XP Repair Install "Setup is being restarted ..." endless loop.

Customer brought in his XP Home pc (Compaq Presario - AMD Athlon XP) with "NTLDR missing" error. Started a repair install of XP which went fine until 34 minutes left, then it rebooted and came back with "Setup is being restarted..." At this point it begins with 39 minutes left to complete, then continues with the installation until it reaches 34 minutes to go and then it reboots all over again and returns to the same "Setup is being restarted ..." and 39 minutes to go. It's stuck in this endless loop.

Reformat and install is not an option as customer desperately needs his apps and data.
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Can you get in to the recovery console and run a checkdsk on the drive? The fact that ntldr went missing is very strange. Did you ask him if he had good virus and spyware software installed? Could be really infected.

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rballAuthor Commented:
Actually, the first thing I did was remove the drive and install it as a slave in another machine and ran a chkdsk from there as well as a virus scan, etc. It found and repaired some errors. That is when I put it back in the original pc and tried the repair install.
Not sure if it will let you do it at this point but will it let you go in to safe mode?
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I would give Spinrite a try:
rballAuthor Commented:
No, can't get into Safe Mode. I don't think that will be possible unless the installation can finish.
rballAuthor Commented:
I don't have Spinrite, but I do have several other disk utilities. Yeah, it might be an idea to run a couple and see if anything turns up, though it seems more like a driver or a hardware issue as the installation always bails out at the exact same place.
It can be either bad Mem or HDD.
you can downlaod the UBCD ultimate boot cd from net and test the mem and hdd
For mem use Memtest and for HDD used MHDD.
I have seen many time this problem becaouse of these two bad parts.
However their are chances that the cpu or mbd is bad too, also try removing the cpu and make sure that heat sink and cpu has clean surface and apply some thermal paste, and make sure fan is working fine too.
Al try to discoontect all the extra wires from the mbd, like front USB, Sound Firewire connections etc.

All the best
As long as your doing repair installs .... and assumning it is either a bad driver or something deep in the hardware .... Can you move it to another computer (like yours :) ) and see if that will shell shock it in to completeing?
rballAuthor Commented:
Hello All - Turned out to be a bad hard drive. I originally installed it as a slave in a test machine and did a chkdsk which fixed a couple of errors, so I thought it was o.k. so I put it back in the original machine and continued having problems. So I removed it again and installed it as a slave for a secon chkdsk scan which found more errors. I have concluded that the disk is hooped.

I'll split points with everyone for pointing me to the hard drive.
I'm having the same problem.  I've run chkdsk on the drive twice.  I'm still in an endless loop.  I'm running memtest from the UBCD right now.

[This is my first comment to experts-exchange, so please forgive me if I'm not following proper etiquette.]
rballAuthor Commented:
You might want to have a look at the article in the link below. If you can boot to the recovery console, this might provide a solution for you:

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