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XP freezes at desktop after booting... really slowly!

Posted on 2006-11-03
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Last Modified: 2011-09-20
Hi all,
I have a friends laptop, Toshiba Satellite which is not booting up.  It is VERY slow to boot, and after it does, it freezes up.  She says she didn't do anything... hmmm.
Any suggestions?  I tried safe mode, previous config that worked and it still freezes.
What do you suggest I do next?  All her data needs to be saved (she is a college student and needs her school work off it).
Thanks a bunch.. highest points .. quick responses needed.  She has projects due Monday!
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Question by:mchyzik
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36 Comments
 
LVL 15

Expert Comment

by:mattisflones
ID: 17870657
You have two options.
Either do a inplace upgrade, or recovery in recoveryconsole with a SFC...

In either case the data should be preserved.

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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17870692
how do I do SFC in recover console?  I can get to recovery console, then type in sfc /scannow but it comes back saying no disk.  confusing!
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LVL 15

Expert Comment

by:venom96737
ID: 17870722
Simple answer you can't do sfc from recovery console its not a valid command.  It boots to safe mode so thats good is it sloow to boot to safe mode?  Boot to safe mode and goto start run msconfig and goto the startup tab and disable some programs from the startup see if that helps if not go back into safe mode and go back to msconfig and goto services tab and at the bottom click hide microsoft services and then unclick the ones that remain see if that gets it to boot ok.
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LVL 27

Expert Comment

by:David-Howard
ID: 17870729
If you can get in to safe mode perhaps you can scan the system.
Do you have any types of anti-malware of anti-virus software?
You can get them free off of the web.
Spybot:
http://www.safer-networking.org/en/download/index.html
AdAware:
http://www.download.com/Ad-Aware-SE-Personal-Edition/3003-8022_4-10399602.html?tag=tab_rev
AVG (Anti-Virus)
http://free.grisoft.com/doc/1
You may have to download these utilities from a different pc and then install them on your friends laptop.
If the system is sluggish throughout bootup and log on, the system may have been exposed to malware.
If you have the XP CD you can do a repair as well. If it all possible prior to this though I would suggest copying her data to wherever you can. (Just in case).
XP Repair: (With screen shots)
http://www.webtree.ca/windowsxp/repair_xp.htm#How%20to%20Repair%20Windows%20XP%20by%20Installing%20Over%20top%20of%20Existing%20Setup:
Good luck. :-)
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LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:glenn_1984
ID: 17870743
You get to recovery console with a c:?
No disk usually means the drivers for the hard drive were not loaded (F6 as the CD boots) or the drive is crashed.
=====================
Inplace upgrade is easier, though it takes about an hour, with a little bit of intervention
Boot to the CD.
At the first prompt to Repair (via Recovery Console), select Install Windows.
You should get a second option to repair before you need to commit to install new windows.
Take that.
==========
or look here about recovery console repair
file:///P:/GLENN/TechAnswers/XP_Repairinstall.htm

file:///P:/GLENN/TechAnswers/xp-repair-deep-viewarticle.jsp.htm
================
or
get it booted up and try running a virus scan
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Expert Comment

by:venom96737
ID: 17870781
Glenn why did you give them a file address that is located on your local computer?  There is noway they can access that it will just say that they don't have a p:.
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Expert Comment

by:mattisflones
ID: 17870894
"how do I do SFC in recover console?  I can get to recovery console, then type in sfc /scannow but it comes back saying no disk.  confusing!"

You should be able to run a SFC from recovery console, even if Venom says its not a valid command... because it is!
But that error is kind of strange.. At taht point i would just skip recovery console and do a inplace install.

Easy, quick, and solves allmost everything..

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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:joelcpatterson
ID: 17871021
If you can get into safe mode:
1.Go start and then the "run" and type in "msconfig" and hit enter.  This should bring up the system configuration tool.  
2.Go to the services tab. In the bottom left corner, put a check in the "Hide all microsoft Services" box and then click the "Disable all button".
3.Now go to the "startup" tab and click the "disable all" button.
4.Reboot into normal mode and see if it works.

If you can't get into safe mode:
-Listen to see if you can hear any clicking noises and or other random sounds coming from the hard drive.  It is possible that the hard drive could be going out.
or
-Put the Windows CD in that came with the Laptop and try a repair install.

Let me know if any of this works...
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871301
if I do an implace install would I lose all her documents in my documents?  Thats the only think  I want to be able to save for her at the very least.
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871335
I think the hard drive is bad... takes forever to get into safe mode as well.  Im going to go ahead and clean up the startup and services.  Will keep you posted!
Worse case, I can remove the laptop hard drive, make it a slave in another PC I have (I have a converter cable to make it fit as IDE/5.5 inch drive.  What 'cha all think?
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871348
this laptp is making a terrible noise now!
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871354
its a loud vibration... but it went away and is quiet again... whew!
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LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:glenn_1984
ID: 17871359
Inplace restore does NOT lose documents or even program settings.

venom -- WHOOPS sorry about that.

The correct links are:

http://www.michaelstevenstech.com/XPrepairinstall.htm

http://webcast.broadcastnewsroom.com/articles/viewarticle.jsp?id=8658-0
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Accepted Solution

by:
mattisflones earned 500 total points
ID: 17871381
I suggest you do something before the HD breaks and all is lost..

Rip out the HD, insert it in a desktop computer, ad backup the data!!!!
(You will need a converter for the HD that cost about $15)
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871405
OK, got in safe mode and got my thumb drive to work.. so am now copying all her files to my thumb drive.  I really dont want to have to rebuild this PC and applications...
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871421
I have the converter so it works with a desktop PC  if I can't get the data on the thumb drive
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871426
strange things happeneing.... as I am copying files from her hard drive to the thumb drive, windows keeps coming up with messages that its installing drivers (ie: foundnew hardware, cd-rom drive)... is this possessed?
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LVL 15

Expert Comment

by:mattisflones
ID: 17871454
Weird...
I hope the transfer works, but if not.. hook  the HD up to another computer.

Then a inplace install/upgrade should be the obvious next step..
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871537
Thus far transfer is still working in safe mode.. then I'll perform an inplace install...
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17871548
should I do a repair, or inplace install...
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Expert Comment

by:mattisflones
ID: 17871605
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/315341/en-us

Its called an inplace-upgrade, but is a reinstall..
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 17872500
i would not directly do an OS repair or reinstall; first test your disk with any of these :
http://www.disk-utility.com/hard-disk-low-level-format.html
and if it shows problems, yopu'll have to replace it
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LVL 15

Expert Comment

by:venom96737
ID: 17872803
HAHAHAHA Matt you can't run sfc from the recovery console go ahead try it all day.  SFC needs to be able to access the registry to run.  Here is a list of commads you CAN use tell me if you see that on there.
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17873292
I don not want to format my drive...... I'd rather try and keep what she has and work with it.  I went to device manager to try and find what the drive manufacturer is and it only states toshiba mk4021gas.  Dont know what that is! I agree, I should test the drive before doing anything else, but don tknow what the drive is without opening the laptop and removing it.  suggestions?
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LVL 91

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 17873346
run hitachi's drive fitness test from my link
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17873377
I tried the link... site temporarily unavailable... I'll google it.
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17873415
OK, I was able to run fitness test and it failes w/disposition code of ox70... new hard drive needed!
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 17873470
the links works for me now !
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17874363
ok, installed new HDD, loaded XP, and the system works fine for a few minutes (like 3), then freezes up... Im ready to throw it in the trash!  THoughts?
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Expert Comment

by:glenn_1984
ID: 17874527
Now it sounds like something in the PC or some kind of virus or spyware.

I remember a PC of mine that froze up.  Called the MFG.  They sent me  some obscure plug in part with a resistor built in.  I replaced the  old one and the problem went away.

How old is this PC?

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LVL 91

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 17875709
ok try to  check the cpu temp in the bios after it freezes.
and run a ram test, use memtest86+ from :  www.memtest.org
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LVL 15

Expert Comment

by:mattisflones
ID: 17876672
If you got the same problems on a fresh install there is no spyware or malware that causes this, thus there must be a HW problem..
I guess a memtest, mobo vendors mobo tests and so on is the way to go..
Or simply get a techie with the right tools to check the HW to test it for you..
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 17883700
It seems that the hard drive was the culprit... swapped it out, reloaded and everything seems to be working fine.  I am trying now to use an adapter to pull off remaining data from the old hard drive, but when I put it in as a slave in another system, the system won't boot up.... suggestions?
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LVL 15

Expert Comment

by:mattisflones
ID: 17885690
If you connected the LapHD to a IDE bus allready in use i would guess its a master/slave/CableSelect issue..

Try setting the LapHD as Slave, and the other device as master. Or even check if you get the LapHD up in BIOS.
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Expert Comment

by:venom96737
ID: 17886533
mchyzik a system wont boot up with a badly damaged harddrive attached to it.  You could try a few tricks to get it to work like placing the drive in the freezer for a few hours throwing it on the system and trying to get the information be4 it heats up.  NOTE: After performing this the drive will be unusable once it heats.

or you could try taping the edges on the table (all edges) and see if it will work

Or you could send it off to a profesional data recovery center and have them get your information.
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LVL 91

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 17887364
the easiest way is to disconnect the cd drives from the 2nd cable, and connect the disk to it.
But if the drive is bad (bad interface), it can stop the booting
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