My mother's computer: Gateway PC, running XP Pro
She denies dropping or hitting the computer...ever.
She did say that she had left the computer on for a couple of days with the doors to the cabinet closed. It's a wooden cabinet with air holes. She turned it off. Then the next time she turned it on she got the message "Hard Drive Was Not Found. Please consult the Troubleshooting section of you User's Manual" (Full version in #3 below).
When I checked out the computer, this is what I did and what I found:
1. I turned on the computer and immediately could hear the drive "clicking"...sounded like a lawn sprinkler: "click-click...click-click...click-click..etc..". Never heard the typical "grinding" sound.
2. Got the "Gateway" logo screen for about a minute.
3. Then black screen with white lettering:
- "Hard Drive Was Not Found. Please consult the Troubleshooting section of you User's Manual."
- "Press ESC to prevent displaying this warning in future"
- "Press Enter to continue"
5. Blinking Cursor on Black Screen, like in a Dos Prompt.
6.Turned the computer off and then back on.
- "A Problem with the hard drive has been detected. Consult the troubleshooting section of your user's manual"
- "Press Enter key to continue"
- CHKDSK ran.
- Verified Indexes, Security Descriptors, and Replacing Bad Clusters
- Then went back to the message from #6 above.
- "Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
- "Please reinstall a copy
Is this computer toast?