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Jim LaceyFlag for United States of America

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HP Pavilion PC will not boot - repeatedly returns "The computer restarted unexpectedly or encountered an unexpected error...."

A friend asked me to ‘fix’ her HP Pavilion PC which cannot be started… I have done below, to no avail. I have 3 recovery CDs that came with PC (see below)

Question is How to start/reset/ PC - Likely WIN 7 - unfortunately upgrade to WIN 10 is no longer free.

Attempting to start WIN 7(?) HP laptop returns… " The computer restarted unexpectedly or encountered an unexpected error. Windows installation cannot proceed. To install windows , click "oK" to restart the computer, and then restart the installation"

I press “OK” and PC repeats above message. — not much help here… “This thread is locked. You can follow the question or vote as helpful, but you cannot reply to this thread.”  IMPORTANT SEE (20) BELOW

HP PCs - Performing an HP System Recovery (Windows 7)
HP and Compaq computers that came with Windows 7 installed.

Recovery Options:

Continue - does not work

Use a device - Will not load Recovery System from internal CD drive

Use another Operating System - there is none

Reset this PC, Keep my Files - no, “…There aren’t any administrative accounts on this PC”

Reset this PC, - delete all files - “There was a problem reseting this PC.”

(20)      On the same error screen press SHIFT+F10 and it will open up a black Window. (a command prompt window)

(21)       In  the black windows type the word "regedit"(without the inverted commas and hit enter. That will open the registry editor.
        In the Registry Editor..
                Browse to....
        HKLocal machine/SYSTEM/SETUP/STATUS/ChildCompletion,
and after highliting child completion,on the right hand side check for setup.exe. if the value is 1 change it to 3.(by double clicking on setup.exe and changing the value shown in the box).

Then close the registry editor and then also close the black window.
Then click on OK for the error and the computer will restart and the installation may complete. 

“just try it and let me know if it worked.” - No, just continues to cycle and return “Installing features and drivers” … “Configuring settings 0%”

So, How do I get this HP PC to work?
Avatar of David Favor
David Favor
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If I hit this, I'd first pull out the hard drive, install it in a drive dock, then attempt booting the drive on different hardware.

If the the disk will boot on different hardware the the Pavilion will require returning it for repair.
Get from HP Support the application to test the hard drive. If you cannot even install Windows 7 (?) fresh with the Recovery DVD from HP, then there well may be a hardware error.
Avatar of Kimputer

If a clean install/recovery doesn't work, probably hardware issues. Look at the motherboard for blown caps.
With an Ubuntu Live CD: Do a mem test. Check the hard disk health.
i would run diags on ram and disk, to be sure about the basics
usually, i use the UBCD for this
Hardware diagnostic CD    UBCD
go to the download page, scroll down to the mirror section, and  click on a mirror to start the download
Download the UBCD and make the cd   <<==on a WORKING PC, and boot the problem PC from it
Here 2 links, one to the general site, and a direct link to the download

since the downloaded file is an ISO file, eg ubcd527.iso - so you need to use an ISO burning tool
if you don't have that software, install cdburnerXP :

If you want also the Ram tested - run memtest86+ at least 1 full pass,  - you should have NO errors!
direct download :
For disk Diagnostics run the disk diag for your disk brand (eg seagate diag for seagate drive)  from the HDD section -  long or advanced diag !  (runs at least for30 minutes)      

**  you can make a bootable cd - or bootable usb stick
*** note *** for SSD drives  use the tool from the manufacturer, like intel 's toolbox :

for completeness -here's how i handle disk problems :

==>>****in order to be able to  boot from CD or usb - you may have to disable secure boot in the bios
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William Fulks
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Thanks to all for your help. Enough ideas to bring to local PC repair shop & have them fix the HP Pavilion.