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Dell PC Won't Start


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#1 Modsci

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 04:33 PM

Hi All:

A friend (?) asked me to help with a major difficulty she was having with her Dell Dimension E521 machine.

The machine refuses to boot up; won't even boot up in Safe Mode. It gets to a black screen with "Safe Node" in the 4 corners of the screen.

I tried doing a recovery console but had no luck there. I thought about doing a System Restore, but was hesitant to due to loss of data files with no way to back them up before doing it.

When trying to do a normal boot-up, the Windows Splash Screen comes up, the the login screen comes up wanting you to click your user name. When you do that, the message "Loading Your Personal Settings" comes up, then the screen blanks, and goes back to the login screen up with the message "Windows is shutting down" below the user name.

Please help when you can.

MODSCI

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#2 Budapest

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 04:36 PM

You may be able to back-up the data with this:

http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vis...ndows-computer/
The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it.

—George Bernard Shaw

#3 Modsci

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Posted 08 February 2010 - 05:04 PM

Budapest:

Thanks for your help with this. I tried Ubuntu, but had some problems, so I instead made a CD of the Ultimate Boot CD. With that I was able to make a backup of all the data files on the problem machine.

I think the next project will be to re-install Windows XP so at least it will boot. After I run all the virus scanning I can find just to make sure all the nasties are gone. I may have to re-post for more help.

How do we mark this topic as closed?

modsci

#4 Budapest

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Posted 08 February 2010 - 05:27 PM

If you do a "Clean Install" of XP that will remove any viruses.

http://michaelstevenstech.com/cleanxpinstall.html

Generally we do not bother to close topics on this forum.
The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it.

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#5 Ken-in-West-Seattle

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Posted 08 February 2010 - 07:18 PM

We will be seeing more of these. I have two on my bench right now. One dell and one HP. It sees to be too new to be identified. A recovery from recovery partition will fix it.

Use the ubuntu live cd to boot and transfer the user file tree to an external drive before running the recovery.

If you don't mind a test, try this:

type "administrator" as the log in name and leave the password field blank. hit enter.

If you get a dialog box that mentions logging on to a netware server or choosing a login script, let me know.

I have no idea why the ones I have do this but I cannot think of any reason both my clients pc's would do this since they have never been on a netware network.

Why didn't the recovery partition work? Do you have the dell oem xp cd's?

Edited by Ken-in-West-Seattle, 08 February 2010 - 07:20 PM.


#6 Modsci

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 05:52 PM

Being a "Newbie," I don't really understand what a "User File Tree" is. I backed up the My Documents subdirectory, settings, My Downloads, and some other stuff using Fab's Autobackup from the Ultimate Boot CD I made. I tried the Ubuntu software but didn't really understand what it did, so I went to Ultimate Boot CD.

I have done a Windows XP Repair, which recovered all the data files. I did not do (yet) a clean install you mentioned. As of now the only thing which has a problem is Internet Explorer, which is the subject of another post on this forum.

I did have the "Status.msi" problem mentioned in other posts, but I deleted the HP PSC 2100 software which cured that. probably a Windows Installer issue.

I don't think I can do the "Login as Administrator" try now, as the XP Repair has already benn done, so the machine is in a different state.

#7 Ken-in-West-Seattle

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 09:07 AM

I figured it out.

Both pc's, different clients, had been mangled by the same CompUSA "tech" in the past. He apparently used the shotgun approach to networking and installed every networking protocol available in xp in an attempt to get a wireless router working. Failed at both attempts. Looks like ipx/spx was on both.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPX/SPX

It apparently had nothing to do with the blank screen with mouse issue, but was a bizarre coincidence to stumble on none the less.




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