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I'm an idiot/Need help

by mdwillms / November 20, 2006 4:53 AM PST

Ok, it's proven, I'm an idiot. I have an older Compaq Presario 5726 that has Win 98se on it. I pulled it out of the closet yesterday and decided to clean it up a bit and get it ready for use in an office in the near future. Computer was working fine but I decided to load XP on it. As it began it's installation process, it needed to shutdown, after it came back up it would not finish installing, it was not recognizing the cd. I tried several times and same thing over and over. Finally gave up. Well, after I shut the computer down and brought it back up it wanted to continue taking me to a screen asking if I wanted to continue installation or go back to Windows 98. I got tired of this and so I went in and changed the boot.ini. Rather than typing in the boot loader \winnt I put \c:\windows. Well, needless to say, my computer now goes to a screen asking me which operating system I want Windows (default) or Windows 98 . If I chose the one that says default, it takes me to a screen that says I have a disk configuration problem and if I chose the option of windows 98 it takes me to a screen saying I am missing/or have a corrupt file<windows root>\system32\hal.dll. This message was the message I got sick of seeing before I went and changed my boot.ini. How can I now get in and change the boot.ini? I can not even get to a prompt anymore to try and work it. The screens I have mentioned in this email are the only screens I get on this thing now. Self induced problem!!! If I can get back to the boot.ini I can fix it. I'll type it back the way it was.

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by mdwillms / November 20, 2006 4:59 AM PST
In reply to: I'm an idiot/Need help

One more thing, went on line and downloaded a bootdisk. The computer recognizes that I have a disk in but it won't open and do a self extract. It just tells me to remove the disk and hit enter to restart.

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First check the bios/setup
by TONI H / November 20, 2006 7:59 AM PST
In reply to: I'm an idiot/Need help

as the computer is booting up and make sure that you have the cdrom listed as the first boot device, the harddrive second. I get the impression that when you installed XP, you were already in a windows environment at the W98 desktop.

Once you can get the boot sequence right, you should be able to put the XP cd into the drive and continue with the installation, although you might have to start over again to get it right. Once the computer reboots the first time, leave the cd in the drive and DO NOT choose "boot from CD" at the bootscreen...just let it go on to the harddrive instead by itself. It will go to the harddrive, but will continue the installation with the cd in the drive.


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by mdwillms / November 20, 2006 1:56 PM PST

Well, I tried, no luck. It's like this thing is not reading either the floppy or cd drives. It starts to boot up and gets to the screen asking which operating system I want, from that point, no matter which one you tell it it gives you errors. The real problem is I changed the boot.ini for it to go to c:\windows and there is no c:\windows on this machine, it should have gone to \winnt. I need to be able to get back to the boot.ini or I would even go for a format and load xp with a clean install. Its an older computer so I'm not to worried which way to go. I would just like to get it working o I don't have to go and buy a new one for my business. If I could get into DOS I could fix it, but it won't let me go there, I can het f10 and go to BIOS but that is not giving me enough options to fix it.

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Take out HDD and fromat using fat32 on another computer
by acoxon1274 / November 21, 2006 11:16 PM PST
In reply to: Tried

and make the HDD bootable then reinstall win98 using Compaq restore disk or than just install XP from it's bootable install CD.

I find it hard to beleive that it won't go into DOS. Did you try a win98 boot disk or is that downloaded boot disk for XP? No don't answer that, I just didn't know it was possible to mess a computer up by nexxing the boot.ini file to point it won't come up with a boot disk in the floppy drive. Wow, learn something new everyday.

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