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inconsistant booting and operation


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#1 tryn2learn

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 09:32 PM

I am trying to help a friend who has my old computer. It's an old 2001 Nexlink PC running Windows XP Home Edition. The first problem was that it would not start up. Then it would start and not fully boot, got it booted in safe mode and let it sit for a day, the clock stopped. So figured it was the CMOS battery. Replaced battery. Then it wouldn't boot. Finally got it to start and got the ROM checksum error. Got into the BIOS and changed the boot order so that it would boot from HDD 0. (not sure if it should be 0 or 1). Played with it all day today and it was working great. Went through numerous restarts, shut downs and then start ups and no problems.

What we did notice is that the problem occurs when it has been shut down and unplugged. Sure as heck, let it sit powered down and unplugged for 4 hours and now it won't boot properly. Got into the BIOS set up and it reverted back to the boot from a: Now the BIOS will not let me change settings and freezes up as I go through the various set ups.

My question is should I just tell my friend to take to the next recycle collection or am I missing something. BTW, the PC is clean with no malware or viruses. Used Malwarebytes and AVG.

The only things that I can think to do are to check the battery to see if it's properly installed (I didn't install it), check connections to make sure they are seated correctly. And possibly to get another battery. It's not like it would be the first time our local Shack had bad batteries.

I do not, nor does my friend have any of the original installations disks for this machine. And the floppy A: doesn't appear to be working as I tried to format 4 floppys and it stops dead at formatting at about 57%.

Any suggestions before I tell him to get rid of it?

Thanks in advance for any help. (oh one other oddity, even with sound device on the motherboard driver installed it also has no sound)
:blink:

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#2 dc3

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 11:27 PM

You're on the right path, check to see if the battery was installed observing proper polarity. Most computers use the CD2032 battery, the + sign should be facing up.

You can also take a DC Voltmeter and check the voltage, if it's below 3V I would replace it.

What is the model of this Nexlink?

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#3 tryn2learn

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 08:10 AM

Thanks for the quick response. I don't have a voltmeter and even if I did, I'm scared to death that I would electrocute myself! I'm assuming you mean check the power supply, right?

This is a Nexlink's Ececutive Model P4 Professional series, MDTower ATX case 250W power supply and Intel CPU Nex TX850nps - 300 (hard to read original packing slip as it was printed with an old dot matrix printer and they definitely had some burned pins on the print head) So on the TX850nps I'm not sure if the beginning T is actually a 'T' or not, and on the end 'nps' I don't know if it's the letter 'n' or not.

The packing slip goes further to say it's Netlink Midtower ATX case w/300Watt Power Supply

Haven't been inside the unit yet to check the battery and connections. Will do that shortly.

Thanks for your help! :)

#4 dc3

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 09:35 AM

I'm assuming you mean check the power supply, right?


No, I was suggesting reading the DC voltage of the CMOS battery.

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#5 tryn2learn

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 09:47 AM

OH!!! Well, I can take the battery back to the store and have them check it. Wouldn't be the first time I've taken a battery back there. Thanks for the heads up.

So you think that if the battery is bad it is causing the inconsistent booting event? Because once it does boot correctly, it works beautifully!!! :|

#6 dc3

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 10:14 AM

A low CMOS battery can cause some of the problems you have described. With a flat battery the BIOS will revert to its default settings and may produce error messages when you go to restart the computer, like CMOS Read Error, CMOS Battery Failure, CMOS Checksum Error.

I would replace the battery, reset the date and time, and see what happens after that.

When you take the battery back and the "tech" pulls out a Voltmeter and goes to read the voltage, be aware that batteries will not have an accurate voltage reading without an appropriate load on them. This could allow a fading battery to produce an accurate voltage reading, but the voltage may drop once it is under the normal running load.

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#7 tryn2learn

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 10:38 AM

Thanks for the excellent info. Once the HVAC guy leaves (heat isn't working, and it's cold) then I can go back to the store with the battery. I will let you know and thank you so very mcuh for the excellent info for one like me who doesn't realize all these nuances.

:)

#8 tryn2learn

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 02:18 PM

Okay, went and bought a new battery from Staples as their batteries are pretty reliable. It's a Duracell DL2032 Which is their number for a CR2032.

Powered up and it booted to the MSI flash screen where you can hit the DEL key to enter the BIOS. It entered BIOS but my keyboard was dead, because this BIOS default doesn't allow USB input of keyboard or mouse. (also know this cause it use to be my machine and it came originally with a PS2 keyboard and mouse) I shut down and repowered up and re-entered the BIOS. This time it let me go in and set the date and time and change the boot order, default is the floppy a: and I enabled USB for keyboard and mouse. Did a save and exit and it worked perfect and booted into Windows XP.

Decided to do a restart and it flashed a blue screen so fast I could see what it said. Rebooted in safe mode and am looking at the event viewer and it's giving me a system error for where to acquire the time. What do I set that at? I'm lost. My laptop is set for NIST. But does this need to be set for something else in the windows XP set up?

#9 dc3

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 02:39 PM

Is the local time zone set properly?

What does Date and Time reflect in the Control panel?

Edit: Your blue screen error has me curious, please download BlueScreenView
No installation required.
Double click on BlueScreenView.exe file to run the program.
When scanning is done, go Edit>Select All.
Go File>Save Selected Items, and save the report as BSOD.txt.
Open BSOD.txt in Notepad, copy all content, and paste it into your next reply.

Edited by dc3, 11 March 2011 - 02:40 PM.

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#10 tryn2learn

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 02:42 PM

Now I'm viewing the events viewer and seeing Service Control Manager errors all the same:

The following boot-start or system-start driver(s) failed to load:
AFD
AvgLdx86
AvgMfx86
AvgTdiX
BANTExt
Fips
IPSec
MRxSmb
NetBIOS
NetBT
RasAcd
Rdbss
Tcpip

What in heck is going on??? Can anybody help????? :(

#11 tryn2learn

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 03:10 PM

I can only now boot in safe mode. It just goes into an endless loop of trying to boot normally and tries to reboot. If I choose safe mode it will boot into Windows XP. But will not boot in normal mode. I think I am ready to throw this out!!!!

Is there any hope???

#12 dc3

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 03:18 PM

There are two things that come to mind here, one is that there may be a problem with the hdd. The other is that there may be an infection. I've requested that a member of the Malware Removal team take a look at this to help determine if that is the problem. With the hdd I would like you to go back into the BIOS and see if you can find the SMART feature and see if it is enabled, if it is what it indicates.

Another thing that we can do is to find out who the manufacturer is of your hdd, then you can go to their web site and download their diagnostic tool for that hdd. If you don't know who the manufacturer is you can download SIW to find out who it is.

Caution:
It has recently become necessary to advise members that many free programs now come bundled with unwanted or unneeded software. I would suggest that you read all of the options so that you will know what you are installing. You should remove the check mark in any boxes with unwanted or unneeded software that is not needed for the proper function of the program being installed.

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#13 Elise

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 03:26 PM

Hello, this kind of problem can be caused by a variety of problems. First lets have a look at the BSOD code in normal mode.

We Need to Diagnose Your BlueScreen
  • When you boot your machine, press F8 to list the startup options, exactly as you would if you were trying to enter Safe Mode
  • Select "Disable Automatic Restart on System Failure", as shown here:
    Posted Image
  • When your system BSODs, write down the STOP error code, as well as any written out error message back here. The STOP error will always appear, but the message may not. You are looking for this:
    Posted Image
Please post me the error(s).

regards, Elise


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#14 tryn2learn

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 04:00 PM

Bleepin'Blonde,
Okay, I'll check again, but I don't remember seeing those options. All I remember seeing is SAFE MODE, SAFE WITH NETWORKING,& SAFE MODE WITH COMMAND PROMPT. Course I'm a bit blurring eyed from looking at it so much.

I will let you know.

@Arachibutyrophobia
I can't boot in normal mode and so if I boot in Safe mode with networking will that allow me internet access?


Thank you both.

#15 Elise

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 05:22 PM

Hi, in that case, scroll down to Normal mode and put one finger on the F8 button. Hit enter and immediately after that tap F8. The Advanced Boot Options menu will then come up and you'll see the options as listed above.

regards, Elise


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