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Dell Dimension 3k Won't Load Os


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#1 Mike508

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 01:37 PM

The system is a Dell Dimension 3000, Win XP sp2, 40G hard drive. I use ZA, Grisoft AVG anti-virus, Spybot, Spywareblaster, and AdAware. Recently I purchased a Maxtor external drive to help take the bloat off of the original 40G.

I've only used the Maxtor a few times to transfer files (just to get used to the thing). Yesterday I tried a backup using it; the system responded that the backup had failed. In the meantime, I also noticed several problems with AdAware, Spybot, and AVG. Neither AdAware, nor Spybot would uninstall, Spybot wouldn't do a system check, and, until I did a system rollback, AVG had disappeared. The rollback brought up a few more problems with missing files and whatnot.

I decided to reinstall XP. Recently, with some help from bleepingcomputer, I did this successfully with our Dell 8200, but the 3000 is proving to be a pain. The first reinstall seemed to take, but I could not attain I-net access as the system didn't seem to recognize the Ethernet connection. I couldn't resize the screen, either. Consequently, I tried doing a second reinstall. Now the system boots to a screen where I can choose one of two versions of XP. The first version (on drive C, I'm assuming), gives the following:

Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
<Windows root>\system32\hal.dll.
Please re-install a copy of the above file.

Trials using the second version lead to an attempt by the system to reinstall XP. Once it's loaded some files, I get a screen where I can choose to set up XP, repair an existing installation, or quit. Choosing the repair option gets me to a screen that asks which XP I want repaired; there's only one option given: 1 C:\WINDOWS. That option ends in another screen where it will accept a few DOS commands, but no repair is done (I assume it's because there is no OS there to repair). The other option, the reinstall, loads some files, then gives a screen saying: "Setup cannot copy the file: megasas.cat" along with options to retry, skip the file, or quit. (When I first attempted to do the second reinstall, the file it couldn't seem to copy was cercsr6.sys. Several attempts to retry failed, and attempts to skip copying the file just led to more files it couldn't copy.)

Shortly after trying the second reinstall I also noticed the CD-ROM wasn't running (I'm guessing this is why the reinstall won't get past the inability to copy files). I was able to run diagnostics and the CD ROM player is operable. It's possible the driver isn't loading.

Anyway, I'm stuck. Any and all suggestions are welcome.

Thanks,
Mike

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#2 WinCrazy

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 03:19 PM

When you reinstalled XP apparently you installed a second copy of the OS. This is far too easy to do when using an "XP CD" (aka "XP Installation CD" aka "XP OEM CD"). The prompts that are provided in the installation program are non-intuitive. Shame on MS (again).

Also, apparently you have your internal hard drive partitioned into multiple volumes. Possibly the external hard drive was given the new copy if it was hooked up and powered on at the time of the install. When this is done and XP is installed again, the default action that the installer takes is to put another copy of XP on another volume ! What in the world was MS thinking ?!

To properly reinstall XP, first make sure that the USB drive is at least turned off or disconnected. Rerun the install. All the partitions/volumes that exist on the internal hard drive(s) will be listed. Most store-bought systems have only a single drive with a single partition/volume on it. When asked, choose to do a fresh install of XP. There is an option to reformat the C: volume - do this using the NTFS filesystem. If more than one volume is listed then reformat each one. This will completely wipe out all the old installations.

You will then be asked again which volume to install XP. If there is only one volume available then choose this. If there is more than one choose what you think was the old C: volume. Finish the installation.

Make sure you have all the drivers for your PC available on a CD before you do the install.

#3 Mike508

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 04:32 PM

Thanks for the response, WinCrazy. We're at a new point in the process now (though I'm not sure it's much in the way of an advancement). After posting, I thought I'd try using the DVD player as the source for the re-install disc. I expected it to do nothing as the diagnostics said it wasn't there, but it jumped right up and started transferring data. Apparently some drive associations got mixed up somewhere along the line. But, I was able to format the drive and load XP.

Now, everything on the monitor is giant size and I have no i-net access as the monitor and network (both Dell proprietary equipment) drivers apparently aren't there. I've got the Dell "Drivers and Utilities" and "Reinstalling Dell Tools and System Software" discs, but have not yet located drivers for the sub-systems that aren't functioning right.

While I search for drivers (I may have to download them from another box and x-fer them by floppie), I'm open for suggestions.

Thanks,
Mike

#4 Mike508

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Posted 21 August 2007 - 08:29 AM

Update: The system is up and running after installing the needed network and video drivers. Now, with i-net access, the reinstall should be able to be completed.

Thanks,
Mike

#5 mme

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Posted 21 August 2007 - 09:01 AM

i recently reformatted a dell dimension 3000
here are the neccessary drivers you need

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
graphic driver

http://downloadcenter.intel.com/confirm.as...ms&lang=eng

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

PCI Modem

http://downloadcenter.intel.com/license_ag...ms&lang=eng

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Intel® PRO/100 VE Network Connection

http://downloadcenter.intel.com/filter_res...mp;submit=Go%21

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
sound

http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/...p;fileid=122481

Edited by mme, 21 August 2007 - 09:04 AM.





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