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Disk Boot Failure

By cwwest
Dec 9, 2006
  1. I put together a system for my daughter and grand kids, who live 1,500 miles away, as a family Christmas present. It uses an ECS motherboard, AMD Sempron processor, 512 MB RAM, and a brand new Maxtor 160 GB IDE drive. I installed Windows XP Pro and other application software. I tested it for a week, powering it on and off, downloading some pgms like AVG, loading digital pictures, configuring 4 users, etc., all without any problems whatsoever. It performed flawlessly all week. I shipped it to her via UPS and it arrived in perfect condition. My granddaughter's boyfriend, with a fair amount of computer knowledge, installed the system and when it was powered up it gave a "disk boot failure". He checked all cables and any obvious problems and found no problems. The system gives the same failure every time.

    Any suggestions as to how to diagnose this problem from long distance or what the problem might be? It will be very difficult for me to re-create the system so I am hoping for a fix that will save the software and settings. I am somewhat concerned about some one there doing a boot repair if it has the high probablility of destroying all software and settings. I have never had to do this so I do not know the procedure or risks. Thanks for any help.
     
  2. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    have them move to other ide and make sure drive set to master
    have them check bios settings
    if sata sounds like cable is bad
    I have a machine that just needs a littl bump and cable comes loose
    if possiable try drive in diff machine see if it is recognised

    lastly the power supply lines should be checked
     
  3. cwwest

    cwwest TS Rookie Topic Starter

    More info

    HDD is NOT being detected by BIOS. Plugged into secondary controller - still not detected. Plugged HDD into another motherboard and drive was NOT detected. Bad (brand new) HDD. Worked for a week. Loaded all kinds of software and set settings, users, etc. Any suggestions as to how to bring the HDD back to life? Any way of retriving the software installs?
     
  4. N3051M

    N3051M TS Evangelist Posts: 2,115

    could have been bad transport.. hdds are very touchy sometimes.

    one of the only ways to test a hdd is to check it with the manufacturer's diagnostic utility (downloadable from their website), and also listening/feeling if its still alive/spinning or not or testing it on a pc rig you know works.

    If its hardware related problem, you may not be able to do much depending on what parts failed. If its software related, then you can try a software hdd recovery app to try and bring back some of it. either way not 100% guaranteed. professional data recovery service is expensive.

    you should have made an image of the HDD (eg with Ghost or acronis etc) before you shipped it, that way its a quick fix for the other person, like how OEM manufacturers do it (HP, dell etc), especially when the HDD fail, you just stick in the CD and load it to the new HDD.
     
  5. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    if data not important RMA back ASAP



    Ya I screwed a new laptop drive up like that bounced of the truck seat
    there went 100 usd
    was I PO'ed
     
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