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Suddenly Can't Boot XP Partition Of Dual-Boot Configuration


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#1 LouieChuckyMerry

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 06:10 AM

Back for more and, as always, a hearty thanks to anyone willing to give of their time. For the last several months I've been running a dual boot configuration--XP Professional and Windows 7 Home Premium managed by GAG Boot Manager--on my HP Pavilion dv4 2040us with no problems. I mostly use Win 7, but roughly twice a week I'll boot into XP Pro to utilize a legacy app or just to update my anti-virus. Yesterday, 4 days since my last visit, I booted into XP Pro and was, for no reason that I can figure, confronted with the classic "We apologize for the inconvenience . . ." screen that asks if I want to start Windows normally or use the last known good configuration or start in Safe Mode or a few other options. Given that 4 days ago I booted into the XP partition with no problems I chose "Start Windows normally." However, after entering the splash screen, the dots moved across the bar below the logo for 3 complete cycles then, half-way through the forth cycle, the screen went black then reset to the Power-On password request (I have the "Power-On" password set to yes in the BIOS, so I receive this request every time I power-up). Also, it's exactly the same if I choose any of the other options, Safe Mode, last known good configuration, etc.: 3 cycles of dots then half-way through the forth cycle it resets to the Power-On password request. My last successful use of the XP partition went smoothly, and in the 4 days between visits to the XP partition I did nothing out of the ordinary in Win 7: my avast! Home Edition anti-virus updated many times, I installed a couple of Win 7 updates (Defender definitions and a generic Win 7 security update), I ran CCleaner and Glary utilities a couple of times each, and truly nothing out of the usual. Does anyone have an idea what the problem might be? And thanks again for any help.

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#2 computerxpds

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 06:38 AM

Bleeping Computer DOES NOT recommend the use of registry cleaners/optimizers for several reasons:

Registry cleaners are extremely powerful applications that can damage the registry by using aggressive cleaning routines and cause your computer to become unbootable.

The Windows registry is a central repository (database) for storing configuration data, user settings and machine-dependent settings, and options for the operating system. It contains information and settings for all hardware, software, users, and preferences. Whenever a user makes changes to settings, file associations, system policies, or installed software, the changes are reflected and stored in this repository. The registry is a crucial component because it is where Windows "remembers" all this information, how it works together, how Windows boots the system and what files it uses when it does. The registry is also a vulnerable subsystem, in that relatively small changes done incorrectly can render the system inoperable. For a more detailed explanation, read Demystifying the Windows Registry.

Not all registry cleaners are created equal. There are a number of them available but they do not all work entirely the same way. Each vendor uses different criteria as to what constitutes a "bad entry". One cleaner may find entries on your system that will not cause problems when removed, another may not find the same entries, and still another may want to remove entries required for a program to work.

Not all registry cleaners create a backup of the registry before making changes. If the changes prevent the system from booting up, then there is no backup available to restore it in order to regain functionality. A backup of the registry is essential BEFORE making any changes to the registry.

Improperly removing registry entries can hamper malware disinfection and make the removal process more difficult if your computer becomes infected. For example, removing malware related registry entries before the infection is properly identified can contribute to system instability and even make the malware undetectable to removal tools.

The usefulness of cleaning the registry is highly overrated and can be dangerous. In most cases, using a cleaner to remove obsolete, invalid, and erroneous entries does not affect system performance but it can result in "unpredictable results".

Unless you have a particular problem that requires a registry edit to correct it, I would suggest you leave the registry alone. Using registry cleaning tools unnecessarily or incorrectly could lead to disastrous effects on your operating system such as preventing it from ever starting again. For routine use, the benefits to your computer are negligible while the potential risks are great.



As I've said many times, registry cleaners, tune-up programs, and so-called "optimizers" are the current snake-oil of the internet. There are countless free programs like this and apparently some paid ones, as well.

Do not be deceived. They promise performance you can only dream about....but only deliver a computer that is worse off than it was to begin with.

Which os did you run the cleaners on just windows xp or windows 7? Also the windows 7 os runs just fine? I would try a repair using the command chkdsk /r in recovery console using the original windows xp disc (if you still have it if not we can still help you) :thumbsup:

Edited by computerxpds, 15 May 2010 - 06:39 AM.

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#3 LouieChuckyMerry

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 11:06 AM

I use CCleaner and Glary Utilities to empty my recycle bin, delete empty folders, and clear cookies. Your reply to my request for assistance seems a bit extreme to me. I've used CCleaner and Glary for years without issue. And, as I mentioned in my original post, I've had a perfectly functional dual-boot configuration--XP Pro and Win 7 managed by GAG Boot Manager--for months without issue. My problem is that suddenly--without me doing anything out of the ordinary; that is, nothing that I haven't done for many, many months--I can't boot into my XP partition. I run CCleaner and Glary in both OS's, as described above. I'm typing this reply from the Win 7 partition of the computer about which I originally posted. Because my laptop originally had Win 7 installed, I find it impossible to use my XP recovery console as Win 7 trumps XP at boot. Any other suggestions would be appreciated.

#4 hamluis

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 12:01 PM

From what I see...if you installed XP after Win 7...and you used a boot manager other than the XP or Win 7 boot manager...the problem with your XP partition may relate to your boot manager...or it may relate to your hard drive.

You have another complicating factor in that you have an HP system, which means that your hard drive is not necessarily set up like a system would be if the user went out and bought a system and then installed Windows. Recovery/restore partitions and where/how they are established...is a standard practice for OEMs like HP, but there seems to be no uniformity in the manner in which such is done.

Can you post a screenshot from the Win 7 Disk Management console, so that we can see what is reflected there?

Louis

#5 LouieChuckyMerry

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 02:00 AM

hamluis: thank you for trying to help. Here's a screenshot of my Win 7 Disk Management console:

Posted Image

When I bought this Win 7 laptop several months ago, the first thing that I did was make the recovery disks then delete the recovery partition. Next, I made a new partition and installed XP Pro. After this, I installed GAG Boot Manager to manage the 2 partitions because GAG allows each partition to stand alone; that is, each partition has it's own boot files so that they're fully independent. Then I made and tested image files of each partition and, finally, I swapped the partitions on the hard disk so that XP Pro is first. And in the ensuing months I've had not a single problem. The first thing that I did after being unable to boot into XP as I described above was to reinstall GAG. Unfortunately that wasn't the problem; XP still cycled the dots below the logo three-and-a-half times then reset to the Power-On password request. The next thing I tried was to use the XP Recovery Console, but as I typed above, Win 7 trumps XP and won't let me do this. Then I used a bootable CD with Puppy Linux to check out the XP partition. Everything appears in order, all the data is there as far as I can tell, but I'm not knowledgable enough to notice if something's missing from the boot files. My next goal is to figure out how to run chkdsk on the XP partition, but any other thoughts that you have would be very welcome.

#6 LouieChuckyMerry

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 05:11 AM

So, I used my partition manager, Partition Wizard Home Edition 5.0, to "unhide" my XP Pro partition with the intention of then running chkdsk /f. However, literally the second I assigned a drive letter to the XP partition I received a message from Win 7 stating that the drive had a problem and asking if I wanted to fix it, which I did. I then scheduled a chkdsk /f for my next reboot and, without even running the chkdsk, was able to boot into my XP partition (I'm typing this message from it). Anyway, all is well and thanks again for the help.

#7 hamluis

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 09:07 AM

Well...thanks for providing your resolution...happy computing :thumbsup:.

Louis




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