Luther, Ron wrote: > Hi Gang, > > > Luddite Ron begging for tech support again! > > It's my son's laptop. It's about a 3 year old Compaq > running Windows XP. I would really like it to last > another year to finish his undergrad work at OSU. > Then we can think about a new one for grad school. > > It's not booting up cleanly. If he hits escape > while the laptop is booting, then F1, he can > kinda sorta get the box halfway working. > > 'Recovery' didn't. > > Tried format and a reinstall of XP. The machine > seems to make it to a point where it needs to > reboot itself - then drifts off into never never > land. > > Is this sounding like a hardware issue? Maybe the > boot sector on the hard drive is fried? > > Are there other things I should be trying? Or do > I need to run out and get a new hard drive for a > fresh XP install? I would first create a bootable floppy to see if the hard drive is the issue or whether it is something else. http://www.computerhope.com/boot.htm#71 Boot to the floppy and see if you get similar results as the hard drive. If you can get to Windows Explorer, run the Tools under the harddrive properties. Run the Error checking tool. You will probably need to restart to run it on the main drive. Reseat the RAM module. Shifty memory is a bitch. If you have two modules and can get to them, swap them. If the connections look funky take an old eraser to the contacts very softly, then reseat the modules. It could even be something like a video driver. Did your son upgrade any drivers lately? Good luck, Roger -- Visit http://www.misshunt.com/ for fun and creative items including the famous Clean/Dirty dishwasher magnet, now available in velcro.