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Starting from scratch

by Vince.Rosati / June 23, 2007 7:46 AM PDT

Some time ago I had my HP computer in the repair shop. One problem after another meant that I wouldn't get my computer back for several weeks. Because I needed info on the hard drive for my work, I removed the drive, took it home, put it in an external drive case and copied what I needed. (yes, I back up regularly - but not often enough!).

Anyhow, I bought a new computer that has now been acting up, so I thought it wise to get the old HP back up. Intel mother board (3 GHz) replaced with a (ugh!) FoxConn. Do I need to admit that I can't for the life of me find that old drive?

What do I do now? I have a new 160 GB Western Digital drive. How do I get the computer to boot? Is there any hope?

As usual, thanks in advance.

Vince

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You'll need to re-install the OS
by ChuckT / June 23, 2007 7:50 AM PDT
In reply to: Starting from scratch

You can't just replace the motherboard and expect the computer to reboot. There are sometimes even problems if you are replacing same brand and sometimes even the same model.

You need to reinstall the OS and any of the applications you want.

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It may be worse than that...
by John.Wilkinson / June 23, 2007 10:09 AM PDT

Assuming it was an OEM copy of Windows, preinstalled by the manufacturer, it's permanently locked to that one motherboard. Replacing the mobo voids the Windows license and in most cases the copy will refuse to install. You can try to talk to the manufacturer or Microsoft, but unless someone decides to cut you a break you'll likely end up having to purchase a new copy of Windows. Sad

John

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Starting from scratch
by Vince.Rosati / June 23, 2007 8:30 PM PDT

Chuck and John,

Thanks for the reply.

I figured that I would have to reinstall the OS. Yes, it was OEM, but I also have a set of 11 CDs that purport to be what's needed to do that. The trouble is, when I start the computer the drive light goes on for a few seconds, as does the CD indicator light. Then the lights shut off and nothing else happens!

Now, suppose I buy a new copy of Windows (VISTA?). How can I get the computer to do something? Anything!

This computer happens to have a 3 1/2 inch floppy drive. Is there an emergency startup procedure that I can download? (I have access to other 3 1/2 drives.)

I just hate to see a $1,ooo paperweight just sitting there.

Vince

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Just buy an OS
by Kees Bakker / June 24, 2007 1:28 AM PDT
In reply to: Starting from scratch

(XP or Vista), put the CD (or DVD) in, boot from it and give the right answers to questions about making partitions and installing the OS.

Hope this helps.


Kees

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Check your BIOS boot-up sequence
by ChuckT / June 24, 2007 5:18 AM PDT
In reply to: Starting from scratch

If you are intending to boot-up from a CD then you have to make sure that your computer is configured in the BIOS to do so before your hard drive. Also, since you say you do have a floppy drive, you'll probably want that before the hard drive, too. A typical boot-up device sequence might be:
1) Floppy drive
2) CD/DVD drive
3) Hard drive
Typically you want the hard drive last, since that is the last item checked and it is expected to always boot-up (once you have an OS installed). Thus there will never be a need to go another device after the hard drive.

There are other devices that you might also have in your computer that might also be selectable for boot-up devices, such as USB devices, selectable hard drives, maybe even Zip drives. Whatever sequence you have, make sure it makes sense in the startup scenarios you might have (as those might change, you can change later, if you need to). If you have more than one CD/DVD drive, perhaps only one can be used in the boot-up sequence - so check to see which works for you.

The other thing you will definitely need will be a media on that device that has boot-able information. Not every Windows disk is going to be boot-able, as was the issue way back in Windows 98 days. Since then, and I am pretty sure, the WinXP and up, disks are now all boot-able (so that probably is not a real issue anymore).

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Starting from scratch
by Vince.Rosati / June 24, 2007 11:34 AM PDT

Thanks to all for the advice, but perhaps I am not making myself clear.

When I turn on the computer, the only things that happen is that the HD activity-indicator LED flashes for several seconds, and if I have a CD in one of the drives, that indicator light will likewise light for a few seconds. (This CD drive is one of the only ones that I have seen that has an indicator LED.)

Nothing else.

Nothing on the display. At no time. (But the "No Signal" message is not displayed.)

Shouldn't there be SOMETHING showing on the diaplay?

I'm puzzled, and evidently in over my head.

Vince

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The display should certainly show something.
by Kees Bakker / June 24, 2007 8:58 PM PDT
In reply to: Starting from scratch

Such as the BIOS identifying itself and the results of the POST. You say in your first post that the machine has been repaired after several troubles and has gotten a new mobo, but is missing the hard disk or has a totally empty one.

I've got the impression that there's more wrong than just that. Back to the repair shop then?


Kees

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Starting from scratch
by Vince.Rosati / June 24, 2007 9:03 PM PDT

Kees,

I didn't want to hear that, because I'm afraid you are right!

I'm thinking about getting an abacus, a quill pen,and a homing pigeon. Who needs computers?

Thanks to everyone for the help. If anything else occurs to anyone, I will be glad to hear it.

Thanks again,

Vince

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THE 11 CDS
by boonie22 / June 27, 2007 7:21 AM PDT
In reply to: Starting from scratch

THOSE 11 CDS YOU HAVE ? ID BE WILLING TO BET THEIR REINSTALL CDS FROM THE MANUFACTURER RIGHT? IF SO THEY WONT REINSTALL ONTO A NEW MOTHERBOARD , IVE TRIED THAT HAHAHA ... YOULL NEED A NEW OP/SYSTEM INSTALL ... I FOUND AN OEM FULL VERSION ONLINE MYSELF FOR $80 ORIGINAL MICROSOFT , W/ REGISTRATION AND KEYS

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Starting from scratch
by Vince.Rosati / June 27, 2007 7:51 AM PDT
In reply to: THE 11 CDS

Boonie,

Yeah, I'm afraid you're right.

That abacus, quill pen, and pigeon idea looks better alll the time.

Thanks for the input.

Vince

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Re: those 11 CDs
by ChuckT / June 29, 2007 8:08 AM PDT
In reply to: THE 11 CDS

Another point about what is on those 11 CDs. My guess is that at least 8, maybe 9 of those CDs are for installing Works Suite, which was probably something that came with that computer when you bought it.

One of the CDs will probably be for installing the OS (Windows), but it will probably be for that old motherboard, and not work on some other brand or model of motherboard.

One of the CDs will probably be for the unique drivers and motherboard chipset and adapters that were also the original computer. So it won't be usable either. Except, maybe for the cards (example the video or audio cards) you were able to re-use with the new motherboard.

BUT, those 8 or 9 remaining CDs, if I am right about them being the Works Suite, you should still be able to use them again. So don't toss them yet!

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Starting from scratch
by Vince.Rosati / June 29, 2007 10:27 PM PDT
In reply to: Re: those 11 CDs

Chuc,

Thanks for the reply.

I think your'e right about MS Works.

Somewhere I have a single CD that has XP on it. (I got it from an IT professional, and used it until I bought a new computer with XP already loaded - a few computers ago.) I might try to find it to see what happens. The version of XP is what is used to "push" XP onto computers on a LAN, so I'm guessing that it doesn't look for a particular chip set. (I think I'm remembering all this correctly.)


However, the fact that I do not see anything when trying to boot up remains a problem.

Thanks again,

Vince

P.S., I have been trying to uninstall MS Works, but can't so far because there is a file missing. Maybe one of those 1 disks will do the trick.

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