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Toshiba Laptop - Is it dead? Help please!

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Ozintokyo, Apr 23, 2004.

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  1. Ozintokyo

    Ozintokyo Thread Starter

    Apr 23, 2004
    My Toshiba laptop has finally given up altogether it seems.

    It seemed to have some chance of starting up a few days ago, but now it has consistently just come back with a black screen with white writing that reads as follows:

    Intel(R) Boot Agent Version 4.0.18
    Copyright (C) 1997-2001, Intel Corporation
    PXE-E61: Media test failure, check cable
    PXE-M0F: Exiting Intel PXE ROM.
    Insert system disk in drive.
    Press any key when ready....

    It does not always come back with that, sometimes it just asks for the HDD password (on the little lcd screen at the front) - wtf is that????

    I would of course like to be able to get into the damn thing to see if
    there is something as simple as a cable loose inside, but also don't want to
    take out every screw to see if it may then open somehow!! (A big disadvantage to a laptop is not being easily able to get in and ferret about) Does anyone have a link to where it shows me how to open this thing properly? - or do I just undo all the screws and see what happens?

    I have also then tried to insert the system CD I got with the machine,
    and this seems like it MAY recover the machine, but warns it will wipe the
    harddisk in the process. I suppose I don't mind doing this too much as
    I think I have all important files/photos backed up, but will lose minor
    stuff like Internet bookmarks (and my latest saved characters in Diablo ! ) - nothing especially earth shattering I think.

    So, I give you these options:

    1 - That's worse than the black screen of death - it's toast!
    2 - Yes, it's bad, but if you take it back to Toshiba they should be able to recover everything
    3 - Yes, it's bad, your best option is to go with the system disk recovery and start from scratch
    4 - I have no idea what the hell you are talking about
    5 - But of course I can help you fix it, all you need to do is...[insert solution here!]

    Any help or options to try would be much appreciated!!
  2. bowmar


    May 30, 2003
    At a guess i would say that the hard drive is playing up, when its asking for system disk it cannot find the boot sector of hard drive and is asking for one.
    Not the end of the world at this point, as you say if you have most data backed up i would go with the system restore, then test it from there. If similar problems occur then you have to imagine the hard drive is dying/dead. Good news is that most laptops allow you to change memory, hard drives and batteries with relative ease, do not though take out all screws and dismantle laptops, usually extremely hard to put back together if you haven't done it before.
  3. Ozintokyo

    Ozintokyo Thread Starter

    Apr 23, 2004
    bowmar - thanks for your help. I went with the 'restore' option and thus thought I would be letting my harddisk by reset/reformatted/repaired, or whatever it is actually going to do - but, actually is seemed to try to do this and actually got nowhere, it ended up coming back to the same screen.

    After a few different off/on attempts, I got a combination of results when I turn it on - sometimes the one explained above, and sometimes it would just prompt me to put in "HDDPassword" at the little LCD screen on the fron of my laptop, this is AFTER I have already put in my normal startup/boot password.

    The problem is that I don't think the HDD has a password!!

    Anyway, my feeling is that my harddisk is dead. If that is not the case, great, but I thought it was. If I get a new harddrive, is it then possible to try to access the old drive externally? i.e. some kind of adapter that lets me connect it through a USB port or something?
  4. deHakkelaar


    Apr 21, 2004
    1st try to take out the hard disk & re-seat it.
    Sometimes ( 1% change ) its a faulty/dirty connection.
  5. Ozintokyo

    Ozintokyo Thread Starter

    Apr 23, 2004
    Thanks for the suggestion - every new suggestion helps - you never know what might work sometimes!

    However, in this case, I can confirm that I did try that one - pulled it out, connections were clean as a whistle - popped it back in, and, no change. Doh!
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