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Help! Windows NT 4.0 is dead (well, more like in a coma)

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Help! Windows NT 4.0 is dead (well, more like in a coma)

Old 01-19-01, 03:20 PM
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For reasons unknown, my boss's IBM ThinkPad 770 (with NT 4.0) wouldn't log on anymore. Forget the network, it wouldn't even log on to the machine itself locally. ("The system cannot log you on. Please contact your administrator.")

Unsure of what else to do, I tried a Windows NT repair from the CDROM. Then, at the very end, I got a fatal error saying, "The security subsystem could not be initialized." When I rebooted, the upgrade/repair process started all over again, ending with the same error message. This has now happened 4 times in a row.

I have two questions to ask:
1) Does anyone know why I'm getting this error? If I could just get the thing booted up one time to the desktop, I could save whatever was needed from the hard drive and start from scratch.

2) Is there any way to do a clean install (obviously what is really needed) without completely wiping out a particular partition on the hard drive? Unfortunately, there are things to save on both partitions. You'd think the boss would know better...

Please help!
And to think - we're only a month away from Windows 2000 anyway...

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Professor Frink, Professor Frink, he'll make you laugh and make you think. He likes to run and then the thing with the ... person. Oh boy, that monkey is going to pay.
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Old 01-19-01, 03:33 PM
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You could certainly install another copy on another partition without formatting. Use the same machine name and admin password.

Don't know about your logon error. Might have to do with a dll or something getting wiped out.
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Old 01-19-01, 03:48 PM
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DAMN THINKPADS (X that was for you)

just kidding

Are you sure the caps lock key was off when you were typing the PASSWORDS?

If you are sure the username and password were right then your SAM was corrupted. It happens every once in a while and you should have an RDISK on hand to repair it with.

What's that? No RDISK? yeah no one else ever does except on servers

Seeing the damage that is already caused and you saying that you can not re install NT but want to salvage the data there are not many options left.

I would get an adapter to convert the laptop IDE (44 pin) interface to a desktop IDE (40 pin) interface like this one

http://www.cablesnmor.com/hard-drive-converter.html

Install this laptop hard drive as master on the secondary IDE channel in the desktop machine. Install windows NT on the primary hard drive in the machine (or use one with NT installed already) login as administrator and copy the needed data to the desktop hard drive or to your network or zip drive or burn to cd, whatever option is open to you.

Fdisk, format, and reinstall the laptop drive.

There are other ways, but this is the easiest, cheapest, fastest way to get the data and get going again. Most places can priority overnight you the connector I was speaking of. The link I used was for descriptions sake I have never bought from those folks.

oh yeah almost forgot, installing windows 2000 over top of this mess will probably fix this problem too.

[This message has been edited by 4KRG (edited January 19, 2001).]
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Old 01-19-01, 04:13 PM
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Why not just do an install of another copy of NT, not over the old one, but a second one?
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Old 01-19-01, 04:19 PM
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X,

The hard drive only has the two partitions. There is certainly enough space left on D: for another installation of NT, but it keeps telling me that it will wipe out everything on D: when I do that.
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Old 01-19-01, 04:22 PM
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And you didn't tell it you were doing a repair or reinstall? Is your \WINNT directory on C:? Sounds like you have one on D:. You can change the name of the new one to \WNT or something and see what it says.
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Old 01-19-01, 04:38 PM
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There certainly can't be an NT install on D:, since only a couple hundred MB are used. I believe Office 2000 is installed there, plus a bunch of documents.

But still - won't an NT install on D: wipe all those documents out? I thought that part of the OS installation was to wipe the drive clean.

If only I could take the 1.5 GB on D: and re-partition it, creating an F: drive; then install NT on there.

BTW - We do create repair disks for all the workstations (100+); in fact, they were just re-done about a month ago. But they were never done for the few scattered laptops. Damn.
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Old 01-19-01, 04:48 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Professor Frink:
But still - won't an NT install on D: wipe all those documents out? I thought that part of the OS installation was to wipe the drive clean.



No. It will only add the NT OS (which is only a few hundred MB). If you don't convert the file system to NTFS (if it isn't already) and just do a new install you just get another OS to dual boot into.

But if you're not sure of this or what you're doing, or doing something I can't imagine, maybe you shouldn't do it.

[This message has been edited by X (edited January 19, 2001).]
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Old 01-19-01, 04:57 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by X:
Why not just do an install of another copy of NT, not over the old one, but a second one?




Sorry, I thought he said he tried that and it kept rebooting wihtout doing it.

Only do what I said if you can not install in another directory.

you can have multiple NT installs on the same drive, same partition, but different directory.

Use c:\winnt2 instead of c:\winnt or use d:\winnt.


when it prompts you to format, say no leave current file system intact and it will not format your data.

[This message has been edited by 4KRG (edited January 19, 2001).]
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Old 01-21-01, 09:56 AM
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Thanks for the tips, guys. I'm gonna give it a try today (yeah, I brought the damn thing home). I'll let you know how it goes.
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Old 01-21-01, 04:06 PM
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Wow, I feel dumb. When I had previously seen the option "keep existing file structure, no changes", my first thought was "Golly, it says no changes, that means it'll cancel the installation, I sure don't want that, golly gee whiz." Now I understand what I was looking at.

BTW - The installation went smoothly. Tomorrow the boss can log on and pull off whatever documents he needs, then I can totally wipe the hard drive and start from scratch with Windows 2000.

Thanks again, guys.
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Old 01-21-01, 04:08 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Professor Frink:
BTW - The installation went smoothly. Tomorrow the boss can log on and pull off whatever documents he needs, then I can totally wipe the hard drive and start from scratch with Windows 2000.

Thanks again, guys.



Glad it worked out. Tell your boss you want a day off because you had to work so hard on the weekend!
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