formatting hard drive %*#!

I am trying to help a friend put a used system back together.The disk had been formatted and I am trying to get the cursor to move in DOS.(to load win98) The screen says Loading boot record from IDE-O....ok - but nothing happens. Does this take a long time to load? And the screen seems frozen, I can't get a cursor or get it to type anything in for commands. Nothing gets recognized- the cdrom or floppy. I told her she may need a new hard drive....Any suggestions on trying to put this system (out of a cyber cafe) back together would be greatly appreciated!Thanks, this site is great! Cindy Jes
govrock1Asked:
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InfiniGuyConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Boot from an emergency/dos boot disk, run fdisk and reinstall the disk partition(s). Then restart with the boot disk and type format /s c:  This solution is foolproof, and if it does not work your hard drive is bad.  If these steps are followed correctly, your computer should then boot correctly to the c: drive.
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hewittgCommented:
Stpid question here but are you using a proper bootdisk?
If not, go to www.bootdisk.com.

Glenn
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jbeamanCommented:
Sounds like you may not have the appropriate system files on the hard drive to make it bootable.  Boot from a floppy bootdisk if you have one.  Make sure it was made from the same OS as what you are going to install on the hard drive.  For instance, don't use a DOS 6.2 boot disk if you are installing Win98.  You can type "VER" after booting from the floppy disk, and you will see a line of text stating what version OS is on the disk.  Once booted to the floppy, you can type "SYS C:" to transfer the necessary system files to the hard drive.  After that, you should be able to boot to the hard drive.

One other thing to watch for.  Make sure that the hard drive is still set up correctly in CMOS.

HTH,
John
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j2Commented:
1. make sure that the boot order in BIOS is set to A: C: and not C: A:. If not the systgem will never try to boot from floppy.

2. make sure you have a clean MBR (fdiks /mbr)

3. make sure you have valid partitions.
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DavidHalperinCommented:
Just boot up with a DOS boot disc with CD rom support and start the installation.  Also, try to boot the CD.  Change the boot order in the BIOS
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dbruntonCommented:
Follow j2's advice and set your bios to boot from A: first if it has this option

Get a boot disk and boot the computer.  Ensure that you have the format command on the boot disk and then reformat the hard disk.  The command is

format c: /s

Remove boot disk and restart the floppy.  Does the computer boot off the hard disk now?
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govrock1Author Commented:
Thanks all of you for your expertise.
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