Comp. turns on but not much else

November 27, 2010 at 17:01:21
Specs: Windows 7
My computer (Windows XP, Dell Inspiron E1505) will turn on but after the Dell loading screen it turns black -- but is still on. I've tried running Diagnostics and it says everything is fine, and I've tried Running last known good configuration, but it just goes back to the black screen. Please help!

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#1
November 27, 2010 at 17:42:39
Does it beep once while loading? Your Bios screen is hidden behind the dell logo, so I'm assuming it posting. Sounds like when it comes time to find the operating system on the hard drive, it's not there. This indicates a failed hard drive. If you can get into the bios, see if the hard drive is listed and operating. Sounds like a hard drive failure to me.

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#2
November 27, 2010 at 17:47:37
It doesn't beep. I don't know how to work the BIOS. How do I check?

Failed hard drive...that sounds terrifying.


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#3
November 27, 2010 at 17:55:05
Did it ever beep?. Normally it should beep one short beep. The fact that you see the Dell logo screen tells me that it appears that the bios is loading. Don't be too horrified just yet. You can enter the bios by tapping the F12 key when booting up.

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#4
November 27, 2010 at 18:02:38
I don't think it did, but maybe that's because I nearly always have my computer muted unless I'm watching a video, and always when shutting down and starting up so I don't bother my roommate if I wake up/go to bed earlier than her.

I kind of assumed it was the warning kind of beep that happens regardless of whether or not you have it muted.

If I press F8 while it shows the Dell logo there's a choice to go into BIOS mode but I'm kind of reluctant to without knowing how to work it.


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#5
November 27, 2010 at 18:14:38
OK, the beep is not connected to your speakers. It comes from a small speaker on the motherboard. You can safely enter the bios and exit if you don't change any settings. It will always ask you if you want to change the settings. Just press N if you didn't change anything. By looking in the bios you can see if your hard drive is listed. If it is, it doesn't necessarily mean it's good, but it's a start.

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#6
November 27, 2010 at 18:21:18
Okay, I assume it's under Primary Hard Drive. It says

Primary Hard Drive = 78 GB HDD


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#7
November 27, 2010 at 18:24:50
OK, tap the F8 key when booting and choose Safe Mode and see if the OS loads. If it won't go into Safe Mode, i would say the hard drive is toast.

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#8
November 27, 2010 at 18:28:33
It may be toast and I may cry.

I chose safe mode and it says:

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS\system32\ntoskrnl.exe
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS\system32\hal.dll
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS\system32\KDCOM.DLL


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#9
November 27, 2010 at 18:43:40
Do you have the restore disks that came with the computer? If you didn't get any restore disks, there is usually a restore partition on the hard drive. When the menu screen comes up, is there an option to restore the computer? If you have disks, pop the first on in and boot up. You should see something on the screen that says press any key to boot from cd. To use the restore partition, you have to press an F key to enter the setup.

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#10
November 27, 2010 at 18:55:31
Part of the trouble of living in a different place every 7 months or so it the inability to keep track of anything smaller than a dog.

I can't find them, though there is a possibilty they are around here somewhere. It also seems as though you can buy a cheap version here: http://www.amazon.com/Dell-Windows-...

But you said there's a way to do it without the CDs? It doesn't give an option to restore the computer when it starts up.


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#11
November 28, 2010 at 04:55:47
I would go to the Dell site and order them from there. That way you know they're genuine and for your machine. You could try pressing Alt / F11 or Cntrl / F11 at startup. See if that takes you to a recovery partition. You'll need the disks anyhow if you get a new hard drive. Good Luck, and don't cry.

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#12
November 28, 2010 at 11:15:30
"I chose safe mode and it says:

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS\system32\ntoskrnl.exe
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS\system32\hal.dll
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS\system32\KDCOM.DLL"

Exactly, that's what it's supposed to do. If may take serveral minutes to load. Did you wat long enough?


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