Built new PC, will not boot to Windows

By bg3075 ยท 6 replies
Apr 10, 2009
  1. I just finished building a new PC (specs are below). First tried booting it to a hard-drive that came with an eMachines T2642. It would not boot to Windows, so I figured it had something to do with eMachines only Windows version incapable of running when hardware is replaced. So I bought a new hard-drive (Western Digital Caviar WD2500BB), ran fdisk and formatted it to FAT32. Installed Windows ME (the latest version of Windows that I have a full version disk). It appeared to install correctly, but having the same problem...keeps re-booting, will not boot to Windows. It first displays "No signal input", but the monitor is working (displaying everything after that message), the post data all appears to be ok, the Windows splash screen appears, but then it states that "Windows did not fully load on last attempt" and prompts me how to load. I tried loading in 'Safe Mode', still with the same result.

    Two things that I wonder about is either the monitor is not fully communicating with the PC (it is a refurbished I bought), even though it is displaying, or the graphics card is incompatible (though the motherboard manual did not give much information regarding the PCI-express compatibility). I tried booting with the onboard VGA, but nothing displayed on the monitor. I could find nothing in the BIOS to change to VGA display though.


    Biostar P4M900-M4 Motherboard
    Intel Celeron, Socket 478 Pentium 4 - 2.6GHz (original from eMachines T2642)
    XFX GeForce 8600 GT XXX Video Card
    Western Digital WD2500BB IDE HDD - setup as Master IDE0
    Western Digital WD400EB 40 GB IDE HDD - (original from eMachine) setup as slave IDE0
    Sony CD-ROM/DVD-ROM CRX330E - setup as Master IDE1
    NEC DVD+/-RW ND3530A - setup as Slave IDE1
    19" Westinghouse L1916HW DVI Widescreen LCD Monitor
    2 - Kingston KVR667D2N5/2G 2GB DDR2 RAM PC2-5300 240-Pin DIMM memory modules (667 MHz)
    Windows ME
  2. B00kWyrm

    B00kWyrm TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,436   +37

    Your card is a card that your MB should support / detect...
    If there is no BIOS setting to disable the onboard video, it may be autodetect.
    I did not see any information in the manual on your MB.

    Someone else here may have a better idea,
    but my initial guess is the OS.
    You have installed ME, on a system with a MB that says

    Not good news... I suppose
    You said that this was what you had for a full version...
    Do you have any upgrade versions of 2000 or XP?
  3. bg3075

    bg3075 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Could this be the problem...found this on Biostar's website (the m'board manufacture):

    "Support Windows 2000 / XP / XP 64"

    Is it that I installed Windows ME on the Master HDD, and cannot boot to the Slave HDD (the original HD from the eMachines) due to the way eMachines has it set up even though it is Windows XP?

    Sorry, didn't refresh to see your post before I replied...do you think that is it? Why wouldn't it boot to the other HD with Windows XP? Does eMachines have some sort of restrictions on their version of Windows, because it does show a short blue screen when trying to boot to it...too short to read.

    Yes, I think you may be right about the incompatibility with Windows ME...I just noticed on the m'board manufacturers website (Biostar) this:

    "Support Windows 2000 / XP / XP 64"

    Before buying the new HD, I did try running the repair disc that came with eMachines and it stated that it could not find a Symantec Ghost file. And the disc does state that it will only work with an eMachine computer for which it was shipped.

    Based on the above statement on Biostar's site, do you think the Windows XP Media Center OEM disk would suffice?

    This is strange though, Biostar's chipset driver download page, http://www.biostar.com.tw/app/en-us/mb/driver.php?S_ID=283, states for:

    "Windows 98/ME/2000/XP x86/XP x64/Vista x86/Vista x64/Server 2003 x86/Server 2003 x64/"
  4. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    You have FOUR posts in a row, there is an edit button for that.

    DO NOT DO THAT, that WAS most likely your problem. Windows configures itself to the specific hardware its running on, there are usually problems plugging an old harddrive into a new computer, like the new wine in an old wineskin parable.

    I doubt it, if windows is getting errors and the monitor is working before attempting to load windows, I would say a software issue.

    fat32 you say? Normally windows would be on NFTS, but technically fat32 should work...

    Probably not.

    It is unlikely that there is a hardware problem, though if your motherboard says it does not support an OS, that may be an issue. Most should and will support all though, aside from shady OSX releases.
  5. B00kWyrm

    B00kWyrm TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,436   +37

    See the previous note...
    the old emachine drivers likely will not work with your new board,
    and will likely result in bsods during boot.

    Saving your files from the old drive is another matter...
    to which we can return once we have your machine booting up to windows properly.

    If you want to install the OEM of XP media edition that should work,
    but you may be able to use ME (if you really want to)
    once we resolve the conflicts you are currently experiencing.
    Start by unplugging the old emachine drive and see if you can boot then.
    By the way... using Driver Detective without a LOT of caution can result in similar issues to what you have reported.
    (Voice of personal experience)
    Have you tried using their tools to update drivers?
    If not, then my advice would be do not.
    Lets get you going withe plain vanilla, and then update drivers _only_as_needed_ for optimizing your performance.

    Second Edit...
    As for NTFS vs Fat32.
    There are reasons for choosing one over the other.
    I am finding the reasons for not moving from Fat32 to NTFS to be less compelling than I once did.
  6. yukka

    yukka TechSpot Paladin Posts: 861   +67

    It is unlikely that it would boot to the emachines disk as it will look for hardware that doesnt exist anymore on bootup.

    You can have 2 bootable disks in your machine at once as it will only use them in order listed in the bios. It wont get confused about master boot records because it wont look at both at the same time, only one at a time. Otherwise my dual hard drive (windows vista on one, windows 7 on the other) machine at work would fail. It doesnt.

    I would suggest that the problem is the windows ME disk. you are in luck because there is no way you should be going near that OS anyway. Its bloody terrible. But if your motherboard isnt compatible with it, the generic windows drivers arent going to work and it wont boot.

    You need a oem copy of windows xp from somewhere so you can test it works. Or you could download the Windows 7 release candidate when that appears and use that.

    Or you could actually buy an up to date OS to go with your new PC.
  7. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    True, but there is no harm in trying just one, the new one, not the emachine one.
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