Question about Compaq Presario s4020wm (DK214AR#ABA) PC Desktop

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OS will not load

My system will not load the OS (XP). The system seems to load, but once it gets past the Compaq screen, it goes black. The light is on like it is working but nothing. I tried to do a system recovery, but the recovery shutoff or locks up and restarts. I used the System Suite 8 to try to boot the system and that didn't work. My biggest thing is saving the files that are on the hard drive. Is there a way that I can copy them? Can I access command prompt from any where other than alt+d in the system recovery mode? PLEASE HELP! I am losing my mind here!

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  • 3 more comments 
  • Kennebrew Nov 12, 2008

    I did unplug all the usb devices minus the keyboard and the mouse. Still didn't work. So, what I am resorting to is installing a new hard drive which brings me to another set of questions. I did not receive a copy of the XP disc with my computers. I have a HP that has the same OS as the compaq. Can I (and how) clone the hard drive on the HP to the new drive for the compaq? Will the recovery discs that I have work?

  • Kennebrew Nov 13, 2008

    A little more detail....I am moving from a 40gb to a 250 gb drive. I have Norton Ghost to copy the original drive. Is there a way to isolate the OS on a separate partition on the new drive?

  • Kennebrew Nov 20, 2008

    New problem....I am seriously ready to chuck this machine. Compaq didn't have the recovery discs for this model pc, so I bought the Windows XP Pro to install on the hard drive. In the setup, I am getting the following error:
    SXS.DLL - Syntax error in manifest or policy file "D:\I386\asma\10\MSFT\Windows\GDIPLUS\GDIPLUS.MAN" on line 4

    Any idea as to what the problem is and how to fix?


  • Kennebrew Nov 20, 2008

    I do have a regular XP disk. I finally got the install to work (cleaned the disk off)....NEW PROBLEM...nothing else will load to it now...I can't get any updates, drivers or even install my antivirus....and it is moving SOO Slow. The RAM was upgraded back in August and a new power supply was put in.....I am at a serious loss as what to do at this point. I have re-formatted and reinstalled....now when the boot screen comes up, I have two choices for OS to choose from. Both are the same one.

  • Kennebrew Dec 05, 2008

    Much appreciation....after installing and reinstalling a few more dozen times, I finally got it to install. I removed the ram that was recently installed and adjusted the BIOS settings and it ran straight through with no problems.

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2 Answers

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Kennebrew if it's a fresh install, just try and reinstall. When it gets to the part about installing on the following partition, follow the instructions to delete the OS partition, then reformat it. Don't use the quick ntfs format. Use the regular (slow) method. When I am having an install problem, that usually works for me. Trying to do a fix on a new install is usually going to end up with problems down the road. It's better to do it now before you have data to lose. I'm assuming you have a regular XP CD and not a proprietary one from a manufacturer (recovery disk i.e.dell compaq et al)

Posted on Nov 20, 2008

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Unplug all USB devices >> turn off your computer and turn on again (with all USB devices unplugged)

Posted on Nov 05, 2008

  • 4 more comments 
  • Pablo Csaky
    Pablo Csaky Nov 12, 2008

    If you clone the disk means that both disks will become the same. You can use the same recovery disk set.
    To clone your disks you need a program like a partition magic or similar.

    Or you can get a Ultimate boot CD from internet for free here:

    http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/


    You will get a lot of utilities for your hard drive in that disk for your needs

  • Pablo Csaky
    Pablo Csaky Nov 12, 2008

    Remember that if you clone the disk both disks must be of the same size. If you have disks with different sizes you can copy the partitions instead of clone them.

  • Pablo Csaky
    Pablo Csaky Nov 13, 2008

    Sure, you have to do two partitions. You can create one with the same size of your original hard drive and copy that partition there and keep the available space like a second drive (aprox 200 GB)



    You can do it easily with partition magic.

  • Pablo Csaky
    Pablo Csaky Nov 20, 2008

    JUST IN CASE......



    Due you're doing a fresh installation, this option is NOT VALID, but keep this info, just in case....(to replace the corrupted file)



    SXS.DLL: syntax error in manifest or policy file


    The gdiplus.dll file is probably corrupted. Go to this site and download the file and replace it
    http://dll-files.com/dllindex/dll-files...." target="_blank" rel="nofollow" http://dll-files.com/dllindex/dll-files....

  • Pablo Csaky
    Pablo Csaky Nov 20, 2008

    Kennebrew if it's a fresh install, just try and reinstall. When it gets to the part about installing on the following partition, follow the instructions to delete the OS partition, then reformat it. Don't use the quick ntfs format. Use the regular (slow) method. When I am having an install problem, that usually works for me. Trying to do a fix on a new install is usually going to end up with problems down the road. It's better to do it now before you have data to lose.

  • Pablo Csaky
    Pablo Csaky Nov 20, 2008

    There is two ways to remove the second instance of Windows XP in the boot
    screen.

    One way is in Control Panel > System on the Advanced tab, click the Settings
    button under Startup and Recovery. Click the Edit button and remove the last
    line in the boot.ini file.

    The other way is to open C:\boot.ini in Notepad and delete the last line in
    the file and save the file.
    It is a hidden, system file so it may not show if you don't have your system
    configured to show hidden and system files.

    ******************************************************
    About your computer slow, go to bios and check the CPU temperature.
    Check also if your CPU fan is working properly to discard any hardware issue



    ******************************************************

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