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Windows 7: Can't start or restore Dell PC

15 Jan 2013   #1
Conzo427

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 
Can't start or restore Dell PC

My wife's Dell Inspiron PC was performing extremely slowly and the HD light was always on. Here is the steps I had taken to attempt to resolve the issue:

-Performed a clean boot
-Tried to restore to a restore point (it said there where no restore points)
-Chkdsk /r (took 72 hours to complete and found what seemed to be a lot of errors)
-Performed factory system restore. I received a message that said that the HD was not compatable with this feature and that I must have a HD with GB of storage. There where no numbers before the "GB" in the message, I would have expected the error message to be indicating that the HD had to be a specific size.

I was able to get the computer to enter into safe mode, however, if I tried to open a program such as cmd, or msconfig I just got the blue spinning wheel for eternity.

Now the computer won't boot at all. It gets to the point where I see a mouse pointer on the screen with the blue spinning wheel but after about 15 mins the HD light just blinks and it will not go any further.

My suspicion is hard drive failure, but I wanted to explore any additional options before purchasing a new HD. I have the Dell recovery disks if that is helpful.

Thank you in advance for any help you can provide!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
16 Jan 2013   #2
Cancerous

Windows 7 Professional 32bit
 
 

Try booting a live CD/USB of any linux distro (Ubuntu, GParted) and running these commands (note, you can't run these while the file system is mounted).

To unmount
Code:
init s
Disk check
Code:
/sbin/fsck
Or
Code:
/sbin/e2fsck

If those come back clean, boot up Memtest.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2013   #3
Saurabh A

Windows 7 64bit
 
 

Hi Conzo427,

You may try the following steps before planning a 'Hard Drive' replacement:

1. Unplug all 'physical connections' from the computer and release 'static power'
- Power off your computer > Unplug all cables/connections from the tower (Isolate it completely) > Press and hold the 'power button' of your computer for 10-15 seconds to drain out the residual power > Plug the power cable, monitor cable, keyboard and mouse back into the tower (Refrain from connecting other USB devices for the time begin) > Power on the computer and check results

2. You may also run 'Hardware Diagnostics' to check 'hardware functionality'; it may help with conclusive results. Please capture the error(s) if applicable. You may refer to the following web article: http://dell.to/OUGnqT

If no 'hardware issue' is detected, you may also try loading 'BIOS defaults'. Usually 'F2 key' is repeatedly tapped at 'Dell Splash Screen' to enter the 'BIOS environment' (When the system is powered on).

Also share the exact make/model of the system so that I can help you further. Do reply if you have any further questions; would be glad to assist.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

16 Jan 2013   #4
azasadny

Microsoft Windows 8.1 Enterprise 64-bit
 
 

Yep, all good advice here. The hard drive is dead. They are cheap and easy to replace. See if you can use a SATA hard drive with the PC (versus an IDE).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2013   #5
gregrocker

 

Rely on the Dell Diagnostics Utility run from boot or run them from Dell PC Diagnostics | Dell US if you can boot win7.

If unbootable boot into BIOS setup to see if HD is detected. If not replace the cables and if still not seen replace HD..

If HD is seen work through the Troubleshooting Steps for Windows 7 starting with the hardware tests. If unbootable work through steps for Troubleshooting Windows 7 Failure to Start

If you replace HD or exhaust troubleshooting steps with no resolution I would strongly consider getting the superior Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7. Stick with the tools and methods given and you will get and keep a perfect install.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #6
Conzo427

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Cancerous View Post
Try booting a live CD/USB of any linux distro (Ubuntu, GParted) and running these commands (note, you can't run these while the file system is mounted).

To unmount
Code:
init s
Disk check
Code:
/sbin/fsck
Or
Code:
/sbin/e2fsck

If those come back clean, boot up Memtest.
I am trying to do as instructed however I keep getting "init: Need to be root." I type cd / to get to the root directory but still get the same message. Im sorry, I have never used Linux before though I am familiar with DOS.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #7
Cancerous

Windows 7 Professional 32bit
 
 

Ahh ok.
Try
Code:
sudo init s
sudo stands for superuser do
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #8
Conzo427

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Saurabh A View Post
Hi Conzo427,

You may try the following steps before planning a 'Hard Drive' replacement:

1. Unplug all 'physical connections' from the computer and release 'static power'
- Power off your computer > Unplug all cables/connections from the tower (Isolate it completely) > Press and hold the 'power button' of your computer for 10-15 seconds to drain out the residual power > Plug the power cable, monitor cable, keyboard and mouse back into the tower (Refrain from connecting other USB devices for the time begin) > Power on the computer and check results

2. You may also run 'Hardware Diagnostics' to check 'hardware functionality'; it may help with conclusive results. Please capture the error(s) if applicable. You may refer to the following web article: http://dell.to/OUGnqT

If no 'hardware issue' is detected, you may also try loading 'BIOS defaults'. Usually 'F2 key' is repeatedly tapped at 'Dell Splash Screen' to enter the 'BIOS environment' (When the system is powered on).
Also share the exact make/model of the system so that I can help you further. Do reply if you have any further questions; would be glad to assist.
OK so I am getting:
error code 0142
Msg: Error code 2000-0142
Msg: Hard Drive 0 - self test unsuccessful Status:49

My assumption is that this means the Hard Drive is bad but I will wait to hear from you before buying a new one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #9
gregrocker

 

Does Dell Diagnostics give you the ability to run an extended HD scan in addition to the Quick Test? Run the Quick test again to confirm it and see.

If not then you can determine the HD maker by looking on the HD or googling the serial listed under storage in BIOS setup, then run the maker's HD Diagnostic extended CD scan. If it's WD then use the Data Lifeguard bootable scan on Hiren’s BootCD 15.1 since WD is too incompetent to keep a working ISO to download from their site.

You can also run Partition Wizard Check File System from Hirens or run the comparable Disk Check from the System Recovery Options Command Line. Running these tests will confirm beyond doubt the HD's condition and whether it is reparable.

Or you can just replace the HD by googling the make/model for a replacement. There is probably also a video showing how to replace it for yours or a similar model.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Jan 2013   #10
Saurabh A

Windows 7 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Conzo427 View Post

OK so I am getting:
error code 0142
Msg: Error code 2000-0142
Msg: Hard Drive 0 - self test unsuccessful Status:49

My assumption is that this means the Hard Drive is bad but I will wait to hear from you before buying a new one.
Hi Conzo427,

'Error code 2000-0142' points at a 'hard drive' failure and needs replacement. Based on warranty status, I may be able to arrange a 'repair service call'. Please refer to the following link to confirm the current 'warranty status' of your system:How to Check When Your Warranty Expires | Dell (Note: 'Hard drive' replacement leads to data loss. If the system allows you to boot to the 'Safe Mode', please backup all personal information on priority)

If it is covered under warranty, you may share the following details with me through a private message:
- System's 'Service Tag'
- 'Account Holder's name' (Person who purchased the unit from Dell)
- Country where the system was purchased
- Country where it is currently being used
- Contact number (with time zone and a convenient callback time-frame)
(If we cannot callback for some reason, personal information can be exchanged through the private messaging)

Do reply if you have any further questions; would be glad to assist.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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