My Dell has gone mental

By apocalypsecow ยท 9 replies
Aug 2, 2005
  1. OMIGOD someone help!!!! Arrgggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhh

    My PC has just gone mental ( not this one obviously)

    It won't load up, it loads up Windows 2000 then goes black and says something like:

    "authority shutting down system" or something, restarting in... 59... 58... etc.

    then it says files missing and/ or corrupt.

    I rang Dell and I think its a call centre in India as the person on the line couldnt understand me and I couldnt understand her, I rang back and got someone else who couldnt understand me and I couldnt understand her, she might as well have been speaking Russian, I think I understood the words "Dell" and "system." She even kept calling me Mr. as I said the PC is registered in my Dad's name.

    Can anyone help?

    I cant get into the system to even try re-formatting it. It was fine last night. If I have to ring Dell once more I might just launch this through my window.


    Please I'm going insane!

    I've rebooted it a million timesand it wont even start in safe mode

    I thought about sticking a Windows disk in and reformatting it but theres are documents on my HD that I can't risk losing.

    I thought about hitching up the HD to this PC and transferring files, but if its a virus, this is my Dad's PC and I don't want to ruin all his work on here. I mean he works from home so all his business stuff will mess up and I don't want that.

    Any advice for a slightly clueless guirlie ??

  2. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

  3. apocalypsecow

    apocalypsecow TS Rookie Topic Starter

    thanks :hotbounce I'm going to try this now, fingers srossed. :haha:
  4. apocalypsecow

    apocalypsecow TS Rookie Topic Starter

    OK, I just gfollowed those instructions and it doesn't work, doesn't let me get past the DOS prompt screen now.

    I tried to reboot with Windows disk in and it doesnt do anything :mad: :mad:

    It just says cannot access Windows then tells me to go into Command option which also doesn't work.

    :confused: I think its destined for Dell Heaven, or Hell .
  5. tdeg

    tdeg TS Rookie Posts: 119

    Sounds like a virus... possibly Sasser or the likes.

    Do you have anything important you need to save on that computer? If you don't, I would just reformat and reload.

    If you do you can boot from the Windows 2000 CD and try to repair possibly....
  6. Hawk88

    Hawk88 TS Rookie

    Do me one favor and also look at all your capacitors. What you have is probably software related, but I have seen a simular problem and it is bad capacitors on the mobo. Look at all of them and see if any are bulging on the top or sides. The problem I seen didnt say exactly your message, but it did give a message stating that the system would be restarted, but only gave a few seconds. The other problem stemming from the capacitors is that the screen will go black and the system will still be on, but no video (these systems were using on board video). Before I get flamed, I am a Dell Certified Tech, (not that that means a whole lot), but I do not work for Dell. My company is authorized to order warranty parts and do warranty repairs. Like I said, it is probably software related, but just look. Keep calling Dell as well, if you cant understand them, keep calling to you can find someone who you can. If no dice on the capacitors, then run virus scan download as ad aware and spybot as well and see if they catch anything. Then if all else fails, backup and restore like tdeg said.
  7. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    If the system says "NT Athority" is shutting you down and counts down from 60 seconds then it is very likely a Sasser type virus as some1 suggested.

    This would take very advanced procedures to fix, requiring DOS mode tools and you have to get in Recovery Console. If you can't get that far, you pretty much "HAVE" to reload.

    Plugging into your dad's box may be the only way. Viruses don't just automatically "jump" from your drive to his. The virus has to be "ran" to do anything. If your dad has an up to date, modern antivirus, then scan your drive first before copying any files over. Matter of fact, you may scan for viruses, clean them, and put your drive BACK in your box and try again. Then reload if it doesn't work.

    If you still don't want to chance your dad's box, take it to a repair shop. It may be the only way. Sorry.
    But that's only if it's a virus! As there is still the chance it is a hardware issue.

    Lastly, if you do plug into the other PC, make SURE it does not boot off your drive!
    Make your drive a slave and chain it up right. It MUST boot off his drive and not yours.

  8. Big-Z

    Big-Z TS Rookie

    Definitely the sasser virus. I don't know how I managed to get rid of it when I got it... it was a question of hoping i'd be able to do everything needed before it crashed. If you have another PC you have an advantage I didn't.

    Get AVG anti virus, get the symantec hotfix for the sasser worm. Also, you may want to disable system restore as I had the sasser virus residing in the 'System Volume Information' folder which is inaccessible to everything (inc anti virus) - turning off system restore wipes everything in this folder - but remember to reactivate it. This was the worst virus i've ever had and very nearly ruined my system (it had managed to replicate itself 250+ times).

    I did manage to do something that stopped it from crashing as regularly while I fixed it but the memory is hazy now. It was something like disabling all network connections as I found the NT shutdown thing would appear less often when I had no network connectivity.

    Anyway, good luck... and more importantly, have patience!!!
  9. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    The problem is it WON'T go into Normal Mode OR Safe Mode. She can't get in Windows to be able to run or download or use ANYTHING!

    She can't run DOS based antivirus tools because it must be NTFS. Now, it can be done, but that is where things get really advanced and just downright nerdy!

    Incidentally, if you CAN manage to get into Windows, run McAfee's "Stinger" tool. Get it from
    This scans for 50 or so of the most common viruses. It should still include sasser, nachi, blaster and all those popular ones.
  10. Big-Z

    Big-Z TS Rookie

    Oh, that's worse than I thought. If she doesn't have valuable data on the PC I would wipe it completely and do a clean build. Maybe even create a new partition and put an install of windows on from there. I've got a crappy 8Gb rescue HD with Win XP on so I can hook it up to retrieve or move data from infected/corrupt drives - but we're getting into nerd territory here and unfortunately, I think the only solution is going to be complex.
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