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Second opinion on laptop diagnosis.

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
My step-dad's Dell Latitude D800 landed on my workbench today. Its been running fine for years but suddenly it stopped loading windows XP. It will POST and even allow acsess to BIOS but never even attenpt's to load windows. just sit's there with a black screen and a courser indicator at the top left corner.

I removed both batteries to reset the CMOS. POST went fine, even double checked the BIOS and set the date/time and same black screen with a courser.

Because POST is working fine and its loading BIOS I am diagnosing it with a dead HDD and was going to get a refurn IDE HDD and install Linux(he doesn't have a copy of XP anymore). Is there anything else I can do to validate/confirm my diagnosis? I don't usually mess with laptop's(I hate'em) so I want to get a second opinion.

Again before this boot issue it was in perfect working condition and was used daily for basic browsing. The the rechargeable battery hasn't held more than 10-15 min charge for a long time but the "BIOS" battery is fine, subsequently its only ran while plugged into a wall socket. Ask if there is any info I left out. Thanks for reading.
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post #2 of 15
Is the HDD listed in BIOS? If so, it might be fine and there may just be a boot issue. I would try installing whatever OS before replacing the HDD...
post #3 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by KhaoticKomputing View Post

My step-dad's Dell Latitude D800 landed on my workbench today. Its been running fine for years but suddenly it stopped loading windows XP. It will POST and even allow acsess to BIOS but never even attenpt's to load windows. just sit's there with a black screen and a courser indicator at the top left corner.

I removed both batteries to reset the CMOS. POST went fine, even double checked the BIOS and set the date/time and same black screen with a courser.

Because POST is working fine and its loading BIOS I am diagnosing it with a dead HDD and was going to get a refurn IDE HDD and install Linux(he doesn't have a copy of XP anymore). Is there anything else I can do to validate/confirm my diagnosis? I don't usually mess with laptop's(I hate'em) so I want to get a second opinion.

Again before this boot issue it was in perfect working condition and was used daily for basic browsing. The the rechargeable battery hasn't held more than 10-15 min charge for a long time but the "BIOS" battery is fine, subsequently its only ran while plugged into a wall socket. Ask if there is any info I left out. Thanks for reading.

Sure sounds like a dead HDD, can you possibly try it in another laptop? It could just be a corrupt HDD. For the age of the laptop i'd suggest just getting a new HDD if possible. It will set you back but it will be a lot more reliable then a refurb. Unless your step-dad only wants to use it for a couple of months for non-important data (Facebook. etc). Otherwise I would highly obviously suggest to back-up to an external HDD.

It could be a messed up boot-sector or whatnot (or something related to windows) as i have mentioned but if you can't have a look at the contents of the HDD with another PC (or just test if it spins) - Just get it power somehow. - Maybe a friends laptop? Maybe even try just feeling to see if it spins when you boot the PC (and it posts). smile.gif
Edited by Matt-Matt - 3/31/13 at 11:31pm
 
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post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by selluminis View Post

Is the HDD listed in BIOS? If so, it might be fine and there may just be a boot issue. I would try installing whatever OS before replacing the HDD...

No, I don't recall seeing the hard drive in the BIOS, but the BIOS was also VERY limited (thank you dell) so I didn't think much of it. Let me check again. Thank you for the suggestion.

It would be nice if the hard drive wasn't dead, He has some picture's he would like back on the drive, but its not very important. I'll report back shortly. Thanks again.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt-Matt View Post

Sure sounds like a dead HDD, can you possibly try it in another laptop? It could just be a corrupt HDD. For the age of the laptop i'd suggest just getting a new HDD if possible. It will set you back but it will be a lot more reliable then a refurb. Unless your step-dad only wants to use it for a couple of months for non-important data (Facebook. etc). Otherwise I would highly obviously suggest to back-up to an external HDD.

Its IDE, I have another parts laptop that use's IDE drive's but its not in "working condition" so that's out. I have extra sata drive's and some SSD's I could use if it was SATA based. This also has me thinking about the Bootable linux and XP CD's I have..

See. My personal dislike for them compromise's my ability to work with them, Go figure lulz.


EDIT:Ok, I found it, it was right in front of my face on the first page of the BIOS but the hard drive is listed under Primary Hard Drive : 137 GB.
Is there anyway I could repair windows XP in this situation? That I know of there is not but hey never know smile.gif
Edited by KhaoticKomputing - 3/31/13 at 11:40pm
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post #5 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by KhaoticKomputing View Post

No, I don't recall seeing the hard drive in the BIOS, but the BIOS was also VERY limited (thank you dell) so I didn't think much of it. Let me check again. Thank you for the suggestion.

It would be nice if the hard drive wasn't dead, He has some picture's he would like back on the drive, but its not very important. I'll report back shortly. Thanks again.

With that being the case, check it out. I would think if there was no active HDD there would be an error code or something. Of course, who know with an old LT. Let us know if you can boot and install anything. biggrin.gif
post #6 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by KhaoticKomputing View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by selluminis View Post

Is the HDD listed in BIOS? If so, it might be fine and there may just be a boot issue. I would try installing whatever OS before replacing the HDD...

No, I don't recall seeing the hard drive in the BIOS, but the BIOS was also VERY limited (thank you dell) so I didn't think much of it. Let me check again. Thank you for the suggestion.

It would be nice if the hard drive wasn't dead, He has some picture's he would like back on the drive, but its not very important. I'll report back shortly. Thanks again.

if the HDD is a IDE or SATA, just plug her into your rig, assuming you have a IDE port on your Mobo, i know the SATA's will match a SATA cord. And then go into Win and see if you can access the HDD, if you can, run a Error scan on it and do the S.M.A.R.T Testing on SpeedFan, if everything checks out, back up the pics and Documents and do a Hard Re-Format (Uncheck Quick Format), might take an hour or two. Then put her back in the Laptop and install Linux or XP. smile.gif
 
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post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PimpSkyline View Post

if the HDD is a IDE or SATA, just plug her into your rig, assuming you have a IDE port on your Mobo, i know the SATA's will match a SATA cord. And then go into Win and see if you can access the HDD, if you can, run a Error scan on it and do the S.M.A.R.T Testing on SpeedFan, if everything checks out, back up the pics and Documents and do a Hard Re-Format (Uncheck Quick Format), might take an hour or two. Then put her back in the Laptop and install Linux or XP. smile.gif

Sata is cross compatable from laptop's to desktop's, IDE is not. Thank you for the suggestion.
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post #8 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by KhaoticKomputing View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by PimpSkyline View Post

if the HDD is a IDE or SATA, just plug her into your rig, assuming you have a IDE port on your Mobo, i know the SATA's will match a SATA cord. And then go into Win and see if you can access the HDD, if you can, run a Error scan on it and do the S.M.A.R.T Testing on SpeedFan, if everything checks out, back up the pics and Documents and do a Hard Re-Format (Uncheck Quick Format), might take an hour or two. Then put her back in the Laptop and install Linux or XP. smile.gif

Sata is cross compatable from laptop's to desktop's, IDE is not. Thank you for the suggestion.

I was under the impression IDE is IDE, for Desktops or Laptops. But since it's not, i am sure their is a way to get an adapter for it, probably not worth the trouble, just a thought. thumb.gif
 
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post #9 of 15
Seeing as the HDD is detected in the BIOS that most likely means that is is operable. I'd say get the (or a copy of a Windows XP disk) and repair the install. That or re-format the entire HDD and I hope that your step-dad has backups or didn't have anything worth keeping on there.
 
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post #10 of 15
If you can source an XP iso, and boot from that, that should give you some repair options.

Mainly, access to a command prompt. From which you can run...

chkdsk /f

sfc /scannow

and lastly, only if the previous two tools did not help anything at all...

fixmbr
Edited by Baskt_Case - 4/1/13 at 12:16am
    
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-8350 @ 4.6GHz 1.48v 990FXA-UD3 Pegatron HD6450 1GB 2x4GB G.Skill Sniper 1866 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
WD Blue 500GB Samsung DVD-RW Corsair H100i Win 7 x64 
MonitorPowerCase
LG 32" 720p HDTV SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze CM 690 II Advanced 
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Overclock.net › Forums › Mobile Computing Forum › Laptops and Netbooks › Second opinion on laptop diagnosis.