Old HP Compaq
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  1. #1
    Senior Member IcSilk's Avatar
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    Old HP Compaq

    Since being unemployed Im really starting to turn into a techno-geek

    I have a 5 yr old HP Compaq that was bluescreening me to death a few months ago so I got a mid-range Acer travelmate instead - which Im rather happy with.

    I almost bought a RAM expansion card for my Acer the other day, since Iv been running a VM and two OS's on it. then I remembered my old HP and thought that I would check to see if I could use the memory cards from it first.
    But the blue screen is really only software caused, issn't it?
    So I figured I could do some things with my old HP. I could completely wipe it out and start with a new OS, I could use some of the hardware or I could sell bits piece by piece ... whatever, its not COMPLETELY dead.

    Anyone have any other ideas on what I could do with it?? Something that would be kinda fun, challenging and would help me learn something - just looking for ideas from 'outside the box' that I may not have thought of.

    Thanks and Blessings
    F
    "In most gardens they make the beds too soft - so that the flowers are always asleep" - Tiger Lily

  2. #2
    Super Moderator: GMT Zone nihil's Avatar
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    But the blue screen is really only software caused, issn't it?
    Nope, a BSOD can have pretty much any sort of a cause in reality.

    Windows is an OS so it reports most every problem as if it were a software problem, even though the root cause might be something quite different. What I am saying is that Windows is reporting the problem as it affects itself and the applications you are running. Its hardware diagnostics capabilities are minimal at best.

    My advice in this instance would be to forget about loading some other operating system on a platform that is having problems running the OS for which it was designed and built. You need to sort the machine out first!

    You have an opportunity to sharpen up your Windows diagnostic and troubleshooting skills...............take it
    If you cannot do someone any good: don't do them any harm....
    As long as you did this to one of these, the least of my little ones............you did it unto Me.
    What profiteth a man if he gains the entire World at the expense of his immortal soul?

  3. #3
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    Often it is the physical memory that causes a BSOD.
    You need the stop code and/or a dump file to properly debug a BSOD.

  4. #4
    They call me the Hunted foxyloxley's Avatar
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    do the basic first aid though
    CHKDSK on the HDD
    and in BIOS there is generally a setting to run a set of tests over HDD as well
    DELL has one, not sure of COMPAQ routine off my head

    full strip and clean
    then do start ups from scratch
    adding bits n pieces as you go

    so MoBo / PSU / CPU / RAM / HDD and fire it up
    once you have it running, THEN you can think of what to do next
    55 - I'm fiftyfeckinfive and STILL no wiser,
    OLDER yes
    Beware of Geeks bearing GIF's
    come and waste the day :P at The Taz Zone

  5. #5
    Super Moderator: GMT Zone nihil's Avatar
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    Hmmmmm................

    I have a 5 yr old HP Compaq that was bluescreening me to death a few months ago so I got a mid-range Acer travelmate instead - which Im rather happy with.
    Well, the Acer is a laptop, so I suspect that the Compaq is as well..........some model and specification details might be helpful?

    Problem with a lappy is most of the crap is hard (cold?) soldered to the MoBo, so you don't have much to play with?

    You need the stop code and/or a dump file to properly debug a BSOD.
    1. The stop codes and error code (if any) are needed. Also anything in the system logs that relate to the incident.

    2. The dump files are the singularly most useless bits of information I have ever seen come out of Windows. I have never ever used one to any effect. Basically they are just the Windows whine, and add nothing to the party. After all, they are generated by the OS itself?

    My suggestion is that as this came as a question of what to do with the box, rather than how to fix it; I suggest that we guide our friend in some of the basic analysis steps?

    First, is to note down the fault codes that the BSOD shows. Note also the date, time, how long the machine had been running error free; and what you were doing when it happened. On reboot go to the system logs and see what you can find there.

    You are looking for either:

    1. Consistency.
    2. Randomness

    Please wait for the next thrilling installment........................
    If you cannot do someone any good: don't do them any harm....
    As long as you did this to one of these, the least of my little ones............you did it unto Me.
    What profiteth a man if he gains the entire World at the expense of his immortal soul?

  6. #6
    Senior Member IcSilk's Avatar
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    I've never really had to do any of this before but Im really pumped to get started.

    I booted her up and the first thing that I got was:

    SMART Failure predicted on hard disk 0:ST980829A-(PM)

    WARNING Immediately back up your data and replace you hard disk drive. A failure may be imminent.

    F1 to continue


    Then I got through the boot up screen and the welcome screen until I got the "ACTIVE DESKTOP RECOVERY" screen.
    clicking the "Recover Active Desktop" button got me an Internet Explorer script error (I have never used IE on the machine - nor any machine actually). So I just turned off the Active Desktop.

    Even though I hadn't Yet seen the BSOD the whole system was feeling lice ridden and really bogged down.

    I was in the middle of copying the sys specs from System Information when *WHACK* .......... BSOD.
    It wasn't even there long enough to see what it said.

    Anyways, I was going to wait until I could get more of the system info. before posting but its clogged up and seems it will be taking its time (like senior citizens driving in a school zone on sunday). These are the sys. specs as I have them right now:

    Os: xp home
    Vers: 5.1.2600 service pack 3 Build 2600
    Manufacturer: HP
    Model Presario V2000 (ET933UA#ABA)
    Type:x86
    Processor:x86 Family 15 Model Stepping 2AuthenticAMD~1790 Mhz
    SMBIOS Vers.:2.31
    Win Directory: C://WINDOWS
    Sys Directory: C://WINDOWS/System32
    Boot device: \Device\harddiskvolume1
    Hardware Abstraction Layer:
    <this is when BSOD hit>

    Iv been trying to get back to the System Info now for the last half hour, but its so lice ridden that its practically stopped in its tracks.. its been awhile and I suspect that BSOD will pop up pretty soon.

    Its a great little lappy, I'd love to be able to wipe it clean and get it up and running again, I just dont know where to start - I have the time.
    Like I said though, Im not sure where to start and Im not even sure where to start researching (AO has always been my failsafe lol)

    I'll get the rest of the sys specs up when I can finally get to them ...

    EDIT: Is there anyway to get BSOD to stay long enough to read it, or will I just need to have my phone on cam mode and ready??
    "In most gardens they make the beds too soft - so that the flowers are always asleep" - Tiger Lily

  7. #7
    Senior Member IcSilk's Avatar
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    Actually the dump will provide information on the faulting module that isn't otherwise available as well as a stack trace back. That in itself makes it easy to diagnose a bad driver versus a hardware error. The trace back also shows what code was in memory and executed recently. It is much more specific than simply recalling that text was being edited, an email client and a browser was also running.
    I've never used a .dmp before nor a traceback. right now (on the HP) I have searched and found the most recent .dmp (6-1-2011) and amazingly I got it to connect - a tiresome process not for the impatient). Im looking for a way to open the .dmp now.

    This is taking a really long time and I hope its not for nothing (its taken me the better part of an hour just to get the system specs, find the .dmp and get this thing connected).
    Im not wasting my time here am I. I don't mind spending the time to do this Id just hate to find out I spent so much time on nothing lol.

    Since I have no data on my HP that I will miss, could I reformat the hard drive or something to return it to its original state? Since Im not trying to save any date, would this be a wise first step?
    Last edited by IcSilk; September 11th, 2011 at 11:36 PM.
    "In most gardens they make the beds too soft - so that the flowers are always asleep" - Tiger Lily

  8. #8
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    how about the basics..
    1) open the case first.. look inside at the condition.. if dusty and dirty .. take it outside, compressed air it .... take it in...

    2) reseat memory, cpu, turn on.. watch that fans work ... etc..

    Then if you're still getting BSOD go forward with trouble shooting the problem..

  9. #9
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    Actually the dump will provide information on the faulting module that isn't otherwise available as well as a stack trace back. That in itself makes it easy to diagnose a bad driver versus a hardware error. The trace back also shows what code was in memory and executed recently. It is much more specific than simply recalling that text was being edited, an email client and a browser was also running.

  10. #10
    They call me the Hunted foxyloxley's Avatar
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    as you have a SMART warning
    you really need to swap out the HDD PDQ
    THEN a clean install of XP Home using the COA key from PC itself
    then you will have a nice little PC ready to go again

    would advise you get 2GB of RAM too
    and maybe set the beastie up as a test box for any OS that takes your fancy

    we are assuming it to be a lappie ??
    so the other options of adding additional HDD's and setting them as a mirror / RAID 5 to create a file server are not going to be an option here really

    but the reality is that we don't know what you are interested in to make an informed suggestion
    so we will just throw some ideas around, see what takes
    55 - I'm fiftyfeckinfive and STILL no wiser,
    OLDER yes
    Beware of Geeks bearing GIF's
    come and waste the day :P at The Taz Zone

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