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I Can't Plan My Honeymoon!


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#1 daffy13b

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 02:25 AM

Hello everybody –

I am planning my wedding and honeymoon in Costa Rica and all the information is stored on my computer, which suddenly is confronting me with what I now know is the Blue Screen Of Death. If I don’t fix this soon, I’m in big trouble.

I have a Dell Dimension 4600 with Windows XP Home Version 2002, SP2. Pentium® 4CPU 2.80GHz with 2.25 GB of RAM (more on that in a bit).

Around Thanksgiving, my fiancée and I had a technician switch our computers (her laptop, my desktop) from cable to wireless internet (Linksys adapter and router). At the same time, he hooked up our printer (Epson Artisan 800) to both machines via wireless as well. While he was doing this, he noticed how incredibly slowly my desktop was working and recommended I add more RAM. I did this within a few days, adding two gigs to bring it up to the amount mentioned above.

All seemed well, and I was greatly enjoying my fast “new” machine until about a week ago. I started to prepare my machine to update to SP3 (the little balloon saying the update was available had been popping up at startup for months, but my machine was so slow I hadn’t bothered). I ran a-squared’s free deep scan and it didn’t find any problems. A bit later I was surfing for info on how to install SP3 when I got the message ”Internet Explorer has encountered a problem and must close”. So I moved on and decided to run a scan with my McAfee anti-virus. Suddenly I got a similar message: “McAfee has encountered a problem and must close.” I decided to re-start, but was unsuccessful at using the start button. I had to turn it off using the button on the tower. It was New Year’s Eve; I decided to give it a rest.

The next day (no hangover!) when I turned it on, I noticed the little “Updates Available” balloon didn’t pop up. Internet Explorer, Outlook Express, and McAfee wouldn’t open. I turned it off again using the manual button. I started it again and this time I got a message which I recall began with, “Windows fixed a serious error…” I still couldn’t open IE or Outlook Exp. Suddenly I got a bright blue screen with lots of writing. Here’s what the BSOD said:

A problem was detected and Windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer.

IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL
Check to make sure new hardware/software is properly installed…

etc.

If probs persist disable or remove new hard/software, Disable BIOS, etc.

Tech info:
***STOP: 0x0000000A (0x0000001C, 0x00000002, 0x00000001, 0x0x8053BAD9)
Beginning dump of physical memory, etc.”

Pressing keys, including F8 (which it suggested) did nothing. I haven’t the slightest idea how to do most of what it said; I don’t even know what BIOS are. I had to turn it off by killing the power on the strip.

I turned it back on and got the message, “Generic Hosts Process for Win32 Services has encountered a problem and must close.” Nothing was working. The desktop looked normal, and if I single-clicked on an icon it would highlight, but nothing would open. The Task Manager wouldn’t open either. I tried opening Outlook Express and nothing happened. I tried again and got a message “Can’t open OE because it’s already running. Close it” or something like that. More blue screens. Other tech info I saw included 0x0000008E and 0x000000F4.

I came here (I'd read about you guys on Castle Cops, R.I.P.) and surfed around a bit and came to think maybe I was having either a problem with my new RAM or a drivers problem, whatever that is. I read that I should scan for viruses.

I tried my machine again. Blue screen again. I tried booting into Safe Mode so I could run a scan, but with no luck. I unplugged the wireless from the USB port and tried again. It worked! I started McAfee to run its cleaner before running a scan. It was nearly done when I got a message, “McAfee MISP Shell has encountered a problem…” So I closed and re-opened it; this time I got the same message before it was even finished opening. Now, however, I could open the Task Manager. Go figure.

The next day I was having wireless connectivity problems; being tired of copying down error messages, I figured I would take screen pictures of them to post here. BSOD!

Problem seems to be caused by the following file: kmixer.sys
PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA” etc.
Tech info:
***STOP: 0x00000050
***kmixer.sys – Adress AFC68D11 base at AFC4600, DateStamp 448fed31

At this point I go to my technician and describe the problem. He says to “run Check Disk” and that it might find the problems and even repair them. So I did. All seemed to go well until near the end of the final stage, when I got three different messages:

userinit.exe – Entry Point Not Found
The Procedure entry point GetWindowModuleFileNameW could not be located in the dynamic library USER32.dll.

userinit.exe – Entry Point Not Found
The Procedure entry point GetWindowRgnBox could not be located in the dynamic library USER32.dll.

Explorer.EXE – Entry Point Not Found
The Procedure entry point Unpack DDELParam could not be located in the dynamic library USER32.dll.

All I had was my wall paper with no icons on it, so I tried Ctrl/Alt/Del:

taskmgr.exe - Entry Point Not Found
The Procedure entry point GetNextDlgGroupItem could not be located in the dynamic library USER32.dll.

So I clicked “OK”. BSOD!!!

A process or thread crucial to system operation has unexpectedly exited or been terminated. Etc. etc.
***STOP: 0x000000F4

I tried again going into Safe Mode in order to run a virus scan. BSOD!!
Yesterday I tried to get into Safe Mode and got BSOD before I even got there: 0x0000007F

So there it is and here I am. I’m sorry if this is long-winded, but I didn’t want to leave out any details that might be important. Tonight I turned it on to go into My Computer get system info to post here, but that was really all I could do with it.

What do I do next? Right now the machine seems pretty useless, but I’ve gotta get it working so I can use that wedding info and get to Costa Rica.

Many thanks in advance, and Happy New Year.

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 08:36 AM

Hi :thumbsup:.

The first thing I would do...is run Memtest on various combinations of your RAM.

Just reading the headlines...it all seems to point to that as being the focus, starting with the RAM update.

In my limited experience with RAM situations...the pattern of varying error messages (all with RAM pointers) was my first clue to check it out, rather than treat each error message as a separate entity.

When running the tests (if you go that route), you have to try various combinations in various locations. If you get errors running all RAM...try it with just the new, then just the old...then single modules and so on.

MemTest Manual - http://hcidesign.com/memtest/manual.html

Memtest86.com - Memory Diagnostic - http://www.memtest86.com/

The download must be burned onto CD. You must use a program to create the bootable CD from the .iso file you download. I find that Active@ ISO Burner. Data CD DVD burning software. Write ISO image to CD,DVD,CD-RW,CDR,DVD-RW. - http://www.ntfs.com/iso-burning.htm is easy to use and does this quickly...but there are a ton of other .iso burning programs that do the same.

You will have to change your BIOS boot options so that XP will boot from the CD...in order to run the tests.

I know this may seem like a lot...but someone here will guide you through, if you have questions.

Louis

#3 daffy13b

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 10:55 PM

Hi Louis -

Thanks for the quick response.

I was with you until this point:

The download must be burned onto CD. You must use a program to create the bootable CD from the .iso file you download. I find that Active@ ISO Burner. Data CD DVD burning software. Write ISO image to CD,DVD,CD-RW,CDR,DVD-RW. - http://www.ntfs.com/iso-burning.htm is easy to use and does this quickly...but there are a ton of other .iso burning programs that do the same.

You will have to change your BIOS boot options so that XP will boot from the CD...in order to run the tests.

Are you saying I should download to a CD from a different computer, then download Active (or some other) to another CD, and then run them consecutively on my machine? I guess the only way I know to create a CD is to burn it from a file on my computer. And where can I go to find out what a bootable CD is? Does that mean I put it in the CD tray and push the ON button and let it do the rest?

Sorry, for all the questions; I'm on foreign soil here.

#4 hamluis

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Posted 07 January 2009 - 10:10 AM

No problem...questions should always precede actions when uncertain about procedures :thumbsup:.

I explained it poorly.

You need to do two different downloads.

a. Memtest .iso file from the Memtest website. The file is in .iso format and cannot just be burned to CD and expected to boot/run properly. The .iso format must be changed into a bootable CD.

b. Active@ Iso Burner (or comparable iso-burner application), which is the program you will install onto your system and then use that to burn a bootable CD from the .iso file which you downloaded from Memtest site. This will be just like burning a CD from your hard drive, but you just use a "special" program to do the burn.

A bootable CD or a bootable whatever...is one which is not dependent on any version of Windows to either install or run.

To normally run a program, that program needs to be installed in Windows...but a bootable CD doesn't need Windows in order for the program to run. The program is on the CD itself.

Diagnostics of various kinds are often run from bootable CDs or bootable floppies because trying to diagnose with Windows running is very difficult and unreliable. Memtest is RAM/memory diagnostic, can be used to check the status of memory modules and system slots for memory.

You will have to go into the BIOS to change your boot options...before you begin to run the Memtest diagnostic.

Someone here familiar with Dell systems...can give you advice on how to do that :flowers:. Or you can probably look it up in your owner's manual.

Louis

#5 daffy13b

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Posted 10 January 2009 - 03:32 PM

Hi Louis -

Active@ Iso Burner doesn't seem to be recognizing MemTest as an .iso file. It can't find MemTest when I run it. Any suggestions? Thanks.

#6 ePost

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Posted 10 January 2009 - 04:03 PM

EDIT: Forget this article below - not relevant. Link: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/161850

Edited by ePost, 10 January 2009 - 04:10 PM.


#7 hamluis

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Posted 10 January 2009 - 05:10 PM

Find? You need to browse/point to the .iso file when trying to burn it.

Are you saying that it cannot see the file? Can you see the file when you search?

Louis

Edited by hamluis, 10 January 2009 - 05:23 PM.


#8 lowtek_otc

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Posted 10 January 2009 - 05:53 PM

Hi Louis -

Active@ Iso Burner doesn't seem to be recognizing MemTest as an .iso file. It can't find MemTest when I run it. Any suggestions? Thanks.



I prefer ImgBurn if you cannot get Active ISO Burner to work:

http://download.imgburn.com/SetupImgBurn_2.4.2.0.exe




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