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Error reinstalling Windows XP on Dell Dimension 8400

My cousin has a two year old Dell Dimension 8400 PC. I've reformatted this PC around a year and a half ago with no problems with a fresh copy of Windows XP. In the last three months his PC started giving him problems - I'm assuming it is either a trojan, spyware, malware, etc. He kept his copy of XP and I tried to reinstall it once again. It boots perfectly off the CD and goes right into the setup. However, it does not prompt the normal blue screen and simply sits on a black screen. If there isn't a CD in the hard drive it does prompt the following error: "a disk read error occurred." It won't even power up his Windows. I'm not sure if this is what is causing the problem. I did go into the BIOS and it appears his Boot Sequence is okay, although I haven't used a Dell in years and have formatted my own PC (a CyberPowerPC) completely different. I did read that going into BIOS and changing the sata operation under Drives to RAID AUTO/ATA might help, but didn't know if that was necessary. Any help that could be provided would be much appreciated.

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Try to use a another hard drive

Posted on Jan 15, 2009

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Sounds to me like the hard drive is bad.Download some testsoftware that does not require windows and test it. 

http://www.seagate.com/www/en-us/support/downloads/

Posted on Jan 15, 2009

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Don't worry about virus or trojans. Just let me know what is the problem which you are presently facing what is the reason that you believe that your laptop has one.

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