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How to use reinstall cd when can't change boot order?

Last response: in Windows Vista
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October 14, 2010 6:00:21 AM

1) My desktop takes forever to boot up, then after being on 5 minutes it reboots itself so I am unable to run utilities or virus scans. I have the Dell Reinstallation CD, + the Dell Drivers and Utilities cd, however I can't even get into Boot Options to change the boot order to cd drive The System32 files are damaged, + the windows installer is corrupt. What to do now?

2) In the past I have used a special cable to connect defective hard drive to a functioning pc and use it's OS to run scans and remove viruses from the defective drive. But I don't know how using this method would help if the problem with defective drive is damaged or missing system files. Ie. I do not know how to repair these files while the defective hard drive is connected to another functioning pc OS. Any thoughts on this?

3) One other concern, there is a product key # label on the Dell case, however as I recall this rarely matches the product key in the machine (in BIOS or hard drive???) . I'm wondering if I will have trouble activating the OS if I only have product key on outside of case?

If this is too many questions or in wrong sections I will try and break them up and post elsewhere. Thanks!

Best solution

October 14, 2010 7:00:01 AM

Have you tried entering the BIOS when you first turn the PC on, i.e. press f2? You can change the boot order there temporarily to re-install the OS. After the reinstall, you can go back and change it back to the hard drive. Don't worry about the product key, as it will already be activated after the install.
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October 17, 2010 8:54:12 PM

^
exactly. that's a BIOS adjustment, not a use of install disk..
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October 21, 2010 1:26:44 AM

verbalizer said:
^
exactly. that's a BIOS adjustment, not a use of install disk..



I was eventually able to get into boot options (F12) and set it to book from Hard drive 1st. Then used Dell Installation disk to reinstall the operating system. All is well now.
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October 21, 2010 1:27:32 AM

Best answer selected by ckmckee.
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