Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Boot Disk Failure

Boot Disk Failure. Insert System Disk. 
Nov 30,2010: Had another one of these calls. Exact same symptoms, exact same solution. People, clean the dust out of your power supplies!

I had a computer at work BSOD (blue screen of death) on me. I shut it down and restarted it. Oh no! "Boot disk failure. Insert system disk." That is not a good error. It came up before I even got to the windows start up screen. I tried another restart, but the same error came up. I thought I'd try a windows repair from my windows disk, since it looked like something serious had corrupted the hard drive. I inserted the disk, rebooted the computer, but another oh no! "There is no hard drive installed to repair to." That can't be good right? But wait. I know for a fact the hard drive was there a minute ago. Had some dastardly thief stole in and made off with my hard drive, cackling madly and twisting his handlebar mustache? Alas, no. Cool as that would have been, when I removed the side cover of the computer and had a look, the hard drive was right where it should be. There was only one reason I could think of that the computer would think there was no hard drive installed at all. A cable must have come unplugged! But no, all the cables seemed fine. I then remembered a while back that something similar had happened, and the power supply had been to blame. I swapped power plugs with the DVD-ROM and the hard drive and tried a reboot. Success! A completely successful reboot. Do you know what can cause random power issues in a computer?  DUST! Yep, a build up of dust in your computer can do all kinds of crazy things. Luckily for me, we have a large air compressor at work, so I just brought the computer over to the nearest hose, blew about 10 pounds of dust out of it, reconnected the plugs the way they were originally done, and presto! Successful reboot, no more BSOD's and no more boot disk error. If you don't have an air compressor handy, you can buy cans of compressed air at most computer supply stores. A vacuum can work in a pinch too.

Remember, if random errors start popping up, especially during the boot sequence, before the Windows start up screen, it never hurts to pop your cover off and give the computer a good dusting!

No comments:

Post a Comment