MY COMPUTER WON'T BOOT UP??? No boot device available- f1 ti retry or f2 for setup utility

I have a Dell e310 with windows xp (I think).  

I was on a site the other day and the computer froze up and then the screen went blue.  I turned it off and then tried to power it back up and it will not come back on.  When you turn the computer on it says "LOADING PBR FOR DESCRIPTOR 2- FAILED" another message that has come up is "DRIVE 0: ST380819AS- FAIL RETURN CODE: 7".  Right now as I am looking at the screen it says "NO BOOT DEVICE AVAILABLE- STRIKE F1 TO RETRY BOOT, F2 FOR SETUP UTILITY".

Does anyone by chance know what could have happened, how severe the problem is, and how to fix it???

All help will be appreciated

Thanks
Laballa1Asked:
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sliiconmanCommented:
Sounds like you have a corrupt Master boot record.

Try this...

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314503

And Fixboot too after may help
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smckellar83Commented:
very silly question but i have to ask. Do you have any usb hard disks plugged in. iPod? External HDD? USB memory stick?

It could be the system is trying to boot off this device.
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Brian PiercePhotographerCommented:
Boot from the Windows CD into the recovery console (Press 'R' when prompted)

From the recovery console enter the commands
FIXMBR
FIXBOOT

Exit the recovery console and attempt a reboot
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sliiconmanCommented:
KCTS that is the link I already posted - Cheers!
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Brian PiercePhotographerCommented:
Opps - apologies - must refesh more often
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Laballa1Author Commented:
no there is not any usb hard disks plugged in.  Not a silly question
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Laballa1Author Commented:
This is what is happening,
I press the button to turn the computer on
The Dell screen comes up
A black screen with a blue stripe at the top (with www.dell.com, on the stripe) and it says "Loading PBR for descriptor 2. . . failed."  

If I press F8, it says "No boot device available-  strike F1 to retry to boot, F2 for setup utility"

I don't even make it to a Windows or Microsoft screen or anywhere
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SLFuquaCommented:
Have you tried to fix the MBR as KCTS said above? If so, and it didn't work, you may be looking at a failed drive. You could however see if the problems are logical (i.e., repairable). You can create a bootable copy of BartPE on another computer and run checkdisk. I've repaired failed disks before with it.

http://www.nu2.nu/pebuilder

Good luck,
sl
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Laballa1Author Commented:
To fix the mbr I would need a windows xp cd-rom, I didn't get one of those (or I can't find it) would it be logical to try the bartpe without trying to fix the mbr
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Brian PiercePhotographerCommented:
You can use a trial version of the CD to start the recovery console if you can get hold of one.
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Laballa1Author Commented:
kcts

do you think that there would be a trial version available somewhere that I could download
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sliiconmanCommented:
I am not aware of any downloads but if you are willing to buy a book you may be abllet o find a demo there. May want to check the computer section of a local bookstore.  Make sure you follow the diretions in the link I posted about how to repair the masterboot record. There are some important details in there.

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SLFuquaCommented:
Just create a copy of BartPe and run checkdisk from it. It's really simple. http://www.nu2.nu/pebuilder. It isn't going to hurt anything on your computer. It may not fix it, but it's possible and an easy check.

If none of the above mentioned suggestions work then your hard drive is probably failing. You can also try a copy of the Ultimate Boot CD (UBCD) which includes recovery utilities from most of the major hard drive manufacturers. You'll need to pull the hard drive and see whom the manufacturer is. If the problem is logical but deeper than OS clusters, (i.e. hard drive sectors) the manufacturer utilities can sometimes recover data (the drive tables) and restore access to the drive.

Best,
sl
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Laballa1Author Commented:
Thanks for the help everyone...I guess I will be buying a book from the bookstore tomorrow to start down the path of troubleshooting.  I will most likely be back on tomorrow once I get the book and disk to get some more help :-)  

Thanks again for your time
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3_SCommented:
The code 7 means you disk is about to fail or is already failed.
You will have to replace your disk as soon as possible.  Add you disk as a slave to try to recover the data on it.
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PUNKYCommented:
I agree with 3S. I have many failure like that on Dell, and replace the drive would help.
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3_SCommented:
With you will have to replace your disk as soon as possible I mean
The more things you try (fixmbr, chkdsk,...) the more likely you will lose data on your disk untill no recovery will be possible and you will end up with a dead hard drive.
 (unless really expensive professional recovery, but in most case you will not want to pay the money for that)
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sliiconmanCommented:
If you are worried about losing data you could try a product called Acronis.

You can boot from the CD and create a backup of your drive. If you have a netowkr sahre or available USB drive you could save it there. Then at a later time cruise the image file for any files.

Just a thought
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SLFuquaCommented:
I do agree with 3_S, you should slave the drive before you go any further and get your data backed up, or burn it to CD/DVD, or copy it to a thumbdrive. Running any type of diagnostics on a failing drive can push it over the edge.

Data first.

Best,
sl
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Laballa1Author Commented:
A lot of this terminology is WAY over my head...
What does is it mean to add a disk as a slave or slave the drive?
When you say disk, does that mean my hard drive?

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