View Full Version : xp crash HELP

10-11-2008, 10:15 AM
I have an older Dell desktop. Windows xp crashed, gives errors like missing files. it wont boot up at all. Run diagnostics but no help. it did not come with a xp cd so i have no idea on how to reinstall without buying one. any idea how to reinstall with no cd and wont even boot up?:confused:

10-11-2008, 10:40 AM
when you mean reinstall, what would you be installing from?

10-11-2008, 10:43 AM
Welcome to PressF1 :thumbs:

- What diagnostics did you do exactly?

- Can you tell us exactly what the error messages say, and at what point in the boot they come up?

- Have you tried booting in safe mode (turn the PC on, and repeatedly tap the F8 key until a menu appears. Select the top option)

10-11-2008, 10:54 AM
diagnostic- its called symptom tree after hitting F8 and found nothing. First error was missing file system32/hal.dll. Turn pc on and before boot up, that message appears . You will see the Windows name then goes black with the message. Will not boot up in safe mode or last good configuration.

10-11-2008, 11:12 AM
Do you have access do an XP cd?
You may need to perform a repair install

10-11-2008, 12:21 PM
as of now, no. The pc didnt come with one, am asking around though. If cant find one then i have no choice but to purchase one right?

10-11-2008, 12:49 PM
as of now, no. The pc didnt come with one, am asking around though. If cant find one then i have no choice but to purchase one right?
Welcome to PF1:

To answer your question - Not always - being a Dell it MAY have the I386 Folder on the drive if it does then you can do a repair install as long as you can get it to boot into safe mode.

Heres how.

Reboot the PC in Safe Mode with command Prompt ,You should then have something like C: documents and settings\your name\

Type in CD C:\I386 < Press Enter>

Type in winnt32.exe <Press Enter>

Agree to anything, this should then reinstall windows as doing a repair install.

When asked, enter the product key thatís on the Case or on the box the CD Case / Packet the XP CD came in, it will reboot several times this is normal, it will take approximately an hour.

HOPEFULLY when it reboots you will have your Desktop all up and going, you may need to reactivate the OS, thatís a phone call to MS on their activation window, and tell them you had to reinstall from the product key on the PC.

How to do a repair Install fulll instruction from a CD, so you should start from number 2 ( from memory) if doing it from the I386 folder:

You will need your 25 digit product key for this.

Place XP CD in drive: Reboot or shutdown and start PC.
1.When the Press any key to boot from CD message is displayed on your screen, press a key to start your computer from the Windows XP CD.
2.Press ENTER when you see the message To setup Windows XP now, and then press ENTER displayed on the Welcome to Setup screen.
3.Do not choose the option to press R to use the Recovery Console.
4.In the Windows XP Licensing Agreement, press F8 to agree to the license agreement.
5.Make sure that your current installation of Windows XP is selected in the box, and then press R to repair Windows XP.
NOTE: if it doesn't locate your old OS STOP! As any further actions may result in wiping your data.

6.Follow the instructions on the screen to complete Setup.

10-11-2008, 01:10 PM
Just a Thought - before you try the above - if you can get into Safe mode With Command Prompt type in chkdsk /f <Press Enter> if the /f switch wont work, try chkdsk /p Note space between k /p

10-11-2008, 01:28 PM
Cant start in safe mode. Turned on and pressed F8 and chose safe mode with command prompt and also safe mode. As soon as i did i get the error message again <system32/hal.dll>

10-11-2008, 01:38 PM
Needs a Repair Install.

Boot off CD, press Enter for Install at the first prompt, then press R for Repair at the second prompt.

You can borrow anyone's CD, the important thing is the COA on your case - it will ask for that number during the repair.

Make sure its the same version of Windows as yours - ie XP Home OEM or XP Media Centre OEM or whatever. And it can't be a recovery CD, it does have to be WIndows.

10-11-2008, 02:02 PM
You can try running chkdsk /p from the recovery console, on the odd occasion it fixes it, (did one a few weeks back this way and it worked) if not then as mentioned by pctek and others it will need the XP CD.

Since you cant boot into same mode with command prompt and dont have a XP CD handy, on a working XP PC, download This zipped file (http://vlaurie.com/computers2/downloads/recovery_console_cd.zip) its a program for creating CD for a windows recovery console .

Download and unzip the contents to a folder, read the " Readme.html" it tells you how to make a bootable CD for the XP recovery Console. I did have a link to the finished product - but seem to have misplaced it :crying

Boot from it and agree to all the guff - select R to load, when you get to C:\windows type in chkdsk /p