I think this is a hardware question so starting off here...
I have a Compaq Presario, running WIndows XP Sp2. Over the last few weeks, on booting, it's failing to find the hard drive with following message:
first screen displays this
Press Ctrl-Alt-B to configure
after a couple of other screens does this
Non-system disk or disk error
Press any key to continue
If you escape to the bios, it shows no hard drive present.
After umpteen ctrl-alt-deletes or switch off/ons or (more recently) escaping in to bios set up, getting a cup of coffee and rebooting, Windows starts ok. So it appears that whatever the problem is, the machine is fine once warmed up. When XP is up, successive reboots always work.
I've tried the following which makes me think the hard drive is ok:
1. Moving Hard drive (30 gig Hitachi with single partition) to top of boot order
2. Physically removing hard drive & replacing it as firmly as possible
3. running chkdsk. This produces 'CHKDSK discovered free space marked as allocated in the volume bitmap' which don't appear to be cleared when doing chkdsk/f. I read somwhere that this could be a feature of XP SP2.
4. doing a detailed physical disk scan with the on-track product - no problems
5. defragged disk/registry
Does anyone have any ideas what may be causing this. Any other tests I can do. Reading a similar posting suggested the clock battery may be going. If this IS a possible cause, any way I can check it?
Grateful for any help. Rob