won't boot/screen goes black

Posted on 2008-10-10
Last Modified: 2013-11-09
    I friend has this Dell Dimension 8110. For some reason, when she turns it on, it will say "Diskette drive 0 seek failure." Several seconds later it will also say "Secondary drive 1 not found." Then it will quickly flash some third message and then try to boot, but I never know what the third message is because its way too fast. I've tried to hit the pause button but I'm never in time.
     Then it brings up another screen that says
     "Hardware Profile/Configuration Recovery Menu.
     This menu allows you to select a hardware profile to be used when Windows is started.
     If youre system is not starting correctly, then you may switch to a previous system configuration, which may overcome startup problems. IMPORTANT: System configuration changes made since the last successful startup will be discarded.
     Profile 1
     Profile 2"
     Regardless of which profile I choose, it will look like its booting and then the screen goes black.
     I've tried to get into the BIOS but I am unable to. I've tried hitting every one of the F keys, as well as the Delete key and the Esc key. When I hit any of these, I hear the PC beep (so the keyboard is probably working) but for some reason, I cannot get into the BIOS.
Question by:john8217

Expert Comment

ID: 22689947
It sounds like a hardware failure rather than software. I guess (by the
F1/F2 prompt) that you are getting this message just after it has gone
through POST checks (memory checks etc) before Windows starts to boot?

if it's DISK DRIVE 0 SEEK FAILURE, time to run some hard drive diagnostics, and backup your important data. you may need a new hard drive.

Accepted Solution

codezp earned 250 total points
ID: 22689995
sorry misread first error, first one means that your floppy disk is faulty if you have one

in any case try this when computer is starting

Hold <Alt>+F, then hit <Alt>+E. After it stops beeping, hit <Alt>+B, and this will restart your system. That procedure sets your BIOS back to defaults, and it should force the system to redetect all of the IDE drives.
LVL 63

Assisted Solution

SysExpert earned 250 total points
ID: 22691448
IN adition, you may want to disable floppy boot in the BIOS, and then concentrate on the hard drive isues.
Use  UBCD CD to run vendor diagnostics on your hard drive.



I hope this helps !
LVL 91

Expert Comment

ID: 22692988
first, check your bios battery, it should read 3 V, or replace it (a CR2032 )
Then - i suggest testing with the minimum setup - disconnect also all peripherals and network cables :
motherboard + cpu + 1 ram stick, video card, power supply
on boot, do you have a display? and can you enter the BIOS ?
if NO it is one of the connected, swap ram, Power supply, video card - leaving only motherboard and cpu
if Yes, add devices till the problem shows

you can also check the motherboard for bad capacitors as shown here :

Author Closing Comment

ID: 31505156
-I took out the CMOS battery, put it back in, and then I was finally able to get into the BIOS settings. From there I disabled the floppy drive and now it works. But I later ran a diagnostic test on the hard drive and found it had 1 bad sector. But at least it's working again (for now).

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