I'm really hoping for a solution before I kick this machine out the window :rolleyes:
This is a Dell Inspiron 1150 laptop, BIOS v.A06 (yea I see there's an update available but it's been fine till today), 512mb ram, 20gb HD, Win XP Home SP2 (with all updates).
I started the machine this morning just fine. Installed AIM Triton. System was incredibly slow so took a look at Task Mgr and see system is pegged out at 100% CPU. Not too unusual a site at this time of day as Windows Defender is kicking in and sucking up resources. Aim install finishes and I close browser windows that it had opened to see that Windows Defender has stopped with an error stating it was "unable to update, check Windows Update". So I go to run Windows Update thru IE (Firefox is my default browser) WU begins scan but I notice the little box to the right saying that my 'Automatic Updates' is 'off'. This is VERY unusual as I make it a point to turn that on and leave it on ALWAYS. But I click the little button to turn it on and set a time to check for updates. WU is still scanning. Finally WU comes back and asks to run the Genuine Windows Verification tool, again this is odd as I've run the Verification previously, but I say ok and it begins to check. It comes back to tell me that it doesn't think my installation is valid and how I can obtain a 'valid' copy of software. Well I know this is garbage because all of my software is legal so I close my browser and choose to restart my machine. Well now it won't load! It runs POST, I see the Windows XP Logo with the progress bar....then it goes to a black screen.
I've run Dell diagnostics...no memory or hardware failures. I've run the 'Thorough' POST, no errors. I've attempted to start in Safe mode, stops at MUP.SYS. I've attempted to load from last good configuration, black screen. I've attempted to boot from Windows CD and do a repair, system reboots after I select the windows install I want repaired (C:\Windows). I've unplugged the mouse, the wireless card, the power cord, same thing....POST, then Win Logo, then black screen.
When the screen goes to black, the hard drive still flashes a few times for a few minutes apparently trying to access something but eventually everything is still.
I'd appreciate any help offered. This is my machine for work so I really need to get this sick puppy back on its feet.