Ah. Yes... Another dead machine I'm afraid... When I start my Compaq Presario 6000 series desktop all I get is something like "Disk read error press ctrl, alt, delete to restart."

There was a blue scream of death but it was too quick for me to note the code and I haven't seen it since...

I'm assuming there's a bad sector in the boot part of the hard drive. I have a second smaller drive installed but it doesn't have the operating system on it (XP SP1) so I can't boot from that.

I have a laptop but it has no diskette drive so I can't makea bootable disk even if I could decipher the techy jargon on the microsoft knowledge base...

If anyone has some easy to understand instuctions of how to fix this I'd REALLY appreciate it!

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Check if the cmos detects your hard drive. If not, the ide ribbon or cable is broken.

Maybe your hard drive has bad sectors. Have you changed your ide devices configuration before? Are you using your original restore cd everytime you reformat?

Go raibh maith agat!

Erm, not sure how cmos works but I think the drive could be dead. Tried to use the chkdsk from the restore cd but it said the disk had unrecoverable errors... do you know if I can set up XP on the slave HDD and boot from that?

If so do I need to fiddle about with the jumpers and all that? Oh dear...

Adh mor ort agus slan!

No, it can't be. The restore cd will work only on the primary ide master. If you want to use XP on the slave HDD, use a XP retail version cd (non sp slipstreamed) and set slave HDD as first boot in the bios. If the bios does not support it, set your slave hdd as master and use the restore cd.

Ah its never as simple eh?

I can't afford a retail copy of windows... so can I swap physically the two drives over, set the cuurent slave to master and vice versa, and still use the restore cd? If you can refer me to a step-by step for eejits I'd really appreciate it!

Thanks by the way for the help so far...

oh, another thought... if i send microsoft my authentiation certificate will they let me download a copy of windows gratis?

This is all becoming a bit of a nightmare...

Yes, what you need to do is place your current slave drive to master but set it as cable select in the primary ide controller and put it to the last ide ribbon connector. Disconnect all devices not included in the preinstalled factory setup such as extra hard drive, cd rom, and memory modules. See to it the preinstalled cdrom is also set as cable select and connected to the last ide ribbon connector on the secondary ide controller. Your restore cd will work on this setup and no need to authenticate it unless you replace your motherboard. Attach your extra devices after the operating system (Win98, WinXP) installed.


Set also your extra hard drive and cdrom (if any) to cable select setting and place them in the middle connector of the ide ribbons.

Erm.... ? Cable select? That's outside my field of understanding!:|

I've read your advice a few times Fren but it just won't sink in... Sorry for being such an eejit, but can you explain it step by step or send me off to look for instructions.

I really appreciate your help. A fren in need is a fren indeed!

Yup lol, okay. Disregard my previous post. Let's start again.

Some Compaq computers have been using different settings and configurations. Some of them are set their ide devices such as hard disk and cdroms as cable select instead of using master/slave configuration.

So, try this first.

Check first the ide configuration. Examine your hard disk and cdroms jumper settings. Were they set as at what configuration, master or cable select setting?

You can determine the jumper setting easily in the cdrom drives. It has "Master", "Slave", and "Cable Select" (MA, SL, CS) markings found on top of its casing.

Post their jumper settings here again.


Read and try my above post first before installing a new hard disk drive in your system in order to insure that all ide devices are correctly configured. Otherwise, your restore cd will not work and function very well.

commented: Fren has the patience of a saint! +3

Aha! Gotcha!:icon_cheesygrin:

Right... The slave is st to slave (no jumpers present)
The Master is set to cable select
The dvd RW is also cable select
The dvd rom I can't see but I'd say it was probably cable select too...

I have physically removed the slave but can't seem to get the master out. They were on the same ribbon (IDE?) but at different places.obviously...

What you seem to be saying in the last post is that if i now put the slave in on the IDE ribbon in the same place as the master was and set the jumper things to acble select.... the Computer will think that its ok to install windows from the restore cd... Am I close?

Thank for your patience above and beyond the call of duty!:icon_cheesygrin:

okay, if all the ide devices are set as cable select. It means your computer originally supports cable select configuration.

Set also your previous slave hard drive (to be your boot drive now) as cable select. (Note: Not all hard drives have the same pin jumper settings. Different brands or models have also different pin jumper settings).

Remove the cable connection of the defective one and replace the new drive in its ide connector cable (Note: Attach the new drive in the last connector of the ide cable).

Note: The middle ide connector will become unoccupied.

That's it! Your bios will now recognize the new settings.

You can now use your restore cd to install xp.

:icon_cry: Oh Dear...

Fair play to ye! I followed your instructions and it worked grand... It got as far as formatting the new master HDD and I went of for a nice cup of tea while it was formatting.

When I got back 10 mins later I was confronted with a Blue screen of death... (like happened before the first crash)

I got to write down the code this time. Does it make any sense to you?

0x8b50348f, 0x000000ff, 0x00000000, 0x8018ed5e

to make matters worse it doesn't even post now and there's a blinking red light on the front of the tower that's always been green before....

the horror the horror...:icon_eek:

is the end for the machine?

Do you remember the type of error, like "IRQ_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL" and the number that came before those you wrote down? I guess that those numbers that you wrote were inside parenthesis. One before that is the error code.

:icon_redface: ...

Erm, heh heh heh...:icon_redface:

I sorted the power problem... I'd pulled out the power lead for the processor cooling fan while changing the drives... Don't think I fried anything permanently though...

The old hard drive seems to be dead though I'll try the cryogenic method for the craic!

I successfully installed XP to the ex- slave drive from the restore Cd and its updating everything as we speak. (trying SP2 from a clean install...always avoided it before)

The error Number was a 0x00000000a (not les or equal) that I figure was due to not having installed all the drivers.

Anyway, thanks for all the help (I told you I needed instructions for eejits!)

Its great to know you folks are out there...

I did not notice your recent post here. But anyway, you've just installed xp successfully. At least you bypassed the old problem. I am glad your computer worked.

The error Number was a 0x00000000a (not les or equal) that I figure was due to not having installed all the drivers

You're probably right, especially if you haven't installed motherboard drivers, but that kind of BSOD can go from anywhere to everywhere. Windows bug (resolved with SP2), dying hardware, lack of (or wrong) drivers... maybe even overheating CPU.

Regarding overheating, if it is Intel CPU, than you're safe. They have overheating protection (PIII and above). They slow down if it get too hot. If it is AMD, then you would want to check hardware monitoring in your BIOS, just to be sure if everything is OK. I don't mean checking temps, but checking if it is showing any, like CPU temperature diode, which tends to go first on overheated AMDs.

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