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Is my compaq a goner?

By supz ·
My wonderful Compaq.

Initial error = NTLDR not found, press any key to retry.
Attempted to delete existing partition to redo the system.
First hard drive would ?blue screen? when attempting to install windows xp after deleting the existing partition.
After that, tried a lighter OS, Windows 2000.
Installed. I believed the installation was complete, however the system would freeze when booting into Windows 2000. Operating system never fully booted.
Thought the HDD was bad.
At this point, I took apart the PC and swapped in a HDD (720 MB) from a very old working Windows 98 system. At first the hard drive worked, saw the windows 98 screen, until when trying to boot into the operating system when the ?drive failed?. I turned off the PC and tried again, another error.
Tried 2 more times, each time receiving the error that the computer was ?unable to access hard drive? ?Operating system not found on any devices press any key to continue? Pressing a key reboots the system but now NO HDD or OS is recognized.
Put the original hard drive back in, tried to boot one more time and now I?m getting a blue screen reading a c0000221 unknown hard error.

Is this a hard drive error, or is the motherboard messed up? No idea.

Any suggestions or opinions would help.

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by ctrservices In reply to Is my compaq a goner?

According to MS, your ??stop? error probably indicates a hardware problem or corrupted file (see the following link). They suggest a reinstallation.

You can check out the hardware angle easily if you have access to one of Marcel Gagn??s books, like ?Moving to Linux: Kiss the Blue Screen of Death Goodbye!? with the bootable linux CD. The OS works entirely from the CD and RAM (no hard disk read/write), so if it boots to the Linux desktop, your hardware is likely good.

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by 3xp3rt In reply to Is my compaq a goner?

From your description I suppose you have a bad IDE controller. You can try to move your HDD to other IDE connector, and try to install the OS. You can find the real reason with some diagnostic program. These program you can run under an OS installed and booted from a pen drive or a CD. For these you can download some OS from http:\\ or you can make a windows bootable cd if you are not familiarized with Linux from

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by Bobsta In reply to Is my compaq a goner?

Sounds like IDE Controller.
Go to download ISO and boot with CD, CD contains various Diagnostic tools for testing Hardware.

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by OTL In reply to Is my compaq a goner?

Check in the BIOS, is the HD recognized ? If so sounds like a CD/DVD onboard controller card has failed (2 different HD's) and is streaming data on the buss. Swap out the CD or if you have a DVD just remove the CD cables, should be able to boot from the DVD. If it fails, add the CD and remove the DVD cables (can do this in any order).

If no DVD sounds like you may have spare parts, swap the CD drive and use 1 HD, disconnect all other drives and try loading XP. If it works add additional drives after you have the system up and operating.

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by wlbowers In reply to Is my compaq a goner?

Download the following.

IBM's Drive Fitness Test is bootable and will test any drive. There are some features that will only work on IBM/Hitachi.

It will do a advanced test and sector/block recovery.

This will tell you if the drive is good or bad.

If it blue screens during this test. I would look at the memory.


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by michael In reply to Is my compaq a goner?

something to consider, XP upgrade wants to be loaded to a HDD that has a windows operating system on it, second, are you sure that the power supply is ok, can cause random restarts and crashes if going bad.

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by borris In reply to Is my compaq a goner?

Try an old fasion FDSK/MBR this will clean up your bootsector.

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