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Need some advice on how CD drives work.


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24 replies to this topic

#1 NuckenFutz

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 03:39 PM

Hi all, there is this laptop that we could not get to boot/read ANY type of cd while in the bios. But we boot an external OS called slax and it would then read disks. My friend thinks that for the disk drive to work you first need an OS installed so it has the proper drivers to work in the bios. I think that is totally wrong. I REALLY think the drive should work even with no OS installed because how do people expect you to install an OS with no current one? I was going to boot this utility disk and put on a fresh XP MBR so windows would boot. And it cant be the HDD because its new. So could the cd drives firmware be defective? And I forgot to say I need to install windows XP on it and we could never get it installed so i am supposing its the MBR. This CD drive only supports basic CD-R disks. Will it not read a CD-RW?

I looked over my post to try to make it more understandable. Hope it helped =/

Edited by NuckenFutz, 09 July 2011 - 04:00 PM.


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#2 Allan

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 03:48 PM

First, I have to admit I don't understand your post at all. But I do understand the basic question, so here goes. If you insert a bootable disc in a cd or dvd drive, and that drive is the first device in the bios boot order, the system should boot to it. The only reasons a system will not boot to a disc are the following:

1) The drive is not the first device in the bios boot order or
2) The cd / dvd is not bootable or it is defective or
3) The drive is defective

Edited by Allan, 09 July 2011 - 03:48 PM.


#3 NuckenFutz

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 03:51 PM

Yea, im pretty terrible at explaining stuff because this laptop is very complicated. soz about that =/
1. I did set the boot order to boot the disk drive first.
2. I know the disk is bootable because I test all the things I am planning to do on my PC first
3. How can it be defective if it works well when we boot slax?
Thanks for the fast response btw. =D

Edited by NuckenFutz, 09 July 2011 - 04:02 PM.


#4 Allan

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 04:01 PM

I don't know, but I stand by my post.

#5 NuckenFutz

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 04:05 PM

Well this kinda sucks =/
What about the firmware? Could it of gotten messed up some how?

#6 Allan

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 04:06 PM

no

#7 NuckenFutz

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 04:13 PM

Well im all out of ideas.... Does anyone else have any? ANY

#8 BlackSpyder

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 09:26 PM

OK let me see if i get this straight...

1)The Hard Drive died and you were unable to clone the old drive

2) There is no copy of Windows on the new Hard Drive and you only have a Recovery CD not a full install CD

3) You cannot play CD's through the BIOS...

4) You can, however, run Slax

Here's whats happening, The utility CD you have requires there to be some of the Windows XP OS to be run on the PC, since there is none it won't. Media CD's will not play because the BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) does not know how to decipher them since there is no boot sector (same reason the Recovery CD won't run). Slax (aka the Slackware Linux Live CD) is an OS designed to run off of a CD drive alone with no hard drive.

How to fix it, get your hands on a Windows XP install CD for the version you have a license for (on the back of the laptop there should be a sticker stating what version and the license key, most likely XP Home), insert CD boot and install windows from the install CD. or install a version of Linux on the PC (Ubuntu, Fedora, etc I would not suggest Slackware unless you are very secure with your knowledge of linux)

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#9 NuckenFutz

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 01:23 AM

I do not have a recovery disk. This is a Windows XP SP2 install disk. I used this thing on my tower to put a fresh install on it when it was built. And sorry for not checking the forum in like 2 days, I was out on a job. I also used wintoflash to put a copy of the disk on a bootable flash drive. Last time we did this it would get all the basic files on there and once it had to restart to finish installing xp it never got to that point... It just sat at a black screen so i was hoping loading the XP MBR would fix that. And that Utility CD I have is hirens boot disk. Its a live cd that has a many VERY useful tools on it so I am hoping I can get it to boot that.

Edited by NuckenFutz, 11 July 2011 - 01:29 AM.


#10 NuckenFutz

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 09:39 PM

Also we cannot even get this laptop to boota windows XP install off of a flash drive. It just sits at a black screen.

#11 MrBruce1959

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 10:22 PM

Normally when you install an operating system all the required files and cabs are loaded into memory on the motherboard from the source disk or flash drive.

Once this has been completed the files and cabs are then moved to the hard drive for further execution and expansion.

The disk or flash drive is no longer needed at this point because the required files should have been successfully saved to the hard drive, where they are expanded and placed across the hard drive as part of the operating system.

Usually when the OS asks for a reboot, the installation disk/s are no longer needed.

From what you typed above, you are saying your computer boots to a blank screen and not the flash drive, it actually shouldn't be looking for the flash drive at all at this point, it should be looking for the boot command on your hard drive at sector 0, cyl 0, head 1.

Hope this clears things up for you.

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#12 NuckenFutz

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Posted 13 July 2011 - 02:23 AM

Thanks for the response bruce. Would you have any idea why we cannot get this laptop to boot either this CD or this flash drive with the windows XP install? I have tested both on my desktop and my friends. They both are bootable in the bios. This is the part I can't get past... We just cant get it to boot anything, Perhaps it could be caused by a faulty bios? And I have made sure I tell the system to boot from the device I want to use. I tell it to boot the disk and it tells me there are no bootable devices. I tell it to boot the flash drive and it just sits at a blank screen. sorry for dragging this along so far, this computers behavior just makes no sense though.

#13 MrBruce1959

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Posted 13 July 2011 - 05:15 AM

can you please post the make and entire (FULL) model number of this laptop?

Please remember, the complete model number will help me to help you better, I say this because some members post a laptop's series number and series numbers can be used on several hundred different models.

Bruce.
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#14 NuckenFutz

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Posted 13 July 2011 - 11:58 AM

Its a Dell Latitude D610 if that's what you mean by full.

Edited by NuckenFutz, 13 July 2011 - 12:02 PM.


#15 Eyesee

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Posted 13 July 2011 - 12:29 PM

Could your XP cd be excessively scratched or need cleaning?
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