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Old 01-09-2011, 12:24   #1
IndyGunFreak
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Strangest thing I've ever saw...

This will be long, but it was certainly strange...

A couple weeks ago, a lady asked me to look at a computer I built for her about 4yrs ago. Computer was giving a "disk failure" error upon boot. I of course immediately suspect hard drive failure. I boot it at my house, and use the computer for an entire day without issue. I told her it was working fine for me... so she comes picks it up.

3 Days later, same problem.. she brings it back. I boot it at my house, no problem. I went ahead and swapped the SATA cables just cuz I figured that could be a likely issue, and used it again for almost an entire day... No problem.

Yesterday, she brings the PC back.. I still have no problem. So she comes and picks it up, and has the problem within 20min of getting home. So this afternoon I drive out there to see if it's something local. I turn the PC on, and sure enough, boot disk failure. I open the PC up, pretty much unplug everything except the hard drive and the keyboard. Machine boots up perfectly. Shut down.. Plug in the mouse, boots fine. Proceeded w/ shutting down and plugging in all the external devices one at a time, and all was fine. Plug the DVD drive back in.. bam... Disk boot failure. So I disconnect it, check the BIOS to make sure the hard drive is first in the boot sequence (it is).... Machine boots no problem. I shut down, plug DVD drive back in, Disk boot failure. So I unplug the hard drive from the motherboard, and plug it into the SATA port the DVD drive was occupying. Boots no problem. Plug the DVD drive back in to the SATA port the hard drive was initially using, boot disk failure.

Anyone ever had a bad DVD drive cause a machine to not boot? I've got a new DVD drive here, I'm gonna run over and put it in tomorrow and see what happens. For now, I've just left her DVD drive disconnected, and it seems to be fine.
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The fire is no longer my major concern since I am leaving immediately on an unexpected road trip to Indianapolis. Watch the national news over the next couple of days, I'll wave... well, only if I'm cuffed in the front.
RIP Jack
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Old 01-09-2011, 13:06   #2
GenX
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Could it be a voltage problem? PS failing, maybe?
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Old 01-09-2011, 13:32   #3
IndyGunFreak
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Could it be a voltage problem? PS failing, maybe?
I considered that... but I don't think thats the issue because when I was "removing cables" I never touched the power cables, just the data cables. So if it was the power supply, I think it would have revealed itself whether the data cables were connected or not.
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The fire is no longer my major concern since I am leaving immediately on an unexpected road trip to Indianapolis. Watch the national news over the next couple of days, I'll wave... well, only if I'm cuffed in the front.
RIP Jack
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Old 01-09-2011, 13:49   #4
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Wow, you sure haven't seen a lot of strange stuff if this is number one on your list.
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Old 01-09-2011, 13:57   #5
IndyGunFreak
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Originally Posted by Davegrave View Post
Wow, you sure haven't seen a lot of strange stuff if this is number one on your list.
Well, "one of"... how's that
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Originally Posted by GioaJack View Post
The fire is no longer my major concern since I am leaving immediately on an unexpected road trip to Indianapolis. Watch the national news over the next couple of days, I'll wave... well, only if I'm cuffed in the front.
RIP Jack
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Old 01-09-2011, 14:35   #6
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Hope you get it sorted out.
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Old 01-10-2011, 07:09   #7
Green_Manelishi
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Strangest thing ...

Could it be the cables themselves?

Can you use a different set of cables to connect the device?

Does the device cause a similar problem in a different puter?

Does the 'puter want to boot from the drive and is there a non-bootable disk in the drive?

Sometimes you (me as well) need to accept that fixing the problem is about all you can do; understanding why such a problem happened might never be possible.

Last edited by Green_Manelishi; 01-10-2011 at 07:14..
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Old 01-10-2011, 07:57   #8
IndyGunFreak
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Green_Manelishi View Post
Could it be the cables themselves?

Can you use a different set of cables to connect the device?

Does the device cause a similar problem in a different puter?

Does the 'puter want to boot from the drive and is there a non-bootable disk in the drive?

Sometimes you (me as well) need to accept that fixing the problem is about all you can do; understanding why such a problem happened might never be possible.
The PC boots from the hard drive fine, when the Optical drive is not connected. I haven't tried booting it from another computer yet, as I haven't found it necessary. Up until yesterday, I'd always gotten the machine to boot perfectly at my house.

An Optical drive, even if there is a non-bootable disk in the drive, it skips the drive and moves to the next drive in the boot sequence.

As I mentioned, when she brought the computer back the second time, I replaced the SATA cables. I've had cables go bad and cause erratic behavior, so I replaced those the second time.
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Originally Posted by GioaJack View Post
The fire is no longer my major concern since I am leaving immediately on an unexpected road trip to Indianapolis. Watch the national news over the next couple of days, I'll wave... well, only if I'm cuffed in the front.
RIP Jack
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Old 01-10-2011, 08:32   #9
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Could it be that Optical drive for some wacky reason is reporting that bootable disk exists and therefore passing that no boot error?
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Old 01-10-2011, 08:50   #10
IndyGunFreak
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Could it be that Optical drive for some wacky reason is reporting that bootable disk exists and therefore passing that no boot error?
That's what I'm thinking, just not sure why it's doing it. I'm pretty sure I've ruled out the SATA controller on the MB being the culprit, because I switched ports w/ the hard drive, and it still booted fine. The second I plug in the Optical drive however, the PC fails to boot.

I disconnected the Optical drive Sunday, and I want her to use it a few weeks to see if the problem crops back up. If it doesn't, then I've got a new DVD drive here at the house, I'll put it in and hopefully that is the end of this.
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The fire is no longer my major concern since I am leaving immediately on an unexpected road trip to Indianapolis. Watch the national news over the next couple of days, I'll wave... well, only if I'm cuffed in the front.
RIP Jack
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