Laptop, pentium III, 256, purchased from a business bankruptcy sale. has both xp professional and home os on it. After running fine for approx 3 months, thanks to the support on this site,
It gave me a blue screen stating master_ boot_ volume_ error. Not knowing what to do, I tried to reinstall xp home. Probably my 1st mistake.
Now when i start up, i get the windows screen with the options of entering bios setup or alternate boot device. Cannot see anything wrong with bios set up.
When I try to boot from any device I get " a disk error occurred. press alt control and delete to restart." This puts me in a loop, and restarting gets me back to the same point.

A friend had the same master boot error at work, on xp professional. She tried to get the fix for me, but it was company proprietary. so here I am asking for your help again!
I have a totally functioning desktop with xp home, that I can write cd's on for any downloads to fix the problem.
Knowing nothing about computers, I'd appreciate any and all suggestions on how to get this thing running again.
I should mention that the xp professional is lockdown by an unknown administrator logon. I'll need to do any fixes via the xp home. :sad:

Well here is where i would start, pop in an XP pro CD and get to the recovery console, at the console type in chkdsk /f. if that doesnt fix it go back to the recovery console and type fixboot.

bought it used. didn't get a xp cd. have an xp home, but when anything is in the disk drive I get an error with a command to reboot. one big circle. I think i need something that will get me into the brains of the darn thing, so i can give it a new command!

it tells you to reboot with anything in the CD drive? go to your bios settings and change the boot order so that CD comes before HDD (i think standard order goes like this FDD, HDD, CD. so just go CD, HDD, FDD)

can get into bios and make changes.

when i use boot from command, no mater what I chose, cd, hard drive etc I get
" a disk read error occured. press ctrl+alt+delete to restart" problem is, no matter how many times i do the restart, i get the same " ".

Ok well there is another way to get to the recovery console, boot into your windows home edition as administrator grab your xp cd and hope for the best.

To install the Recovery Console, follow these steps:
Insert the Windows XP CD into the CD-ROM drive.
Click Start, and then click Run.
In the Open box, type d:\i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons where d is the drive letter for the CD-ROM drive.
A Windows Setup Dialog Box appears. The Windows Setup Dialog Box describes the Recovery Console option. To confirm the installation, click Yes.
Restart the computer. The next time that you start your computer, "Microsoft Windows Recovery Console" appears on the startup menu.

bring up the recovery console it will prompt you to select the windows boot to repair, go to the broken one (drrr) and run chkdsk /f and or fixboot

good luck!

how do I get into the xp home administrator? all I get is the bios option or the the loop to restart, when i boot from another source. . i need to get past the loop of "a disk read error occured. press ctrl+alt+delete to restart" problem . i'm thinking i need a work around, so i can get to the start and run commands ;-).
Otherwise I understand your instructions.

Laptop, pentium III, 256, purchased from a business bankruptcy sale. has both xp professional and home os on it

I have a totally functioning desktop with xp home, that I can write cd's on for any downloads to fix the problem............I'll need to do any fixes via the xp home.

so what i read was you have a laptop with dual boot either XP pro, or XP home, Also to my understanding XP pro wont boot, and we cant boot from any devices I.E. CD or Floppy, AND the XP home boot sector works is this correct?

all of your statements are correct, except: as nothing will boot, I'm assuming the xp home sector is non functional as well. When all was working at start up I could chose home or professional. Now all i get is the lovely windows screen, offering a bios or alt. boot device, and no functionality. I've been banging my head on the darn thing.......

ouch, well lets hop into the BIOS and make sure you are running on the fail-safe setup not optimized, Also just to be clear you cant even boot from a floppy?

correct, cann't boot from anything.
ok. got the laptop here, in bios set up.
let's walk thru this. failsafe would be locates???

it should be at the main screen it will have a listing of several options on the left there should be load fail-safe settings. If not then you may not have the option in your BIOS. But lets see if we can boot to DOS go here
create the disk, make sure you set to boot off of FDD first

you're gonna love this one,
saved to cd, booted from cd, got (in red) "hard drive not installed. if operating system not found, reinstall hard drive.
Went into hard drive, got operating system not found.

hmmmmmmmm we'll get this working yet. Ok do this for me go into your BIOS and just verify that is has a detected HD post back with if it does or doesn

Ouch indeed!

Is the hard drive even being recognized by the BIOS? At the very least, does the BIOS indicate that it sees at least something on the IDE bus?

<Woops- Civilian beat me to it...>

remember i'm a newbie. what am i looking for?

In the main/general BIOS page, you might see the make/model number of your hard drive and CD-ROM. If not, look in other areas of the setup pages for something mentioning IDE devices. Different BIOSes display different information, so it's hard to tell you exactly where to look.

ok. I have the following: bios version and date, embedded controller, cpu type, speed, installed memb, uuid,
along with submenus for config, start and restart, password, date time.

on the boot device list, there is an atapi cd rom drivel isted.

Welcome to the Battle DMR

ok thats a start, in that area it should list if there is a HD to boot from is there?

yes, hard drive is there, phew!

selected hd and got : media test failure chk cable, and operating system not found.

can i use a cd?

i was under the impression we couldnt get anything to boot off of the CD

can't get anything to boot from anywhere! don't know if I have 6 disks, that's why i asked.
It has an internal hd, removable cd, disk and dvd. IBM thinkpad t22

ok, well let set the boot order to CD-rom as the first device, put the xp home in the drive and cross your fingers

we did get the dos disk to boot, but that is running off of itself

got windows set up.
something about install raid?
loading files,
set up is starting windows.....
and we wait....................................

thats a good thing keep me posted

how long should it take?

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