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boot failure, system halted

Posted on 2011-03-19
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I am getting the boot failure system halted message. I am trying to change the boot sequence and I dont see an option to change the device order. I've tried other HD's and still no luck.

I tried to reset the bios by removing the cmos battery and now get prompted for a password. The password is blank but i dont recall having to enter the password before. Could this be an issue?
Is there a more effective way of reseting the bios. I've checked my cables and they seem to be installed correctly.

Thanks,

Rob
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Question by:tobe1424
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10 Comments
 
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Accepted Solution

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dbrunton earned 1000 total points
ID: 35173172
These 2 links suppy methods of resetting BIOS.  Don't know if they apply to your system but you could try.

http://absoblogginlutely.net/mtblogarchive/005461.php
http://www.tech-faq.com/reset-dell-bios-password.html
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Author Comment

by:tobe1424
ID: 35173267
I will try that.

Anything else this message can relay to? The machine had the same message prior to the bios password setting.

R
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LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:Korbus
ID: 35173367
you might need to try disconnecting various devices to see if you can get your system to boot properly.   You are NOT getting a "no operating system" or "no boot device" message, that  sound to me like your boot up sequece isn't even getting that far.  

I'd start testing removals by unplugging CD's and HD, then move on to RAM and addin cards.
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Expert Comment

by:Thanatosis
ID: 35173518
First off missing info about your computer. What kind of computer/motherboard it has is really important information.
Second if your getting a bios password request you probably did not reset the bios properly. Remove the battery like you did and then refer to your motherboard layout and short the two pins that resets the bios. If your still getting the password after that you might have another problem. Here are some basic boot sequence diagnostics.

Isolate, Isolate Isolate.

Remove all card except the graphics card
Remove all drives (Hard disk, cd's drives, usb drives, and floppy drives)
Pull out all memory except for one stick.
No USB devices at all, if possible use a PS2 style keyboard.

If the machine boots properly, start adding in devices one at a time till it stops booting, then you will be able to narrow down the problem to a specific piece of hardware.


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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 35174731
here is how i handle it  : http://www.experts-exchange.com/articles/Hardware/Components/Motherboards/Short-overview-of-how-to-troubleshoot-bad-hardware-when-a-pc-does-not-post.htm

once you get it to boot from a cd, run some diags - eg ram and disk, to be sure about the basics
best download ubcd to run them : http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/      

btw - that model does not exist : 44001
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Author Comment

by:tobe1424
ID: 35182586
I'll give this a shot and keep you posted.

Excuse my typos. I mean to say dimension 4400.

Regards,

Robert
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 35182777
find here everything for your pc :  http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/dim4400/

and if you click on support - you'll find the driver section
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:Merlinsmaster
ID: 35193220
Robert,

Hold down the control key and then turn on the power, this should start the dell diags.

This will help you to know what the actual problem is.

If you hold down the f12 function key, then you should be able to go to diags from there as well!

Let us know how you make out?

Michael
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Author Comment

by:tobe1424
ID: 35346820
Sorry folks I have put this project aside for a few weeks. I will try the last few things mentioned.

-Thanks
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