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WinXP Pro SP2 - Strange Booting Behavior

by lemaech56 / October 15, 2007 4:57 PM PDT

My Toshiba Core 2 Duo, WinXP Pro SP2, laptop has developed very strange behavior at boot time:

1) Booting occurs normally, and the system runs as
expected.

2) Booting hangs in the "Windows Starting Up" phase
and requires booting into Safe Mode.

3) In Safe Mode, there is complete access to all of
my files and directories.

When this first occurred several days ago, I did a Repair Install from the WinXP Pro SP2 CD. After the system was back to the expected configuration, I created a Restore Point. I was able to recover from the most recent hang in boot by booting into Safe Mode, then selecting a restore from the Restore Point I created previously. This operation was successful, and the system is running fine. Does anyone have any clues as to what is happening? This is frustrating and a real time waster. Thanks.

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The clue here is "XP Pro"
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / October 16, 2007 12:03 AM PDT

I see these issues often when an owner installs Windows themselves. Usually with many hours invested I find a driver for motherboard or other component that was overlooked.

This is why I suggest use of the laptop's restore CDs then upgrade to XP Pro. Most owners couldn't be bothered to find every driver...

Bob

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Re: The clue here is "XP Pro"
by lemaech56 / October 16, 2007 1:49 PM PDT

Bob Wrote:
I see these issues often when an owner installs Windows themselves. Usually with many hours invested I find a driver for motherboard or other component that was overlooked. This is why I suggest use of the laptop's restore CDs then upgrade to XP Pro. Most owners
couldn't be bothered to find every driver...
-----------------------------------------------------

Of course you are correct, as always. I must admit that I was scared away when I started with the Recovery CD, and the only option available was "deleting the existing C partition.." This was interpreted as start from scratch: Installing all of my applications and restoring all of my files. Truth be told: I hadn't backed up my files recently, so I took the "easy" path.
So this weekend I shall dedicate at least one day to getting my laptop to a stable, usable mode. Ironically, my employer just bought me a new MacPro, which begins a whole new conversation. I see dual environment usage in my future.

Thanks for your wise advice.

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Re: Windows XP: WinXP Pro SP2 - Strange Booting Behavior
by lemaech56 / October 20, 2007 4:55 AM PDT

Problem solved with a lucky tip! After discribing the symptoms of my Toshiba laptop running WinXP Pro SP2, and the new OS install I had performed, he asked whether I had increased the RAM size. He recently had experienced a similar problem: When the laptop entered stand by or hibernate mode, after wake up system behavior was strange, including failure to boot which was exactly what I experienced. By luck, on one return from stand by, the following error message was issued: "Windows System Error - Insufficient resources to complete API." My colleague assessment was that WinXP never accounted for the 2 GB RAM size and overwrote the boot image. Using the error message in a web search, KB 90905 was the hit, in which Microsoft had provided a "Hot fix" on 8/23/07. I booted into Safe mode, installed the fix, rebooted into normal mode, and the system came up completely intact - all apps. and all files were accessible. After the system was running, I reviewed the paging size and noticed that default was set to 2046KB, which seemed like an unusual number. I increased the number to 2048KB, a power of 2 (an idiosyncrasy from being a computer systems engineer for 30+ years), rebooted to normal mode , and the system came and ran successfully. As a regression test, I have placed the system in hibernate and standby mode for several days without a single failure. Now, my Core2 Duo T7200 laptop is a stormer. For others who may be experiencing a similar issue, the "Hot fix: can be found at:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/909095

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