Can't stop windows XP reinstall

Discussion in 'Computer Help' started by Zoinks, Feb 10, 2007.

  1. Zoinks

    Zoinks Senior member

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    I've been having a few minor windows problems, like nothing happening when i press 'accept' on the license agreement for acrobat reader. Having no idea what's wrong I decided to reinstall windows. I ran windows setup from within windows, not directly off the CD. It me to find a driver file manually. I had no idea even what hardware it was for. I just hit esc to ignore figuring everything was already on the version of windows installed - that file just wouldn't be updated.

    After the installer rebooted and ran for a while I get a BSOD something about a driver unloading while commands were still pending. It reboots, restarts the reinstall, crashes, reboots, repeat ad infinitum.

    I tried taking the CD ROM out, it asks for it, I say cancel, it reboots, restarts the reinstall, asks for the CD, ...

    Booting into safe mode says you can't run install from here, press ok to reboot.

    So how do I stop this reinstall juggernaut? The problems weren't as bad as my attempted solution!
     
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  3. KarenMarie

    KarenMarie Elite Member

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    Sorry, I don't understand... you mean that you tried to take the hardware CD ROM out?

    It seems like it needs this driver to continue the install. Did the process tell you what driver file it was looking for?

    Why not just boot from the XP install disk?
     
  4. Zoinks

    Zoinks Senior member

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    1. I mean "I removed the Windows XP installation CD-ROM from the CD drive.

    2. Yes, it did tell me the name of the file. In fact there were 2 or 3 files. I do not recall what they were. I have no way of finding out now.

    3. Booting from the XP install disk restarts the windows installation program which crashes, causes the computer to reboot and restarts the installation program. Thus the problem.
     
  5. sieistganzfett

    sieistganzfett Senior member

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    if the windows cd is not scratched, boot off the cd, (were you doing the windows repair install? delete the windows directory install?) my guess is that your doing an upgrade install like first time around, but now your doing a repair install. it seems there is a lot of corruption that is causing problems in windows. if you were to just delete the windows directory, install, then go through the process of reinstalling all your programs, the problem should all be resolved.
     
  6. Zoinks

    Zoinks Senior member

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    I don't know exactly what to call it, but like I said, I ran windows setup off the CD from within windows. As opposed to booting off the CD and running a repair install, or booting of the CD and installing a new copy of windows.

    Also like I said, I was having some minor glitches in windows. I don't really want to go through the hassle of a clean install - especially since I didn't have a chance to prepare by backing up bookmarks, outlook files, etc...

    The CD I was using was a backup copy of the original CD to keep the original CD from being damaged. The copy I was using did have errors. I tossed it and made another copy. Neither the new copy, nor the original does anything to the BSOD I get when the installation program runs.

    (It seems strange to me that the Anandtech spellchecker doesn't recognize BSOD!)
     
  7. Zelvek

    Zelvek Member

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    Use a live CD like BartPE or ultimate boot CD for windows to backup your files to a removable device or another HDD then do a clean install of windows.
     
  8. Zoinks

    Zoinks Senior member

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    I guess I was hoping there was a way to cancel the reinstall or restart it from scratch without nuking the old copy of windows
     
  9. sieistganzfett

    sieistganzfett Senior member

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    well, i'm willing to help you try to do that. but you should always backup things as important as outlook, etc. regardless and be prepared for the worse. you said that you CAN get into safe mode now, even though normal mode BSOD, is that right? i know you cant install things in safemode, such as windows. but can you run the "system file checker" http://support.microsoft.com/kb/310747 maybe this will get it running right? also, another idea is troubleshooting those blue screens, then correcting them, probably a driver problem, http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/devtools/debugging/default.mspx use windows debugger to find out what driver is doing it, then install just that, and that might fix the problem as well. another option is to boot off the windows cd, then use the repair install option, this will (or at least it SHOULD) keep your data, and even your programs that are installed "as is" and reinstall windows, which usually fixes problems.
     
  10. Zoinks

    Zoinks Senior member

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    First, I can boot to safe mode, but it tries to run the installer before giving me access to anything. The only thing I can do is click 'ok' to reboot at the message that the installer can't run from safe mode.

    Second, getting to the repair install option is EXACTLY what I'd like to do - now that I have a non-scratched CD to install from. However, like I said, I don't get that choice. When booting from the XP install CD it automatically restarts the reinstall process that it was in the middle of. Boot from CD --> Installing... --> BSOD --> Reboot --> Boot from CD. At least the windows installer is running unattended ;)

     
  11. sieistganzfett

    sieistganzfett Senior member

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    get rid of the winnt.sif file from the cd you made to have the unattend install. the existence of it seemed to always get rid of the "repair" choice for me. but yours is the factory made cd right? MS's factory created cd? you hit a key on the kb, it boots the cd, it shows the text screen about it copying files, etc. it should then prompt you about agreeing, give an option for installing along with an option for recovery console, when you choose the option for install, it then should give the more options, eventually there should be an "r" for repair the other option would be be to delete the windows directory if you choose not to press "r" to repair the existing windows install.

    - this problem is getting really wierd. are you positive things like hardware are 100% good, and passing diagnostic software, like memtest86+, prime95, HD diag, etc?
     
  12. Zoinks

    Zoinks Senior member

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    No the unattended installation thing was a joke - crash, reboot, crash, reboot, crash... he he sob sob sob

    No, it is stuck in the middle of installing and skips any choices.

    When I boot to the CD (or to C:, either way its the same) it says:
    Setup is being restarted...

    (New screen)
    Collecting information (checked)
    Dynamic update (checked)
    Preparing installation (checked)
    Installing windows (unchecked)
    Finishing install (unchecked)

    Setup will complete in approx 39 minutes...

    Then at 37 minutes a green bar comes up saying "installing devices". The bar gets about 2/3 across and the time gets down to 34 minutes.

    (New screen)
    BDOD

    DRIVER_UNLOADED_WITHOUT_CANCELING_PENDING_OPERATIONS
    vdiskbus.sys
    STOP 0x000000CE (0xF78320DC, Fx00000000, 0xF78320DC, Fx00000000)
    There's a bit of helpful advice about making sure your memory cards are plugged in right while it dumps memory to disk
    Then it reboots

    Setup is being restarted...
     
  13. Zoinks

    Zoinks Senior member

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    I was looking here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/320252

    Under "Installing on a clean hard disk" I tried the F8 part but I didn't get "Cancel Windows XP Setup" option. If I try the second part and do a "sys c:" am I going to completely hose system?
     
  14. wnied

    wnied Diamond Member

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    You could take that hard drive, reset the jumpers as a slave drive, and place it into another computer temporarily to get the data off of it you need. Once you do that, its just a matter of doing a clean install from a bootable windows xp cd, and replacing the data onto the newly installed drive.

    ~wnied~
     
  15. nullpointerus

    nullpointerus Golden Member

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    1. I don't think that article has anything to do with your problem. Even if you could cancel XP setup, there's no older OS for you to boot back into. Your existing XP install is hosed the minute you see the text mode progress meter where it says it's deleting existing system files. The only thing you can do now is to find a way to complete XP setup.

    2. Are you sure that booting from the CD restarts the installation? Just leaving the CD in the drive while booting isn't enough to make it boot from the CD; you actually have to hit a key on the keyboard to make the computer boot from the CD, which will AFAIK always restart the setup process from the beginning.

    3. The CD gives plenty of ways to install, but they're so mired in "user friendliness" that you have to know just what to look for. Basically, I think you should continue through normally until you get to the box (still in text mode) which lists your windows partitions. Somewhere there should be an option to install XP onto the existing partition in a new folder -- that's about as safe as it gets. BTW what CD do you have? Retail upgrade? OEM?

    I got my upgrade CD to do a clean install by putting the hard drive in another computer, renaming the Documents and Settings, Program Files, and Windows folders to Documents and Settings (old), Program Files (old), and Windows (old). This makes XP setup think there's no Windows on the drive. Next, put the hard drive back into the computer you want to reinstall XP on, boot from the CD, which will restart setup from the beginning.

    In this case, you should opt to keep the existing partition, but install Windows into a new folder. This method will preserve all the existing files on the drive -- even what's left of your incomplete XP install -- but you will have to reinstall drivers, apps, and restore the user profiles. I can tell you exactly how to do that last part if you need me to.

    4. Generally, when Windows asks you for a driver file during setup, you should point it to c:\windows\system32 or something until you locate the driver file. And it may be a good idea to unplug any nonessential devices (i.e. USB cameras) during XP setup just to avoid wierd problems.

    5. If you have anything overclocked, I would set it to stock clocks. Doesn't matter if it's prime stable.

    6. The command "sys c:" just overwrites the boot files and leaves the other files intact. Running this command from a Windows 9x/Me boot disk will install the 9x/Me bootloader on your drive. This command is useless to you because you're only running XP, but the 9x/Me bootloader can't boot XP. BTW, the command that will erase your files is "format c: /s" -- the formatting part is the problem.
     
  16. Zoinks

    Zoinks Senior member

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    Ah! While my USB keyboard is working ok in the BIOS, it doesn't seem to work when windows asks to press any key. Plugging in a standard keyboard fixed the problem.

    I was able to cancel the install and try to restart. Unfortunately it still crashes so I'm doing a clean install. It hate Windows.