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Hi! This is an SOS. I need urgent help with this. My mom works at home and she types in an older computer which uses Windows 95 (which is okay for what she does, when she delivers copy). On Friday, when she went to work, there was a floppy in the floppy drive and the computer wouldn't complete the booting sequence, instead of warning so that the floppy would be removed, it gave a screen we had never seen. We hit a key we thought would take us out of there (having removed the floppy) and expected to go to Windows. We were wrong. The computer started asking for a booting disk. I searched high and low until I found the Win 95 bootable disk that was made when Windows 95 was installed in her machine. It takes me to drive A: and just sits there and the cursor blinks and nothing happens. I don't know how to recover Windows and don't want to reinstall it because she would lose her work in the machine. She's a heart patient and a retiree, her job is important to her and I would like to help her if I could, but do not know how to access the system and get it to react. I don't think she has a recover setup that we could access.
Is there a way to reach drive C: and access the computer and "repair" Windows?
How do you use a booting disk to access a computer in order to reach the files that do that kind of repair? Is there ANY repair possible without having to take this machine to the shop?
Thank you soooooo much! :cry:

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Last Post by goodtaste
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I want to add one more thing. I took out all the old manuals and have been reading up what I can understand and I think that what turned up and what we messed up was CMOS or SETUP, though no warning of any type came up. I would have never touched a BIOS or SETUP screen if I had known it was that. I do not know how to get the computer back to normal. If helpful, I have discovered that my there is a printout of the setup of my mom's computer (it's 14 pages long!!!!) with all the details, such as floppy drives, cylinders, port address, IRQ address, etc. If anyone could tell me how to get into the screen that could fix this problem and restore the settings, I could type them from the printout. Or better yet, if I could be told how to tell the machine to restore Windows (I'm not sure that would work if she needed to have some type of backup, because she didn't have that setup.) I am really trying to save the work in there instead of having to reinstall Windows again.
Thank you very much. :o

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Hi! This is an SOS. I need urgent help with this. My mom works at home and she types in an older computer which uses Windows 95 (which is okay for what she does, when she delivers copy). On Friday, when she went to work, there was a floppy in the floppy drive and the computer wouldn't complete the booting sequence, instead of warning so that the floppy would be removed, it gave a screen we had never seen. We hit a key we thought would take us out of there (having removed the floppy) and expected to go to Windows. We were wrong. The computer started asking for a booting disk. I searched high and low until I found the Win 95 bootable disk that was made when Windows 95 was installed in her machine. It takes me to drive A: and just sits there and the cursor blinks and nothing happens. I don't know how to recover Windows and don't want to reinstall it because she would lose her work in the machine. She's a heart patient and a retiree, her job is important to her and I would like to help her if I could, but do not know how to access the system and get it to react. I don't think she has a recover setup that we could access.
Is there a way to reach drive C: and access the computer and "repair" Windows?
How do you use a booting disk to access a computer in order to reach the files that do that kind of repair? Is there ANY repair possible without having to take this machine to the shop?
Thank you soooooo much! :cry:

Well what you have on your hands is probably a windows boot disk which enables you to reinstall windows. To me it sounds like your MBR has gone missing or corrupt and im not sure as to fix this on win95 without reinstalling the whole thing. Anyways, if you want to recover her data quickly and have another computer handy, take her hard drive out...set its jumpers to slave and hook it up to your other machine. When you boot into windows on your machine, you should have access to her hard drive letting you copy her important files off of it. Then i would put the jumper settings back to master and put it back in her machine and reboot with the boot floppy in the drive and your windows 95 cd in the tray and select the option boot with cd rom support. Then when you get the prompt for A:> type format D: (say yes to wiping your hard drive clean) and then once that is done, reboot, say boot with cd support and then at the A:> type D: then type at D:> setup and windows 95 will start installing again and you will be back up and rolling again :)
Maybe there is a better solution out there but maybe not. Give your 2 cents if you have one :) hope this helps some, Chris

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woops sorry i didnt see that second post of yours. Well to get into your bios upon startup some computers can access the bios through hitting the F2 button at the top of the keyboard, some are F1 some laptops are Fn + Esc etc... check your manual for exact details. But the only thing that could have changed in your bios that might be making you have troubles is your boot order. Once you find it in there make it say first floppy , then CD drive, then hard drive C: if you have any more information i could help you further hopefully

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Thank you, Chris! We were praying someone would answer. I have copied your instructions and will try to follow them. I can't do the thing with the hard drive, it's as scary as brain surgery to me. But I will try to get into Setup with the printout and reproduce what it says to see if it would work. If it doesn't, THEN, I will re-install Windows. I{m trying hard not to wipe out what's in there.

Thanks again! Take care, and God bless.

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No breaks! I went into setup and asked the machine to go ot is previous settings. It says it did. Funy how computers are, when it boots it gives you a list of things and includes from Bios and when you check it tells you all the stuff is enabled, but it won't work, although the machine tries to fire up windows when it boots before it asks for a bootable disk on floppy drive A. I cannot re-install Windows because the only thing I have is a CD and the computer does not remember it has a CD Rom, a Drive D, etc. It's asking like it only has a floppy drive a: and I cannot get it past that point. We go over and over through the boot session and once it hits drive a, it stops and that's it. What can I do? :sad:

Thanks!

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One more detail, it tries to fire up Windows 95 every time it is booted and it tells you so (starting Windows 95....) but of course, it cannot do it from floppy drive a:. So it comes back with an error. It doesn't remember drive C, it doesn't remember drive D and it doesn't remember the CD rom it has. So I cannot slip into it the CD for Win95. I tried, believe me, and of course, it didin't work, I have even been thinking to go back to Windows 3.1 (she has the old disks still and they are for drive a!) and once that is done to upgrade to Win95, but the loss of the material I'm trying to save stops me. Aside from that, I am not sure where to locate all her software (mouse, etc.) she has it all, put away in different places! Is there any way to make the computer "remember" that is has a dive C. When it boots it gives you a BIOS list telling you even what serial ports it has, no mention of any other drives but drive a: (it only acknowledges that drive).
I just wanted to give you a little more information to see if that gives you some ideas. I don't know what to do, but it might be easy for you or any of the other techies around here who know a lot more than I do.
Thanks!

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can you boot do dos? aka use win95 boot disk and get the A:> prompt? if you dont have a win95 boot disk you can make one from several sites that let you download one just search google. but if you can get to the dos prompt i may be able to fix your problem. If you get there type at the A:> FDISK /MBR this should fix your master boot record, which should find your C and D drives and you should be good to go. Let me know how it works for you - Chris

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Thank you, Chris, I'll try it. But I still have a question, do I have to re-install Windows or will this repair it?

Thanks so much for all your help and patience!

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I know I am comming into this conversation a little late..
Does this machine have a cd burner?

Do you have access to broadband?

If so I would suggest you download a copy of knoppix or mepis so you can boot to it and make a backup copy of your data before you do anything else.

You say you found a floppy boot disc?

When you put it in and boot up can you type c:<ENTER>
then LIST <ENTER>
Does the pc still see a C drive?

Tell people where you live... there may be a member close enough to help you out. FYI, I am in San Diego CA..

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Hi Chris! Hi Thong_Ispector! I am here to report success.

After I last left her I went to Microsoft.com, it didn't help at all. The computer saw nothing but floppy drive a:, I kept going back to Setup and hanging on to a BIOS printout from a tech that was more than 10 years old, and praying a lot (I'm a Christian), well, after a while, I was impressed to look at the Standard setup more carefully, and it said that master and slave fixed drives were not installed! I didn't know what to do, so I read some more, prayed some more and fidgeted some more and was able to find in the print our where the drives were listed, the number of cylinders, the sectors, the megs, etc. so I typed those in and the machine accepted the data! But then it stopped recognizing the booting disk and I was left in the cold, no drive C nor D yet, no CD Rom yet, no drive a: at all but when I rebooted (and I did it several times because I didn't quite know what else to do), it listed the two hard drives, primary and secondary or slave, plus the floppy drive. But I wondered why I couldn't access them. . .so I prayed some more, and all of a sudden when I was booting, I looked at the BIOS and in the list it said LBA Mode off, 32 Bit Mode off, Block Mode off, P10 Mode 0, so I went into setup again, and without really knowing if it would work or not, just following my impression, I enabled them and rebooted, and Windows fired up with the Orion nebula wallpaper and everything working! I was so moved I cried. My mom thought something bad had happened when she so me tearing.
I am a praying Christian and I really believe I got help from Above and I really want to thank you guys for your willingness to help others that are confused and stranded on the shores of computerland, like me. (Can you see me grinning?)
Take care!

P.S.
She has some files that are corrupted. I am wondering if I should run a scandisk. . .could you give one last piece of advice? What would be the best thing to do? Can one rename corrupted files to delete them? I tried to delete them but they wouldn't allow me to delete them the usual way. They are just files of things she had typed for her job and were already delivered, so she doesn't need them anymore, but they got corrupted through all this.
Thanks again.

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It was the battery! It has been changed and it is working like the good old trooper it is. One thing, though, it "forgot it has a slave drive D. and it will not accept it anymore. So, my mom is using only her drive C. which is smaller in megs, but ah, well, at least she can type and that's fine. I tried going into setup and putting the data in Setup it won't accept it as a slave drive, I wonder if I should put the data (you know how many cylincers, heads, megs, etc.) as a secondary master drive? What do you guys think? It gives me an error every time I try it as a slave.
Thanks for all you do.

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It was the battery! It has been changed and it is working like the good old trooper it is. One thing, though, it "forgot it has a slave drive D. and it will not accept it anymore. So, my mom is using only her drive C. which is smaller in megs, but ah, well, at least she can type and that's fine. I tried going into setup and putting the data in Setup it won't accept it as a slave drive, I wonder if I should put the data (you know how many cylincers, heads, megs, etc.) as a secondary master drive? What do you guys think? It gives me an error every time I try it as a slave.
Thanks for all you do.

Great! im glad you took my suggestion on that one. As with the slave drive check and make sure its jumper settings are set for slave, you can sometimes read this on the hard drive cover or in its instructions. Also, make sure it is connected firmly with both connecters. Im glad things are starting to shape up for the best for you. Chris

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Thanks, Chris! At least even with only the dive C operational, the machine is being used for what she needs it. I have forgotten where you change the settings, I haven't done that in a looooon time! The cables are okay. I have some things written down and can go to the them as reference, but never wrote that one down. That's something you don't do all the time. :o

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