Hi, If you have, or can get hold of another hard drive. (prices are so low that it would pay to buy one). Set the new drive as master and your existing drive as slave. Re-instal XP etc. on new drive. you will be able to access the old drive for your data (Unless the drive is beyond help).If the drive that is causing the trouble is a 'Maxtor' get someone to download 'Maxblast' from the 'Maxtor' site and create a bootable floppy which will test the drive and tell you if the drive is on its way out. Cheers, Bill.L.