Can't boot to Normal Mode or Safe Mode in Windows XP SP3

Hello,

I have a client's computer that blue screen's and then reboots itself. Scanned for malware and removed tracking cookies only. Started rebooting with greater frequency. Tried to startup in Safe Mode, and it blue screen's and reboots before it finishes starting up Safe Mode. Tried to load a UBCD. It blue screened (IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error) when loading SuperAntiSpyware. Swapped out the RAM with another identical computer, then tried to boot to the UBCD. Blue screened again with a "PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA" error. I took out the swapped out RAM, and re-installed only one of the original DIMMS.

I am suspicious of hardware, but there's only so much I can swap out on this HP Compaq dc5000 SFF. RAM and the processor appear to be the only swappable parts, other than fans, etc. The NIC is hardwired. No other add-ons in any slots.

Before I replace the computer, any suggestions for troubleshooting?
JAStillwellAsked:
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acl-puzzCommented:


If you have imp data there retrive it using this method

http://www.raymond.cc/blog/archives/2007/10/24/backup-files-from-dead-windows-using-linux-live-cd/

"Before I replace the computer, any suggestions for troubleshooting?"

there can be a way beofre reinstall and it is system restore in recovery console

and if nothing works for then why dont you reinstall this system?

are you not able to boot by windows CD?

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JAStillwellAuthor Commented:
As mentioned in the OP, it is blue screening using an Ultimate Boot CD for Windows (UBCD). I have removed one of the DIMMS, and have booted into the UBCD. It is running a scan and hasn't blue screened yet. Might be bad RAM!
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acl-puzzCommented:
". Might be bad RAM!"

To check RAM download bit defender rescue cd

http://download.bitdefender.com/rescue_cd/BitDefenderRescueCD_v2.0.0_3_08_2009.iso

boot system with it and on menu select memtest
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dexITCommented:
I ran into an issue almost identical to this but with a different error code and after 3.5 hrs of cracking my head open, i reset the values to default in BIOS and it booted up.
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ThinkerIVCommented:
I recently had a problem with one of my computers blue screening. I spent most of a day trying to figure out what was wrong. And replaced practically every replaceable part in it.

I finally took it to a professional computer technician only to have him spend a few hours to figure out that the mother board was bad.

A lot of modern computers are made from cheap components (especially HPs), I would suggest that if there is no immediately obvious solution. It is not worth the time to diagnose or the cost to repair.
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CrystalMethodCommented:
I would take a look at the capacitors on the motherboard. The tops should be flat. If any of them are bulging or even leaking (usually a rust colored substance), then the motherboard would be the problem.

http://www.badcaps.net/pages.php?vid=5

* If the capacitors are leaking, DO NOT touch them. If you do, make sure you wash your hands thoughly as soon as you can.
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AshinpixelCommented:
have you tried removing the hard drive and then booting up into the UBCD?

also disconnecting the optical drive and trying to boot xp again?

Memory would then be next port of call
ALong with HDD
and then possibly motherboard.

Try something like Memtest (http://www.memtest.org/) free to download, it will usually pick up any memory errors in a few minutes. Just to be sure it isnt memory.
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ThinkerIVCommented:
I use a program called fix it utilities from Avenquest. It comes with a rescue boot up cd that I find very helpful in diagnosing problems. It will also scan the entire windows installation from the live cd and check if there is anything wrong on the software end.
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jovonnCommented:
If the PC recently had some software or other device updates installed (which is probably the cause of  your blue screen problem) you could try the following:

Take hard disk out and add as a secondary drive on a working PC.

View all hidden system files and folders  
Go to C:\System Volume Information\_restore{123...}\RP79\snapshot
Change permission if necessary to 'everyone' with full access

Use recent copy of the registery hive  and COPY either

_REGISTRY_MACHINE_SOFTWARE
_REGISTRY_MACHINE_SYSTEM

(Try one at a time)

To C:\WINDOWS\system32\config

and rename either

software or system to old

paste the above registry hives and rename as either
software or
system.

Then add the disk back and see if it works.
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307545
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angler-sdCommented:
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CrystalMethodCommented:
angler-sd, good point.

But, the OP mentioned that they could not boot from even the EBCD. While the hard drive may be part of the problem, I suspect an undelying hardware problem. Personally, I'd check for physical defects first. Then II would then run a memory test (with a good, solid power supply).

* I've had memory tests fail with "bargain" power supplies. Just because it's new and out of the box, doesn't mean that it it's "good".

When in doubt, I throw one of my own hdd's in and do a test installation on a known good drive. If it goes through without a hitch, then you know you're looking at a bad drive or an incompatibility issue.
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JAStillwellAuthor Commented:
Thanks for all the suggestions. Rather than spend any additional time troubleshooting, we had to get this user back online, so computer replacement was the answer.
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angler-sdCommented:
I believe Crystal Boy is trying to critisize my Experience.
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