Hard drive failure or virus? Unable to boot up computer

  Armchair 07 Sep 11
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Answered

I was online earlier, when a warning message from (I assumed) Microsoft Security Essentials popped up, something about a threat being detected, I clicked on it, and about a minute later my PC switched itself off. I haven't been able to get back on again. It gets to the screen listing all the hard drives, CD-ROM drives etc., and won't go any further.

I've had to remove the hard drive, and install my old slow one. I'm updating everything on it now (but I haven't been able to get a download for XP service pack 3, just the multiple computer one. Does that matter if I install it on one PC?). All the other components are working alright.

If it is a virus, any idea how to get the hard drive working again?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 07 Sep 11

I suggest you make a bootable disk with anti virus and anti malware on then run from that.see here

Then possibly do a XP repair from the XP CD

  Nontek 07 Sep 11

Have you tried starting in Safe Mode? In safe mode you could run a full scan with MSE which should find and deal with any nasties.

  robin_x 07 Sep 11

Regarding the SP3, I had problems with other SP3 downloads till I tried it a few years back. It was fine for me. I was just a 'network of one'. Went in without fuss.

Compaq SR1619UK Tower Athlon 3200+ 512MB at the time.

http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=24

  Armchair 07 Sep 11

1) I made a Kaspersky rescue disc, changed the boot preference to CD-ROM in BIOS, and it looked like it was working but only resulted in a load of lines and dots on the screen. I'll have a look at your suggestion tomorrow, Fruit Bat. I'm exhausted now! Been on about five hours with this tonight.

2) I can't get into to safe mode. The boot up sequence doesn't get far enough.

3) Thanks, Robin. I've downloaded the multi-PC one, and I'll install that tomorrow.

If worst comes to the worst, and I can't get it to work again, I might just buy another hard drive. Not many IDE ones about, but I don't fancy making do with this old 5400 RPM, 1MB one.

  robin_x 07 Sep 11

My 6yr old desktop is still in use albeit with an extra 2GB memory and W7 these days.

I bought an IDE/SATA converter (which worked fine) when I put an extra HDD in.

Also noticed while I was buggering around that the motherboard had two SATA headers on it anyway. Doh.

I used one of the Iomax converters. Cheap and cheerful. I think it came with the necessary adapter cables.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nbsbssi0_10?url=search-alias%3Dcomputers&field-keywords=wd+tv+live&sprefix=wd+tv+live

Have fun tomorrow.

  robin_x 07 Sep 11
  PSF 07 Sep 11
  Armchair 08 Sep 11

I booted up from the BitDefender rescue disc, and ran the (up to date) anti-virus built into it. It found and disenfected three items, one of which was the kazy virus. I removed the rescue disc, re-set BIOS to boot from the hard drive, but it still doesn't work. Same as before, gets to the screen listing hard drives etc., and that's it.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 08 Sep 11

Disconnect our drives one at a time and see if it will boot or go to an error message.

  Armchair 08 Sep 11

Update:- No further forward. I cannot boot from, or gain access to, the hard drive. As I said, the Bitdefender rescue disc scanned and removed the virus/trojans that are PROBABLY the cause, but the hard drive still won't work.

If it is the kazy virus to blame, maybe I need another way to get rid of it. There is supposed to be a removal tool available, but I don't know how to actually get it to the hard drive.

Btw, is there any way I can just format the hard drive? I wouldn't mind wiping it and starting from scratch. Unfortunately, whatever the Administrator Password was is long gone, so I haven't been able to use the Windows XP product recovery CD-ROM.

I actually comtemplated buying a new desktop PC earlier on, but I've decided to stick with this one.

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