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'[OT]: Laptop Fun'
2002\09\11@123654 by Roman Black

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face
Ah the joys of relatives. :o)

One of my relatives has sent me a laptop to
"repair", which is giving me no end of frustration.

It is an IBM Thinkpad, that will boot up in safe
mode or command prompt mode, but will not go into
Win95. It just says "starting win 95" then gives
a command prompt. Obviously something in windows
has been corrupted?

Now if I boot up in ANY mode I can get working, I
try to run setup.exe on his Win95 disk to reinstall
windows, and it says; "Setup cannot be run from msdos
mode with a private configuration. Either run setup
from windows or shut down windows and run setup from
msdos".

Hmm, now I can't shut down windows as windows will not
run. And I AM running from msdos!! Even if I boot from
a known good boot floppy in msdos mode I get the same
message when trying to run the CD setup.

I have even booted with a sys floppy with command.com
io.sys etc from a different version of dos and get
the same message. Yes the CD drive does read ok, and
I have tried many config.sys and autoexec.bat setups.

What is REALLY annoying is that the Laptop is modular,
and I have to pull it apart to put the floppy drive in
and again to swap the floppy for the CD drive. No it
can't have both operating at once! :o(

Now the hard drive, CD, floppy, etc all work as normal
in dos mode. I'm quite prepared to delete windows
and just run the thing in dos mode so I can reinstall
Win95 from his CD. BUT the windows setup on the CD will
not run!

Does anyone have a clue what went wrong with the Laptop
or (maybe) how to fix it?
-Roman

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2002\09\11@130606 by Dipperstein, Michael

face picon face
> From: Roman Black [spam_OUTfastvidTakeThisOuTspamEZY.NET.AU]
> Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2002 9:32 AM
>
> Ah the joys of relatives. :o)
>
> One of my relatives has sent me a laptop to
> "repair", which is giving me no end of frustration.
>
> It is an IBM Thinkpad, that will boot up in safe
> mode or command prompt mode, but will not go into
> Win95. It just says "starting win 95" then gives
> a command prompt. Obviously something in windows
> has been corrupted?

One of the differences between safe mode and normal mode (unsafe or dangerous
mode) is that all the programs in the run and run once sections of the registry
are not run.

It's possible that one of the programs that is supposed to run at start-up is
missing or damaged.  If you have a program like Norton Utilities it can check
for the programs that don't exist and remove their entries.  Searching for a
damaged program is much harder.  You might have to manually edit the registry
and remove entries until things work.

With that said, it's possible that you would have spent time trying to fix
something that wasn't the problem.  Good thing this is all fun.

-Mike

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2002\09\11@131020 by M. Adam Davis

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In the brief instant I thought about it, I'd go about it this way:

Boot to windows safe mode with the CDROM.
Copy all files from the \win95\ directory (lots of .cab files) to a new
directory at the root of the hard drive.
Turn off, insert floppy drive and boot back up to safe mode (or dos)
Make a bootable floppy disk (should be able to do from safe mode
explorer or the dos prompt with "format a: /s") or on another computer
Use floppy disk to boot computer straight into dos.

At this point you can either delete every directory and file other than
the CD files, or you can leave everything like it is.

Run setup from the directory with the CD files.

If it's a problem with the boot up files (boot sector, msdos.sys,
io.sys, etc) then delete them and go through setup again, or do a "sys
c:" from the A: drive (copy sys.com from the windows\command\ directory
before deleting it)

If that doesn't work then get a boot disk with fdisk, format, sys, and
the interlnk files on it.  Hook that computer to another computer using
a null modem or laplink printer cable to copy the cd files to the newly
fdisk'ed, formatted and sys'ed hard drive.

Then boot to the hard drive and run setup.

-Adam


Roman Black wrote:

{Quote hidden}

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2002\09\11@140718 by Paul Hutchinson

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Hi Roman,
Ain't it just great being the family tech :-)

This sounds like the MS-DOS mode infinite loop problem. I haven't seen it
for years but I do remember it used to occur on my nieces PC. They had a
bunch of Kids CD's that required MS-DOS mode to run. If the DOS app crashed
in just the right way it would get their PC stuck in an infinite loop where
it always came up to a DOS prompt in MS-DOS mode.

I can't remember the details of how I used to fix it but, I do know I fixed
it without re-installing Win95. I think it was due to the settings in the
MS-DOS.SYS configuration file (in Win95+ MSDOS.SYS is not an executable it
is simply a plain text file of configuration settings). The MS knowledge
base has some good info on MS-DOS.SYS. I also seem to remember something
getting set wrong in CONFIG.SYS.

Looking at the MS-DOS.SYS files I have here I think it may be do to these
settings in the "Options" section:
BootGUI=0 and/or BootWin=0 they should both be 1 or not present at all.

In CONFIG.SYS I seem to recall part of the problem being a "DOS=SINGLE"
line.

Hope this helps,
Paul

>{Original Message removed}

2002\09\11@154009 by Nate Duehr

face
flavicon
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On Wed, 2002-09-11 at 10:32, Roman Black wrote:
> Ah the joys of relatives. :o)
>
> One of my relatives has sent me a laptop to
> "repair", which is giving me no end of frustration.

First off, consider sending them back a Mac.  I started recommending
Mac's to relatives that only needed web-surfing, e-mail and the like,
and the phone calls ended after a few purchased them.  (GRIN)

> It is an IBM Thinkpad, that will boot up in safe
> mode or command prompt mode, but will not go into
> Win95. It just says "starting win 95" then gives
> a command prompt. Obviously something in windows
> has been corrupted?

Can you single step through the boot process and find which specific
thing is making it die?

{Quote hidden}

Most laptops have a cable header for the floppy to be put in an external
case and run with the internal CD drive inside the machine at the same
time.  Did they forget to send you that gadget?  :-)

> Now the hard drive, CD, floppy, etc all work as normal
> in dos mode. I'm quite prepared to delete windows
> and just run the thing in dos mode so I can reinstall
> Win95 from his CD. BUT the windows setup on the CD will
> not run!
>
> Does anyone have a clue what went wrong with the Laptop
> or (maybe) how to fix it?
> -Roman

Try a different tactic... if you can't reload Windows, try seeing if you
can boot to the mode that allows for single-stepping through the startup
process.  I fixed a machine for a customer once this way when we found
that an old version of software had deleted a system file... grabbed a
version of that file from the Windows CD from inside a CAB file, copied
that to floppy and onto his machine, and it was up and running... then
we found online the warnings he had missed about clashes with this old
software and newer versions of Windows...

I'm normally a Linux guy, so take all Windows advice with a grain of
salt... (GRIN).

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2002\09\11@155402 by Jeff Mericle

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Used to have this problem all the time. Try this procedure:

1. Press the F8 key when you see "Starting Windows 95" message, and then
choose Safe Mdoe Command Prompt Only from the menu that appears.

2. Type "win /wx" (without quotation marks) at the command prompt, and
then press ENTER.

This is the automatic recover method. If this doesn't work there are a
few other things you can try, but this usally does the trick.

***********************************************************************
*               Jeffrey W. Mericle, MT                                *
*               Systems Administrator                                 *
*               Morehead Memorial Hospital                            *
***********************************************************************


Roman Black wrote:

{Quote hidden}

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2002\09\11@172206 by Francisco Ares

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When this things happen, I use the Win98 install boot disk, that comes
with CDROM drivers, and then start using the Win95 CD.

This, off course, on systems that have both floppy and CD drives.

Can you hot-swap them?

Francisco

Roman Black wrote:

{Quote hidden}

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2002\09\11@212542 by cdb

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One thing to think about - IBM machines will come with a red or blue
(depending on model) system restore disk. this will have the win9x
image on it.

assuming the Laptops OS has not been er fiddled with :) it is quite
possible that IBM like ALL Compaqs have a hidden partition with
proprietory info on it. Erase this and strange things will occur
unless a vanilla copy of WinXX is loaded.

So if you can get hold of the restore CD this should have the
appropriate tools to allow a reload. Now if this is a 95/98 machine
the CD is red in colour. The bad news is depending on the actual
model the CD may only give the choice of reformat and load and not
just a reload option. There are ways around this and the tools are on
the CD but you need IBM tech help/knowledge to use them as they are
enabled by access codes and key combinations. IBM will charge A$25.00
(oh $27.50inc) per question/incident  for non warranty items.

The other thing is if you can get into the BIOS (F1 or F2 if I recall
for IBM's) make sure Rapid Resume is disabled and if possible change
the boot sequence to floppy first. Rapid Resume while nice is a pain
when things go wrong and if you're floppyable then doing the above it
won't check the C or CD drive first and find the special software and
then stop and moan.

If you are unable to get the image CD then try using a win98 boot CD
to just get in. I wouldn't recommend using cluster level utilities as
it is possible to make the condition worse.

If a non IBM version of Windoze(sic) has been loaded then you will
almost certainly only have the option to reformat and reload.
Remember that Win95 had 3 retail versions and two OEM versions and
you often need the right boot disk for each version. If there is no
information that needs to be retrieved then if Win98 boot disk with
floppy as the first boot device won't let you get to a command prompt
then Nortons gdisk should allow you to FDISK and Format in the one go
and then you'll be able to re-load a vanilla copy of windows.

Feel free to email me if you need any further help

colin
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2002\09\12@024506 by SM Ling

picon face
> What is REALLY annoying is that the Laptop is modular,
> and I have to pull it apart to put the floppy drive in
> and again to swap the floppy for the CD drive. No it
> can't have both operating at once! :o(

I encountered same problem with "window can't install from dos ..." with one
of my compaq CD, but with other window CD is no problem.  I am not sure is
that the problem.

You might want to see if the floppy drive has a cable that can be pulled
out.  If there is, you can connect that to the parallel port of the laptop.
It took me quite a while to discover that for the 2nd-hand HP laptop I
bought.

Enjoy ...

Cheers, Ling SM

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2002\09\12@044417 by Roman Black

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THANK YOU EVERYONE for the suggestions with
the darn laptop. I'm beginning to think there
is a special file missing/damaged/not loaded
which is specific to that laptop's hardware,
ie, not a windows or dos fault at all.

Since a couple of people have already "had a
go at it" the config files are a real mess, and
some of that mess is hardware specific.
I'll fiddle tonight and then leave it for the
weekend as i'm having a couple of days off. :o)

Thanks again! :o)
-Roman

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2002\09\13@131306 by Sean Wright

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Try this:

Boot in safe mode

Click on Start ---> Run

At the prompt, type SFC and <ENTER>

This will check to see if any system files are missing or corrupted.

Sean

{Original Message removed}

2002\09\13@132927 by Sean Wright

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Oh, and Roman,

Stay as far away from MACs as you can :P



-----Original Message-----
From: pic microcontroller discussion list
[PICLISTspamspam_OUTMITVMA.MIT.EDU] On Behalf Of Roman Black
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2002 12:32 PM
To: @spam@PICLISTKILLspamspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU
Subject: [OT]: Laptop Fun

Ah the joys of relatives. :o)

One of my relatives has sent me a laptop to
"repair", which is giving me no end of frustration.

It is an IBM Thinkpad, that will boot up in safe
mode or command prompt mode, but will not go into
Win95. It just says "starting win 95" then gives
a command prompt. Obviously something in windows
has been corrupted?

Now if I boot up in ANY mode I can get working, I
try to run setup.exe on his Win95 disk to reinstall
windows, and it says; "Setup cannot be run from msdos
mode with a private configuration. Either run setup
from windows or shut down windows and run setup from
msdos".

Hmm, now I can't shut down windows as windows will not
run. And I AM running from msdos!! Even if I boot from
a known good boot floppy in msdos mode I get the same
message when trying to run the CD setup.

I have even booted with a sys floppy with command.com
io.sys etc from a different version of dos and get
the same message. Yes the CD drive does read ok, and
I have tried many config.sys and autoexec.bat setups.

What is REALLY annoying is that the Laptop is modular,
and I have to pull it apart to put the floppy drive in
and again to swap the floppy for the CD drive. No it
can't have both operating at once! :o(

Now the hard drive, CD, floppy, etc all work as normal
in dos mode. I'm quite prepared to delete windows
and just run the thing in dos mode so I can reinstall
Win95 from his CD. BUT the windows setup on the CD will
not run!

Does anyone have a clue what went wrong with the Laptop
or (maybe) how to fix it?
-Roman

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