Disk hardware configuration problem

By ladylaffsalot
Aug 4, 2009
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  1. I'm having a problem.
    It started when I downloaded Windows xp(Home) onto a laptop (IBM ThinkPad) Well, I didnt realize at the time that I misplaced the product key, and when I got to that point in the downlkoad I could go no further. I found another windows xp version(Student and Teacher) that I did have a key for, but I couldnt stop the previous windows installation from restarting EVERY time it rebooted. It had windows xp (professional) on it when I began , but it was not working properly, hence the download. It is a used laptop and I dont have access to that original disk.
    So I went searching on the web to find out how to stop it. Well, I am not too savy with the inner workings of a computer and took to trying anything to stop it, since nothing I was trying was working.
    The last thing I tried was changing the boot.ini file and that has only made things worse!
    Now, I am only getting the error message: "Windows could not start because of a computer disk hardware configuration problem..." I'm sure you know the rest. So it will reboot whenever I hit any button. I get the IBM screen with the F1 & F12 options then back to the error screen. NOTHING ELSE!
    I've gone into BIOS and and tried every boot option, and none have worked. I'm completly lost at this point.
    I cant get a command prompt, or any kind of access to the boot.ini file to change it back.
    Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    Ladylaffsalot
  2. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,274

    You'll have to get into the BIOS, change the startup drive to CD/DVD, and boot from your Student/Teacher CD. Once you boot from the CD, you may (slight chance) be able to use the recovery console, but you're better off at this point to do a fresh install. You'll jusst have to go through the hassle of knowing which drivers you need (unless you know all the computer specs):slurp:
  3. ladylaffsalot

    ladylaffsalot Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Thanx for the help. I did what you suggested and nothing happens. It ends back up at the "Disk hardware configuration..." error screen.
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