Freaky behaviour on XP system

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A friend's computer out of a sudden started cycling during would
get to the screen telling them to choose which installation (weird since it
only had one anyways)...if you chose the top one it would go back to the
bios screen, if you chose the bottom it would go to a screen telling us it
is restarting the install...
He told me to go ahead and format so I used a win98 boot disk and tried to
format c...well...I got an error saying that C didn't have a recognizeable
FAT partition (which is fine if you had a NTSF but I have always formated my
own XP computer this way and it's using NTSF and I never got this error
before) wouldn't format C at all...
I then changed the boot order and booted from the Windows XP cd and
reinstalled windows. In the process I selected for a full NTSF format of the
Well...he has a ASUS P4S533-E, P4 1.6 with 512 RAM (just got 256 more 2
months ago) and after I finished installing windows, Word, Powerpoint and
Norton the computer was crawling to a halt....very slow...then it started
rebooting out of nowhere....
I managed to update the virus definitions but the computer crashed every
time I tried to open Norton to tell it to run a full scan...
My questions are:
1- Could this be a virus in his boot sector and if so how do I eliminate it?
2- The computer had a minor upgrade 2 months ago...the computer store added
256 DDR400 RAM to his computer...that made me curious since chances are his
old RAM was not a DDR400 stick as the computer was 3 years old...Could this
be a hardware conflict? I didn't see anything else wrong in the hardware
manager though.

Any help is very  appreciated,


Re: Freaky behaviour on XP system

In a computer that old I would suspect the power supply as they have the
highest failure rate. Is power supply fan spinning? Is the CPU heatsink
clean and fan spinning? Re-booting problems are often RAM. Two sticks often
causes trouble so try with one. Next step is buying new motherboard and
replacing that.

Post back when more is known.


Re: Freaky behaviour on XP system

RAM could be faulty. Try booting with one chip in each time. If it
continues to screw up and youv tested the ram then you may have a
boot sector virus although formating your HDD should fix this, Maybe
his HDD is screwed. Your gonna have to search around in google to
figure out how to delete a boot sector viruses but it shouldnt be too
hard to find.

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