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Thinkpad 390x 2626, won't boot from cd drive

I'm trying to boot a live-CD OS from a cd drive. The live-cd works on another computer and the CD drive works.

The bios was setup to boot first from CD drive, then from floppy, then from hard disk. I checked and found that the current bios is the most recent available for this machine.

Somehow, the computer ignores the bios order and looks for an OS on the hard disk.
It gives a boot error ''operating system not found'' if 1- no hard drive is present 2- an unformatted hard drive is present (detected in the bios).

If I place a formatted hard disk with XP in the computer, it goes straight to the OS, ignoring the boot order in the bios - thus not even attempting to read the cd-rom boot disk.

Any ideas on how to get it to boot from the cd-drive?


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  • nic1876 Nov 19, 2008

    Thanks for the F12 suggestion, but I still doesn't boot from the cd-rom.

  • nic1876 Nov 20, 2008

    Thanks again rickyostrom,

    I tried the live bootable USB thumb drive with no success. I tested the USB drive on another laptop and it works perfectly.

    While trying again to boot with the F12 key and an unformatted hard drive, I got the following error messages:
    1- "Error 0210: stuck key 58" - this is probably the F12 key I was pressing.
    2- "Hard disk sector read function failed. Save disk feature is disabled. Run Phdisk for information. File: create new partition. Consult manual. Hit any key to exit." - so it is still trying to read the hard disk, even if in the bios it is last in the boot order and I even disabled it. I guess the Phdisk is a hard disk diagnosis/formatting utility. Also, I can hear that it always checks the floppy disk drive in the boot process, even if it is placed behind the CD-rom in the bios boot order.

    Any other ideas?

  • nic1876 Nov 21, 2008

    I have disabled the hard drive and the floppy in the BIOS with same results - the boot process does 1-floppy 2-hard drive 3-error message, if 1 or 2 don't have an OS.
    Unless you mean something different when you say in the CMOS?

    Thanks again rickyostrom.


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Try pressing F12 at startup, you should get a boot option.

Posted on Nov 19, 2008

  • 1 more comment 
  • Ricky Ostrom
    Ricky Ostrom Nov 19, 2008


    Have you thoght about making a live bootable USB Thumb Drive.

  • Ricky Ostrom
    Ricky Ostrom Nov 20, 2008

    Have you tried to disable the hard drive in the CMOS, just to see if you can boot off of a CD or USB Device?

  • Ricky Ostrom
    Ricky Ostrom Nov 21, 2008

    I'm not sure how you burned the live-cd, either ISO or Data. But try burning at a low spin factor like 8x with Finalize / Not Multi-session mode.


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