Strange characters displayed after defragmenting

By DW49
Jan 21, 2006
  1. Hello All,
    Last night I was using my somewhat older computer that has windows xp professional SP2 on it. I like to power it on from time to time so I can keep it updated. After doing so..I decided to defragment the hard drive, I first ran the analyze mode to see what it said. It informed me that I didn't need to defragment at this time, but as I saw some 'red' areas shown ( fragmented files ) I decided to go ahead and defragment anyway. Everything seemed to be going ok till I reached about the 70% level. Then I heard my hard drive make two 'clunking' sounds, but it did finally finish the defrag process. I didn't think anymore about it till this morning when I booted up the computer. At the windows xp boot screen, the blue bar moved across like normal, then there was a seemingly long pause before anything happened. Then the blue welcome screen appeared, but instead of having the correct readable fonts displayed, it had weird fonts and symbols displayed, like a different language or something. I tried restarting the system, and pressed F8 and chose 'last known good configuration, the most recent settings that worked mode'. I had hoped that would correct my problem, but it didn't..does anyone have any suggestions as to how to correct this ? I was trying to get to my system restore area, but couldn't find it so far. Thanks for any help..
    David :confused:
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Most likely a bad sector on the drive. Run the Windows disk checker and tell it to scan for bad sectors. (If you can't even get into safe mode, then you can use the Recovery Console accessible when you boot the XP CD). After the scan, you may have to restore some system files from the XP CD (or just do a repair install).

    It would be a good idea to run the drive diagnostic utility from the manufacturer of your HD. This would report any errors beyond bad sectors.
  3. DW49

    DW49 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Dear Nodsu,
    Thanks so much for the quick reply...I can get into safe mode, but the strange characters are present there also. And as I can't read them, it's kind of difficult to decide what to click on. Your idea of using the recovery console sounds interesting, or even the repair install method. Of course my goal is hopefully not to lose any information. You also said," it would be a good idea to run the drive diagnostic utility from the manufacturer of your HD " . As the computer in question was given to me, I don't have that software, once I figure out the manufacturer though, I'm sure I could probable download that software from the manufacturers website.
    David :p
  4. DW49

    DW49 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Dear Nodsu,
    I just went the repair install route....except for a few small software problems, everything is fine once again. Thanks again for your help, I will determine what brand of hard drive that's installed in this system, and see if I can obtain some software for it. Have a GREAT day !!
    David :grinthumb
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