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won't start in windows without prompt

I'm hoping this is a generic question in all computers because I'm not sure of the system info. A friends older computer opens in dos mode and she is prompted to enter F2 or #?? and then it will go to the windows screen. Any quick fixes for it to open up in windows first will be helpful. Shes not sure what she pushed or deleted to have it start doing this.

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F2 or what???

In reply to: won't start in windows without prompt

would help if we knew the whole message - but if it is asking to press F2 to enter "setup" then she may have set this in the setup (ie bios).??????

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F1 to enter setup, F2 to continue?

In reply to: F2 or what???

It is also an error message about something with BIOS Setup, not Windows setup.
It is not a DOS screen or mode exactly, it is a BIOS screen. A PC logo may show before the error message. The next screen is the Windows Logo screen.
The BIOS Logo can be turned off in BIOS setup to allow the showing of device inventory, some PC info, RAM counting and total, hard drives (Hdd), CDrom drives, floppy drive, maybe some other devices.
Yes, the complete screen message is needed to determine what isn't right in BIOS (basic input output system).
The windows logo should be reported so we know what version of Windows is being used (Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98 Second Edition).
Report what computer it is.

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Isn't it usually - F1 to continue F2 to enter setup???

In reply to: F1 to enter setup, F2 to continue?

There may be a preceding message but if not enter setup and check that everything has been defined such as floppy, time, hard disks, CDROM and so on - it can also mean your battery is getting low or that your CMOS (which is a copy of your bios kept in memory of your settings) is getting reset or corrupt - this could also mean your bios maybe on the way out as well.

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Protection errors..

In reply to: won't start in windows without prompt

1. The article [Q149962] explains that when Windows is started, an error message similar to the following may be displayed and can occur when the computer loads or unloads a certain virtual device driver (VxD). In many cases, the VxD that did not load or unload is mentioned in the error message. In other cases, the VxD causing the behavior cannot be identified or determined:

While initializing device (device name) Windows Protection Error - where device name is a device

=or simply=

Windows Protection Error

Note: When the computer is shutdown, the following error message may be received:

Windows Protection Error

2. Windows Protection Error messages can occur under any of the following conditions:

a. If a real-mode driver and a protected-mode driver are in conflict.

b. If the registry is damaged.

c. If either the file or the file are infected with a virus, or if either of the files are damaged.

d. If a protected-mode driver is loaded from the System.ini file and the driver is already initialized.

e. If there is a physical input/output (I/O) address conflict or a random access memory (RAM) address conflict.

f. If there are incorrect complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) settings for a built-in peripheral device (such as cache settings, CPU timing, hard disks, and so on).

g. If the Plug and Play feature of the computer's basic input/output system (BIOS) is not working correctly.

h. If the computer contains a malfunctioning cache or malfunctioning memory.

i. If the computer's motherboard is not working properly.

j. If you installed Microsoft Office 97 and you are using the Novell Client 32 software.

3. When the computer is stated and a Windows Protection Error is received displaying the following options after the Power On Self Test (POST) is completed, the error may identify the device which caused the anomaly and sometimes not. Depending on the manufacturer of the motherboard BIOS/CMOS, the error may be listed on the display indication the applicable item in a section which requires editing. In some instances, the action may require nothing more than opening the BIOS/CMOS, Saving, and then restarting the computer. In some instances, it may require nothing more than the user muddling around in a section and getting things set right. But other times, the action required at the second item next may be necessary:

? Press F1 (or equivalent key) for Setup

? Press F2 (or equivalent key) to load defaults and continue

4. Please note that you may minimize the amount of time to locate the origin of this type error message as well as other error messages by first focusing on any obvious changes that occurred just before the error message is received. If new software or hardware was installed, the installation process itself or the person performing any hardware installation may have performed some action that caused the problem either with the new hardware or accidentally dismantling some other device or the same situation may occur if outdated software or hardware was removed. If changes occurred, revert to the original configuration, be sure everything is tight, seated properly, and observe if the problem is resolved. The article [Q263466] explains how to create a Bootlog.txt file, how to examine it, and to perhaps identify the error. If not, try to locate an "Ios.log" file in the Windows folder that may give certain clues, but it may not exist.

Note: If the "Performance tab" < graphics > of the My Computer Properties sheet indicates that the file system is not using 32-bit drivers, check the ios.log to find the filename of the real-mode driver that may be preventing the use of 32-bit file system drivers.

5. The article [Q192832] warns that when using the System File Checker (Sfc.exe) tool to restore a file (for example, the User.exe, Gdi.exe, Setupx.dll or Krnl386.exe file) from a cabinet (.cab), the wrong version of the file may be extracted. This can result in the inability to start Windows (for example, the computer may stop responding/hang) or a Windows Protection Error messages may be rendered. This article explains that after starting the computer, a user should extract the correct file.

Hint: If you have the Windows Operating System media resident on your hard disk you may want to rename the in that location. At least take the b off the end of the file's extension so you'll not forget that an incorrect file could be extracted.

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