i put together a semi new system for a buddy of mine and im havin some problems with it. ill list out the specs first.
380 watt power supply
2.? (2.0 or 2.4 i cant remember) p4 taken out of a dell demension 2350
giga byte GA-8VM533M-RZ motherboard
pc2100 ram (stick of corsair 512 and a stick of 256 that came out of the dell)
seagate 120 gig hard drive
ati radeon somethin or other video card (not really important to know for this problem)
anyway the problem is the comp will reboot itself as soon as its about to load up windows. ive flashed the bios twice and its in good working order. i know its not the hard drive because ive tried it in another set up with out a problem. i can get into bios and all that good stuff but windows is a no go. ive tried disconnecting everything but the essentials (hard drive, ram, cpu) and im still gettin the same problem. im thinking the ram might be bad because my buddy got a little 'new-computer-happy' and started dismantling his dell before any of the new stuff came in. o and everything is recognized in the bios fine (cpu, memory, hard drive, etc.). any suggestions are much appreciated. thanks and happy turkey day.
If you have an app that doesn't require Windows, try that first. If that works OK the problem is in Windows installation meaning you have to reinstall Windows. A clean install.
One good program to try is http://www.memtest86.com/
It is most likely the windows install.
You may be able to do a repair install. Put the xp CD in, and pretend you are going to do an install, up to the point where the instalation starts. Rather than actually installing, hit the button that says repair current setup, or something like that. Ignore the fist repair notices, as they will not do what you want.
Did the other system also have a via chipset?
Windows XP is designed so that a single install will not work on multiple platforms.
If xp thinks you are trying to boot a system that it was not installed on (read no license) it will act exactly as you described.
If your system can boot to the cd, and get to the repair screen, then the problem is obviously in the windows install.
BTW if you have "forgotten" the windows cd key, you can put the drive back in the comp that works, and get a key finder from magic jellybean, run it, and find out what your key is.
now that i think about it that does make sense because the hard drive was originally on a dell and the computer i tested it out to see if it boots was also a dell. god im such a moron haha. thanks for all the help guys.