Is My hard Drive Toast?

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Vore

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My pointer started to jump around a bit and when I typed something the curser would arbitrarily move to a different line and type over what I had previously typed. Wierd, but I thought there was a problem with the software and I was going to reinstall it.

When I shut down the computer it did not turn off, just a dark screen. I have a removable Omega drive in one of the bays (it was always quirky) and I thought that might have been the cause. I rebooted ejected the zip disk but I had to initiate another hard shut down.

When I started up the computer again I got a blue screen and an error message that reads "cannot find or load reg. file KRNL386.EXE. Pathway not found, system halted".

Heres what I've done so far.
1. I did a DIR on my hard drive and all the files are there.
2. I did a scandisk/ all /surface and found 18 bad clusters
3. It found 1 file with a long file name that could not be repaired. It
suggested I do another scan. I did 5 scans in all but each one would
not repair that one long file name.
4. I tried to start in safe mode...I can't!
5. I tried to install Windows Me again, I get the setup screen after booting
from my startup disk it starts to check installed items but then I get an
error message that reads "Cannot continue an existing version of the OS
has been installed and I need to upgrade to Windows Me, second
edition"?????

Ive tried for 3 days now searching web sites including Microsoft but none of them addressed my specific problem or told me how exactly I can reinstall that KRNL386.EXE file. I thought I would exhaust all avenues of information before I asked you nice people for help.

Dell Insprion 8000 Laptop
Windows Me
Pentium 3, 800 M/hz, 256 ram
10 gig hard drive
 
Joined
Aug 1, 2003
Messages
51,988
18 bad clusters does not bode well. Try another scan. If there are more, your drive is dying fast and the more you use it, the worse it will get. Better think about getting a new one and transferring your data.
 

Vore

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 22, 2004
Messages
40
Hi Elvandil, thanks for the response.
Yeah I know 18 bad clusters kind of freaked me out as well. I did 5 scans and the scans come up clean now but it was not able to correct that one long file name its an "invalid" file name by the way.

I have tons of work files on that computer icluding presentations and personel photo's etc. How can I transfer files to a new computer if I can't open the bad drive?
 
Joined
Aug 1, 2003
Messages
51,988
You can put that drive in as a secondary in another machine and access it that way. It doesn't need to be bootable, or even in particularly good condition, so long as the file tables are OK, and if you can get a Dir in DOS, you can access the files.

Not finding any more is a relatively good sign. Every time I have done this and found some bad clusters, subsequent scans have produced more, so the drive was going fast. A few bad clusters that are not inceasing may be just a fluke.

If you know the location of that file with the long name, try renaming it from a boot disk. DOS will give it an 8.3 name, anyway, so you can rename it something with just a few letters.

It just doesn't seem worth the trouble to try to get the drive booted. Even if those bad clusters are now marked and won't be used again by Windows, any bad clusters is not a good sign and you would save yourself a lot of pain by just retrieving your data and tossing that drive.
 

Vore

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 22, 2004
Messages
40
Hi Elvandil
I have no idea of the location of the long invalid file or its name. scan disk did not tell me...it just said that it exists. Is there a site I can be directed to that will guide me through the process of entering DOS and extracting the info and renaming it or deleting it? When I enter DIR for drive c at the c: promp I get a long list of files. All of them are there including the last known free space on the drive which is correct.

Is there not a way of reinstalling the KRNL386.EXE file. If I can do that my computer should boot up right?

The computer I'm using is a laptop, how would I connect it to a (new) desktop? And I would still have the same problem trying to get it running.
 
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