Windows 2000 Professional system will not completely boot

Posted on 2004-11-17
Last Modified: 2010-04-14
I have a Windows 2000 Professional system that was working just fine two days ago but after being used by another user the system will not complete it's boot process.  It gets to the Windows 2000 screen with the blue bar at the bottom and appears to be loading everything and then a blue screen with white writing flashes and it reboots itself.  I have attempted to boot into safe mode, last known good configuration and attempted to repair but I do not have ERD's!!!  I do have a set of boot up disk but not sure what to do once I get there?  Also if I need to re-install the OS my data will still be in tact right?
Thanks for saving my butt yet once again!!!
Question by:SCUD1
    LVL 18

    Expert Comment

    Do you have your windows 2000 cd? This cd is bootable and can be used to troubleshoot problems via the recovery console or to also do a repair of the operating system.
    LVL 18

    Expert Comment

    From the recovery console, I would start by running chkdsk /r to scan and fix your any system errors and see if that helps.
    LVL 18

    Expert Comment

    If you do a true "reinstall" by popping in the cd and going the normal way about installing the OS...then no...your data would be lost.

    That is why there are also these options if other methods haven't worked:

    Author Comment

    Yes...I do have the 2000 CD and attempting to do as you have suggested's asking me which installation I would like to log on to and I'm entering "c" for the hard drive but it's wanting a number?  I typed in "1" and now it's wanting a password.  Am I doing the right thing or have I gotten off the beaten path?  It's not my system so I am now waiting for the owner to call me with it.  
    Thanks for your help thus far.  Hopefully, what you have suggested will do the trick.  I will let you know!!!!
    LVL 18

    Expert Comment

    Yes, you are doing the right thing. It should list c as the installation...and it will have a 1 beside it to indicate it is the first option.

    So you type 1 and hit enter.

    The password it is asking you for is the built in administrator account make sure the owner gives you the built in admin account password and not their user account password.
    LVL 4

    Expert Comment

    If you end up doing a reinstall then you will want to make sure that you get all of your user data off the machine.

    To do this I would suggest hooking up the Hard Drive to another computer and copying the c:\Documents and Settings folder and the C:\Program Files folder off the drive.  95%+ of all user documents, favaorites, and user data files are located in these two folders.  If you really want to make sure that you have everything then do a backup of the drive using NTBackup (start->run->ntbackup).  Then if you ever find that you are missing anything you can get it back by doing a selective restore of the files.

    Author Comment

    by:SCUD1's the deal...I have attempted to run the recovery console with no avail.  I did attempt to boot the system again and got a stop error.  Registry file failure was about all I was able to catch.  The screen flashed too quickly. what?  I have the Windows 2000 CD and I have made a set of Boot Disks but I do not have the ERD's.  And everything that I'm reading is stating that the ERD's are needed to repair.  The system will not completely boot into Windows, Brownmattc.  Either normal or safe.  I have attempted the "last known good configuration" and nothing.  Got any more ideas anyone?  I really do not want to have to reformat this drive.  It's not my data to lose.  
    Thanks again!!!
    LVL 30

    Expert Comment

    by:Wayne Barron
    Are you saying that you cannot boot completely up?
    So no Desktop? I would kick the sh*t out of the person that
    messed up my computer.

    Just going to through some things at you, I understand your pain
    And hope that you can get it fixed.
    Try this link.;en-us;156640

    I have done this before, so no biggy.
    IF you have "Multiple Partitions" on the computer.
    If you do not, then you are going to end up having to do a complete

    If 2000 was like NT4 Server. You are given an option in Install.
    To choose to [Recover] system.

    If you perhaps get the system up and going again.
    Follow the instructions below from "Upgrading" your 2000 System.

       If you are some how able to get onto the desktop Then stick in your
    Windows 2000 CD.
    When Launches choose:

    [First Screen] Install  |   [Second Screen]Upgrade (recommended) |
    [Third Screen] Registration Code | [Forth Sceen] Coping system files.
    And then last, reboot to complete installation.

    This will enable you to keep everything like it is without loosing nothing.
    But you will have to install all SP's once completed.
    If you have Office & Norton. Uninstall them Before you do the Upgrade.
    As they are a pain in the butt once you do the Upgrade.


    Author Comment

    Ok...I have tried all the above suggestions still with no avail.  The system is still not completely booting into windows.  It doesn't get any further than it did two days ago.  I'm just spinning my wheels here I think.  I just can't believe that it's this serious.  The guy booted his computer with a floppy in the A: drive got the non-system disk messge, removed the floppy and now this?  The system was working perfectly before this.  What in world could have happened?  
    I want to thank all of you for helping me thus far.  If any of you can think of another solution here I would greatly appreciate it.  I might just have to make that nasty call and reinstall the OS and lose their stuff.  Let me know...Thanks again!!!
    LVL 30

    Expert Comment

    by:Wayne Barron
    Just a shot in the dark here......
    I doubt it will do anything, but since you mentioned:
    The guy booted his computer with a floppy in the A: drive got the non-system disk messge, removed the floppy and now this?  The system was working perfectly before this.  What in world could have happened?  

    Maybe the system is Halting on trying to find information that is located in the A:\ Drive.
    I have never known of this to happen before, but stranger things have happened.

    Go into: BIOS
    I cannot remember the actual page it will be on, But set the
    1st Boot Option  -   HardDrive. (It is not named HardDrive HDD I think)

    This way it will not be looking in the A:\ Drive for anything.

    As mentioned above, I doubt this will do anything, or cure the problem.
    But who knows.. Right? Just throwing things at you here to test.

    If I was in front of the Computer I would be able to track it down.
    But through the Internet, like I tell my Father "all the time"
    I cannot read a "Computer's Minds" over the internet :-)

    Keep me informed.

    Author Comment

    Carrzkiss, thanks for the thought but already tried that and didn't make a difference.  And I know just what you are saying about doing this over the internet.  It is difficult.  But...I have gotten "wonderful" advice from you experts in the past and are very thankful.  I have spent way too much time on this computer already but "always" want to give it every chance before having to reformat and start over.  This guys wife is taking online college classes on this computer so telling how much information will be lost.  I'm totally out of idea though.  I have tried everything I can think and you all have thought of????  What to do?  
    Thanks again for your help!!!
    LVL 30

    Expert Comment

    by:Wayne Barron
    How far is it getting before it hangs?

    Author Comment

    It gets past the first screen where it detects RAM, drives, etc.  And then goes through the black windows screen fine and onto  the windows 2000 professional screen, the blue bar at the bottom scroll across until it gets right to the end and hangs for just a short period of time and flashes to the stop error screen and reboots doing the same as is described.
    It won't boot into safe mode, I have tried the "last known good configuration" option...nothing!!!!  There apparently isn't a set of ERD's.  And I have tried everything above.  So????  I don't know!!!  
    LVL 30

    Expert Comment

    by:Wayne Barron
    Just thought about something!

     (Desktop Computer Only, Laptop never tried it with)
    {OK, we need to find a way to keep the young ladies information without loosing it, right?}

    Follow these steps
    #1: Remove the Hard Drive from the computer.
    #2: Add the Hard Drive to your computer. Set it as Slave
    #3: Boot your computer. (Make sure that it is seeing the Hard Drive,
           If not, Make sure the Ribbon is set correct. If so, change the
           Ribbon around with another Device.. i.e. CD Rom Drive )
    #4: When on your desktop, go into My Computer.
          And open the Hard Drive up, And create a Folder some where on your
          Computer's Actual Hard Drive.
          And name it [Her Drive]
          Move ""ALL"" her Files over to the Folder.
          i.e. Outlook Express folder
    Located:  (Must have [Show Hidden Files and Folders] Enabled
                    Tools | Options |   [View] Tab
                    Look under [Hidden Files and Folders]
    Once the files/folders are viewable, do the following:
    The [Her User Name = Username]
    Is the String for her Identity, it will not be the same as mine here    
    My Computer |
    C:\Documents and Settings\Her User Name\Local Settings\Application Data\Identities\{F085B46C-5D07-4D36-AC8B-716021D3552F}\Microsoft\Outlook Express

    Then go to and Backup her [Favorites]
    C:\Documents and Settings\Her User Name\Favorites

    Then go to and Backup Her [Documents]
    C:\Documents and Settings\Her User Name\My Documents

    Then go to the place on "Her Drive" were all the School Files
    Are kept at, and Back them Up.

    Keep in mind, to make all this work properly.
    Create the Same Folder Structure on the "Backup Folder"
    On your Hard Drive, as it is on her drives.

    Example: Create the Folder Structure like so:
    C:\Documents and Settings\Her User Name\My Documents


    Once you have all the files Successfully Backed Up.

    Shut Down your Computer, and Remove the Hard Drive.
    Place it back in her computer, and then boot with the
    [Windows 2000 CD] in the CD Rom.
    Set BIOS to Boot From CDRom.
    And install the System.

    If you do not have access to the Drives.
    Then post in here, the information on the Computer.
    i.e. Dell so and so.

    And I will be more then happy to find the Drivers for your
    And post all links to download them in this post.

    This is a sure fire way, to make sure that you do not loose none of her
    Important Data.


    Author Comment

    Ok...I have printed the above instructions.  I have contacted the owner to see if there is any other information they can offier as to how this happened.  They are going to call me back (hopefully with the clue to this mess).  At that time they are going to make the decision as to whether I spend the time to go through the above instructions or re-install the OS.  I'm assuming that if & when I re-install the OS their programs will still be there or will this be like a clean install?  
    Once again...thanks for your help.  I will let you know what they decide.
    LVL 30

    Accepted Solution

    If they have "Multiple Partitions" on the computer.
    And they have programs installed Properly
    "As-in = Programs installed in other partitions and not C:\Drive
    And Data saved on other Partitions and not C:\ Drive. "
    Then they will not loose all their Data.
    If they have everything installed on (or) they only have
    A C:\ Drive, then the answer is 'Yes' they will loose everything.

    You will want to perform a "Clean Install"
    This will be the better alternative. This way you will have the option
    to Partition the computer.

    [Instructions on Partitioning Large Drives]
    If the computer has a 5-Gig Drive, then skip this part.

    For Drive over 10-Gig's in Size.
    "Demonstration Purpose Only"

    When you get to the "Choose the Drive to install Windows into"
    You will see the Drive C:\ 30000 <-- Example of a 30 Gig Drive.

    Highlight the Drive.
    Hit    [D]  < -- Deletes the Partition

    To create the Partitions.
    Hit [C] On the Next Screen, Type in the size that you want to have the Drive.
    Then hit [Enter]

    Example of Drive Sizes
    [C] 10000       --> 10 Gig
    [D] 10000       --> 10 Gig
    [E] 10000       --> 10 Gig

    It is best to keep C:\ Drive at around 10 Gigs’ in Size.
    On a larger Drive, This will hold a lot of information in it.
    And will also perform better for the computers "Memory Swap Files"
    The Larger the Drive, the Better Performance on Memory Swapping
    Which is a Must.

    The [D] & [E] and other Drives.
    Can be anything really. above 5 Gig's or more. For
    Storage, Office/Education and software.
    Example of Smaller [D] and other Drives, on a 30 Gig Drive.

    [C] 10000    --> 10 Gig
    [D]  5000     -->  5 Gig
    [E]  5000     -->  5 Gig
    [F]  5000     -->  5 Gig
    [G]  5000     -->  5 Gig

    Of course you must also understand that the drives will not be the size
    5 Gig will turn into about 4.95 ......  10 Gig --> will be about 9.89
    The system writes Data to the Drives so that Windows can use these Drives.

    On Larger than 30 Gig Drives. just use best judgment, or post question in here
    Same post of course, and I will give an example for the Larger Drives

    -------Formatting the C:\ Drive-----------
    After you have created your drives, Choose [Highlight] [C] Drive.
    To install Windows 2000,
    The Next screen will be the [Format] screen.
    For “security and reliability” choose [NTFS] as the File System.
    It is better than Fat32 Drives.

    If you choose [NTFS] then highlight it and press [Enter]

    And you will be on your way to Installing Windows once the Formatting is complete.

    When the System is done [Formatting] the drive, and writing Data to the Drive.
    It will Display a Restart Window in 15-Seconds.
    When the System Restarts, go into BIOS and set your
    1st Boot Option to [HDD] so that you can leave the CD in the drive.
    ( I have all my 3 Boot Options set to [HDD] )

    To partition the other created Drives
    Once the system is loaded and you are now on the Fresh Beautiful Windows 2000 Desktop.
    Do the Following:

    Right Click on [Taskbar] choose [Properties]
    When the Dialog Appears choose the [Advanced] Tab.

    [Start Menu Setting]
    Put a check in
    [Display Administrator Tools]

    Click [Apply] then [OK]

    Now click on [Start  | Programs   | Administrator Tools   | Computer Management
    Once the Computer Management Window is opened.
    Click on [Disk Management] Under Storage
    On all Drives (EXCEPT C:\ Drive)
    Right Click on them, and choose [Format]
    Choose [NTFS] and choose [Quick Format]
    If you do not choose [Quick Format] then it will take Forever to format all drives.

    You will want to do this to all extra drives, in order for them to be accessible
    VIA my Computer.

    After that is done, you will be ready to start installing Windows Service Packs.
    And programs and everything else, then you can get all the data from your
    Computer from the Backup and put it into place on hers

    Take Care and keep me informed, and ask questions when needed.
    I work out of my Office, which is located at my house, so I am always around.

    Take Care

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