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I'm pulling my hair out here...help!

I'll try to make a long story as short as possible...

My mom was having trouble with her PC, an HP running Windows XP. I don't know what led up to it, but by the time I got there it wouldn't reboot. It would just show a message "We apologize for the inconvienience but windows did not start successfully..." and then options for safe mode, last known good configuration, etc., none of which would work.

So I got her HP System Restore discs and tried to reinstall everything.

About halfway through the restore process, I got this error message;

"Problem in extracting process:
File: WINDOWS\Help\SBSI\Training\WXPPer\Content\Wave\U1L 1Fe.wav"

I clicked "ok" and then I got the blue screen...

"A problem has been detected and windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer.

IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL

If this is the first time you've seen this stop error screen..."

etc etc

So I called HP Tech Support and they walked me through reformating the HD, thinking that would solve the problem.

Then I tried the restore discs again and I got to about the same place in the process and then got this error message;

"Problem in extracting process:
File: WINDOWS\Help\SBSI\Training\WXPPer\Content\Lib\L16_ C.LDZ"

The computer is not under warranty, so HP isn't going to help anymore.

I have no way of *knowing* that the restore discs are good. And if it's a hardware issue, how can I narrow it down and find out what's going on so I know what to replace? Or should I just take the entire thing to a pro?

At this point I am just completely in over my head and don't know what to try next.

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Comments
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could be a bad hdd...

My computer recently suffered a hard drive failure. While the drive was in the process of failing, Windows would blue screen, often with the "IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL" error. Since you had problems copying two different files, it could be that there's nothing wrong with the CDs; the problem could be the HDD.

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how can I know for sure?

is there some kind of diagnostic I can run to find out for sure?

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you might want to try...

I'm not really sure. You might want to try the Seagate Seatools (I'm pretty sure they work for all hard drives, not just Seagate's). I really haven't used them too much, but they might be useful.

Also, when using your hard drive, is it louder than normal? If so, that is often a sign that it's on it's last legs.

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IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL

1. From what I read in your message, neither of the two errors appear critical unless they point to hardware change(s) on the box which the HP Restore isn't aware of -- at least for reinstalling the software. What if anything has changed on that box since the restore disks were issued?

2. The received "IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL" error is explained in these two references and you'll also find instructions for stripping down the box to the minimum requirements to boot cleanly:

a. "How to Use Driver Verifier to Troubleshoot Windows Drivers (Q244617)."

b: "Troubleshooting a Stop 0x0000000A error in Windows XP (Q314063)."

Note: Don't ask me why there could be a change to the drivers since the original HP issue since the only way you or I would know is whether something in the box died or was fooled with either by somebody or an infection of some sort perhaps.

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Those extracting errors are...

commonly caused by problems with the DC or the CD reader.

By any chance is the CD reader you are using a combo DVD/CD? They are notoriously bad about restoring or installing from CD.

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