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3 posts

Wannabe Geek

# 34783 29-May-2009 00:53
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I have a 22 month old Windows XP laptop. The battery on it is pretty fried so I have to constantly have it on AC power. I was told that you should take the battery out if you do this and then 2 days ago I did this.

Now, normally when I shut down my laptop I will turn off the mains and let battery power run my laptop as the 'Windows is shutting down' screen is on and I did this out of habit, forgetting I had taken out the battery. The laptop shuts off due to no power.

My reaction is, 'Oh crap!' and I put the battery back in, turned on the mains and turned on my laptop again. It seemed to be loading normally, then on the WIndows XP loading screen it cut out. I turned it on again and the screen came up saying that Windows didn't shut down properly and I chose the 'Start Windows normally' option and, again, on the Windows XP it cut out.

Again, I turned it on again but this time it just cut out on the first screen. I thought I'd leave it until I got home from my exam, and I left. A few hours later, I turned on my laptop and I chose to 'Start Windows normally' and then on Windows XP loading screen the loading bar stopped and a flash of blue screen was seen before the laptop rebooted itself.

Then I chose 'Last Known Good Configuration' and again blue screen briefly after XP loading screen. I chose 'Safe Mode' and blue screen came up briefly and laptop rebooted. I then chose to not have the system restart itself after failure so I could read the blue screen. It said that there was a system failure and it could have been something I installed and I should uninstall it.

I restarted my laptop and tried debugging mode, which didn't work as blue screen flashed up again. Nothing seemed wrong when I entered set up after laptop restarted and same thing kept happening with blue screen and laptop rebooting.

I just wondered if anyone has any idea what I can do, I'm a uni student so I'm poor and can't afford to have someone charge me a fortune just to look at it and tell me there isn't anything they can do. Any help would be GREATLY appreciated and I will love you forever!!

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2584 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 219091 29-May-2009 06:42
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When you boot go into safe mode. That should get you into Windows. Then either press the windows key and the break key or click on start control panel and open the system icon.

Click on the Advanced tab and go into startup and recovery. About half way down the window there is an option to Automatically restart. Deselect that.

Right now close out of those Windows and reboot the PC. It may just reboot and be fine sometimes going into safe mode is enough for Windows to fix the problem. However it will quite likely bluescreen however this time instead of just flashing up it will leave the blue screen open.

Take a note of what the error is and post that back up here.

Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64

3 posts

Wannabe Geek

  # 221158 3-Jun-2009 02:16
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Unfortunately I cannot get past the XP loading screen so I cannot do that, but by going onto F8 Advanced Start Up Options I was able to disable restart on system failure and read what was on the blue screen. The main thing I noticed was UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME. Anyone help me on what that means? If not, don't worry, I'm thinking my laptop is pretty much screwed seeing as I can't get pased the XP loading screen but I'd be grateful if anyone can help :)


1786 posts

Uber Geek


  # 221165 3-Jun-2009 05:54
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1. Insert your XP installation disk into an optical drive and boot up your computer.
2. When you see a welcome screen, hit the R key on your keyboard. This will enter you into recovery mode with a DOS prompt.
3. Now type chkdsk /p and hit Enter. This will launch a utility which will check for errors on your hard drive.
4. After the process is done, type fixboot and hit Enter to repair any damaged boot files which may have become corrupted. When asked to say yes or no, type the Y key on your keyboard.
5. Type exit and press the Enter key to reboot your computer.

however last time I did this on a desktop the HDD was fried. Good luck!

3 posts

Wannabe Geek

  # 226569 19-Jun-2009 09:22
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Thanks for your help guys but my laptop is dead, even a new hard drive didn't help apparently!

1874 posts

Uber Geek


  # 226591 19-Jun-2009 10:08
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Sazula: Thanks for your help guys but my laptop is dead, even a new hard drive didn't help apparently!

Huh? it was booting to the windows xp screen, you took it to a repair shop im guessing? and they have proclaimed it as "dead"? and inserting a new hard drive wont help? This is very suspect. If its powering up, getting past post (bios screen) and booting to the windows xp screen.. then its not dead, far from it! You have a software problem that can definetly be fixed one way or another..
I hope you still have your laptop? and wish i had of seen this thread when you posted it as i could prolly help you get it up and running.. im head technician in our repair workshop and deal with these problems daily..

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  # 226903 19-Jun-2009 23:12
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wasn't it something like, "Press F8 before the loading screen appears" to get the boot menu to safe mode or recovery options.
I haven't done this in a while, but if it's reaching the loading screen before the blue screen of death, then you should be able to get that option.

I hope you didn't throw your laptop away either!
My laptop's battery is fried, but I can still use it for web browsing and simple documentations, even network monitoring sometimes when I'm bored (damn motherboard is fried too, so I can't install WinXP on it, stuck with Linux)

360 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 227197 21-Jun-2009 20:56
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sounds like ram to me. i would change ram see how you get on

Hu? did i do that?
16Mb (EDO RAM), K6-II processor, 2Mb of onboard graphics. 32k dial up modem. 12 speed CD ROM. 5¼-inch floppy drive. 500Mb HDD.


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  # 228022 24-Jun-2009 16:46
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BSOD is a Windows operating system error - the laptop has got far enough through the boot sequence to try to load Windows from disk. This means two things. Firstly, the laptop is not completely fried. Secondly, the hard drive is working at least enough to read the master boot record and to start loading Windows.

UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME implies a problem either with the hard drive or with the HDD controller. if it's the HDD controller, then it is possible that there is an intermittent motherboard fault, in which case a repair is likely to be difficult and costly.

It is much more likely that it is a "soft" error such as data on the disk being damaged by premature shutdown causing buffers not to be written properly or at all, or a "hard"error such as a physical disk problems with unreadable sectors again caused by sudden power spikes.

For a "soft" error, which is the most likely issue given the scenario you described, a repair-install of Windows (if you have a Windows install disk and serial number) is likely to fix it and hopefully won't lose all of your user data. Otherwise, a full reinstall (e.g. from Recovery Disks) will be needed to fix it but your data will be lost.

If it's a "hard" error, then a new HDD and full Windows reinstall will be needed. Once this is done, It may be worthwhile putting the old HDD into an external case to see if it is readable to extract any data.

In any case, I agree with the other posters that it doesn't dound like the laptop is fried - it wouldn't get as far as the BSOD if it were.

1874 posts

Uber Geek


  # 228028 24-Jun-2009 17:04
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serafis: UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME implies a problem either with the hard drive or with the HDD controller. if it's the HDD controller, then it is possible that there is an intermittent motherboard fault, in which case a repair is likely to be difficult and costly.

I get machines in with unmountable_boot_volume every week. 90% of the time its not a dead drive or controller. Your master boot record is shagged. An easy 20 min fix cures this with the recovery console.

147 posts

Master Geek


  # 228387 25-Jun-2009 22:15
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I had this same problem when I got up this morning and turned the PC on. The last thing I did last night was run an iTunes update, and figured that can't have caused such a meltdown. I tried a few of the above things first, trying to be all clever and stuff, but was nice and simple in the end. Last known working config, uninstall iTunes and wah-lah! Back in business. So if you've just update iTunes, that could be your issue.

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