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error:checking file system on c: the volume is dirty

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by nhl2b, Aug 15, 2009.

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  1. nhl2b

    nhl2b Thread Starter

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    I have a Dell dimension 8400 running XP. Error on startup reads:

    checking file system on C:
    The type of the file system is NTFS
    The volume is dirty

    CHKDSK goes through all 3 stages and completes them. The last thing it says is 'Usn Journal verification completed'. But nothing else will respond. I have pulled the plug and started in safe mode, same thing happens or it will run a bunch of dos commands and stop with no result.

    I have read lots of other threads but I can't find the same exact problem. I can't get to a dos prompt (i think) to type in some of the commands I read about.

    I would love to just get it so I can backup 1 more time so if I have to replace the hard drive I am current.

    thank you
     
  2. DaveBurnett

    DaveBurnett Account Closed

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    You should boot to a recovery console from the install CD and try
    CHKDSK /R which is the most thorough of the options and does a surface check so will take a while.
     
  3. nhl2b

    nhl2b Thread Starter

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    thanks for the reply.
    Do you mean the resource cd or the windows reinstallation cd? I put the resource cd in the drive and restated the computer, but I just go through the same thing I described before. Am I not booting from the cd correctly?

    Thanks
     
  4. DaveBurnett

    DaveBurnett Account Closed

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    Have you got or access to a proper XP Install CD?? That is the one you need. (not the resource one - that is just drivers etc.)
    You may need to go into the BIOS and change the Boot sequence so that it boots from the CD first.
     
  5. nhl2b

    nhl2b Thread Starter

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    I do have the xp install cd. I have it in the drive and it won't boot up with the cd. Is there a option I should use when I hit f8 to boot with the disk? If not, how do i get to the bios and change the boot sequence?
     
  6. DaveBurnett

    DaveBurnett Account Closed

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    Does your machine not display a quick message on boot (during post) that tells you which key to press to enter BIOS??
    I think it is F2. You might like to try F12 first as some Dells allow a temporary override.
     
  7. nhl2b

    nhl2b Thread Starter

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    It looks like f2 got me there. I am looking at the 'boot sequence'.
    1. onboard or usb floppy drive - (not present)
    2. onboard sata hard drive
    3. onboard ide hard drive - (not present)
    4. onboard or usb cd rom drive
    5. usb device (not present)

    i figured out how to change the order so it boots from sata hard drive first, but it still is going back to 'checking files system on c'

    I'm sorry if I am asking too much, i am pretty good with minor computer repairs, but it seems that this is the toughest one I have had to deal with.
     
  8. nhl2b

    nhl2b Thread Starter

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    my bad on last message. I got it so I was able to boot from cd. I am at the 'windows xp home edition setup'
    welcome to setup
    1. to set up windows xp now press enter
    2.to repair a windows xp installation using recovery console, press r
    3. to quit setup without installing windows xp press 3

    Is this where i should be? if so which option do i want.

    Thanks
     
  9. DaveBurnett

    DaveBurnett Account Closed

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    You want the sequence to be:
    1. onboard or USB CD Rom drive
    2. oboard sata hard drive

    It should then boot and (with the install CD) say Press any key to boot from CD.
    You then need to work your way to the recovery console ( good old DOS type prompt)
     
  10. srhoades

    srhoades

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    You need to tell it to boot from the CDROM first if you want to boot from the Windows CD. Then choose R at the menu and do a chkdsk /r
     
  11. nhl2b

    nhl2b Thread Starter

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    OK getting close I think.
    I am in the 'windows recovery console'
    I have a dos screen but I am not able to type more than 1 character at the following prompt:

    which windows installation would you like to log onto
    to cancel, press enter)?

    after the ? it will only let me type 1 character.

    what do you suggest?

    at this point, i am still trying to just get windows started so i can backup if my drive is failing. i do NOTwant to wipe the drive clean and reinstall xp yet (or at all if possible)

    thank you both
     
  12. DaveBurnett

    DaveBurnett Account Closed

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    It should have shown you a numbered list of Windows installations, hopefully in your case just one.
    So you type the number corresponding to the one you want to check. (1 ????)
    It may then ask you for an Administrator password. If you don't know it, just try pressing enter.
     
  13. nhl2b

    nhl2b Thread Starter

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    Got the chkdsk /r to start. It has been running for almost 2 hrs and seems stuck at 72% completed. From what I have been reading it does take a long time to finish, I just hope it has not frozen as there does not seem to be any movement from the hard drive. It is a 320g hd.
     
  14. DaveBurnett

    DaveBurnett Account Closed

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    It can take a long time, and if it does find bad sectors it retries them many times to try to recover the data.
     
  15. nhl2b

    nhl2b Thread Starter

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    OK, thanks for the heads up. Are there any other fixes I can try if this doesn't work?
     
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