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a Drive read error occured press ctl-alt-del to restart

Posted on 2009-05-11
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Last Modified: 2012-05-06
I have a client that has an older PC with a IDE hard drive in it. Wehn powering up the system she got the above error. So I took into the shop anticipating a bad drive. Not the case. I cloned it to another drive with no errors reported during the clone. Installed the clone drive and the system booted and ran just fine. OK so it looks like it is solved. 4 days later she turns on the computer and the same error happens. Once again in the interest of getting my client running I just cloned the drive and put he clone in.
Now I replaced the IDE cable reseated the power connector etc. Reseated the memory modules and all adapter cards.
BTW I ran a virus scan adware scan etc and verified a clean system.
Thinking there may be a problem with the power supply I ran a test on it and found high and low voltages so I installed a new power supply.  The system ran fine for a week, with her turning the computer off at night and on in the morning. Bam Friday morning the same error. Once again a clone and back up and running.
Any ideas as to what is causing this?
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Question by:Compservices
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bootreboot earned 250 total points
ID: 24357347
does the error message say "a Drive read error...." or "A Drive read error"... Sounds like a problem with the Floppy drive?
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by:Compservices
ID: 24357578
Sorry for the confusion, definetly  "a drive read error has occured" Not relitive to the A: Drive on the system.
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by:bootreboot
ID: 24357686
Are there any bios updates available?  Is disconnecting non essential peripherals (i.e. cd drive, floppy drive, an option?  What does the boot sequence look like on the machine?
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by:Compservices
ID: 24357769
I did try that, ie disconnecting devices and peripherials on my initial visit and that had made no difference at the time.
The boot sequence is typical when all is well, ie BIOS screen identifying hardware and the report, then the windows logo and windows boot.
When this problem occurs there is NO BIOS screen, the error message is the first thing to show on screen.
I did check for BIOS updates and it was up to date as another tech had worked on the machine in Januarary and I'm assuming updated the BIOS. Although the problem at that time was not a hardware related issue to my knowledge.
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by:dbrunton
dbrunton earned 250 total points
ID: 24358987
Sounds like motherboard problems.

I'd look for bad capacitors http://www.badcaps.net/pages.php?vid=5 as the first target.  

Check the southbridge and northbridge chips for heat in case they are getting too hot.

And blow out any dust but I suspect there won't be any.
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