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Help! Stuck in XP reboot loop hell.

By akatafkac
Mar 9, 2004
  1. HP Pavilion XT978 2.4 256M RAM
    XP (Home Edition) startup logo comes up, then cursor arrow, hourglass...
    Then a message window comes up for several milliseconds;
    all I can read is something about "not enough virtual memory"
    with an "OK" button in the window,
    and it reboots and loops forevermore.

    I've run chddsk from the recovery console with my bootable XP Pro CD;
    The owner of this POS purchased it at Costco or Circuit City,
    but claims they've never had an XP CD...

    The goal here is to recover without frying it and starting over.
     
  2. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    the previous owner was likely correct. HPs generally have either a recovery CD, or a recovery partition.

    Did you happen to disable the Pagefile(Virtual memory)?

    Can you boot to safe mode by hitting F8?
     
  3. akatafkac

    akatafkac TS Rookie Topic Starter

    > Did you happen to disable the Pagefile(Virtual memory)?

    Do you mean "did THEY happen to..." ?

    > Can you boot to safe mode by hitting F8?

    Tried that, safe mode is in the 4 corners, but still reboot-loops.
     
  4. Spike

    Spike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,168

    Can you borrow somebody elses XP disk (It MUST be the CORRECT VERSION though)?

    If so, you may be able to use it to repair the installation, but unfortunately, this WILL require a product key, which I suspect you don't have.

    There are ways and means of getting a product key, but unfortunatly, in your situation, the only ones I know of result in getting a pirated OS.
     
  5. akatafkac

    akatafkac TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Yeah, that's pretty much what i figured.
    I take it that CORRECT VERSION means "Home Edition".
    That is the one scenario that i have not tried.

    BTW thank you both thus far - i didn't expect such immediate results!
    Great board.
     
  6. Spike

    Spike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,168

    Yes. Sorry about the CAPS, but in case you try it, I thought I'd better make sure you noticed it. lol

    I'm not 100% sure on whether a product key is required before or during a repair. If it's during, there will be a real problem if you don't have one, as you won't be able to boot into your OS.

    Have you tried booting with last known good configuration?
     
  7. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    Booting with XP CD to recovery console and deleting \pagefile.sys could help too, if it has become corrupted.
     
  8. Spike

    Spike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,168

    Darn. Didn't think of that, and it sounds like a likely suspect too! lol. Definatly worth a try.

    Nice one Mich. Hope that's the answer.
     
  9. akatafkac

    akatafkac TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Spike sez:
    > Have you tried booting with last known good configuration?
    Yep - SOS.
    And regarding the key - the hard part is finding someone with HOME as opposed to PRO

    > Booting with XP CD to recovery console and deleting \pagefile.sys could help too, if it has become corrupted.

    So Mic - i can get to the recovery console.
    What is the entire path (where is "pagefile.sys")?
    And what happens if i delete it?
     
  10. Spike

    Spike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,168

    Pagefile.sys is a system file.

    When windows requires extra memory, it uses space within pagefile.sys (i.e. dedicated hdd space) as RAM. Hence, 'virtual' memory. Deleting it should do no damage at all. Windows will simply re-create it on the next boot if virtual memory is enabled.

    It resides on the root of whichever drive(s) virtual memory has been assigned to, for example, c:\pagefile.sys
     
  11. akatafkac

    akatafkac TS Rookie Topic Starter

    > c:\pagefile.sys

    Yeah, i thought either root or /win directory.
    [ I searched my machine and found no "pagefile.sys" (?) ]
    And my Belkin 4-port KVM freaked out yesterday, therefore I have to switch over manually every time i have an epiphany on this issue
    (and i HATE it when inanimate objects conspire to get the best of me, so this is really starting to get irritating).
    Plan of attack at this point is to blow away the c:\pagefile.sys,
    and/or try a recovery with XP HE when i can locate one.
     
  12. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

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