Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

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I attached a notebook computer that is rarely connected to the internet
(so it's not likely to have any malware in it) to the internet. I got a
notice that updates were available for my XP Home. I clicked on install
and 14 installed. At the end, it asked me to restart. I clicked on
Restart. Next time, after going through the POST, the computer goes to
the Microsoft flag screen for a few seconds, then reboots just as if I
had pressed a Reset button. This cycle repeats forever.

Tried starting in the Safe Mode. Can't get into it; again I get to the
flag screen and it reboots itself.

Tried booting from a legitimate Microsoft XP CD; same problem. Tried
starting in Safe Mode with command prompt; same problem.

In googling, others have had virtually the same situation after
installing updates and restarting. I haven't seen any good solutions.

I don't mind reformatting the c: drive, but I can't even get far enough
to do that.

My real question is, can malware cause this vs. some problem(s) with the
Microsoft updates?

Thanks,

R1

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

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Did you or can you try changing ram - I had this problem and it turned out
to be a wobbly bit or ram.

Fixmbr?

http://mbrwizard.com/examples.php#repair

Download a puppy linux and try from there..
Of course you'll need to do it on a second machine and burn an ISO.

Or my favourite is  "Trinity rescure disc" - it will find your malware - if
it exists..
Press F2 on trying to startup, and ensure that your machine is set to boot
from CD Rom...

http://preview.tinyurl.com/2965cae

http://trinityhome.org/Home/index.php?content=TRINITY_RESCUE_KIT____CPR_FOR_YOUR_COMPUTER&front_id=12&lang=en&locale=en


chkdisk command

Any one else got ideas

Cheers
Tommy


Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

On 12/20/2012 2:55 PM, Tommy wrote:
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http://trinityhome.org/Home/index.php?content=TRINITY_RESCUE_KIT____CPR_FOR_YOUR_COMPUTER&front_id=12&lang=en&locale=en
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Tommy,

Thanks for the prompt reply. I can't image a bad RAM contact, because
all I did was tell the laptop to restart.

The mbrwizarad suggestions assume I can get to a command prompt. I can't
get to the desktop, the Safe Mode, or the command prompt. It takes 19
seconds to go through POST and get to the MS flag screen; then 19
seconds later it reboots and starts the same cycle all over again.


R1

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?


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If you can get to another computer - d/l and burn an ISO of Trinity -

From my experience, sometimes booting a live CD will help to correct a
fault.
Trinity will give you a good few choices - so work your way through them.

Surely someone will come up with more 'fixes for you.

I shall try your post in another group and post back here.  My mind is blank
at the moment and I'm sure I know how to fix it, but I'd need to be in front
of the machine :)

What we mostly need ;-)  is a way to get to a command prompt

PS if by chance you get to a command prompt.....
type  ?   or 'help' and that will give you quite a few choices
damn and blast I know the answer to this but I can't for the life of me ....

Cheers
Tommy



Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

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http://discussions.virtualdr.com/showthread.php?188627-XP-Home-Keeps-Rebooting

http://en.kioskea.net/forum/affich-10056-windows-xp-reboot-loop-help

I used these words to search   ------ >  XP reboot loop


Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

Rebel1 wrote:
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My guess is that you got a bad hardware driver from Windows Updates.
Assuming that's the case...

Set your BIOS to boot from CD first, boot to your XP disk, and do a
Repair Install:

http://www.informationweek.com/windows/operating-systems/langa-letter-xps-no-reformat-nondestruct/189400897

http://preview.tinyurl.com/c3ccx5n

When it's all over and done with, there's a setting in Windows (I forget
specifically where atm) that you can tick/untick to tell it NOT to
reboot on error. Then, if you experience the same kind of difficulties
you at least will get an error screen that might help you troubleshoot.
Then get all your security updates, but don't take any hardware/driver
updates.

Good rule of thumb is to *not* install drivers from Windows Update. Best
to get them from the manufacturer.

--
Mark Warner
MEPIS Linux
Registered Linux User #415318
...lose .inhibitions when replying

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

On Thu, 20 Dec 2012 16:35:31 -0500, Mark Warner wrote:

<snip>

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The advise should be taken to heart by all computer users. Don't
update drivers unless you have to. And always go to the
manufacturer, and not Microsoft. Generic driver updates are nothing
but trouble.

--
James E. Morrow Email to jamesemorrow@email.com --

                MICROSOFT ERROR

A Microsoft Error has occurred. All user data will be irretrievably
lost. Your Windows configuration is invalid. Windows will now close.
Thank you for using Microsoft, THE POWER OF INNOVATION.

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

On 12/27/2012 2:57 PM, James E. Morrow wrote:
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  That's not always the case. On my current system for example, only the
generic Microsoft video drivers work properly while the manufacturers
drivers cause various blue screens, program crashes, etc. I tried 5 or 6
different driver versions spanning a couple of years and have yet to
find one from ATI that work without glitches. Nor was NVidia any better
with the video cards I had before this ATI. Evidently 3 monitor setups
are not very high on anyone's priority list.



--
Are we having fun yet?

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?


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This sounds like a bad update. You mentioned you tried to reload windows
from cd. Did you boot off the cd? I know it's a semi silly question, but
sometimes people don't actually boot off the disc and so run into
problems.


--
Notice: Changing the toilet paper roll does not cause brain damage.

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

On 12/20/2012 8:36 PM, Dustin wrote:
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Definitely a bad update. My CD is a legitimate retail XP Home disc. I
couldn't boot off it, so I did a new install without first formatting
c:. It's far from a perfect install, but it's good enough to allow me to
use the computer as a backup tonight when I do a DJ gig.


Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

Rebel1 wrote:
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How did you do a new install without booting from the CD?

--
Mark Warner
MEPIS Linux
Registered Linux User #415318
...lose .inhibitions when replying

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

On 12/21/2012 9:58 AM, Mark Warner wrote:
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I went into the BIOS and changed the boot sequence to start from the CD
instead of the hard drive.



Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

I managed to get the laptop to recognize the CD drive, so I'm attempting
to reinstall a fresh copy of XP in the existing partition, without
reformatting the disc.

While reading various files into laptop, there were about 39 files XP
looked for, but couldn't find. So I just skipped them. I then took the
CD to my desktop computer and tried to find several of them. They don't
exist on the CD. Question: Why is the installation program looking for
files that don't exist on the CD?

Once I got further along with the installation, the program tried
reading about six files from the i386 folder. Claimed it couldn't find
them, but when I browsed that folder all were present. All were checked
as Read Only; none were checked as Hidden. Question: why wouldn't the
program read files that were in the proper folder?

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

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http://www.informationweek.com/windows/operating-systems/langa-letter-xps-no-reformat-nondestruct/189400897


Did you follow the instructions that were included in the link Mark sent
you....

Can't you let the CD run to the end, then after several reboots - see what
happens.

When you'e done all that do an

sfc /scannow

http://www.updatexp.com/scannow-sfc

Read this to the end -

I'm due bedtime now (gmt) so I'll check back tomorrow - see how you got on

Cheers
Tommy


Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

On 12/20/2012 6:32 PM, Tommy wrote:
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http://www.informationweek.com/windows/operating-systems/langa-letter-xps-no-reformat-nondestruct/189400897
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I confess that I didn't go through that process. I managed to boot off a
legitimate retail XP Home disc and did a new install without
reformatting c: or the windows folders. It's far from a perfect install,
but the laptop is good enough to use as a backup tonight at a DJing gig.
I'm going to replace it in a week or two. It actually has a 3.5"
diskette drive; that's how old it is. Despite its age, it hasn't been
used very much.

Thanks,

R1


Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?


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Your drive or the disc or both are bad.

Check the disc for scratches and holes that you can see light thru where
metal should be. If all is well, you've got a bad drive on your hands.
You really shouldn't try reloading windows with it. Or anything else
with it.

You have a few options here. You can replace the drive, or purchase an
external usb dvdrw and see if the laptop can boot off of it. If it does,
you're back in business.

 



--
Notice: Changing the toilet paper roll does not cause brain damage.

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?


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Sounds like a bad update... or, a conflict.. was this an sp2 to sp3
upgrade?
 
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Flag screen?
 
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Did you do an sp2 to sp3 upgrade? You mentioned it wasn't online in
awhile..

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Hmm.....

What kind of notebook is this?

can you tell me the following:

maker of video card?
CPU?
Chipset?
Brand of notebook, model # if you got it would especially help.
 
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Malware could cause this issue.. but I don't think that's the problem
here...

You haven't provided much to go on, so I'm just taking guesses right
now. If you'd be so kind as to respond with useful answers; I will do
whatever I can to help you get back up and running.


--
Notice: Changing the toilet paper roll does not cause brain damage.

Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

On 12/20/2012 8:34 PM, Dustin wrote:
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Good question. I don't know the answer. See other my other comment below.
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My post at 8:47 am ET explains what I did and my decision to replace the
computer. (It's so old it has a 3.5" floppy drive!)

Thanks anyway for your willingness to help.

R1


Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

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.

Fair dues to Mark and Dustin, they're as good as it gets here - I'm not bad
myself :-))

That laptop sounds a cert for a mini- linux...

If its just used for storing music, theres a whole heap of music programmes
all free in linux.

Don't let the linux word scare you.  Format and install any version (an
older Mint or Mepis sounds the way to go)

If you're going to scrap it, what have you got to lose

Cheers
Best of luck
Tommy



Re: Can malware prevent a computer from booting?

Tommy submitted this idea :
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I second that. It was a snap installing Lucid Puppy Linux on my old
laptop.



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