Im fairly familier with installing XP and trouble shooting.
I often use Acronis to backup and restore computers to new systems.
Sometimes I have users who do not want to reinstall programs etc, and in some cases we have pay people to install specialized software onto computers. I have one user who is such a case.
I have used Acronis to backup and image and then restore, but then when the system re starts It stays at the windows xp screen with the loading windows stripe, constatly moving from left to right but it does not boot any further.
I have also tried Paragons backup and recover and basically I get the same symptoms.
I have tried to reinstall windows doing a non destructive install, you know press R and reinstall. It goes through the initial deleting of the c:\windows files but when it reboots, strangely it does the same thing, eg sits at the xp screen with bars moving from right to left.
Interestingly I CAN press F5 and get into safe mode.
What this tells me is that its pointing to the OS properly and that it has probably nothing to do with MBR or things of that nature.
I should say that the system that the image was made from was an older comptuer and the new one is a Duo Core Dell 745.
Im wondering of there is some way in which the files that were installed perhaps for a simgle cpu are different that those for duo cpu. And if there is any way to update them. (or am I talking rubbish).
There is also the ACPI issue. I dont know if the old system didnt have it ( I still have the old computer, [I have that luxury] working so maybe I can check?? not sure how) But maybe If they are not running I can install them. Could that be the issue. Sadly to change the ACPI on a computer normally you have to get the the load new drivers screen press (Fsometing , forgotten now). But I cant do that becasue it never gets to this screen when your doing an overlay install.
Loading a system image of one computer onto another model comes close to guaranteeing that it will not boot. There are low-level drivers that have to match the devices on the motherboard, and other devices, before the system will come up.
Some versions of Acronis have an option to restore the backup to dissimilar hardware. It basically goes through the system, iterates the hardware, and fixes the drivers. This should be followed up immediately with driver updates online.
On the other hand, you wrote "I have tried to reinstall windows doing a non destructive install, you know press R and reinstall. It goes through the initial deleting of the c:\windows files but when it reboots, strangely it does the same thing, eg sits at the xp screen with bars moving from right to left." If this means that you tried to do a clean install from distribution media (not the restore discs that came with the old system), then you may have a hardware problem with the new machine. Did the new machine come with an OS installed that was working, and this process killed it, or was it never known to work?
I have an earlier version of acronis. It didnt come with injecting hw drivers.
My experince has been very good with imaging xp with acronis. I have done it many times and it works great. The server version stinks, I purchased it and its crap but the home version is good.
These new computers are donations to the organization. So they came w/out OS.
I dont understand why a non destructive install of XP after using acronis just doenst want to do a full but but will do a safe mode boot.