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Computer crashed, not sure how to recover it and what to use.

My mother in law's gateway gt5012 crashed. I think i need a boot disk or a recovery disk but im not sure... When i start the computer, it loads until the Windows title appears with the loading blocks below, but restarts all over again.. what should i do?

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  • mommy2maddy0 May 28, 2009

    I did try that. No luck. It would load to windows like before, but it would restart. Thanks for your response. Any more help is great!


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Try to start the computer in safe mode by tapping the F8 key while it boots up,If the startup options screen comes up,Choose last known good configuration,Post back details and we can go from there.

Posted on May 28, 2009

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First, clarify - What version of Windows is installed? XP I assume - Home or Pro?

I"m about to go through a bunch of options for you to try - a 'shotgun' approach to troubleshooting this. I hope one of these things help. Here goes:

If it's enabled on this system and you haven't tried using it already, I would suggest backing up to a previous Restore Point. To do that, though, it would need to be stable enough in Safe Mode to let you do that, and based on your previous comment I'm not sure that's an option. Does it restart immediately or do you have a 'windows' of opportunity there (pardon the pun).

And while we all suspect it's related to the OS, let's eliminate hardware as a possibility, because you may have faulty memory or other hardware contributing to this. "Strip it bare", eliminating all peripherals, addon cards, etc. and boot with nothing more than the Mobo, HD, kb, & mouse. You might want to take it down to one memory stick as well, swapping them out just in case the one you first used is the bad one.

Now let's do a little software 'diagnostics'.
You'll need access to another computer first, but I would try any one of the available boot CD's out there. One chock full of diagnostics utilites is the "Ultimate Boot CD" UBCD for Windows. To use it, though, you need an original XP Installation CD, preferable SP2 or greater. Read the instruction provided and you have a great diagnostics/cleanup tool you can use for this and any future issues you run into.

If you are looking for a quick, simple test I would download the latest ISO for Ubuntu Linux Download Ubuntu | Ubuntu. Create a boot CD from the download. The easy part is, you don't have to install Ubuntu, you simply choose the option of running it 'live' from the boot CD. At least if this boots up and the system remains stable you can eliminate hardware as an issue.

When you're done with this you may not have it 'fixed', but you will have a better feel for what's wrong.

I hope this helps. Good Luck!

Posted on May 28, 2009

  • jcoady
    jcoady May 28, 2009

    BTW - Kudos to you for helping ***********-in-law!!!

  • jcoady
    jcoady May 28, 2009

    Strange. Not sure why FixYa asterisked out mother?

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For data recovery,you can rely on a data recovery program to recover data from the crashed laptop.Download this one to have a try.
http://www.asoftech.com/adr/
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Tip

Hard Disk Data Recovery


Definition of Hard Disk: Hard Drive is a storage device where you can store any types of data and file. Hard Drive is available as external and internal device. We know PC storage device as internal system Hard Disk. When you save data or install programs on your computer, the information is typically written to your Hard Disk. The Hard Disk is a spindle of magnetic disks, called platters, that record and store information. There are several interface standards for passing data between a Hard Disk and a computer. The most common are IDE and SCSI. Hard Disk is made of one or more aluminium or glass platters, coated with a ferromagnetic material. Most Hard Disks are found as Parallel ATA (PATA), Serial ATA (SATA) or SCSI device.

Difference with Floppy Drive:
The term hard is used to distinguish it from a soft, or floppy, disk. Hard Disks hold more data and also faster than floppy disks. As an example a Hard Disk can store anywhere from 10 to more than 100 gigabytes, where most floppies have a maximum storage capacity of 1.4 megabytes. Floppy is more risky device than Hard Disk for losing data.
Problem with Hard Disk:

Most common problems of Hard Disk which may arise anytime are Booting problem, OS Installation problem, Hard drive crashing and another Hard Disk not showing original space or not showing partition etc. But in every case the risk is loss of data. In some of cases formatting and reloading of Operating System can recover your Hard drive and make it useful but formatting can recover a blank Hard Disk only without data. But you have to recover Hard Disk with data, so formatting is not possible.


Data Recovery:

Data recovery is the process of retrieving back data from the damaged media. The damage of storage media can be physical damage and logical damage. The data is retrieved back by recovery experts after determining the type of the damage caused to the storage media. Most of cases data recovery is important and formatting is not possible there. So that I need to choose another way for solution of this type of problems of Hard Disk. The first and secure way to recover a Hard Disk is using data recovery software.


Recover Data from crashed Hard Disk: Power surges, Software Corruption or Malfunction, Hardware or system failure, Natural calamities, User errors may crash your Hard Drive. Data recovery software helps to retrieve or recover the data from the crashed hard Drive. Data recovery software gives an easy and Graphical User Interface with less difficulty so that the data can be recovered easily. The recovery software helps to recover the data and restore them on a second Hard Disk, the Hard Disk being connected to the computer and recognized by the BIOS, the recovered data can be stored on a safe location on the second disk.


Logical data recovery: In a data loss situation when the Hard Drive is perfectly fine and the BIOS recognizes the Hard Drive but reports a read error, logical data recovery technique is very helpful. Here the files that are damaged or corrupted by any user error or virus attack are rebuilt rather than repairing the Hard Drive.


Fragmentation: When the FAT entry is lost during accidental file deletion, formatting or partition deletion that particular block of Hard Drive becomes inaccessible. Some data recovery software makes an attempt to rebuild the files without a FAT entry. This technique is very efficient if the file size is smaller than the clusters size. But it is inefficient in recovery the larger files.


Data Recovery from deleted partition: Partition is allocation of memory in different sections. Each partition will be like separate disk drives. Partition is very use full when the user is using operating systems more than one. Usually after formatting the disk it may not be able to recognize a partition because of accidental deletion of the partition table or by virus infection. The partition is not actually deleted; it can be recovered by using recovery tools and copy the data present in the partition to the required destination. Formatting the drive erases a large amount of data present on it, but not all the data. The recovery of the data depends on the fragmentation of the file system as the parts of files are being placed on different places in the drive. The data recovery software will assume that files were not fragmented and stored in continuous clusters. If the partition was formatted using different file system, then recovery process will be very complicated.


Another Data recovery process: If you don't have any data recovery software you can try another process to recover data. Attach the Hard Drive with another system in slave or second SATA.If detect the drive then boot to the first Hard Drive and use the bad Hard Drive as secondary. Then you can copy the data from the second drive to first drive easily. Here have another process to recover data from a crashed Hard Disk. But it is so risky, and should not try to do this for an inexpert person. First pack the Hard Disk in a bag properly where moisture can't attack. Now freeze it upto get chill. After freezing quickly attach with a system in secondary, and copy the data within the Drive will come in room temperature.

So the most secure process to recover data from a Hard Disk is to use data recovery software. It is available in market.

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