Cant start windos XP or run a recovery facility.

By Mirx ·
I have a laptop *inspiron 9400. I left the computer scanning for viruses last night and I went to bed, this morning when I tried to log in the PC was non-responsive. I switched it off and started it up again, right before the log-in screen appears a blue screen came up stating some kind of error but it literally just blinks and I cant read what it says, immediately after the computer reboots itself again.

When I tried to use the Windows XP to repair the instaliation, it told me that my C drive wasnt formatted and "Partition = Unknon". I have tons of info so I dont want to reformat without copying.

In the CD prompt "Do you want to run the Recovery Console?: I said yes, to which the system responded with a DOS prompt:

It stays like that for hours with no indication that any recovery tool is being run.

When I ran the diagnostics facility it detected an error:
DST short test failed.

Should I give up and format C and lose all my info?

Thanks all.

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All Answers

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Before you try anything else.........

by ThumbsUp2 In reply to Cant start windos XP or r ...

Try booting to Safe Mode. If you can get in, turn off the feature that forces it to reboot on errors, then reboot to normal mode. This should allow you to 'see' the BSOD and write down the codes that it will display. Those codes will give you a clue what is going wrong on boot.

To turn off the feature, right click My Computer and choose Properties (or go through Control Panel and choose System). On the System Properties window, click the Advanced tab, then go into the Startup and Recovery section by clicking Settings. Under the System Failure section, uncheck the box next to "Automatically Restart", then click OK all the way back out.

Let us know what the full code on the BSOD says.

(edit to add:)

By the way, Recovery Console doesn't 'do' anything for you automatically. It gives you the command prompt where you are expected to type the commands manually.

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If you have XP with at least SP2

by IC-IT In reply to Cant start windos XP or r ...

There should be an option on the boot menu screen (F that will allow you to turn off Automatic Restart on error.

Also at the Recovery Console C: prompt you should run a chkdsk /R

Repeat if errors are found and corrected.
The DST failure indicates that your drive is on the way out.

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If the Drive has failed the DST short test

by Jacky Howe In reply to Cant start windos XP or r ...

it is probably on it's way out. If you have important Data now is the time to try to retrieve it.

You could add the Drive as a Slave to another System or a USB enclosure to retrieve the Data.

You can use either of these connectors.

USB 2.0 to IDE / SATA Adapter Cable 80cm (Supports 2.5" & 3.5" IDE)

Notebook IDE Hard Drive Adaptor.

Another alternative is to use a Linux boot CD to retrieve the Data.

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