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Reinstalling W2K, or my night of misery

Old 01-19-01, 11:56 AM
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I have been having some bugs with my new system, foremost being that at least half my programs refuse to install. Setup.exe does nothing. No warning messages. Nothing.

I have some new RAM on order (should be here yesterday). It turns out that getting RAMBUS is not easy. Many companies just don't have it. Micron, Crucial does not make it now.

Anyway, I digress...probably because of my exhaustion.


I decided to try re-installing W2K. Everything was going fine until the system rebooted. Then it said I needed to put the W2K disc in the CD drive. ??? And it could not find WINNT5.CAT. WTF?? I did some search on the net and found that this is something that has happened to others. Microsoft says that this means W2K no longer recognizes the CD drive. I should use a W2K drive (it is!) or contact the drive manufacturer (it worked before!) or try powering the system down because the timing might have gotten messed up. I tried, it did not help.

Nothing I did got me out of this loop. Not finding the file was a fatal error causing a reboot. Rebooting always went back to installing which failed to find the file. ACK!!!!! I did many F8 things to no avail.

So...I ended up putting the CD-ROM on another computer that was 10 feet away. If I had to do it again, I would have moved the freakin computer. Everytime W2K install asked for a certain DLL or HLP or GIF or CAB or whatever, I copied it to a floppy disk and told my new system it was on the A drive.

I did this back and forth for 5 hours last night. My biggest fear was getting 90% of the way done and having the install require a 1.6meg file. My other fear was just how many files were on that CD-ROM.

Anyway, about 3:00am, I finally copied the last file and the system rebooted and it's back to normal. And now it recognizes the CD drive. And the problem still exists.

Thanks for listening...I need more coffee now.

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Old 01-19-01, 12:07 PM
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Maybe you should reformat and start over.
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Old 01-19-01, 12:34 PM
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You gotta love Windows... When it works, it's fine, but when it craps out on you, it REALLY craps out
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Old 01-19-01, 12:58 PM
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That completely sucks! No wonder you were MIA last night.

Is your CD-ROM only on your SCSI bus? You might try installing with an IDE CD-ROM next time. I've had CD-ROMs disappear for boots or installs with Adaptec controllers when the controller didn't come with the computer. Even when setting both BIOS's properly. Why not temporarily scavenge another machine's CD-ROM for the install?

There's something manufacturers (Dell) do to make the controller better integrate with their BIOS when you buy it included with the system. Probably code in the computer's BIOS, maybe the controllers BIOS is in the computer's BIOS, to make it work slightly better.

If you add an Adaptec 2940UW in a Dell it will give you a couple of extraneous beeps when it looks for the adapter during the boot. If you buy the same exact model Dell with the adapter included, the same model adapter with the same BIOS, it won't beep. Happened every time on every model I tried it on.

By the way, I've done the file copy install method too. However, I wouldn't do it for more than about 10 files or so. Maybe that's because I had to run between a machine upstairs and one downstairs. That and, during an initial install, it would seem to indicate even more problems down the line.

[This message has been edited by X (edited January 19, 2001).]
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Old 01-19-01, 02:50 PM
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Randy

I tried to offer my assistance for a plane ticket, room and board, and one evening with your daughter er... maybe I didn't mention the daughter part earlier, but the rates just went up

Seriously though, that sucks. My gut reaction when you started all this was to just wait for Dell to ship your precision workstation, but the equipment you have SHOULD NOT operate like this at all. Something else is wrong. I think the RAM is a big issue (I buy all my ram from Dell, had no idea crucial didn't sell it until now, but normally they are the first choice)

A little more research says, ONLY BUY RAM ON THIS LIST!

http://support.intel.com/support/mot...840/or_mem.htm


Let me recommend 2 sticks (128mb each) of Kingston KVR800X18-8/128 800MHz ECC 8-Device (it is on the list and should be easy to get)

can be found here

http://www.valueram.com/order.asp

look closely the model numbers are similar.

In cases where I can not get the CD to function properly (really has not happend for me in years) I use to copy the CAB files from the cdrom to the hard drive and then initiate the install from the hard drive itself. I think you have enough hard drive space to just copy the whole cd out there and not even worry about it.

side note to X - 99% of the scsi setups came from Dell. In the 1% where I added the adaptec card I never had an issue. maybe I am just really lucky.
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Old 01-19-01, 03:08 PM
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4KRG, in retrospect, I would have done a number of things differently. This kind of stuff is exactly why I quit building systems and would rather buy one (and pay more) already built. Last night alone impacted a medical design project I am late on and cost me a bit of money in lost time.

The memory I have on order (and is now late) is the Kingston you mentioned.

A long time ago, Win95 had a similar install bug, and the solution was to manually copy all the CAB files onto the hard drive, which I did. Last night, I did not have access to my computer to do that. I tried every boot up option (F8) and everytime, it threw me into this setup loop. I could not figure how to get out of it.

I also blew out a clutch line yesterday, so it's been a busy 24 hours since I race on Saturday. Good news is that I coached an awesome soccer game, where my women came back from a tie to score with 8 seconds left on the clock and beat a very good team. I am still celebrating.
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Old 01-19-01, 03:09 PM
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P.S. That would be a no on the daughter, but I could swing a deal with my son.
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Old 01-19-01, 03:34 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by randyc:
P.S. That would be a no on the daughter, but I could swing a deal with my son.



Look out. I think that was beyond his wildest dreams to ask for!
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Old 01-19-01, 03:34 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by randyc:
P.S. That would be a no on the daughter, but I could swing a deal with my son.




umm on second thought I am busy


The kingston ram is a good move. I have only experienced one issue with kingston ram and it was on a compaq server. (probably compaws fault, cause viking didn't work either)

Did the motherboard mount cleanly inside the case?

Does that question even make any sense?

Sometimes I find that motherboards and cases do not always line up exactly as they should and you need to put some non-conductive spacers in place to make it sit correctly. Usully this results in no POST, lock-ups, and blue screens (BSODs) and not what you decribed. I thought I would ask anyway.

What video card did you end up with?

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Old 01-19-01, 05:15 PM
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Motherboard mounted fine. All looks pretty normal. I am using the Matrox G400. System shows everything working normally and no conflicts.

I installed the Kingston Ram 20 minutes ago. No difference on the install stuff. I still can't get setup.exe to run on certain programs. Still glad I got the ram and returned the Samsung. One less factor to worry about.
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Old 01-19-01, 05:24 PM
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I have had issues with mattrox drivers in the past, not sure if that is even a concern here or not.

Do you have any warnings in the event viewer?

Is one of those programs that won't install nero?

Do you feel like doing another reinstall?

Is it possible for you to install without adding any additional drivers? In other words if you install win2k will it recognize all your hardware in some way shape or form?

This is one of those probelms that is hard to hit from a distance.
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Old 01-19-01, 05:38 PM
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What about setting the MB to its factory defaults? Isn't there a BIOS setting for this? Also, isn't there a MB switch that can be jumpered to reset the MB?

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