IWinXP SP2 hangs at splash screen

February 24, 2009 at 11:25:57
Specs: Windows XP SP2
Hello everyone,

I am in dire need of advice. I had a LAN over the weekend and my PC was running fine on SP3. Four days prior to that LAN I freshly installed SP3 (after 5 hours and a few attempts).

To my dismay after returning to the LAN I could not log into windows. It was hanging at the splash screen. So I went back to older restore points and none of them worked until back when I installed SP2. I thought that was okay and tried to install SP3 then the splash screen hanged up me. When I tried to return to the SP2 restore point it was gone.

After all that I decided to reformat my hard drive (Again) and install WinXP Pro. I did that (I'm on my 10th or 11th time). I can install SP1 without any problems. When I download and install SP2 then reboot, Windows hangs at the splash screen.

I tried to ran it through VGA Mode, Boot Logging, etc, but unfortunately it was still stuck at the splash screen. I went into MSConfig and added /sos to the boot.ini tab. When normal booting and hanging up on the splash screen it stops at, "Microsoft (R) Windows (R) blah blah Build 2600: Service Pack 2 blah blah 3328 RAM blah blah multiprocessor"

I am completely flustered and do not remember (unless it was out of sheer luck) that I made a successful install last time. I do not know what the culprit is. I tested different hard drives and my cd/dvd rom drive. They work fine and my video card seems to run fine as well.

I would assume it could be the power supply, but could that be the issue or maybe my BIOs needs an update?

I really would appreciate any feedback.

Thank you.

See More: IWinXP SP2 hangs at splash screen

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February 24, 2009 at 12:08:08
Get Your PC Ready for Windows XP SP2

Steps to take before you install Windows XP Service Pack 3

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February 24, 2009 at 12:39:09
Thanks for the links Chuck_2, but I already satisfy the pre-requisites.

I was able to download and install SP3 from getting it from another site.

However I get stuck on the splash screen again. Yet when going into safe mode (again) it shows that I have successfully installed SP3 (same goes for SP2).

Thus I have the foggist idea of what steps I can take. I know I can install SP1, update it, and it can run fine. Anything beyond that (i.e. SP2 and SP3) my pc just hangs at the splash screen.

Any more help would be appreciated! Thanks!

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February 24, 2009 at 12:55:29
What do you mean by had a LAN?

Iron Sharpens Iron.

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February 24, 2009 at 14:24:16
I went to a friend's house and we were seting up a LAN for gaming. There were no changes made to my computer. There was only 2 installations of games and nothing else that was modified on my pc. A simple plug into the ethernet jack, unplugging/replugging of USB and power cables.

In the past I had similar issues and I thought it was my hard drive. When I bought a new hard drive and installed it after (a few attempts as noted above) I was able to get it through, but I have the same problem. Additionally, I've tested my hard drives in different computers so I can cross out any corrupted sectors.

Any more help would be appreciated! Thanks.

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February 24, 2009 at 21:45:21
So when you reformat this computer it's doing this right off the fresh format with nothing else installed other then windows service packs, as in no drivers or any other 3rd party software?

Also is there anything extra connected to your pc when you start it up like external hard drives, USB thumb drives etc..?

What happeneds when you try to restart it with no LAN connected to your computer does it still freeze?

What happeneds when you install service pack sp2 or sp3 with no other software installed and disconnet everything from your pc including keyboard, mouse, LAN?

I'm thinking it could be two things either a 3rd party software or a external device that is hooked up to your pc causing Windows to freeze.

Iron Sharpens Iron.

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February 25, 2009 at 07:43:57
Yes. When I reformat and reinstall Windows it is a clean install. Nothing else is installed with the exception of my NIC driver.

Only when I have successfully installed SP3 do I go in and actually install other drivers (i.e. video, audio, monitor, mouse, etc) and then other 3rd party software.

I only have the bare necesscities connected such as the mouse, keyboard, power, dvi, and the ethernet.

When I first installed it I did have an external hard drive and my audio equipment hooked up, but I immediately took those out after my first installation (which I had a problem with).

I tried rebooting without the internet connection and it still hangs up.

If I move beyond SP2 or SP3 it still hangs up. I can't even get to SP3 unless I download it from another site and install it in safe mode when I install SP2 and it hangs on splash screen.

I have yet to try installing SP2 or SP3 by disconnecting everything except my dvi connection and power cable. Are you saying that as soon as I download and install SP2 then I should immediately unplug my keyboard, mouse, and internet connection?

Hmm. 3rd party software would sound probable, but I can't imagine what it could be since I always go for the clean install.

External devices is also a possibility... Perhaps it has something to do with my mouse or keyboard?

Here's a minor update: After another clean reformat/install, I downloaded and installed SP1, rebooted, d/l and installed SP2, and rebooted. I had to let it reboot over night and the next day (well this morning) it finally succesfully booted up. I created a restore point and shut down to reboot again. It hunged up again on the splash screen. Only the mouse, keyboard, internet, and dvi connection is plugged in.

I am really drawing straws here. Thanks for the help!

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February 25, 2009 at 08:28:17
You said expection with your NIC driver I'm thinking it may have to do with your network card driver or the card itself if their is nothing else installed.

Just to recap you said you didn't install anything else with the exception of your NIC driver when you did a fresh install and nothing was plugged in externally?

If it's still doing it with the keyboard mouse and anything else externally unplugged, then it sounds like it could be your networking card driver or the network card itself.

Are you able to boot into windows using sp2 or sp3 in safe mode?

Iron Sharpens Iron.

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February 25, 2009 at 09:03:08
Yes. After installing Windows XP the next item on my list was to always install the NIC driver. Otherwise I couldn't get on the internet to download the next SP. The only items plugged in besides my internet connection is the mouse, keyboard, dvi connection, and the power cable. Nothing else.

I am able to boot successfully (all the time) into safe mode with SP2 and SP3 without an issue whatsoever. It is when trying to boot normally or even last known config is when it hangs up on the screen.

If my NIC worked in the past what do you think could have damaged it? I am in an unfortunate situation since it is an on-board NIC and my Shuttle is hard to get around uninstalling certain hardware.

Thanks again. Appreciate the feedback!

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February 25, 2009 at 12:13:07
I don't think it's damaged more or less sp2 and sp3 doesn't like the driver you are installing. If it's booting fine in safe mode then that almost tells me their is a conflict between your NIC drivers and windows sp2 and sp3, because in safe mode no device drivers are loaded.

You can slipstream sp3 with windows XP and have it installed with Windows automaticly when you reformat your hard drive, Like how it's is with retail and OEM versions by following these steps.


Here is what i would do. Do the following as i mentioned above. Reformat it again but this time by doing the methods above. Now make sure nothing is plugged in externally while you are doing this except for your keyboard, mouse, speakers, and monitor. Now once windows is installed don't install anything else and see if it freezes up again.

If it doesn't do it with then install the NIC driver, if it freezes up after you install the NIC driver, then you know what's causing it. There must be a conflict in windows with the NIC driver using sp2 and sp3 that you are using. I would suggest before you do all of this is to make sure you download and save the latest NIC driver for XP on a thumb drive etc.. and keep it around until after you installed Windows XP SP3 with the method I talked about after you resetted your pc a couple times in normal mode to make sure it's ok before installing that driver again.

Iron Sharpens Iron.

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February 25, 2009 at 14:59:27
As I am typing this, I have successfully installed and patched up SP3. I am not exactly sure. I'll explain my steps --

1. After a clean install of WindowsXP, I installed my NIC driver. When that was completed I then downloaded and installed SP1 with my mouse, keyboard, dvi, and internet connection plugged inside my pc.
2. Rebooted successfully to the desktop.
3. Downloaded and installed SP2.
4. Rebooted and it hanged on splash screen. I left it over night and it miraculously made it to the desktop.
5. Rebooted after managing to get on the desktop.
6. After reboot it was stuck on the splash screen.
7. Read your post and took out the ethernet cable while it booted up. After going into MSConfig and adding /sos, I noticed it was hanging up on the black screen with text stating it was checking my disks, well partitions, to make sure they're clean.
8. After a while, I manually shut down and rebooted since it was stuck. Plugged back in the ethernet cable and it rebooted to the desktop after a short time without a problem.
9. Downloaded and installed SP3.

The rest is history.

It appears that there is indeed an issue with my NIC as you had suggested earlier. I appreciate your assistance Cobra_R in working with me.

I am going to archive this ordeal to make sure I know what to do in the future which hopefully won't be by the end of this month.

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February 25, 2009 at 19:27:44
are you using a legit copy of xp? if not sp3 install might not like that.

if you are though, try nlite. it creates custom builds of xp to slipstream service packs, drivers, and you can even take stuff out such as IE and WMP.

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February 26, 2009 at 01:22:41
Yeah i figured it was def the NIC driver causing it especially after you told me you can boot into windows fine with sp2 and sp3 in safe mode. Normally when your logon screen hangs their is a 3rd party program causing it to hang somewhere.

Iron Sharpens Iron.

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