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Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

george calvert
Occasional Advisor

Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

I have a problem trying to get a Win ME system to run. I have WD Caviar 307aa (30gb) drive), I removed from a Systemax Computer,(w/AMD 900mhz).
I installed it in a Compaq D510ssf, Intel Celeron 2000mhz,that had had a WD300 w/XpPro on it.
When it didn't work, I tried it in a Compaq 7360, Intel500mhz. It had had Maxtor 30gb drive w/Win 98SE I had the same I had the same results with it.
When either computer boots up and runs the Post, It shows the ME splash screen and then a menu for booting under several different situations and has "Safe Mode" highlighted. When enter is selected the system reboots and shows a screen that reports:
1: Attempting to boot from CD-Rom
2: Attempting to boot from floppy drive (A:)
3: Attempting to boot from hard drive (C:)
The screen then goes blank while trying to boot and eventually boots into Safe Mode.
What ever I attempt is to no avail because every time I reboot, the computer goes thru the same process and I can't figure out what the problem is.
However, once in safe mode, I checked System Properties under the Device Manager tab; neither the CD-Rom Drive, Hard Drive, Floppy Drive or the Monitor are listed. I can't see what the problem is.
I checked under the Performance tab which shows:
a. Performance Status in Safe Mode:
File Systems: some devices are using MS- Dos Compatibility
Virtual Memory: MS-Dos compatibility-mode.
b. A window that states:
Select an Item and then click for more
information:
Compatibility mode paging reduces overall system performance.
Drive A is using MS-DOS compatibility mode file system.
Drive C is using MS-Dos compatibility mode file system.

When I click on 'Compatibility mode paging reduces overall system performance, the help page relating to this problem is shown and it states:
Compatibility mode paging reduces overall system performance. Windows Millenium Edition was unable to identify a real-mode driver or memory-resident program loaded in your
Config.sys or Autoexec.batch file.
You will see another message that lists the name of the driver or program causing the problem. Because Windows Millenium Edition could not identify the driver or program, it has switched to MS-DOS compatibility mode to ensure the program will run. However, this decreases overall performance. To improve performance, remove the program or driver causing the problem, or contact its manufacturer for an upgraded version.

When I Highlight and click on one of the drive's, the HELP page relating to this problem is shown and states:
Drive X is using an MS-DOS compatibility file system. This problem often occurs on more than one drive. Usually it is caused by a driver listed in the Config.sys file that
Millenium Edition does not recognize and that is related to the message. Compatibility mode paging reduces overall system performance. If you see both messages, see Help. Compatibility mode paging reduces overall system performance.
If you see the message, Drive X is using an MS-DOS compatibility (real-mode) driver, which might reduce that drive's performance, contact your hardware manufacturer to see if an updated driver is available for your drive. If not, this drive's performance might be less than optimal, but you can still use it.

I really don't believe my problem is DOS compatibility mode, as is stated above, but since I don't get any error messages and can't see any problems in Device Manager.

I need HELP!!
Dundalk1
Dundalk1
9 REPLIES
Jim Kisco
Trusted Contributor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

I'd delete the partition and reinstall WinME.

Not booting means a wrong hardware driver or some incompatiability.

Jim
george calvert
Occasional Advisor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

Jim
I can read the drive contents while in safe mode and it has all of my files intact. I also tested the drive and it passes all tests.
I have now noticed that the device manager only lists items from the system the drive was removed from. I believe there is a problem with the device manager since all the devices are recogized in Cmos.
I don't know why you feel I should partition the drive if I will lose my data. Perhaps reinstalling Me would help but can I do that from safe mode?

dundalk1
Dundalk1
Jim Kisco
Trusted Contributor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

George ;

Well here's Safe Mode 101.......

When you load Safe Mode, its primarily for diagnostics only.

All device drivers for all hardware are not loaded. This is the way it is and looks like you realize this concept. So the Device Manager hardware and the bottom right System Tray icons are all empty and disabled. By the way, this is all normal.

Ideas

1. So you've got two drives in the Compaq.
Did you properly setup the jumpers on both hard drives? Extremely important.
Also, if you mix an ATA drive with a SATA drive, this can happen.

2. Not sure, but remove some RAM and see if that affects things. Bad RAM can cause this behavior.

3. Try To cleanup Windows in Safe Mode.

a. Run the Disk Cleanup tool
b. Run MSConfig from Start / Run
Disable Startup applications

4. Bad electrical power can cause the problem.Plug into a different wall outlet or try a different surge protector.

This problem sure does make the case for always backing up your data.

Give those a try..........

Jim


george calvert
Occasional Advisor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

Thanks a lot Jim for your tip on Device Manager. That is good info. I haven't had much time for the troubleshooting but I tryed a couple things so far with no luck, however, I am still going thru your list. I will get back to you asap with my results.
dundalk1
Dundalk1
george calvert
Occasional Advisor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

Hi Jim,

Well, I tried all of your suggestion and haven't been able to get a resolve yet. I was on Microsoft's Knowledge Base and have downloaded a bunch of articles regarding the issue. It will take me a while to read them and see if there is anything different. So far, the ones I have read have been related to what you have said. I will post if I get the drive to work.

If you or anyone else have more or better ideas I would appreciate.

thanks
dundalk1
Dundalk1
Jim Kisco
Trusted Contributor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

More bumps...but more ways to fix

Ideas 2

1. If you have access to a PC and another hard drive, you can your Win98 drive as a slave or 2nd drive. Then you have access to the data which you can copy to the master or 1st drive.

2. Moving a hard drive to different PCs, sometimes make the Windows software unstable due to different motherbaords.
I'm thinking a mthbd driver needs tobe installed or the plug and play is not done yet.

3. Try to reinstall Win98 ME over the current copy. Do not format the hard drive.
This is referred to a repair install, and this might work. It fixes problems like this.

Good Luck,
Jim
george calvert
Occasional Advisor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

Hi Jim,
Thanks for your reply. I had ask earlier on if I could install Me over top of its self. I will try that. Also, I have Me installed on another drive now and have installed the bad drive in an external USB case and I will xfer the files off that drive if necessary, repartition and reformat.
One question--Do I have to unitstall Me before before reinstalling?

Thanks a ton,
dundalk1
Dundalk1
Jim Kisco
Trusted Contributor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

George ;

No, please do not uninstall Windows ME
before you do the repair reinstall.

Just start an install over the currently install version.

If the booting still fails, then time to save your data, and remove the current version of Win ME.( delete the partition ) Finish by doing a new "clean" install of Windows ME.

Just take it a step at a time.....

JimK
george calvert
Occasional Advisor

Re: Unable to get HD to boot to WinME

Hi Jim,
got your msg. will take your advice, thanks.
dundalk1
Dundalk1