Someplace to stash my stuff
Grrrrr....
Published on December 23, 2007 By starkers In Personal Computing
Took my Vista/XP Pro dual boot rig into the shop for some general maintenance... to delete a pesky boot entry for XP Home that no longer resides on my machine. Should have been a simple and uncomplicated procedure, right?

Wrong! It came back totally screwed. At first boot, Vista booted up but was slow and unresponsive...ah, a repair install would remedy that, so I thought. Wrong again...the install disc would only go so far and I'd get a BSOD.

Orright then, I'll boot into XP and see what's what in there.... NO GO, zip, nada! The boot ini file was either corrupt or missing. OK, a repair install, perhaps... maybe (being the Vista install failed)...

Oh goody, that works... and eventually XP is up and running... trouble is, the boot entry for Vista is now gone. Ok, no problem, I'll install Vista BootPro and make Vista the default OS. Orright, why can't it find Vista??? I look in 'My Computer' and it's just not there... neither is G: drive with all my documents... nor H: with 86 gigs of music. A check in 'Device Manager' reveals that Windows cannot see the drive, even though it shows up in BIOS as being present.

Me is totally stumped... but I try everything in my (limited) experience to bring it back on line, which was no easy feat at home without any diagnostic tools of any kind. I finally found the HDD, more by accident than design.... sadly, though, the entire drive had to be reformatted for ir to show up in XP, and all on it was lost...well not quite...

I got me one of those data recovery tools (nobody told me it'd take 4 days on a 250gig HDD) and recovered pretty much everything I wanted/needed...tho Vista would still have to be re-written, which was the daunting task because the disc would only load the files before the damn blasted BSOD kicked in....

By now XP was also playing up and running like a hairy goat...suggesting a repair was insufficient and a re-write was also on the cards there. Firstly, however, it was suggested that I had a hardware issue (CPU, MOBO, RAM, etc????) and I needed to resolve that first...

After a process of elimination/trial and error, I determined that the CPU and MOBO were fine, so tried booting up on one stick of RAM... fine, I'll leave out the other 3 1 gig sticks and reinstall XP, which went perfectly/no problems. Ok, now I'll re-introduce the other RAM stick one at a time...yep, sticks 2 and 3 are fine, but stick 4 starts to smell like it's overheating within seconds, so to prevent a major catastrophe I force shut-down the rig and remove it.

Turns out a bad stick of (brand new) RAM prevented Vista from booting/being recognised, but once it was removed the clean install went ahead without issue. I'm almost back to where I was before all this began, just a bit more setting up/a few more proggies to install on each OS and I'll be right again....GRRRRRRRrrrrrrrr!!!!!!

So why didn't I take it back to the shop to get fixed...after all, it was one of them that knackered it, right??? Yep, that's the question I kept asking myself for 5 days or so... WHY OH WHY ME???? Then I pinched myself and remembered they were a staff member down and it wouldn't be looked at much before Jan 3 08. Orright, it's broke, but a broke PC is better than NO PC for somebody who's addicted to having one to play with/customize, etc.

#@*&ing puters... #@*&, #@*&, #@*&!!!!! Rant over... now I'll get back to work on it.
Comments (Page 1)
on Dec 23, 2007
arrrgh, cap'n! I feel yer pain, so I do!

Nothing worse than taking your PC to a pro to have a lil general/preventative maintenance done, only to get it back screwed up. Still, glad you got it worked out without losing your sanity!
on Dec 23, 2007
I would go back to that shop....................... they would be very, very unhappy when I left.............. and maybe in quite a bit of pain.
on Dec 23, 2007
At the least, I would ask for my money back (maybe not ask, more along the lines of demand).
on Dec 23, 2007
Still, glad you got it worked out without losing your sanity!


What ya mean, without losing my sanity??? If I had any sanity to begin with, this was one episode that was sure fire guaranteed to remove it in a hurry... pronto, like.

I said...

#@*&ing puters... #@*&, #@*&, #@*&!!!!!


...many, many times over the last 5 days or so.

Nothing worse than taking your PC to a pro to have a lil general/preventative maintenance done, only to get it back screwed up.


It wasn't Daniel's fault... I believe it when he said that everything was working fine when he shut it down. The stick of RAM was the culprit... seems I got one of a bad batch, as other customers have returned faulty sticks and Daniel even had one go bung on his shop machine. The good thing is that the RAM is covered by warranty and it will be replaced.

The one thing I have noticed from all this, Vista is more finnicky than XP when it comes to iffy hardware... thus, to get the best Vista experience, it advisable not to install it on below par or wonky machines.
on Dec 23, 2007
I have found many of the Big box stores that offer a tech support, don't hire real techs at all..My mom was a A+ certified tech, the only one in her store, they fired her and kept the idiots who were trashing peoples PC's..most of the so called techs were nothing more than the store managers friends and family. If a pc came in needing service or was having OS problems, all they would do was put in the OS disk and reinstall. Half the time not even checking to see if it worked before handing it back to the customers. Mom got fired for pointing this out to the managers... This was a very well known Nation wide Electronics store that sold PC,s and had a repair desk.

I realize not all stores are like this .. but you should be wary of who you hand your PC over too..
on Dec 23, 2007

Only three words...

...backup, backup and backup   

on Dec 23, 2007
Fuzzy .. are you trying to suggest .. backing up?.. you really need to be more forthcoming with your hints...
on Dec 23, 2007
I would go back to that shop....................... they would be very, very unhappy when I left.............. and maybe in quite a bit of pain.


Nah, they have always been very good to my family and I... always honest and reliable, never dishonest or greedy for our cash. Nope, it was definitely the RAM suddenly going guts up...solved now, tho.
on Dec 23, 2007

Fuzzy .. are you trying to suggest .. backing up?.. you really need to be more forthcoming with your hints...

This is why I have four hard drives   

Why four? If you have three... one drive goes down, so you have to format and install on another. Suddenly, you find the backup data on the third is corrupt, or you format the wrong disk in error - whoops, no data   

It is also wise to disconnect your back-up drives when doing an install, just in case. I know, I've done it, duh! All thanks to drives being reported as different drive letters in DOS, I wiped my main backup. Fortunately I have more than one backup

on Dec 23, 2007
but you should be wary of who you hand your PC over too..


I most certainly am... fortunately, the shop I go to is one I can trust, it was just unfortunate that the RAM decided to die. I have no doubt they would have fixed it at no cost to me... but not 'til Jan 08, and being without my rig over Xmas/New Year is not my idea of having fun.

...backup, backup and backup


Did that for all my skins... and was in the process of backing up my docs & music after a major internal drive rearrangement/re-partitioning, but alas, it went to the shop first and was not to be. 'Tis done now, tho, and I've learned a valuable lesson. Don't take my rig to the shop part way into drive rearrangements.... to back up to an external drive rather to an internal storage drive like before.
on Dec 23, 2007

Only three words...
...backup, backup and backup

That's four words..... Spell checker

on Dec 23, 2007

Only three words...
...backup, backup and backup


That's four words..... Spell checker




LOL
on Dec 23, 2007

Two words:-

f. o.   

on Dec 23, 2007
hehehe
on Dec 23, 2007

Two words:-
f. o.

Er.... 2 letters ....with punctuation ....