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Solved: XP refusing to start

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Bookshelf, Nov 14, 2010.

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  1. Bookshelf

    Bookshelf Thread Starter

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    I have some issues currently with my desktop computer.

    I wanted a clean reinstall of Windows to solve half-empty program folders, cluttered registry and all that. As I do not get the option of reformatting my harddisc partitions all at once, mind you, I decided to attempt installing Windows on my secondary partition, wipe the primary partition, and then re-install Windows on the primary partition before wiping the secondary partition. Wiping the secondary partition went fine, however, half way through the installation on the secondary partition, I accidentally hit the "restart computer" button that is so very inconviniently located in an easy-to-hit spot on the front and in foot-height.

    Now my computer refuses to boot anywhere past the OS selection screen. :eek:

    When the computer starts Windows, the monitor just goes black, and while the fan is still running and I can hear the "idle" noises of the harddisc, there's no further thinking or reading. The computer simply stops, like it's waiting for an input of sorts (keyboard presses do nothing, however). Switching the monitor to the motherboard connection does nothing, either, leading me to believe that I have a profoundly corrupted Windows installed at the moment.

    <removed by moderator> Attempts of starting with the CD in drive (and, yes, telling the computer to boot from the CD first) adds the "Press Key to start from CD" promt - but due to my computer somehow failing to recognize its USB ports (and keyboard being a USB one), I cannot do any selections at all.

    Do any of you brilliant people have any ideas for a solution that doesn't involve a new computer and/or a flamethrower? :( I would so very much like to have my desktop computer working again.
     
  2. etaf

    etaf Moderator

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    I have modified the post as a family friendly site - we try to avoid this language- thanks
    Now to the problem
    Is this a modern PC - does it still have the PS2 type ports for a keyboard
    shown here http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?imgu...1&ndsp=20&ved=1t:429,r:7,s:0&biw=1600&bih=755
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PS/2_connector
    usually purple
    if so then its now looking for that type of keyboard
    did you get an adapter with the USB keyboard that looks like this
    http://www.google.co.uk/products/ca...log_result&ct=image&resnum=6&ved=0CEkQ8gIwBQ#
     
  3. Bookshelf

    Bookshelf Thread Starter

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    My apologies - I wasn't aware that my chosen word was so offensive that it would require moderation.

    In any case; yes, the computer is old enough (~6 years) to have PS/2 ports, however, I don't have an adapter for the keyboard (purchased a few months ago - no, it didn't come with an adapter, either). I have looked around for one, but none of the stores in my area carry it.

    However, the BIOS and everything but the OS selection screen registers the keyboard inputs just fine.
     
  4. etaf

    etaf Moderator

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    so the keyboard should register to boot off the CD.
    Are you sure the CD is bootable , is this how you started the installation ?
     
  5. Bookshelf

    Bookshelf Thread Starter

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    Originally, yes, the install was run off the CD just fine. The last couple of reinstalls were made by starting from within Windows itself - and please note that it is a genuine Windows XP Pro DVD, complete with all the fancy holograms and shiny gloss that comes with that.

    Further, recent testing with the keyboard has made me determine that my computer pretty much forgets about its USB ports when Windows/the Windows CD wants an input of some sort. Which, admittedly, confuses me, as I am quite well able to change around the boot settings on startup, as well as do various other keyboard input - except, obviously, when it is really needed.

    ... Harddiscs don't come with a fancy "insert paperclip here for 5 seconds to reset settings" hole, does it?
     
  6. etaf

    etaf Moderator

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  7. gfne

    gfne

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    For the purposes of initiating a disk check, via the properties of the C drive, I was wondering if safe mode worked.
     
  8. Bookshelf

    Bookshelf Thread Starter

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    I've already tried switching around with the USB ports - none of them work. The keyboard is a Logitech.

    Unfortunately, the computer is a custom built one (from a shop that since went out of business), so it has no specific make or model... My apologies for that.

    Safe mode does not even come up as an option, Gfne, and I'm afraid my skills with boot systems are far, far too puny to figure out how to force it to show up. :(
     
  9. etaf

    etaf Moderator

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    if safe mode was going to work , you would keep taping F8 as the pc starts and see the menu with the option for safemode

    my only suggestion is see if you can get hold of / borrow an PS2 type keyboard
     
  10. Bookshelf

    Bookshelf Thread Starter

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    Okay, for an update:

    I have gotten hold of a converter (USB > PS/2) as well as a PS/2 keyboard.

    Problem: Neither works... The OS selection screen just merrily counts away and ignores all input (yes, I have made sure I didn't plug it into the mouse PS/2 port) - and as with my USB keyboard, it registers my requests to enter BIOS just fine.

    In order words, the computer forgets that it has a keyboard whenever Windows takes over the reigns, be that through OS selection or CD boot.

    ... Is there anything I can do to salvage my desktop? I am quite fond of it, but I cannot afford one of those portable drives that would allow me to plug in the harddisc itself. In other words - is there something I can do, with the software or hardware or anything, to hard reset the harddisc?
     
  11. gfne

    gfne

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    Lets try a modified technique. Don't start tapping until a particular point. To know which point to start taping the F8, you would need to pay attention to screen flickering and/or changing. Starting to press F8 too early, in my experience, will cause the computer to ignore the keyboard, and throw a keyboard error. In most cases, you'll either see a brand name logo, or any logo of sorts, or you'll see a black screen with certain messages about detecting things. After that screen, it will flicker and/or change to the booting of the Operating System which you will see the Windows XP thingamajigee going from left to right. Between those two, right after the screen changes is the right time to start taping F8. When you see the thingamajigee, its already too late.
     
  12. Bookshelf

    Bookshelf Thread Starter

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    No dice. No success. Even though my desktop is polite and makes a beep at the required time, I can't get through to the safe boot screen.

    And keep in mind that I don't get the Windows Boot logo at all - after the initial BIOS boot (AMIBIOS 2005, I gleaned), I get a selection screen with the two installed versions of Windows XP; and the request that I choose which one I want to use (which is where my keyboard goes through a temporary existence failure). Once the timer finishes ticking, the computer just stops doing anything more once it reaches the area where it would normally show the Windows boot logo.



    The OS selection screen I'm talking about is the one that shows (bear with my pathetically poor ANCII art abilities):

    -----------------------------
    | Select OS
    | |Windows XP Professional|
    | Windows XP Professional
    | 23 seconds left
    -----------------------------

    and which normally moves into the moving thingamajing after the timer finishes counting down or a button is pressed.
     
  13. Bookshelf

    Bookshelf Thread Starter

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    ... I hate bumping old threads, but I am still stuck with my issue.

    PS/2 ports are non-functional, as are USB ports during the OS selection screen and the Press Key To Boot From CD option.

    I have switched around everything I could, including disconnecting my graphics card, but no dice so far. Is there truly no way I can save my computer? I am loathe to attempt buying a new harddisc, as I have a strong suspicion that the issue might be between the computer's hardware and Windows itself.
     
  14. gfne

    gfne

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    Ubuntu has a "System Testing" function. You can download the ISO file, burn it as an image, boot into it via the CD. If you can't boot via CD, you would have to disconnect the hard drive during the test, so you can boot via CD.
     

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  15. Bookshelf

    Bookshelf Thread Starter

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    Issue has been solved. A different person suggested to poke around in the BIOS and check if USB Legacy was turned on. It was not, and now my keyboard works - which allowed me to format the harddrive properly and install Windows.
     
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