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Safe Mode reboot loop nightmare - Pls help!


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#1 Niramaya

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 04:28 PM

I am currently caught in a Safe Mode reboot loop. This happened after I opted to enter Safe Mode via MSconfig (checked /Safeboot box in BOOT.INI tab). I am unable to boot through any mode, safe, normal, command, etc.

I do have Recovery Console installed already but I attempt to use it, I get the "UNMPOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME" error on blue screen.

I do not have a Windows XP CD so last night I successfully booted with Knoppix but cannot access the Boot.ini. I believe this is due to the encryption software (Encryption Plus Hard Disk by GuardianEdge) that came with the laptop. Before this happened, During the boot process I would get the Encryption login screen before Windows XP starts. Without that step, I cannot access any files.

My question is this: Is there any way to reach encryption login while booted via Knoppix?

I am completely locked out of my laptop. I appreciate any help you can offer.

Thanks,
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#2 garmanma

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 04:48 PM

At the very bottom of the page in this tutorial will tell you what you have to do:
http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/tutorials/how-to-start-windows-in-safe-mode/

Edited by garmanma, 25 October 2009 - 04:49 PM.

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#3 Niramaya

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 04:56 PM

Thanks for your help. I took a look an I've attempted this already. Problem is I cannot access boot.ini due to the full disk encryption. Any way to fix the volume error on recovery console?

#4 joseibarra

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 05:06 PM

I would:

Make a bootable Recovery Console CD (no XP media needed), boot on that, run chkdsk /r, delete/rebuild the boot.ini file, reboot, proceed with repairs.

You can make a bootable XP Recovery Console CD by downloading an ISO file and burning it to a CD.

The same XP Recovery Console commands can be run from the bootable Recovery Console CD.

The bootable ISO image file you need to download is called:

xp_rec_con.iso

Download the ISO file from here:

http://www.mediafire.com/?ueyyzfymmig

Use this free and easy program to create your bootable CD:

http://www.imgburn.com/

It would be a good idea to test your bootable CD on the computer that is working.

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#5 Niramaya

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 05:25 PM

Thanks Jose.

I was able to boot through CD.. Got the blue "Windows Setup" screen.. seemed to be loading some files and the.. an error screen "a problem has been detected etc"

Tech Info: *** STOP: 0X0000007e

pci.sys - address...

any of this make sense?

#6 Niramaya

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 06:06 PM

I do not have a Windows XP boot CD.. is there a way to download/burn one similar to earlier instructions for Recovery Console? Perhaps that approach is better?

#7 joseibarra

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 04:59 PM

A little Googling hints that this might be a hardware issue (RAM or video card), but I am not sure what to do next.

You can't download XP and make a CD. If you could borrow a bootable XP installation CD, that would be fine for RC and use that to fix your boot.ini file.

Did you try the new bootable CD in a working computer to be sure the RC boots properly? If the CD boots fine on another computer, just type exit, remove the CD and reboot normally. If not, burn a new CD until it does work.

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#8 Niramaya

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 05:24 PM

the bootable CD works perfectly fine on another PC.. With the laptop in question, I get:

*** STOP: 0X0000007e
*** pci.sys - address F76130BF...

I imagine getting hold of an XP CD is useless then if this boot CD is fully functional?

#9 joseibarra

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 05:49 PM

Some of the stuff I read from other people say once they got hold on an XP SP2 (or SP3) bootable CD, they were able to boot RC on that and if that works for you, you would be able to proceed. I do not know if they made the RC CD like you did.

They were working on other problems and needed to boot into RC and unable to boot a Windows CD with SP1 on it, got your same pci.sys and 0X0000007e message, but using a bootable XP installation CD that they knew had at least SP2 got them past the pci.sys 0X0000007e issue.

There are also some hints that it may be a BIOS setting for the PCI bus in your computer to turn off/on.

I do not know how SPs come into play for RC and that CD you made - is it SP1, does it even matter? I have that exact CD you made, but I also have various flavors of XP installation CDs. Perhaps there is a connection with that error and it will only work with SP2+. Maybe somebody else will shed some light. I am using words I don't like - maybe, perhaps, might - ugh!

If it was me, knowing what I read, I would borrow a fairly recent bootable XP installation CD, or make one with SP3 (bootable media required though).

Edited by joseibarra, 26 October 2009 - 05:51 PM.

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#10 hamluis

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 06:01 PM

SPs come into play only when attempting to reinstall the O/S or run sfc /scannow (where the XP CD is required to be compatible with the current latest SP installed on the system.

The RC doesn't concern itself with such.

Pci.sys is a Windows driver...I guess I don't understand where it would come into play at all in loading the RC from an optical drive. If Windows isn't running, why should there be any error noting pci.sys?

If you were trying to reinstall XP...the 7E error would make sense somewhat.

I'd run a hard drive diagnostic.

Louis

#11 Niramaya

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 06:12 PM

Thanks Jose and Louis for your input.

How do I go about a diagnostic without being in windows?

#12 Niramaya

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 06:16 PM

actually, I just ran a pre-boot sysem assessment and everything looks good. Got "...assessment complete. no diagnostic untility partition identified"

#13 hamluis

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 06:49 PM

I don't know what a "pre-boot sysem assessment" is but I do know that I consider the hard drive manufacturer's diagnostic as being the last word on testing hard drives for functionality.

These diagnostics are run from optical drive, have no necessity whatever for Windows to be functional (although Seagate has one which can run from within Windows). If I have a Seagate drive, I use the SeaTools for DOS .iso, which I then burn to CD. Resut is a bootable CD which contains the diagnostic.

Hard Drive Installation and Diagnostic Tools - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/28744/hard-drive-installation-and-diagnostic-tools/

How to successfully burn or write an ISO-image to cd or dvd - http://iso.snoekonline.com/iso.htm

I use the Active@ Iso Burner program for such, Active@ ISO Burner - http://www.ntfs.com/iso_burner_free.htm.

Louis

#14 Niramaya

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 07:01 PM

Thanks Louis. Does it matter which one I choose? I have a Dell Latitude D620.

By the way, the diagnostics I ran was avail through boot menu.

#15 hamluis

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 09:12 PM

I've never owned a Dell, so I know nothing about their diagnostics, CDs, etc.

If you want to run the appropriate hard drive diagnostic...you must remove the case cover, take a look at the hard drive and use the link I previously posted to attempt to download the diagnostic.

If you, for whatever reason, feel that the Dell diagnostic tells you that your hard drive is OK...that's your option to believe such.

Louis




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