computer operating system help needed

ditzy 24//7

Active member
help!
my other puter has lost its operating system
when i turn it on it says "no operating system found"
and using f2 in boot comes up wanting a password and stuff.
it was on windows vista but i dont have a backup of the os
can i copy linnux/firefox/something else from the web to disc on the other puter and load that somehow?
 
Lots of computers, especially laptops, are supplied with a hard disk containing a separate partition containing the operating system that can be used to recover the machine to its factory shipped state. Not sure I'd want to do that if it's Vista! You'd need to find out which function key to use to boot to the recovery options.

If you want to stick with legal Microsoft software I'd go for Windows 7 and Office. Both can be bought for under ?40 each if you look, try software4students. Other systems can of course be free.
 

ChrisJC

Well-known member
I would say the hard drive has gone for a trip, which means you're knackered. Especially as you don't get a backup CD anymore, as said above, the backup is on the same hard drive!!!

Chris.
 

martinb

Member
ditzy said:
help!
my other puter has lost its operating system
when i turn it on it says "no operating system found"
and using f2 in boot comes up wanting a password and stuff.
it was on windows vista but i dont have a backup of the os
can i copy linnux/firefox/something else from the web to disc on the other puter and load that somehow?
Your pc has not 'lost' the o/s but probably suffered a software or hardware malfunction in the boot up process.

Try F8 when booting and see if gives you the option of booting into DOS mode.

When you get the > type 'fixmbr' and see if that helps.

Alternatively/And make sure the hard drive is actually connected either by a large 'ribbon' cable or a smaller 'sata' connector as these can sometimes come adrift.

The only decent freebie o/s on the web is Ubuntu (can't remember the version number), download a iso copy onto your pc and burn that to a cd. Then insert into other pc and boot from the disk. That should copy it to hard drive.
 

stevejw

Member
martinb said:
Your pc has not 'lost' the o/s but probably suffered a software or hardware malfunction in the boot up process.

Try F8 when booting and see if gives you the option of booting into DOS mode.

When you get the > type 'fixmbr' and see if that helps.

Alternatively/And make sure the hard drive is actually connected either by a large 'ribbon' cable or a smaller 'sata' connector as these can sometimes come adrift.

The only decent freebie o/s on the web is Ubuntu (can't remember the version number), download a iso copy onto your pc and burn that to a cd. Then insert into other pc and boot from the disk. That should copy it to hard drive.

Download Ubuntu. Look at this as an opportunity to upgrade your OS.
 

ChrisB

Active member
One thing which has worked for me in such a situation is to download a bootable linux rescue CD. Use your other machine to download it, then burn the iso image to CD. Such as http://www.sysresccd.org/Main_Page .

Boot the dud machine from the CD and it will have working Linux using the CD and it's RAM, not using the hard disk at all. With luck you will be able to read the hard disk. If so, you can set up a network and copy any files you want to keep. You might be able to repair the disk, if not you'll have to reformat it, or if it's really bad, replace it.

Since you don't have anything to reinstall Vista from you'll either need to use Linux in future or buy a new copy of Windows. Except, I don't know if this works with Vista but it's legal for XP, if you can get (borrow or buy on eBay) an installation disk for the same flavour of Windows as you're licensed for, and you know your licence key (on a sticker on the outside of the machine) you can install from that and put in your licence key.

But it's not easy, and takes a while - even if you're not living up to your user name!

Chris
 

dunc

New member
HD has died, boot record buggered etc, a number of reasons why it comes up with that.

Destktop/tower or laptop?
If it's not a laptop then as above look inside make sure HD is connected.
As above some computers have recovery software, find out manafacturer and model, quick search on the net may reveal results.

Can you not remember password for BIOS - did you buy the computer from new, have you set the password? If from new and you haven't set the password it may be possible to work out what it is.
If you can get past that you can check the BIOS to see if the HD is being registered, if it is then at least it's not completely dead.

Can you boot into DOS with Windows Vista, I thought they had got rid of it, I may be mistaken though? Also pressing spacebar when booting may give you a menu where you should be able to access boot/recovery options.

Can you get a Vista CD off anyone you know for booting with that and using the recovery program??

:confused:
 

khakipuce

New member
I suspect that the jist of the above posts is correct - i.e. there has been a harddrive/hardware failure but unless you are really confident about what you are doing, or don't care about what was on the machine, I just wouldn't try.

Some people have suggested installing some version of Linux (e.g. Ubuntu) but again unless you really know what to expect (i.e. it's not windows, none of your windows software will run*, printer drivers won't work, etc.) then feel free to give it a go, but expect to be obtaining a copy of windows and installing that in a few weeks time**.

Upshot - take it to a local shop and spend some money, or find someone who know what they are doing who is there - you wouldn't try to get an illness diagnosed over the internet, would you?


*I know about WINE

** Linux user since 1996 (in the days when you had to compile your own kernel) - regular user of at least 3 distinct operating systems
 

nickwilliams

Well-known member
I agree with khakipuce.

Furthermore, what no-one else seems to have mentioned is that there is a fairly high possibility that, even if you can get the computer to work by installing a new operating system from a downloaded or borrowed disc, you will wipe at least some of the old files on the disc.

If you value what is on the disc then get help.

Nick.


 

ditzy 24//7

Active member
had everything backed up to both puters and a stand alone hard drive so wont lose any stuff
might just play with the reboot f2 / f8 options and see what shows then go to see a man that does  ;)
 

khakipuce

New member
F8 only gets you windows safe mode if windows can load  - the message you've got seems to suggest that windows won' load at all. I'm guesssing that F2 gets you into the BIOS - if you knew the password - that's presumably only going to tell you that the drive wasn't found.

If you know a bit about what you are doing then go for one of the rescue CDs suggested, at least that will try to mount the disk and might give you an idea if the whole drive has failed or if it just a boot sector problem, etc.
 

webdesignnet

New member
:) nice joke about ubuntu  :thumbsdown:

1) hard drive is dead
2) when you press F2 it tries access bios (operational system of motherboard) that is protected by password in your case

get a new hard drive :) if you are looking for cheap one - go for seagate as they have cheap and decent ones

<b>don't go for a used hard drive</b> - new ones are not that expensive ;)

good luck
 

spikey

New member
Just out of interest Ditzy, it wasn't an HP Pavillion series was it??

According to various websites, HP apparently shipped a load of these about 18 months ago, all with the exact problem you describe. US owners seem to get a free extended 2 year warranty and repair for this (replacement motherboard, with altered Fan BIOS algorithms), but European owners do not appear to be afforded the same priveledges by HP  :mad:, (although I will stand to be corrected on this).

Mine has died in the same way, and I am currently weighing up the pros and cons of motherboard replacement or the bin ...........
 

graham

New member
spikey said:
Just out of interest Ditzy, it wasn't an HP Pavillion series was it??

According to various websites, HP apparently shipped a load of these about 18 months ago, all with the exact problem you describe. US owners seem to get a free extended 2 year warranty and repair for this (replacement motherboard, with altered Fan BIOS algorithms), but European owners do not appear to be afforded the same priveledges by HP  :mad:, (although I will stand to be corrected on this).

Mine has died in the same way, and I am currently weighing up the pros and cons of motherboard replacement or the bin ...........

Spikey

Can you point me at where to find out more about this, as it seems to have happened, about three days ago, to that owned by the son of a mate of mine in France. Definitely an HP Pavilion.
 

menacer

Active member
I have 3 hp pavilions and none of them have done that.
Age about 4 years to current..
The main problem was the fan bios issue with the video cards. So if you play lots of High end games using graphics your computer may die earlier than a regular use Pavilion.
Not ideal, but as I dont, fine by me :)
Hp pavilions also come with os system backed up on partition..
 

spikey

New member
graham said:
Spikey

Can you point me at where to find out more about this, as it seems to have happened, about three days ago, to that owned by the son of a mate of mine in France. Definitely an HP Pavilion.

Havent got the hyperlinks to hand, but the HP support site itself has many discussions around this. as well as help sites like "fixya". Problem starts with "operating system not found", reboots, reboots, reboots lead to LEDs and spinning fan, but nothing else.

One thing that worked for a short while was a hard reset (remove all power sources, battery included, and discharge all static / residual power by holding power button for 20-30 secs). However, this only worked for 1-2 boots.

Computer is now completely dead.
 

spikey

New member
One other thing, not sure if it's related, but 2-3 weeks before the start of the problem, the computer diagnosed a problem with a non-existent USB device, so I simply disabled the port.

In reply to menacer, the most high end application I used was probably Office ........

Now back on a 5 year old Toshiba running XP. Never, ever had a problem.

 
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