Does anyone know how to fix a Windows computer?

extraextra

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 29, 2006
1,758
0
California
I have no idea what happened to it.

My mom restarted it, because the internet wasn't working. An error message came up (not BSOD) that said, "your computer was not shut down or restarted properly, etc." It had the options of starting in Safe Mode, Restart as Normal, and a mode that was something like Restart in Last Good Working Mode. (which would restart it from when the computer was last working properly or something)

I tried all of these modes, but the same error message kept coming up.

I ran System Restore, which did nothing. Fine. Ran System Recovery, which deleted everything, it did nothing as well. Now a message appears on the computer saying:

Windows could not start because of an error in the software.
Please report this problem as:
load needed DLLs for kernel
Please contact support person to report this problem.


What does this mean? Is the computer dead? And, what support person? A person at Hewlett-Packard or a person at Microsoft? :confused:

If someone could help, I would love you forever.

(Ideally, I'd just throw this computer out and buy an iMac, but we kind of don't have the money.)
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,873
219
Harrogate
If you've run a system restore which should have given you a clean system and it still isn't working then you seem to be in serious trouble. If you have a more complete restore solution, formatting the drive completely go with that. Otherwise try installing Linux to check out the hardware. If the hardware is OK then keep restoring till it works. Or get hold of a real Windows install CD and use that.
 

extraextra

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 29, 2006
1,758
0
California
robbieduncan said:
If you've run a system restore which should have given you a clean system and it still isn't working then you seem to be in serious trouble. If you have a more complete restore solution, formatting the drive completely go with that. Otherwise try installing Linux to check out the hardware. If the hardware is OK then keep restoring till it works. Or get hold of a real Windows install CD and use that.
I can't install Linux because I can't get past the "Windows could not start because of an error in the software..." screen.

I ran a System Recovery which completely reformats the HD, and it didn't do anything. I'll try to find the disks and see if that does anything.

I'm thinking the computer's one step away from being dead or something.
 

Frisco

macrumors 68020
Sep 24, 2002
2,475
69
Utopia
Do you have the Windows XP install CD? Sounds like your Windows got corrupted:

You can try to repair your installation, if not a complete format and reinstall is necessary.

1. Boot from your XP installation CD.
2. At the welcome screen, choose enter.
3. Once at the license agreement, press F8.
4. At the next screen, choose to repair the selected Windows XP installation by pressing R.
5. The files will begin to install and then your PC will reboot. During the reboot you will be presented with option of booting from the CD again by pressing any key. Don't press anything. Allow it to finish the install without booting from the CD again.

Hope this helps.
 

Sesshi

macrumors G3
Jun 3, 2006
8,113
1
One Nation Under Gordon
System restore only works properly if you've made a restore disk - which I'm assuming you haven't.

The best thing at this point is probably to reinstall Windows by booting off the Windows XP CD. Don't delete any partitions or format the disk when you're installing and you'll not lose any documents you've got. (although it's possible that other previous blunders may have erased the partitions).
 

Cube54

macrumors regular
Sep 4, 2006
129
0
Canada
Does anyone know how to fix a Windows computer?

1) Rent A Helicopter
2) Drop it on Bill Gates House overlooking Lake Washington.
3) Include a note saying 'Return To Sender' When Fixed.
 

jamesi

macrumors 6502a
Sep 13, 2005
595
0
Davis CA
ummmm i seem to remember a few years ago having the same problem. if you cant start up in any mode then this is not good. i would think you would be able to boot up into safe mode, back up what you need and then shut it down. after you shut it down, reformat the system. i am not entirely sure how well versed you are in some of these terms so ill reiterate. first, decide if you NEED what is on that computer ie movies, photos, works etc. if you need whats on that computer than call HP. if you dont really care then just reformat the system. pop in the windows cd when you start up and hold down F8. you will get a series of menus that should be easy to follow, when its done formating then it will boot into windows and take you thru some prompts to get you set up. hope this helps
 

Felldownthewell

macrumors 65816
Feb 10, 2006
1,053
0
Portland
I'm pretty sure your drive is fried. Sorry. Try wiping the drive and reinstalling windows, but if that dosen't work its time for a new drive or an entirely new computer.
 

extraextra

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 29, 2006
1,758
0
California
Ok, I found the CD's that came with the computer. I have "Operating System CD," "Application Recovery CD," and "Driver Recovery CD."

I should run the OS CD first, then the others? Unfortunately the OS is XP SP1, but I have an XP Service Pack 2 that Microsoft so kindly sent me. I install that after I've done everything else?

Luckily there was a storm the other day, I got paranoid that the computer was going to get fried since my mom was using it during lightning so I backed everything up onto a flash drive + external HD.

Dropping it out of a building isn't a problem, parents live in a 4 story building. :p

We'd have to wait tll January for a new computer if the whole thing is fried, I suppose I could let them live off my iBook HD, since the monitor, keyboard and mouse are still working from the Windows computer.
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,873
219
Harrogate
OS first. Totally wipe the drive. The drivers, then applications. SP2 sometime once the OS and drivers are installed, before or after the apps.
 

extraextra

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 29, 2006
1,758
0
California
Oh God, thanks you guys!

I'll let you know how it goes once I install everything. I kind of can't believe it, but I'm crossing my fingers and hoping that this thing ISN'T dead. :eek:
 

clevin

macrumors G3
Aug 6, 2006
9,095
1
extraextra said:
I can't install Linux because I can't get past the "Windows could not start because of an error in the software..." screen.
lol, u probably didn't set up system to be booted from DVD/CD rom, when u trying to install OS from a disk, the whole system will pass harddrive and read Disk directly, and there will be no any "Windows could not start because of an error in the software..." whatsoever.
 

extraextra

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 29, 2006
1,758
0
California
Frisco said:
4. At the next screen, choose to repair the selected Windows XP installation by pressing R.
It's at the Recovery Console and it's asking me "Which Windows installation would you like to log onto?

1: H:\MiniNT
2: H:\I386

It's asking me to type something in (presumably one of those up there?). Which one do I pick?
 

extraextra

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 29, 2006
1,758
0
California
Lmao, doesn't matter. It says the disk ( C: ) is damaged and that it can't do anything to reformat it.

I will be counting down the days till me and the iMac meet.
 

Felldownthewell

macrumors 65816
Feb 10, 2006
1,053
0
Portland
extraextra said:
Lmao, doesn't matter. It says the disk ( C: ) is damaged and that it can't do anything to reformat it.

I will be counting down the days till me and the iMac meet.

While I'm sorry to hear that, I would like all of you to imagine me dancing around my room singing "Who called it? I CALLED IT". Because that is what I'm doing.
 

extraextra

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 29, 2006
1,758
0
California
pseudobrit said:
Paint yourself green, get some torn up blue jean shorts and smash the hell out of it in a public area.
Why green? (Maybe there's a joke I'm missing?) And am I not supposed to wear anything on top? I'm a girl so... well. Maybe no one would mind. ;)

Felldownthewell said:
While I'm sorry to hear that, I would like all of you to imagine me dancing around my room singing "Who called it? I CALLED IT". Because that is what I'm doing.
LOL. Well, we can now get an iMac which I have been lusting over for the LONGEST time (back to the colored plastic enclosure days).

Frisco said:
Buy a new hard drive. They are cheap and easy to install.
That might get in the way of the iMac purchase. :p I'm a bit of a dunce when it comes to these things though. I'll open it up and see what kind of HD it is and if it's easy enough, I might do it.
 
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