I have a Compaq 5300US, running Windows XP. Last night I noticed the screen displaying this message.

"non-system disk or disk error
replace and strike any key when ready"

the cursor is blinking right under these two lines. the screen looks like the MS - Dos command mode screen. all black, with the error message in white letters.

when I restart by shutting down the tower with the power button..... the first screen is the the "red Compaq " and the words <F10setup> in the lower right hand corner. The Floppy drive (A) lights up... and the machine makes a series of repeating 4 clicking type sounds. then the screen goes black, and i get the above mentioned error message.

I normally leave my computer in standby mode... and this is what it it "woke up" to.
Can anybody give me some ideas as to what happened?

I tried to change the "boot order" after going into the BIOS, and noticed that I only show 2 drives. the floppy (A) and the CD-ROM. it looks like the HD drive is not being recognized.

Can this be the problem?? Is the Hard Drive dead....??? Yikes! I can't boot from the CD drive.... using the restore dusk,,, I get a message that it can't read the CD. On one attempt I noticed a message on the bottom of the screen... "no FIXED IDE DRIVE" what ever that means. Is this machine fixable... or should i just put my money towards a new 'puter?

Can anyone give me some help.... thanks.

Hi Jozini and welcome Buddy

Yes youre right you have a hd thats not being detectd by youre machine.if you comfortable with working inside youre machine open the case uplug youre two IDE cables ie hard drive and cd IDE's and reconnect them.Go into BIOS and see if you can then detect it