Discussion in 'Computer Discussion' started by jeallen01, Mar 1, 2017.
Quite right too!
Quite right too!
But I still don't really trust that disk not to do the same thing again! Let's see what happens to the other one (hopefully nothing).
Still working OK and now back pretty much to where it was before disaster struck, but I still have to reinstall VMA's SSA s/w and the SDR s/w.
But just could not "resist" buying a fairly rare N4620g (same case design but Icore3 & 500GB disk - wanted one ever since Morgans sent one instead of the N2620g by mistake ), with the even rarer DVD drive fitted and Win 10 Pro already installed (and I hope it stays that way!), for £135 delivered, as it will fit nicely on the wall above the N2620g and not take up any desk space.
Maybe I should have "resisted" - the N4620 arrived today, and a quick check shows it has a 250GB disk and not the 500GB one claimed in the ad - now likely to be in a dispute situation with the ebay seller!
Will my "bad luck" never improve just a little bit?
Opened a "case" with the seller and he apologised - I guess it was a genuine mistake as these m/c's came with a range of disk sizes and the most common was the 500GB version.
He then said to request a return and full refund, but I thought that I'd got him "slightly over a barrel" here as it would mean that he would have to try to sell it all over again - and I rather want to keep this m/c. Offered to buy a 500 GB disk for about £40 and split the cost between us (£20 each), and then clone the OS on to it and fit that (that experience with Diskpart on the 262o will come in useful as the OE fit disk is GPT config!).
He counter-offered with £30 (so £15 each) because that is the rough price for s/h 500GB disk, and I accepted - because I can actually get a 7200 rpm (the OEM fit is a 5400 rpm WD and so is slower) "new old stock" Seagate for £36 - and he "congratulated me for getting a good deal at £115 net, on the basis of the original displayed selling price being £130. However, he had forgotten that I had already knocked him down a few quid on that price when I bought it - so I will finish a m/c with a (hopefully "new") 500GB disk with 12 months warrantee for the same price as he originally wanted for the s/h machine with s/h 250GB disk. Marginal "win", I know, but that's what makes life moderately interesting some times.
Anyway, ordered one the disks (here next week) and then mounted the "new" m/c on the wall in the office - that's one of the advantages of these m/c's because they come with a dual purpose desk and wall mounting bracket, and so it does not take up the very limited desk space I have there for the sat Rxs and related stuff.
OTOH, one disadvantage of these m/cs is that it is too expensive to fit an SSD as the boot drive because you have to fit a PCIe SSD, and anything above about 32GB (and I want 80-100GB for the boot drive) in PCIe SSD is extortionately expensive.
FWIW here's a pic of the N4620g to show how "unusual" it looks - and the mount can fit in a slot on the lower edge (as shown) for the desk, and in a slot on on the opposite side to that shown for wall mounting (as I have).
I think my adventures with these machines is set to continue for a while!
The replacement 500GB disk for the 4620 arrived on Saturday, converted to GPT OK, and partitioned and formatted fine in a caddy attached to the W7 m/c, but it was after that, that, earlier today, the trouble started!
The next step was supposed to be to clone the 4620 250GB disk with W10 Pro onto the 500GB disk.
Looked around and found that most of the cloning utils that are supposed to work with W10 (my existing, and very reliable old version of Acronis Disk Director was reputed not to be reliable with W10) were going to cost me rather more than I wanted to pay, but then I came across Partition Wizard as being recommended in the WebUser mag which arrived this morning - so I downloaded that to a flashdrive, stuck on the 4620, loaded it up, figured out the cloning routine from notes on their website, and was working through that when it told me it needed to reboot the m/c to complete the process.
OK, I tell it to do that, and then - very stupidly, it turned out - went away to do some other things because I figured that the restart and cloning process would take some time. Unfortunately, when I came back, the m/c was "Off" and so I tried to restart it, but to no avail as it won't boot to W10 from either the internal disk (although it did appear to do that just once - so WIN10 does still seem to be on the internal disk - but then reported a problem and gave options on what to do next - and I probably chose the wrong one!) or the external disk, and I can't get into the BIOS to see if the boot order is incorrect, or something else is wrong - just hangs at the ACER flash screen and then, if left, goes to sleep.
At the moment, it's now in bits, and I've re-seated the hard disk on the SATA connector and also the 4GB SODIMM, replaced the heatsink compound (the vendor said he had replaced the fan - but the compound looked rather "used"), disconnected the CMOS battery and shorted the m/b contacts (and ordered a replacement battery which will be here in a couple of days or so), and temporarily moved what looks like the CMOS jumper to what I think is the "clearing" position and then back again. NB: this m/b looks/"feels" more like a notebook m/b than a normal desktop m/b, and so I think it's probably a repackage version of the equivalent notebook one.
Anyone have any other ideas that might be worth pursuing?
Thanks in advance.
PS: this webpage gives some useful advice on clearing CMOS, but I think I've already tried most of it.
PPS: the machine appears to have originally had W8 Pro factory-installed, and I seem to remember that many vendors offered a retrospective downgrade to W7 Pro.
Therefore, I'd like to know what was involved in actually doing that because I know the W8 Pro Product Key (even though it is now supposed to be at W10 Pro level), and I'm wondering if I could start all over again, install W7 Pro on the 500GB disk (cleaned up first) - using that same Product Key - and then upgrade back to W10 Pro in the same way I did with the N2620 as this might be simpler than trying to sort out the failure to boot from the internal hard disk as I might then be able to get back into the CMOS after a successful OS boot?
I think that If Windows 7 has already been updated to W10 on the computer.You can just install Windows 10 and the W7 or8 key will be valid.
Or when installing W10 when when it asks for the key click I don't know the key.W10 will then look for it.
Finally figured out that what I thought was the CMOS jumper was not, when I found a jumper elsewhere on the m/b (nowhere near the CMOS battery) that was more clearly marked, and that does appear to actually reset the CMOS - and then I got into the BIOS! Progress ( well, a little, anyway)
Still could not make the m/c boot from the internal hard disk, and so I tried the Win 10 Pro update USB key - and that "half booted" but told me I have problems , notably that the internal disk with WIN 10 on it is "locked" - so now looking for a way to "unlock" it and considering removing that disk (getting very good with that on these m/cs - albeit that it requires them to be almost completely disassembled!) and putting it in the caddy and running CHKDSK on it from the Win 7 m/c
Thanks but I now think that, until I get that hard disk "unlocked" it would not be accessible to the WIN 10 installation routine - and if I can unlock it then a full reinstall might not actually be necessary
Further update, and I think I now see what has, or more precisely probably has not, happened:
The 250GB disk is now in a caddy attached to the Win 10 Pro m/c, and I first ran a Win utility bcdboot (to be found in the System32 folder) with some switches as shown here (although the target drive is now G: ) - and it responded that it had failed to copy the boot files. Then looked at the drive in Windows Explorer and found a "new folder" called "Boot" - with nothing in it!
So, what happened was that, somewhere along the line, Partition Wizard failed to create some files (presumably in the Boot folder) before it rebooting the m/c, and so there are no hidden system files from which the m/c could reboot - looks like I may have to try the Win 7 to Win 1o approach, although I will have another go with the WIN 10 upgrade USB stick first.
Well, the 4620g is the one now being stripped for parts because I managed to trash it (probably ESD because you have to remove and refit the processor heat/sink/fan unit every time you remove and refit the hard disk) yesterday and it won't start up - or even do anything - looks like the processor has had it,permanently
Clumsy (and very costly!) mistake - will learn a lesson for the future from that
"Luckily" I have managed to arrange to return the new disk (after having "cleaned" it with Diskpart - FWIW, Diskpart appears to be OS-sensitive to the extent that the version on a 32 bit OS m/c won't work on a disk with a 64 bit OS on it (and probably vice-versa)).
Freeware Download Active@ KillDisk
"" "Luckily" I have managed to arrange to return the new disk (after having "cleaned" it with Diskpart - FWIW, Diskpart appears to be OS-sensitive to the extent that the version on a 32 bit OS m/c won't work on a disk with a 64 bit OS on it (and probably vice-versa)). ""
Thanks for the info, but I doubt this would actually help because I don't think it's a disk issue - otherwise I think the m/c would at least first display the ACER flash screen when it is powered up because that happens before the disk is accessed, but it displays absolutely zilch (the screen just stays black/blank) and there are no "bleeps" (you would normally get at least one, or more if there is a memory fault and so on).
Referred to disc/hdd cleaning before return. #52
OK, now I understand, but I have already run Diskpart "clean" and that should have dealt with the basics, but there was actually nothing on the disk apart from the corrupted Windows OS because I never got as far as installing anything else (and so there was certainly no "sensitive" info on it), and on the Win 7 Pro m/c, Disk Management shows the disk as not initialised and that it is "blank".
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