Teacher Wants Me To Fix PC (STUCK)

Alright my teacher wants me to fix her windows XP system. Honestly I dont know any of the specs cause the PC wont even boot up properly. She told me she turned it on and off the wrong way to many times by unplugging the cord from the PSU and now when you start the PC up it brings you to the Black screen that says
Safe Mode(Internet)
Safe Mode(Command)
Boot Normally
Restore from a previous point
And for every option you choose it restarts and brings you back to that screen again. I was thinking to reinstall XP but whats your guys thoughts?

Well reinstalling xp is probably the quickest solution, or learning linux and running it in a virtual machine

I'd make a bootable Linux USB and try to rescue her old files, then I'd just reinstall XP (or better yet, any other OS if she will agree to it). You should probably check the hard drive too, just to be safe.

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yeup this.

Linux or Hirens. I like hirens better because it has a bunch of extra software for getting you in and out of these types of situations as quickly as possible.

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XP that won't boot is simple enough using the Repair Reinstall procedure. As long as you know the correct version, Home or Pro. boot the to proper CD, go past the first prompt to repair, then you get to the EULA, press F8, the next screen should locate prior installations, choose R for repair. During the process it will look like it is reloading the OS, but it is refreshing the installation while keeping all data and programs.

If it does not give the option to press R, you have the incorrect CD version

Yeah she dont care about any of her old files but she dont want linux she defiantly wants Windows back but IDK if her system can run windows 8. When I put the cd in for windows 8 I tried to boot off of it but it didnt even give me an option.

Does Win8 even have support for IDE?

Crack open the side panel and start writing down part numbers on components. Primarily, Motherboard, Graphics, and RAM. CPU you can find out in the BIOS. With that bit of information I can tell you whether or not it will run Windows 7.

IDE is no longer supported in Windows 8 and above. He would have to install Windows 7 if the hardware was capable of running it, or Reinstall Windows XP as likely the RAM density in the system is probably 1GB or less. I can't recommend any less than 4GB RAM even with 32-bit Windows 7, it's a nasty resource hog that consumes nearly 1GB of RAM when idling.

Wait, this doesn't make any sense. IDE is just a standard, and SATA is an implementation of it. SATA devices ARE PATA device 0 devices (masters) for backwards compatibility reasons. Win8 should absolutely support native PATA by definition.

It makes more sense to put a linux distro on that box, but on the windows side, if the OP wanted it Win 2000-10 should all work. Win10 might not due to some processor instruction requirements introduced with it however depending upon the specific CPU used (must be AMD or newer than Pentium D).

Edit: Mixed up ATA and IDE, ATA is the spec (so SATA is the serial version of an ATA spec), and IDE is an family of implementations of various ATA standards (like EIDE/ATA-2 or ATAPI-6). However my core point remains valid since SATA implementations actually emulate IDE internally.

Interesting, I have a motherboard that still has an IDE connector (The ASUS P5P41D) and two 80GB PATA drives so I may test this.

He could also try SFC (system file checker).

This will scan protected system files and replace any corrupted ones with a backup copy. (You may need the disc though.) This might get it running, and is faster than reinstalling Windows. However, you might wind up doing that anyway. It's worth a shot. I second the recommendation of installing Linux after you've backed up her data.

Please do!

Note that just being able to read/write to the disk would be enough of a test, so like just creating a file system. A system that old will likely not have Win8-10 drivers for the peripherals so it wouldn't be a usable system post install, but it should install.

The system isn't all that old to be honest so most of the peripherals should work fine considering It used to be my main board before I switched to socket 1150 and I used Windows 8 on it at the time but I will report back when I've tested the PATA drives.

tell your teach to join the tek

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You can't boot a UEFI Windows 8 or 10 from an IDE drive as those drives do not support it. IDE drives only support MBR sectors.

It is still possible to install Windows8/10 in legacy boot mode using MBR so effectively IDE is still supported.

Furthermore, I booted up a computer with an IDE drive and created an NTFS partition for that drive during the Windows 8 installation which means that Windows 8 has support for IDE.

Dude what. IDE is a disk interface type. MBR is a partition structure type. The two have nothing to do with one another, exist on a completely different layers of the stack and are completely cross compatible.

And actually you can UEFI boot MBR disks as well, it's just not supported. Technically the UEFI spec requires cross compatibility and as long as a partition on an MBR disk is Fat32 formatted and has correctly configured UEFI boot files, Windows will boot from it.

For example, modern MBR/GPT formatted SATA disk booted in UEFI mode emulates IDE mode (device 0 master). On a windows system you can verify this with:

WMIC diskdrive get InterfaceType,model /format:list

When you ask if WIN8 supports IDE, do you mean at all? Yes it does - I have IDE drives on my current WIN10 (formerly WIN8 machine). Does it support IDE if that is the boot drive - no idea.

Make sure legacy mode is a boot option or enabled in the bios. Thats all I can figure at the moment.