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CRASHED! A topic for SEVERE and immediate Hardware and Operating System FAILURES. We will try to get you up again. NOT for Optimization questions!


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Old 1st December, 2010, 10:52 PM
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Stumped...

Alright, So I have my dad's HP Touchsmart sitting next to me on my desk and has me lost and confused.

To make a long story short the original HDD crashed, Geek Squad installed a new HDD from HP. My dad got it back and all seemed well until the computer crashed again. This time my dad received recovery disks from HP and attempted the recovery himself. Never worked.

Now I have it, went through every combination/order I could think of using the recovery disks, spent an hour on the phone with HP and got nowhere. I then pulled out my Windows 7 disk and all seem well. Then I come back after stepping away from the computer for about 30 mins and its in a constant loop. The computer starts up, gets to the Windows splash screen and then just before the log on screen is supposed to appear I find myself back at the BIOS screen. I tried reinstalling the OS twice just to be sure and the computer still does the same thing.

I've done memory diagnostics, HDD diagnostics, tested each individual memory stick and so-dimm slot to no avail.

Anyone got any ideas?
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Old 1st December, 2010, 11:03 PM
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send it back.
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I've heard that linux community came up with better implemented security in it's latest Linux Mint Gold version, it's actually preventing the user to log in, thus posing 0 risk in contamining the computer with malware! Well done to the open source community!

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Old 1st December, 2010, 11:58 PM
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I have heard that a hard drive controller chip can "flake out" and cause a lot of hard drive problems. Its hard to know if its the controller or the hard drive because of so many symptoms. Since Geek Squad put a new hard drive in it, that may eliminate the hard drive failure. I would try installing Windows XP or even Linux on it to make sure the motherboard is working correctly. If it still has problems, then something on the motherboard (chipset) may be the problem. Its rare, but does happen.
I have the same problem with a Lenovo notebook at work. It refuses to install Vista, XP and even Fedora 13 froze up. I'm figuring its a hard drive failure, but I DID run Fedora off a flash drive and did hard drive diagnostic test. It passed all of them.... pretty strange. I'm going to pull out the hard drive and use a USB adapter to make sure its spinning up and mounting to my XP system. If I can format the drive, then it should be ready to go....
Let us know what happens
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 12:30 AM
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sounds good. I'll keep you posted.
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 12:51 AM
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do you know if the operating system needs to be 32-bit or 64-bit.
you can't repair or restore a 64-bit with a 32-bit and vice-versa
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 02:41 AM
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At the moment there is no OS on the machine so I'm pretty sure that won't be too much of a problem.
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 06:38 AM
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Update: Fedora 13 was successfully installed...Now I'm really confused.

thought...the original OS on the machine was 64-bit. The copy of Win7 that I tried to install on a completely clean and formatted HDD was 32-bit. That should make a difference correct?
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 12:18 PM
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I have had issues installing W7 if the BIOS is not set correctly. Say you have a floppy drive enabled but not actually present on the system. I would think there is something either not set or failing. Memtest.??
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 02:30 PM
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Oh, yeah...
I have seen computers with SATA drives that require a setting in the BIOS to make them run in an IDE fashion.
something like set SATA as IDE
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 02:36 PM
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well, I think I've narrowed the issue down to the optical drive. I unhooked it from its retaining mechanism so its now laying parallel with the desk instead of perpendicular and so far the recovery disks are actually working. currently at 44% of the recovery process. if this doesn't work I'll see if it acts differently with some of the SATA settings.
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 02:52 PM
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Hey Mark, didn't know you were up this early....
Optical Drive huh? Thats rare, but does happen.
If you can get Windows recovered(reinstalled) and the DVD still doesn't work correctly, then you can always try booting from a flash drive and installing Windows that way.
I have never done it, but I'm sure there is a way.
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 03:14 PM
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yeah, I'm up at 5 every morning. With one car and my wife working and too stubborn to learn to drive a 5-speed I drive her to work each morning.

So far so good for the computer, the recovery process has completed and is now installing the software.
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 05:24 PM
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Thats nice of you. I hope you are a morning person. I wake up at 5am just to play video games. All the girls are sleeping so its MY TIME!
My wife refused to learn manual transmission also. I gave her one lesson and she did really well, but if you don't practice every day you aint gonna get it.
Glad the install is working out. Are you able to login windows yet?
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 05:50 PM
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yup! just finished all the updates and installed the updated drivers from HP. She's just about good to go.
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Old 2nd December, 2010, 11:21 PM
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Very nice. Glad you got it worked out. What are your plans for the DVD? replacement?
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Old 3rd December, 2010, 04:35 AM
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Not sure. That one is in my dad's hands. He just cares about the computer working at this point.

After I had finished his computer I went to work on my rig. Its been years since I've really done anything to it so it needed a little TLC. Wires were no longer tidy and I wanted to reorganize the front bay. After moving some HDD's around I go to start up the machine and it was telling me that the BOOTMGR was missing.

I was like what the... I have two HDD's in a dual boot setup how can something be missing? After much tinkering I was able to get the machine to boot but it was super super slow so I've decided to just reformat. I'm tired of trying to figure out how something can go wrong without making any major changes.
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Old 3rd December, 2010, 12:58 PM
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When you said you "moved the HDDs around" do you mean that you changed the ports on the MB that they were plugged into?
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Old 3rd December, 2010, 03:26 PM
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No, They all stayed in the same ports.
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Old 3rd December, 2010, 11:33 PM
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Ah, its good to format them and clean-em up at least once a year. My hard drives get so cluttered with programs, pictures and fragmented files after a year. Instead of doing all the Windows "cleanup" its easier to just format and reinstall. Then its just like a brand new computer...
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Old 4th December, 2010, 06:21 AM
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agreed....But I'm a little more anal... I remember a few years back I reformatted and reinstalled XP about 8 times. Some were due to corruption from overclocking or experimenting with different settings on the OS or just cause it felt slow. I no longer was able to just activate that particular key over the internet, I had to call the other side of the world to have it activated. lol

As for my system now I have it back the way I like it...thank goodness.
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