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Old 06-16-2009, 02:31 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default I need massive help

I have a dell workstation 350. It was working fine, but I wanted to add some memory. So I bought a pci 1gb memory card and installed it, not knowing that the rest of the memory was ECC.

Soon after seeing a prompt telling me both cannot be combined in the PC, I removed the new memory. Thinking everything was going to be ok, I restarted the PC to find that it won't run windows.

I see a message that says "Windows cannot run properly. A recent hardware or software change could be the problem."

Then I have the option of running windows from its latest configuration that worked, safe mode, or run windows normally. None of the options work, they all just bring me back to the same screen. I hit F8 when I turn the PC on and try to run the computer in safe mode, safe mode with command prompt, none of it works.

I checked the setup screen and reset the computer back to factory settings. Still won't run windows. I tried putting in a windows xp CD to reinstall the OS, won't read the CD.

I went back into the setup and looked to see if anything looked off, and it says my IDE drive isn't present. I don't know what to do anymore and I don't have the money to take it to a store. I'm completely computer stupid, and I really need this computer back, my job depends on it.

Please help me.
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Old 06-16-2009, 11:51 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: I need massive help

I think you did this but... did you reset the BIOS settings to default?

The next thing (and easiest) would be to make sure the hard drive and all cables are secure and tight. I've heard MANY stories about people installing things then their computer will not run. I go over to fix it and just to find out they had knocked a power cable or IDE/SATA cable loose.

Just make sure you have everything connected securely (take it out and reconnect everything), then set your BIOS settings to default.

Let us know if that works.
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Old 06-16-2009, 11:59 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: I need massive help

Yha, like Lex said, Check you didn't loosen anything while mucking about... Its quite easy to do.

Also clear the cmos by unpluggin the cord, removing the battery, and hitting the power button.
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Old 06-16-2009, 05:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: I need massive help

I removed and replugged all the cables and made sure they are in tight. Then I turned it back on and reset the bios again just to make sure. Then I restarted it again and still no luck. I went back into the bios to see the onboard devices... it still says IDE is not present. Is that the reason windows won't run? I don't know what IDE is.

I'm going to try the battery suggestion, I have to find a manual because I have no clue how to remove it. What if that doesn't work? Should I start looking for a new computer? Is this a lost cause?
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Old 06-16-2009, 05:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: I need massive help

DO NOT start looking for a new computer.

First the IDE thing. That is your hard drive (more than likely, not sure if you are IDE or SATA). So perhaps you bumped that IDE cable (long flat cable that is about 2 inches in width). Make sure that is snug on both ends. If they are you could have possibly damaged (as unlikely as that is) the hard drive. THe more likely solution is that your IDE drive may have died as around the same time you were installing this device.

A few questions.
WHen you start the computer, where does it 'stop' loading?
What does the screen say?
When you enter the BIOS screen (by pressing F10/F2/Esc/Del/F8) and go into the general settings what drives are detected? Any?

Assuming the computer is not detecting the hard drive for some reason you may need a new hard drive. YOu said you put in a CD to format the drive, but did you change the boot priority in the BIOS? You need to change the boot order to boot from CD/DVD first, then you should be able to utilize a CD to reformat.

After all of this, if your hard drive is still not being recognized and it is IDE, go to some local compute shop (not a large chain) and purchase a used IDE drive for 20 or 30 bucks.

Then we can truely test if the other hard drive is truely dead by installing this new drive and installing XP on it.
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Old 06-16-2009, 09:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: I need massive help

I turn the pc on and tthe Dell Workstation 370 icon comes up with the loading bar. This is where I can enter the setup by pressing F2. After this screen loads that is when I get the "Windows Won't Load Properly" screen.

In Setup:
Boot Sequence:
1 Onboard USB CD Rom
2 Onboard USB Floppy
3 Onboard SATA Hard Drive
4 Onboard IDE Hard Drive "not present"

Drives:
Drive 0: SATA 0 On Controller - Serial ATA.. Port SATA 0
Drive 123 are nothing

Drive 4 PATA 0 On Controller Parallel ATA Port PATA 0 (PRI IDE MASTER) Drive ID - HL DT ST RX DVD GCC 4481b
Drive 5 PATA 1 Off Controller Parallel ATA Port PATA 1 (PRI IDE Slave)

SATA Operation RAID Autodetectt / AHCI
Smart Reporting is Off

Onboard Devices:
Integrated NIC is on
Integrated Audio is on
USB Controller On
LPT Port Mode - PS/2
LPT Port Address - 378h
Serial Port #1 Auto
PS/@ Mouse port is on

Performance:
Hyperthreading is Off
HDD Acoustic Mode Bypass

Maintenance:
Event Log, the last entry says "CMOS Checksum Error"

POST Behavior

Fast Boot is on
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: I need massive help

Do you have XP? If so when you get that error, does that happen during windows load?

You may just need to do a windows repair in XP, which would include you changing the boot priority in the BIOS to boot from CD first, inserting an XP CD then doing a repair install.
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: I need massive help

yes I have XP.. the error comes up right after the dell loading screen before the Windows XP loading screen comes up.

So I go to boot sequence and change the onboard usb cd rom to number one? then insert the cd and restart the computer?
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