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Re: On boot up screen reads "Loading PBR 2...done"
As the notebook is starting you see the Dell 'Splash' screen. Press F2 to go into the BIOS setup. Check to make sure two things: first that your cd/dvd and hard drive are being recognized and identified, second that your boot order has the cd/dvd first and internal hard drive second. Your machine may be trying to do a USB device boot or network boot when these options are not available. Next try pressing F8 immediately after the splash screen disappears to try to get into Safe Mode. If it still fails to boot, I would try booting using a Windows XP installation disk and then going into the repair console to check if the hard drive is damaged or corrupted.
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And again and again and drives you up the wall.OK-boot sector is corrupted, or hard drive is going south.What you can try is system restore.On boot see which button is designated for that-usually f10 or f12.Start tapping that button and follow instructions. If that failed, the only option is to reinstall OS.If you have a lot of stuff that you want to save, install Windows in different folder, say WindowsA.All your stuff will be saved on the Hard drive-My Documents.Good luck and keep us posted.
"Loading PBR for descriptor 2 ... failed" would be the exact error message if the MBR is unable to load the partition boot record for the second partition. There may be more, but here are three possible causes: 1) the partition table is corrupted so that the descriptor points to the wrong place (i.e., says the partition is one place when it's really somewhere else);
2) the partition table descriptor points to the right place, but the boot record there is corrupted or has been erased; 3) The hard disk is failing and having trouble reading the sector with the boot record.
To check (3), run hard disk diagnostic tests. Press F12 when the machine is starting and see if the bios boot menu offers you a hard disk diagnostic test that you can run. Or even better, if you know the brand of the hard disk, most manufacturers should have a free diagnostic utility you can download to test the hard disk.
If it's not (1) or (3), then use Ctrl+F11 to run the Dell restore utility to recreate the Windows partition.
That is the boot loader message to boot to the NTFS Primary boot partition (Primary Boot Record for Descriptor 1 is the Utility partition)
Normally, this message flashes and the system boots, since it is not there is a failure in the boot process.
#1 run diags on the Hard Drive (CTRL+ALT+D at boot) and see if it passes
If it does
#2 Boot to you XP CD, press R for recovery console, and run the COMMAND CHKDSK /R see if the system will boot
If no go, go back to recovery console, try the command BOOTCFG /Rebuild then see if the system will boot
If That fails, try reinstalling Windows
If Diags Fail or all the above fail, replace the hard drive
I suspect that the viruses had infected some of the files that windows needed to boot up. The moment you ran the Mcafee, the scanning might have deleted or quarantined those files. That is the reason you're having this Loading PBR message because it is now trying to boot from the network and not from the hard drive. You will need to repair windows using the CDs that came with the computer (the Operating system CD/DVD) and run CHKDSK /R at the screen where it says 'repair your computer using the command prompt". If this does not work, chances are, you may need to reinstall windows and everything and that all information in your hard drive will be wiped out.
Boot to the Diagnistics FN+POWER at boot, run hard drive diagnostics. The PBR Descriptor 2 message is part of the normal boot process (directing the boot loader to Primary Boot Recond 2, the C: Drive) but usually flashes on an off so fast most people never notice it. Since the boot process is not going past the re-direct it is indicative of a bad hdd (Since the re-image process crashed)
Most likely you are looking at a hard drive replacement.
Regardless you are going to need an XP CD (you'll have to reinstall windows or run recovery console at a minimum)
Try "Safe Mode" (holding F8 key on boot and selecting "Save Mode"), then run diagnostics and an up to date (virus definitions) Anti-Virus full scan. If Safe Mode is not accessible then you may want to consider a format and clean install by booting to your Windows (?) CD.
Loading PBR are caused by file corruptions on system partition. You can use a bootable cd (like ntfs4dos) and try to run chkdsk. You can also restore your dell to its original software, but that would cause you to loose all your dat. Try using a live linux cd (like opensuse of ubuntu) to boot your pc, recover / backup your files maybe to an external had disk, then perform any repair that you want, just to be safe.