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  1. #1
    Joined
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    3

    invalid boot.ini on startup

    I get an invalid boot.ini on start up and booting from C:\windows message. (windows xp pro)
    The computer boots to the "boot option screen" and "start windows normally" is high-lighted.
    However I am unable to select anything as the keyboard is dead.The computer carries on and reboots repeatedlyto the same screen.
    I have tried my 6 boot disks but only the first one is accepted because I can't press enter ankyouwhen I insert the second disk.
    I have also made a bootable floppy with cd rom support as all my drives seem to be unavailable.When I insert it and try to boot I get a message "remove media -press any key to restart-but I can't,and so it goes on.
    I think I have a trojan but I don't know how to get started when nothing seems to function.
    Any suggestions please.? thankyou

  2. #2
    Joined
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    14,221

    Re: invalid boot.ini on startup

    Hi Cabra, welcome to PCP forums

    Does your keyboard allow you to enter the BIOS? Just trying to work out if the keyboard is cut out when Windows tries to load or if it's just simply doesn't work. Sorry if that sounds stupid, but we need to be clear with where you're at.

    Can you either provide details of your hardware in your user signature or in the My Computer dropdown list under your profile? If you do the latter, you'll have to set Display Your System Specs in your user options and save the changes.

    Your problems could also be caused by a number of possible hardware faults. Faulty hard drive, PSU or RAM are some of the more common ones. Do you have any solid reason to suspect that it's a virus causing this? As far as the floppy drive, are the disks new? If so the drive or cable may have had it. I don't think you need to worry about that just yet.

    I'd recommend testing your PSU, RAM and HDD (in that order):
    • Test the PSU rails or swap the PSU
    • Burn Memtest86 to a CD and run it for one or two passes or until you receive an error, whichever comes first (errors will probably indicate that RAM is the culprit)
    • Run the DFT software available on your hard drive manufacturer's website and do a full test (what brand drive is it - we can give you a link)
    Your best bet would probably be to pull the drive out, slave it on another PC and run a bunch of virus scans on it.

    If you can't do that, you can try accessing it by recreating a boot.ini file using the Windows CD. Boot the CD and press R when prompted to get into the Recovery Console. Enter the Administrator account password and go through the following process:

    Type the following line to get to the root directory ( c:\> )
    cd \

    Change the attributes of boot.ini so you can see it and manipulate it:
    attrib boot.ini -r -h

    Back up the exisiting boot.ini:
    ren boot.ini boot.old

    Get the computer to make a new boot.ini:
    bootcfg /rebuild

    Pop the CD out and restart the PC, booting to the hard drive. Go straight into SAFE MODE! You'll have a far better chance of getting your rig clean in Safe Mode than in Normal Mode.

  3. #3
    Joined
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    3

    Re: invalid boot.ini on startup

    Many thanks for your reply.In trying to keep my query short I may have missed out some info.
    Whatever the problemI cannot access the keyboard,cd drives.
    My diskettes don't work because the keyboard is not available.
    Whether another keyboard would work or be rendered no good at boot up I dont know,I am not well up on anything too complicated.
    The system was built to order and is only a few months old and has been o.k.till now.
    I suspect a trojan as I was downloading(system mechanic) at the time when I was alerted to a trojan and I immediately pressed "heal" and it went only to be followed by another .I repeated the heal and the computer shutdown and rebooted to the "boot" options screen and I found nothing would work i.e. keyboard cd drives.Starting windows normally is highlighted on the boot screen but I cannot make any choices,and it goes round in the same circle of re-booting again.

    Windows xp pro/sps
    ASRock 939 dual-sata2Motherboard
    AMD ATHLON 64 3800+Processor
    2x1024Mb DDR Memory
    4 Port PCI Fire Wire CarD
    250 GB 7200 RPM SAT Hard Drive
    Internal 56k modem
    Wireless Optical Keyboard ,Mouse
    2xLG DVD-ReWriter Drives
    320 Watt 2.1 Slimline speakers
    19" TFT Monitor

  4. #4
    Joined
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    14,221

    Re: invalid boot.ini on startup

    OK. Since the machine is new, I suggest you confirm that the PC hardware is working properly with one or two basic checks. The idea is that if you find that the hardware isn't working, let the shop deal with that under warranty. They would probably charge for software repairs, but it is their responsibility to make sure the hardware is functional while it is under warranty.

    First up you need to find out what's going on with the keyboard. Don't worry about getting into windows or using floppies until you know that keyboard works.

    When you first boot up the PC or when it restarts, you should see a screen that shows a heap of info about detecting hard drives or a screen that shows some type of logo. At this stage you should be able to press F2 to get into the BIOS menu. You may have to be quick If you get into that screen, it looks as if the keyboard should be working. You should be able to navigate the menus with the arrow keys.

    If you can't get into that screen, shut down the PC, pull the power cord out of the back of the PC and then unplug the keyboard and mouse. Leave it for about 30 seconds and then plug the keyboard and mouse back in, followed by the power. If the keyboard plug has a round connector, that's called a PS/2 connector. The keyboard goes in the purple socket. The mouse goes into the green one.

    If it's a USB keyboard (I suspect yours is - a rectangular connector), you should be able to plug it into one of the USB ports and it should work. If you can get into your BIOS menu that I mentioned earlier, under the Advanced heading there is a USB Configuration page. Open that and check that the Legacy USB Support option is Enabled. If this is disabled, it could be the reason that you don't have keyboard support when using the floppies. You'll need to save and exit (press F10). That setting may also prevent you from even getting to BIOS if it's not enabled. If you have another keyboard around that's not USB, turn the PC off and plug that one in. Does that help?

    Download this file, or if you have the motherboard manual (you should have it) - check out page 35 (section 3.3.8) and page 37 (section 3.7) to see what I'm talking about.
    http://download.asrock.com/manual/939Dual-SATA2.pdf

    If none of that helps, I think you need to take it to the PC shop and get them to get the hardware going. If you're not confident in doing the process I mentioned in my last post, I strongly suggest you let the shop clean your PC for you. I'm happy to help you through it once your hardware is confirmed as working.

    If you do get into the BIOS, check out section 3.5 and change the boot order so that the floppy and CD drive are both before the hard drive. You may only have to swap the hard drive and the CD drive. By doing this, you can boot from the CD and do the recovery process I suggested earlier. If the CD is after the hard drive in the boot order, as it often is, then it will be ignored at boot time, hence it wont work until it's put in front of the hard drive in the boot order.

    Let me know how you go with that lot.

  5. #5
    Joined
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    3

    Re: invalid boot.ini on startup

    Thanks again for all your info.you may have missed in my previous reply that I have a wireless optical keyboard and mouse .I have done all the checks on these ,changed batteries etc and still no luck.
    I think I will need to return it to shop as you say for warranty purposes ,I was hoping to put off a long drive.I will look at your other suggestions in the meantime.
    Many thanks for your time.

  6. #6
    Joined
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    14,221

    Re: invalid boot.ini on startup

    I caught the bit about the wireless. I use a wireless combo but I have both PS/2 and USB connectors on mine so I can choose. I also assumed that you knew about the "Connect" buttons on the wireless combo to make sure it's working.

    You might be able to go to the local computer shop and pick up a USB to PS/2 adaptor. What are you using to type on these forums? Plug the keyboard into that PC and/or use it's keyboard on the other PC.

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