I think my PC has had it

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theMoody

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Sep 16, 2008
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OK, this is long so please stay with me.

About 2 nights ago I was working on my music in Reason. I was making a bassline and all of a sudden Reason Errored, I cant remember the error but when I clicked OK I had the blue screen. I recognised it as a memory error so just restarted. It got to the main desktop, would try loading my apps for a few minutes and came up with the blue screen again. After several attempts with similar outcome, I decided to reinstall XP with the Master DVD.

I first tried a general Factory Reinstall and it went well. Reformatted and loaded the settings fine, asked me to remove the Master DVD, and press any key to restart, where it would usually install the default settings and apps, the same as every other time I have done it.

But this time is different. You see, when it restarts itself the first time, usually it will install stuff and restart continuously for about a half hour. Only now the screen is stuck in 800x600 with the Start menu permanently open and I cannot move the mouse or use the keyboard. In fact, no USB plug ins seem to work at all, but I can insert a software disc and the default menu for the said disc will open as normal but I can't do anything. Now I know that the USBs work because for a brief moment before it restarts itself after install, I can wiggle the mouse all over the screen.

I've tried everything to my knowledge, removing and reinserting the RAM, the BIOS battery, completely removing the graphics and sound cards to see if they're affecting it, removing the CD drive and booting without it; nothing.

I've tried all of the tools on the Master DVD, ScanCheck, Format Hard Drive, and reinstalled with each option and still no change.

Please help, the PC is only 4 years old but I know it's something I've never seen or heard of before so I am desperate.

Thank you for your time and I hope someone here has a solution.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2008
Messages
66
I would try reformatting your HDD again using the surface check option and then try reinstalling. The failure you experienced might have been a HDD failure and the surface may have been damaged. The surface check/repair may allow you to overcome the bad sectors--if that is the problem.

I also would get a self-contained boot disk which has a mini version of Windows or Linux on it and see whether you can boot the system (into memory). That way you can get a lot of information as to what works and what does not.
 

theMoody

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Messages
6
I've performed a Surface Check which is included in the Master disc and it came up with no errors. Where can I obtain a self-contained boot disk or can I make my own? My tower doesn't have an A: drive so it needs to be a CD.

Many Thanks.

If there is any information or pictures/video I can supply that will help you in finding the solution, please let me know how to get it for you and I will happily do it.

Edit: I have taken a photo of my most recent BSoD:

http://img216.imageshack.us/my.php?image=dsc02183rb6.jpg
 
Joined
May 20, 2005
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2,548
Hello,

The most poular consensus on this error is faulty RAM. So ...

First thing I would do is test your RAM. You can do this with memtest, available here:
http://www.memtest.org/

To burn a CD, download 'Download - Pre-compiled Bootable iso'.

For the CD you need to know how to burn an .iso file, as you don't just copy the file to a CD.

The CD is bootable. Insert the CD and restart the computer.

If you have more than one stick of RAM, test each independently - remove all but one. Rinse and Repeat.
 

theMoody

Thread Starter
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Sep 16, 2008
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6
I wasted 2 CD's burning the ISO to disc and neither were bootable, just opened the CD with the raw ISO file there. X( GRRRRR
 
Joined
May 20, 2005
Messages
2,548
For the CD you need to know how to burn an .iso file, as you don't just copy the file to a CD.
I hope this isn't what you're doing. You need an image burning utility. If you don't have one, either separate or within your CD/DVD burning program, you can use this freebie:

http://www.imgburn.com/index.php?act=download
Just click one of the Mirror links.
Double-click on the downloaded file to install.
 

theMoody

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Messages
6
I've ran the CD for 4 and a half hours and I'm not sure what kind of info I was looking for so I shutdown. :/
 
Joined
May 20, 2005
Messages
2,548
You would be running one stick of RAM at a time. If you have more than one, remove to leave just one, then run the test.
On the screen, you will see your CPU type and your chipset type on the top left.
The program run a series of 9 tests on the stick of RAM. A complete run of the 9 tests is one Pass.
The progress is shown at the top right: total Pass progress, and the progress of the currently running test. Some tests take longer than others. I ran a test on a single stick of 1 GB of RAM and one Pass of 9 tests took about an hour. Different hardware will take more or less time.
After a Pass is completed, the program starts all over again automatically. For a thorough test it can be left running for several Passes. Some folks let it 2 or 3 hours or even overnight.

You're looking for Errors. They are reported in the bottom horizontal line, next to Pass.
Errors indicate failures/faults the RAM card.

No one is guaranteeing that your RAM is at fault. It's just a test to be sure. I realize it's a pain in the wazoo and is time-consuming.
 

theMoody

Thread Starter
Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Messages
6
OK, thanks, I will follow those instructions tomorrow. If it comes up error less, then either there is a completely unknown error responsible, or the only other thing it could be is that the motherboard has finally packed up. Or at least the RAM slots are broken.
 
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