Windows 2000 gone bad. Can't do anything RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I have problems with an HP system XW6000, running Windows 2000.

    I am in a total bind at home with a corrupt system, with these symptoms:

    1. The Blue Screen of Death

    2. When I try to install a new retail copy of Windows 2000, it says "Setup cannot find a hard drive installed on your system".

    3. HP doesn't supply the restore CDs for Windows 2000 anymore, if it ever did.

    3. The above happens even though the hard drive is clearly working, because I can do something, see below:

    4. By pressing Control Alt Del  I can search the disk and start a new task, for example Internet Explorer.
        It connects via DSL to the network, but all anti-virus sites are blocked, and so are all Microsoft sites.
        Also, IE6 is reporting a software bug, a memory violation, which I can nevertheless ignore and run through. It will not send the
        bug report to Microsoft, so I just leave the bug reprot screen open and run with it open.
    I have tried re-running ie6setup. It says the software is not digitally signed by Microsoft. This may indicate it has been compromised.
        Also, no search engine displays results. This is true for Yahoo, AltaVista, Google and Bing - just gives a blank screen,
        but I can type almost any URL into the address bar and go to it, unless one of the above blocked type.
        I have looked in the Hosts file and it is clean.

     5. I can also run Outlook Express by starting a task in task manager, and can receive e-mails, but when I try to send e-mails, it says "out of memory"

    6. Most other installed programs I can run via task manager - I have Comaq Visual Fortan, Easycode with GoAsm assembler,  Office.Org,
       games etc. They all run. But I can't install anything new, get the desktop back, download software from Microsoft or anybody else that requires windows installer,  send an email or run IE6 properly.

    5. I cannot install anything, as the Windows install packages setup.exe's report that they cannot access Windows Installer.

    6. I have been able to copy everything of importance to floppies. So it would be OK to wipe the system clean.
        However, I can't even do that as:
        I can only run anything via task manager.  I can get a DOS window, but I can't run FDISK.EXE to
        repartition the disk as it won't run in 32-bit mode.
        I got GDISK.EXE on a floppy via an old windows 98 machine on dial-up.
        When I start  GDISK.EXE via task manager, it says it can't find a hard drive, or else I don't have the
        priviledges to reformat the disk.
        If I try to run FORMAT /FS:NTFS C:
        it says I can't because the volume is mounted, and asks if I want to dismount the volume.
        When I say yes, it says it can't because it is in use by another process.

    7. Can't run Regedit, as it says I don't have the priviledges, even though I am the only user
        Windows 2000 Pro came preinstalled by HP. Do I have to do something to give myself administraitive priviledges?
        If I can do it via a DOS prompt, or by editing a file (that's not in use by another process), I might be able to do that.

    Please: How do I get out of this impasse folks?
    • Changed type JimR1Moderator Sunday, July 12, 2009 10:45 PM
    • Moved by JimR1Moderator Sunday, July 12, 2009 10:46 PM Off topic. (From:Microsoft Security Essentials: Getting Started and Upgrading)
    Sunday, July 12, 2009 7:28 PM

All replies

  • Though it sounds as if you might simply have a malware infection causing your initial problems, you are correct that it may be best to reinstall the operating system if possible.

    However, if you don't have the original disk to install the OS, does the new retail copy you are attempting to install also have its own COA (Certificate of Authenticity) which is the 25-character license code you must enter when prompted to enable the installation?  If you don't have this, then don't even start down this rad, since you'll never be able to use the new OS without it.

    If you think you've got this, then the other thing you'll need are the drivers for the storage sub-system (disk controller) installed in your PC.  Supposedly, these would be found in those available for your system at the following link on the HP web site.


    You'll need to figure out which of these drivers you require based on which controller is actually installed.  Then you must extract the drivers and place them on a floppy or other removable disk, then put them in your PC after clicking the 'F6' key when prompted during the startup of the Windows 2000 installation CD.  This will allow the installation process to 'see' the drives through the non standard controller on your PC.

    Once you can see the drive, the rest should work normally, except that you'll also probably need the Network Card drivers and possibly others from the same web page above, since many of these are often not included on the original retail installation CD.

    Installing Windows 2000 isn't for the faint of heart, since it was really designed only for IT professionals in business, not home use.

    Sunday, July 12, 2009 7:59 PM
  • Yes I do have the product key that came with the new retail copy of windows 2000.

    Thanks for your reply. That really looks promising.

    I remember the option of an F6 prompt to supply "RAID drivers", but I didn't know what they were.

    So it is at that point I would insert a floppy with the driver for my hard drive on it.


    I'lltry that.

    Monday, July 13, 2009 6:07 PM
  • The drivers are for the hard drive controller, which appears to be either an Adaptec or Promise card from the Storage drivers download link above.

    Watch during the BIOS portion of boot for the title of one of these controllers.  It may not exactly match the names shown on the Web page, but at least the brand name and numbering should match.

    Usually the exact intructions for creating the floppy containing the drivers will be included in a readme.txt or other similar text file found in the files extracted from the downloaded self-extracting exe file.  The installation process is picky about where the INF file (usually root) and the actual driver file(s) are found on the floppy.

    Tuesday, July 14, 2009 5:47 AM