View Full Version : winXP 'disk boot failure'

04-10-2002, 11:24 PM
Most mornings, I get a 'disk boot failure'. Rebooting during the day tends to not be a problem. The hard drive has been thoroughly thrashed by my hardware supplier and is faultless. Weeks back, when this first occurred, the 3rd or 4th attempt would be successful. Now it's no joy, even after my daughter's patient 12 attempts!
I've resorted to booting from the winXP CD-ROM. This winXP CD boot is rather confusing though - it loads a slew of files, then says type EXIT, then shuts itself down and starts a normal boot. Beyond me.
My winXP runs on a mostly stable standalone - aside from WinExplorer crashing all too regular!
Someone thought these boot failures might be due to a busy power supply but the feed is separate and straight off the fuse board. The monitor and all have their own power supplies.
Someone remembered a fix involving a boot.ini edit. Something about Windows possibly seeing a USB device as a scussy device. My hardware supplier couldn't reproduce the failure but they didn't have any of my peripherals attached. With that in mind, I tried booting with the USB printer and USB scanner unplugged. Same thing. Eventually unplugged every damn thing, including mouse, keybd and monitor! Same 'disk boot failure'.
I haven't yet resorted to uninstalling the scanner & printer s'ware.
Any thoughts?

05-10-2002, 07:36 AM
how big is the comps power supply? sounds like a reformat and a nice clean install are whats needed.if you are running to many usb peripherals and only have a low wattage psu , this could cause similar probs as well.

05-10-2002, 10:00 AM

Just to add another angle, it could actually be a bios problem. I had similar problems with a system at the beginning of the year, so I sent it back to get it fixed (as it was still under warranty) and it came back and I was told there was nothing wrong with it. But there was definitely something wrong with it, and after 3 weeks of testing (and many posts to this site ;)) I decided it was the bios that was faulty, and took it back and they replaced the motherboard, and after that the problems went away.


Babe Ruth
05-10-2002, 10:03 AM

First off please check this article Disk_Boot_Problem (http://www.computerhope.com/issues/ch000387.htm) if the suggestions there don't help please post back (post back anyway).

Secondly if you have a MAXTOR harddrive as your system disk then post back with that info (Maxtor drive info for your system) as I may have help specifically for that issue.

Cheers, Babe.

Babe Ruth
05-10-2002, 10:09 AM
Morri, Actually another thought occurred to me... not sure how old your system is BUT it could be the battery backup for the CMOS/BIOS information that is causing the problems. You can replace the battery (it probably is a small round silver type similar to an overlarge watch battery) or you could get the pc tech to replace it if the PC is still under warrenty.

Cheers, Babe.

05-10-2002, 12:49 PM
Hi baldynz and Babe Ruth and Mike
Thank you for your interest and responses! Bloody magic. Okay, first off...
baldynz, the power supply is an okay 300 watt, and no peripherals run off that.
Your reformat suggestion is a possible - maybe later, putting that one off!, but question, does XP heal itself as easy as win95 did?
Babe Ruth, of the 3 areas in your referred article, 1 was a possible,
but I've since ruled that out, ie the boot order is set to - floppy, HDD, CD-ROM as I'd expect.
Also, the HDD is a 20gig from Seagate.
As for the system age and the battery, I dismissed the battery as a possible since the motherbd is only 7 months old. Having said that, batteries is batteries, and I've fixed some weird issues with a fresh battery, so a 'will do' on that one.
Thanks also to you Mike for your input re bios and motherbd.
Where I'm at this fine Saturday here in Auckland - as it stands, I'm up and running (hence this reply!) and I'm gonna get back to work and pop it back to TL Systems on Monday. The year before last I made a promise to myself that I'd never again tinker with my hardware. Generally I've got no problem with it, it's just that I've got brilliant backup in the form of Ren at TLSystems, and I figure, why mess with a good thing. I know that's lazy and you're all disgusted!, but hey, there's still software to screw around with eh! I only buy my hardware from one place and save a ton'a hassles.
Okay, e-nuff.
Thanks gang for helping me get to this conclusion. I'll keep you posted. My money is on the hardware. I figure, if it's a morning thing, maybe it's a temperature thing. Also, s'ware issues are usually constant? - random suggests physical. 'Minds me of dry solder joins from my old days.
Cheers all

Babe Ruth
05-10-2002, 01:30 PM
Morri, Ok thanks for posting back will wait to see the result from your talks with the TL Systems people.

Cheers, Babe.

11-10-2002, 06:48 PM
Hi again to Babe Ruth and Mike and baldynz
Just had to get back to you and share the news!
My 'boot disk failure' was the product of a faulty HDD data cable!
Man am I pleased to not have to re-install all those apps.
Up until this morning, everything pointed to a faulty harddrive. Someone had talked about a batch of drives (from a Co. other than Seagate - can't remember which) that had platters that expanded unevenly as they warmed. This Seagate drive appeared to be doing something similar. On a cold boot I was getting a return of Primary Master Disk: None. But get the drive to spin for what ever reason for a minute or so and a reboot would see the Primary Master Disk get recognized. One of the guys at TL Systems thought straight up - first lets try a new data cable, and bingo.
So there you go. Still can't see how a cable/cable connector could be so susceptible to warmth. Grubby connector maybe? We'll see. But hey, so far so good. I'm typing this ain't I!!

Now here's somethin' for you.
Who knows the best way to recover data?!

In my busy backing up yesterday, I deleted a bunch of archived data.
Not as bad as it first sounds.
I still have my original 3 gig HDD, and, what with this last month-ful's drama with my C:\, I've been backing up to my wee D:\ 3gig. And yesterday I accidentally deleted a folder of stuff off this D:\ and went - "Fxxx!"
So that D:\ has had nothing written to it since.
If anyone has any info on a downloadable Data Recovery app I'd love to hear from you.
I spose I should post that as a separate Question.

And while I'm at it, who knows anything about the cable colours of ADSL splitters?
I've bought the thing from Redeal Networks in Mt Albert, Auckland - $43.88, with the idea of installing it on my house's radiating 'hub', but wouldn't you know it, no data with the thing. (Fair'nuf - usually sold to people who buy them by the dozen) A black box with 2 twisted-pair fly leads. One pair Orange/White, and the other pair Blue/White. One opinion is - Orange comes from the Exchange and Blue goes to the Distribution.
Has anyone got any thoughts on that?
As I see it, essentially this Telecom defined 'Splitter' is actually a 'filter'; not to be confused with what is refered to as the no-tool 'Filter' that you put on each phone. As I see it - please correct me if I'm wrong - this Splitter/Filter does for all the phones in a house, what each Filter would do for each phone. So, again please correct me if I'm wrong, it's a case of 'split' the feed from the street, feed the ASDL modem from one side, and the other side to the house via the 'Splitter. True? Please say so!! I'm told that this filter is passive and as such can't stuff anything up. Just, get it wrong and it won't do it's job.
Kind'a curious situation really. On the one hand, there's people like me who want to do our own phone wiring, and on the other, there's parties that don't want bunnies stuffing up the system. Can't say's I blame them. I just want to wire up my ASDL splitter!
Yeah I will post this as 2 separate issues. Thank God for Copy&Paste!

12-10-2002, 09:37 AM
>>> Now here's somethin' for you.
>>> Who knows the best way to recover data?!

>>> So that D:\ has had nothing written to it since.
>>> If anyone has any info on a downloadable Data
>>> Recovery app I'd love to hear from you.
>>> I spose I should post that as a separate Question.

Not sure if you've posted this as a seperate question, so I'll answer in here, and if there is a seperate one, I'll put the same reply in there :D

How much data have you actually lost? I have this quite old data recovery program that works, but it takes a loooooooooong time as it's only a demo and only allows you to retrieve 3 files at a time, then you gotta exit and reload it and start again (can take hours!). There are no free data recovery applications - and when you see what the ones available do cost, you'll understand why (I think the one that OnTrack sells goes for around $US999).

I do know of a very small and fairly cheap application called "R-Studio" which will do the job (both on FAT32 and NTFS, although I think it's a seperate app for whatever type of file system). I think it costs around $US50 - so if you really need your files back, this is probably the cheapest way to go; else Computer Forensics do data recovery, but charge you for it (several hundred I believe). You can get R-Studio from here. The download is only about 1.5mb, so it's a LOT smaller than others.