PC and keep tapping the delete key (possibly F2) until it enters set up, look for and load BIOS defaults, press F10 to save and exit, type Y to confirm then press enter

Then

Start the System Restore tool at a command prompt

1. Restart your computer, and keep tapping F8 during the initial start-up until you get options, select Safe Mode with a command prompt then press enter.

Did that as instructed (that is loaded the BIOS defaults) but hitting F8 during start up did not bring up the Safe Mode; Just the page with this instruction:

# BIOS V3.3
# 0253568 KB Memory Good

# IDE Primary Channel Master Drive Error
# Equipment Configuration Error


Press F2 to Enter Setup, F12 to enter Multi Boot Selection Menu
Press F2 to enter Setup Utility or F1 to continue

# ACRD5000-MIA-000016-RO1-AOB5-EM
Copyright © Acer Incorporated 1990-2001. All Rights Reserved.

Looks like I might have to borrow some discs as you suggest.

I will advise further to let you know if I have any success.

Edited by Berocca, 18 December 2005 - 03:35 PM.

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#4
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Check if it loads now you have set BIOS Defaults
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#5
Berocca

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Nope. When I turn it on now all it does is bring up the black screen with the BIOS V3.3 page referred to above.
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#6
Fenor

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Since I was asked by Keith to help and take a look at this, I will give my two cents.

I suggest you update the BIOS. (We will need the model number of the TravelMate before we can help you with finding an updated BIOS). I would also suggest that you take out the hard drive and re-seed it. Also do the same with the memory sticks if there are any that are not built-in.

You said before that you could get to the Windows logo, but can you still now before you get the configuration error? If you can, then I suggest you download the Recovery Console from HERE and burn it on a CD and put it in your laptop's cd drive. When you get the message Press any key to boot from cd..., press a key and Windows Setup will start. At the first screen where you have to enter input, hit R to enter the Recovery Console. You will then hit 1 to log into your Windows Installation and then just hit Enter for the Adminstrator password since it's normally blank. Once you are at the C:\Windows prompt type chkdsk /p /r. This will do a very thorough check of your hard drive and the files contained on it and attempt to fix any that it finds that are corrupt. Once this is done, type Exit and your computer will reboot itself. Let us know how far you get this time.

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#7
mcpscomp

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Had this problem before after I played with mine. If it tell you IDE error then more then likely it is.
-Take your battery out
-Open the two small panels on the back take the HD and memories out
-Leave every thing out for about 5 minutes
-Put every thing back carefully the way it should be
Do this Igot my problem fixed. Hope this will work for you.
Good luck. :confused:
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#8
Berocca

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Thanks Fenor.

The Name and Model Number are:
Travel Mate 350 Series
Model No 2001

Reseeding Hard Drive
Have taken it out and replugged it in. I presume that is reseeding

Memory Sticks
I unscrewed and removed the cover, but was not comfortable about removing the stick without breaking anything so for the moment I have not done that as yet

Windows Logo
After turning on the Laptop the screen with the message "We apologize etc" comes up with the options of the 3 safe modes or starting normally. I wait and allow it to start normally, then up pops the blue Windows logo screen and it tries to start, but after a about 15 to 30 seconds it stops, some text quickly flashes which I cannot read, and the black screen with BIOS V3.3 with the memory test begins. Then into the loop again of "We apologize etc"

Recovery Console
As you suggested I will now download the Recovery Console and try to install it and let you know the result.

Many thanks.

P.S. mcpscomp. Thanks. Tried your suggestion but still no luck.
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#9
Berocca

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Fenor,

OK I now have downloaded the Recovery Console, burnt a CD, placed it in the CD drive of the laptop. It spins but no message to start it appears.

How do I now interrupt the Memory Test loop to get the prompt "Press any key to boot from CD"?
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#10
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Check the boot priority is set to CD ROM Drive then hard drive

Boot the PC and keep tapping F2 until it enters set up then change the boot priority, press F10 to save and exit, type Y to confirm, make sure the recovery CD is in the drive then press enter
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#11
Berocca

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Keith. Yes I have done that now. That is I have gone into the set up configuration and changed the order to:

1. CD-ROM
2. Hard Drive
3. Floppy disk

Saved the settings

Restarted the computer a few times but still no joy.

This is what happens when I start the computer:

1. A black screen with blinking cursor appears
2. I hear the CD spinning and trying to start
3. The page with "We apologize for the inconvenience etc offering the different safe modes" appears
4. 26 seconds later the Windows logo page appears then
5. The page with BIOS V3.3 Memory Testing starts
6. At no time do I see "press any key to boot from cd appears"
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#12
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Keep tapping enter as soon as you start to boot the PC with the recovery CD in the drive
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#13
Fenor

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Memory Sticks
I unscrewed and removed the cover, but was not comfortable about removing the stick without breaking anything so for the moment I have not done that as yet

Understandable about being leary when dealing with removing memory from a laptop, it's confusing if you have not done it before and it was very wise of you to not do anything about it until given further advice. You can go HERE and it shows how you take out and put back in memory sticks in a laptop, with pictures.

One thing I would suggest though, is that when you take it out, leave it out and then try and boot up the laptop and see if that is what is causing the problem. You might not be able to boot up the laptop at all if it doesn't have any other kind of onboard memory builty into it besides the external memory stick you just removed, but is worth a try to see if that is what is causing your hangup in the memory loop.

Fenor
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#14
Berocca

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Keith. Tried tapping the "enter" key when trying to start/boot whilst having the "recovery" cd installed. No luck. Same problem occurs

Fenor. Thanks. I read the link, then removed the memory carefully. Tried to restart/boot without the memory. No response. No screen nothing. Completely dead. Then reinstalled the memory and tried to start/boot. Same problem exists.

I have since contacted the guy who sold me the laptop and convinced him to hand over the Windows XP disc, Service Pack 2, and the Registration codes. Will be calling in to see him in about 9 hours.

Will then have a go at repair, by installing the System Disc when prompted. Is the system disc one of the Windows XP installation discs? Not the recovery disc we created?

Will let you know in about 12 hours of the result.

Thanks guys for all your help so far. It is a good learing experience. In my 11 years of computer use this is the first time I have had a boot up failure. Must have been lucky I suppose or is it just that laptops are more prone to failure?
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#15
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Use the XP CD to run the repair

You can use these to repair XP

XP Repair Install

Or here if you are unable to run XP Repair Install

Alternative XP Repair Install Method

Use Windows Installation CD to repair the current installation, from the list, which uses a slightly different method

Windows XP repair feature won't delete your data, installed programs, personal information, or settings. It just repairs the operating system

After running XP Repair you will need to install all Windows Updates

Microsoft Update
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