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There are a ton of possible reasons. Some easy troubleshooting steps:
1) Check the power cable. If you can borrow a different power supply, try that.
2) Remove the battery and try it.
3) Hold down the power button for 20 seconds or so.
Beyond that, tell us everything you're seeing and hearing when you try to boot.
1) What indicator lights does your computer have? Which ones light up when you're trying to boot?
2) Is there any change in the screen when you boot. Does it go from a deep "off" black to that slightly lighter "on-but-blank" black?
3) Do you hear any noises? Beeps? Fans? The chatter of a hard disk? The whirr of the CD drive?
4) Does anything appear on the screen? Tell us about any messages that flash up.
When you press the power button do you hear the fan running, hear the disk drive running, see any lights, do you hear the cd drive click once and see the light come on briefly on the cd drive door? If you see all the aforementioned then it is surely trying to boot. Computers don't boot mainly because of the following problems. 1) Bad Power Cord or Power Supply. 2) Electro Static Buildup. 3) Bad Motherboard 4) Bad boot or system files. Remove the Power Cord and the battery if it's a laptop. Press and Hold the Power Button for 30 Seconds. Then replace only the Power Cord and try hitting the Power Button. If it boots you had an Electro Static Buildup. If you have boot or system files that are missing or corrupt normally the system will be telling you that on an error message that appears on the screen. Does your system show you anything on the screen when you press the Power Button? If not you have a Power Supply or Motherboard issue.
Enter the system bios and set the boot order to boot from CD ROM. If this order is correct and you are still experiencing the same issue. Re-enter the bios and set it to default setup. However, enter the boot order and ensure the CD-ROM is the first boot device and Hard Drive is the second.
Enjoy the power of a PC
boot into the bios or if bios support diagnostics boot into that (typically F1 of F10 on power up) If that is not an option boot off the CD recovery disk and run diagnostics on the HD. Let me know we can take it from there.
For problem #1 there is a MBR (Master Boot Record) problem, meaning that Windows is unable to find Windows.
This can either be a software problem or a hard disk failure.
If you have your Windows XP disc boot up with it in your cd drive and when it starts press 'R' for repair as this wil repair system files and you will not lose any settings or doc's.
When you are running go to your hard disk drive manufacturer and run a diagnosis and repair if neccassary.
Problem #2 should sort itself out if left unplugged from the mains supply and the power supply unit for 15 mins or so.
If not there is a power supply that needs replacing.