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Visa stops at splash screen and/or BSODs with 0x7b error.

Posted on 2010-08-19
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
Our Dell Vostro 220 will not boot.  When attempted it either stops at the splash screen.. at times it displays a BSOD with error 0x7b error.  I have already attempted the following with no success:
-I was able to get into the Dell diagnostics screen and ran hardware tests which showed no issues
-When I select 'utility partition' on the diagnostics screen, receive message 'no utility partition'.
-In BIOS, changed ACHI to ATA as noted in other EE replies.  No change in issue, changed back.
-In BIOS, changed all settings to 'defaults'. As per other EE suggestions.
-Flashed the BIOS to the latest release.
-Ran chkdsk .. .NO errors.
-Booted with Vista 32 Home Premium SP2 disk / attempted Repair, also attempted recovery tool.  Issue still present upon reboot.

We can not get into safe mode/restore to previous version.

It seems the hard drive controller may be faulty?  When at command prompt after booting with Vista disk I am able to see all files on the c: drive... however I can not boot to it. Perhaps BIOS is not seeing the drive?  We also tried fixmbr and it was an unrecognized command.
Help please... this is driving me totally nuts.

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Question by:mchyzik
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by:John Hurst
ID: 33481669
Since you have done some tests already, consider the following:
1. Boot with a bootable CD (Ultimate Boot CD, not the Vista CD) and see if it sees the C: drive. Can you see your documents, etc.
2. Have you got a spare hard drive? Put in a spare hard drive and try to install Vista on the spare from the Dell CD's.

If the above all works, it would suggest a drive problem or a corruption problem on the drive. If the above steps do not work, then you have another problem (memory, or possibly motherboard).
... Thinkpads_User
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by:web_tracker
ID: 33481682
Apparently this type of error has to do with a partition problem with the hard drive. Hense the attempt to repair or sucessefully use the recovery tools have failed. The drive according to microsoft needs to be repartitioned and reformated. Have you used any recovery tools such as bootable discs to see if the drive is accessable to recover data?
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by:web_tracker
ID: 33481698
Try placing this drive as a slave drive in another computer to see if you can access and backup your data then do a total clean install, by deleting the partition, creating a new partition and then reformating the hard drive.  

I found another article that may be of interest to you. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/927392
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 33481806
What could have caused this to happen in the first place?  My client states the last thing he did was perform a java update and when it said it needed to reboot he decided to 'turn off' the computer. Luckily he did it the correct way (using start menu/) When he came to work a few days later, this issue came up.
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by:web_tracker
ID: 33481852
One other thing I noted since you were unable to boot to the diagnostics partition, that is another key that indicates the problem was something that messed up the partitions of the drive. If the partition information was intact then you should be able to boot to the diagnostics partition, unless the harddrive has been replaced since the system was new, or someone previously deleted the diagnostics partition.  The fixmbr is the command for windows xp and I do not believe it works for vista. The command for vista is bootrec.exe  The following article may help you to repair the vista boot sector.
http://helpdeskgeek.com/how-to/fix-mbr-xp-vista/
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by:nobus
ID: 33482586
can you post the minidump for more info?
see windows\minidumps
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by:John Hurst
ID: 33483537
>>> What could have caused this to happen in the first place?

Something may have gone wrong (not necessarily because the client shut down), corrupting the contents of the hard drive. ... Thinkpads_User
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 33484256
I will be going back to the office in a few hours, will post the mini dump.  I will also try bootrec.exe to see if that works.  I rather try things that are less evasive first if at all possible.
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by:TarasShumylo
ID: 33486054
Try this solution http://support.microsoft.com/kb/922976

You will need to modify registry offline

You can do it by this tutorial http://smallvoid.com/article/winnt-offline-registry-edit.html
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by:mchyzik
ID: 33488147
We have not been successful in getting the bootable disk (windows PE) to work.. and we dont know linux well enough to go that route.  ANy other suggestions?
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by:mchyzik
ID: 33488158
I can't boot to the Vista CD..now the system does not see the CD/DVD drive at all.  Its in BIOS, when I boot, it gives an error that there is no medium.  I wanted to boot to Vista so I could run the mbr option.
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by:web_tracker
ID: 33488294
It is probably trying to boot to the harddrive first then it freezes since it cant find a boot partition on the drive. You need to change the boot order of the drives so that the cd drive is the first drive the bios looks for when booting your system up.
When you get the boot up screen there may be an option pressing a key to get a boot menu then you can select the cd.... sometimes this is f8 or f10 or f12, depending upon the manufacturer. If you do not know what key to press just change the boot order in the bios setup.
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by:mchyzik
ID: 33488942
the cd rom IS SET to be the first drive.  I even tried REMOVING the HDD from the boot list...
I went into the boot menu... it wont boot from CD
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by:web_tracker
ID: 33489165
hmm, you sound like you may be right in your original assesment that there maybe a problem with the ide controllers on the motherboard. Does the system keep the right time, or do you have to keep on correcting the time clock in the bios? The reason I am asking it could be a bad cmos backup battery, causing it to lose the cmos settings. Have you tried reseating the ide and power cables  to the drives and reseating the cables to the mobo? You seem to be having more than one issue with this system. The problems seem to be intermittent. Is the CD drive shown in the bios?
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by:web_tracker
ID: 33489243
whooops I meant SATA controler... did not realize this system does not have IDE controllers.
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by:mchyzik
ID: 33489324
The battery is good.. clock has been correct, never wrong.  All bios information has been fine, nothing changed. The CD drive is showing up in the bios.. thats what is strange.  If I cant get the CD rom to be recognized, then I cant even do a restore or reload the OS.  I need to get the CD rom working... suggestions please!
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Accepted Solution

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nobus earned 500 total points
ID: 33490580
try to boot from another booatable cd  : ftp://ftp.kernel.org/pub/dist/knoppix/KNOPPIX_V5.0.1CD-2006-06-01-EN.iso      

just in case the cd is bad..
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 33492636
What is that file you have in your link??
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by:nobus
ID: 33494161
knoppix live cd
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by:mchyzik
ID: 33496360
OK, used a different Vista cd.... booted and ran the fixboot command..  Tried rebooting machine and it stops at splash screen again.... help please.. this is getting old and very costly as I can not charge my customer for all of these hours.. :(
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by:nobus
ID: 33498513
did you try to run from the Knoppix cd?  it will show if the hardware is ok (ecxcept disk)
you did not post the minidump, as asked?
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 33500159
I will pull the minidump and post.  I already ran diagnostics on all... everything checked out fine, even the disk. (that was the only check that the boot up partition would allow me to perform.
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 33501561
Ok, our bad... OS is Win XP Pro.  We attempted booting to CD, however it goes to BSOD.  Wanted to perform fixmbr but cant get boot.  Pulled drive and are now backing up all personal data.  How can we get this system to boot from CD when it gives BSODs?  I went to pull the mini dump, however there are only 2 and they are dated back in 2009!  I did manage to pull other 'log' files I thought were pertinant.. see attached.  It looks like a windows update was the last thing done on the computer.  The customer 'turned off' the computer when it was supposed to reboot possibly.... the updated perhaps became corrupt?

I just want to get this system up and running asap.. any assistance is greatly appreciated!
ntbtlog.txt
SchedLgU.Txt
wiaservc.log
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 33501654
Here are other logs that I thought might help.. one is the windows update log.
WindowsUpdate.log
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 33501953
maybe your system is set to NOT make dumps?
you said you attempted a repair - but did it complete without problems?
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Author Comment

by:mchyzik
ID: 33502042
we could not repair... when we try and boot from the XP disk, it goes to BSOD... cant get it to boot to XP CD at all . need to get around this, as there is no way to reinstall the OS either!
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by:web_tracker
ID: 33502256
It sounds like you are having serious hardware problems with this system, it really does not seem to be a stable machine, all the problems you have been having with this machine. All the hours you spent troubleshooting it. Since your system goes to a bsod before you even load the os onto the machine or try to access the optical drive o even try to access the hard drive means that there must be a hardware issue. So many things give you the same symptoms though. Although your tests say that everything is working fine, obviously the tests are unable to route out what the problem is. If you have known good memory from another machine try it in this machine to see if it will help resolve your problems, or try the memory from this machine in another system to see if it will cause problems in another machine. Try a known good hard drive in this machine to see if you can install the os.  If there are any PCI cards in this system I would remove them, then test your system. Next I would try swapping another known good power supply from another system into this system. If you still are having problems it could be a bad motherboard, which has been a problem with some models of Dell computers in the past. Check the capacitors on the mobo to see if any are leaking are bulged out. They should be flat across the top, and should be perpendicular to the board. If they are bulged out or leaning to the side, or show signs of leaking then the capacitors are bad.
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by:web_tracker
ID: 33502285
How much ram is in the machine? For some reason windows xp will not install properly if there is more than 1 gb of ram. Remove one of the sticks and try to install windows with one stick. Once windows has reisnstalled you can reinsert the other stick of ram and you will be set to go.
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by:nobus
ID: 33502882
test first for booting from a cd =: disconnect all other devices, cd drives disk drives even the C: drive.
reduce ram to 1 stick - disable devcies from bios till you can boot from cd
and swap the connectors for the cd drive too..
it can be you have a bad ide or sata controller
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