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Disk Boot Failure - Tried many things

Last response: in Systems
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September 19, 2011 7:31:42 PM

We have a CPU that is Windows Vista 64 bit. Suddenly during the day (after an itunes update) it goes to a black screen that says Disk Boot Failure, Insert disk and press enter. Well when all else failed (safe mode, etc) I loaded a System Recovery Disk that I burned. It finally comes up and I click Repair your computer. When it prompts me to click on my operating system, there are none. So I click load drivers, then ok and it opens some folders up but none are the drivers. It will only try to open up System Information Files. So I bypass that and go to next. I can't do startup repair (Cannot repair this computer automatically)..Can't do system restore (To perform an offline system restore, you must specify which windows installation you would like to restore. For example, if the installation located in "C:\Windows" should be restored, enter the following command: rstrui.exe/offline:C:\windows. Can't do Windows Complete PC restore (A valid backup location could not be found--I do not have a backup set of disks) I'm at a loss...when I go into the load drivers, it lets me open folders on my computer so I see it there and the BIOS recognizes the HD. I even tried opening the computer up and unplugging and replugging things in to no avail. Any help?
September 19, 2011 8:09:37 PM

It sounds to me like your machine has suffered Hard Drive Failure at a mechanical level. You will more than likely need to replace the HDD. There are some tools you can download that may allow you to boot off a CD or DVD to test the integrity of the drive. I think you will find it has failed though.
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September 20, 2011 2:47:10 AM

Agree with the above diagnosis. Disk is probably dead. But let's verify.

In the bios there is a list of detected drives. First see if your drive is on the list. No. bummer. Power off PC. Unplug. Wait a minute. Open case. Find the hard disk (If you don't know how to do that post.) Unhook and then rehook the power and signal cables. Plug in PC while keeping the case open. Boot. Listen for the sound of your disk drive spinning. No sounds. Bummer.

A great new hard disk is around $100 for 1TB or 1.5TB. An OK hard drive is around $50 for 1TB. Your PC manual shows you how to remove your current drive and install new one. If you made recovery media and still have it, you put the DVD in the DVD drive, power up and it will do a fresh install of windows.

If you are one of the few people in the world who did a backup of their PC to an external hard drive then you can restore your system back to the last backup.

IF this is a prebuilt PC (Hp, Sony, Lenovo, Dell, etc) and you did not make recovery media then check the support web site for your PC. You can order a new DVD usually $10 to $20. It will only work in your exact model PC.

If the disk is dead there are some firms that specialize in data recovery from failed hard drives. They are expensive, and may not succeed. Google "disk recovery".
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