Blinking Cursor = Clueless

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Old 12-15-05, 06:34 AM
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Blinking Cursor = Clueless

I have an Intel board (D845WN) with 512mb ram, 2ghz cpu, XP home recently upgraded from 98SE, two HD's installed. Everything was working without a hitch until I installed Partition Commander to partition the second drive. It "required a restart to run" and on restart it came back that partition commander could not recognize the drive. Hit exit. Went to a blinking cursor that responded to nothing. Hit the power button to restart.

Now all it does is go through the self test and give me a blinking cursor that won't respond to anything. I can get into the bios, and nothing seems wrong in there. I tried changing the boot order to have it see the cd rom first and it wont recognize it. All the drives blink on, but they wont read even if they are first to boot.

I have to idea where to go from here. Any advice is appreciated.

Matt
 
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Old 12-15-05, 05:20 PM
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Additional Info

The blinking cursor occurs right after the motherboard does a single beep. (I believe that is normal) Then the cursor drops one line and the computer freezes with a blinking cursor.

I tried putting a floppy in the drive to see if it would be recognized when it is first in the boot order. The drive light comes on and nothing happens.

I swapped the ram with known good. I disconnected all the drives except the primary HD. I removed all the PCI devices. I swapped the IDE cable with a known good. All with no change.

Anyone have any suggestions? I dont know what to do next. Does this sound like a hardware problem, software problem, malware?
 
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Old 12-15-05, 06:25 PM
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have you looked in the bios and tried to have it autodectect the drive?
 
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Old 12-15-05, 08:05 PM
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Some of the "Windows" based utilities (such as Norton Ghost, and it sounds like the one your using) replace the Windows OS boot files with their own in order to boot into the utility your trying to run. If this gets screwed up, then you may be left with a non bootable hard drive, Boot from your Win XP CD to the recovery console and run fixboot and see if that takes care of the problem, if not, worst case you may have to do a repair install.
 
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Old 12-15-05, 08:34 PM
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May be getting somewhere

Tae,
BIOS is set for autodetect. It has the drive name listed.

Davejb,
I already tried booting from the XP disc, but the cd drive wont read, just the light will light up.


Could a bad power supply be causing this problem? My 'backup/test' desktop had the power supply fail about a month ago and I never got around to replacing it. So I moved the power supply from the Intel based desktop to the backup/test desktop and it started once, had an error, and wouldnt restart. It wouldnt even power up at all. Im thinking that maybe the power supply is garbage. Will pick one up tomorrow. Any brands to look for/stay away from?
 
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Old 12-16-05, 04:33 AM
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In that case I would suspect a hardware failure. Try disconnecting the hard drive, and CD drive and see if it goes any further. The power supply wouldn't be my first guess, but it's not impossible.
 
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Old 12-17-05, 02:05 PM
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Drive jumper settings?

You've got a CDROM and the HardDisk connected, can you provide the following info ?


1) Master/Slave jumper setting for CDROM and which IDE port is it plugged into?
2) Master/Slave jumper setting for HD and which IDE port is it plugged into?

Are the IDE cable(s) UDMA or just DMA (does one end of the ribbon cable have a blue connector? or are both ends gray?).

Is your BIOS set for "First boot device = CDROM" or "First boot device = HD"?

TIA.
 
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Old 12-18-05, 07:19 PM
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All fixed

Thanks for all the advice everyone.

I got a new power supply and installed it. I was still getting the blinking cursor, but at least now my cd drive was being recognized as having a disc in it. So I used the XP disc to try and repair the drive. It went through the whole process and I ended up with the same blinking cursor. So I formatted and reloaded and all is back to normal. Good thing I had everything backed up....
 
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