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A Disk Read Error Occured. Press CTRL ALT DEL to restart.

This is a discussion on A Disk Read Error Occured. Press CTRL ALT DEL to restart. within the Hard Drive Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. So my cousin called me up today asking for help with his computer...He said its working slow and hes getting


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Old 08-03-2006, 11:48 PM   #1
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So my cousin called me up today asking for help with his computer...He said its working slow and hes getting lots of pop ups and he wanted to use his XP disk to reinstall windows. I told him to just get spybot, AVG, and to use firefox from now on and his computer will be fine.

So we are talking on the phone and I'm giving him directions on how to use Spybot. Eventually his computer is starting to crap out and is running slowly. This is after he completed a spyware check and fixed the problems. I told him to go to run and type "msconfig" than I had him turn off stuff like aim, ICQ and all those other programs that he doesnt use, but are opened once he starts up his computer. I knew all of the programs that he turned off except for one that had the word spyware in it and something called "VTTimer."

Than I had him restart and as soon as he did he got this error message "A Disk Read Error Occured. Press CTRL ALT DEL to restart." He tried restarting numourous times, but got the same message. I than told him to use his Windows XP CD and boot from the disk. He did that and I had him hit "R" for repair. The screen came up with

1. C:\WINDOWS
Please choose which windows you want to use:

....Or something similiar so I told him to press 1 and enter and than to run "chkdsk /r"

It started running check disk, but it was still at 0% after a few minutes. I just told him to go to sleep and see where it was in the morning. I'm hoping that it won't be at 0% in the morning. I have a couple of questions.

1. What could've caused this? He almost never reboots his comp. Was it me that caused it or something else?

2. How do I fix it?

3. Since my cousin was ready to reinstall his OS from his XP CD this isn't a big problem as long as he can access the pictures he had stored on his hard drive. If he reinstalls Windows will he still have access to them?

Any help is appreciated

He just called me back. He said at 11% it stopped and gave him an error message, but now when he restarts instead of going to the disk error message right away he gets a screen saying that his hard drive is going to fail or something like that and that he should back it up. It also says to click F1 to run setup or F2 to continue. When he clicks F2 it goes to the disk error message. I had him go to setup and change his boot record from

1.CD ROM
2.CD ROM
3.HARD DRIVE

to

1.HARD DRIVE
2.CD ROM
3.CD ROM

but it didn't help. If he installs the OS system from the XP CD again will it work fine? And can his pictures be recovered?
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Old 08-04-2006, 12:56 AM   #2
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Greetings KingFisher9,

Going by what you have told us, my recommendation is get your cousin to follow the steps in this link.....

https://www.techsupportforum.com/showthread.php?t=15968

...once he's submitted the HJT log, one of the analysts will guide him through the process to 'clean' his system, and hopefully save all his data.

Good Luck with it.
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If it works, Don't fix it!
Especially if Microsoft made it!
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Old 08-04-2006, 01:35 AM   #3
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you are taking a big chance with a full install. these files may be over written and data recovery software is not a good guarantee .
if you do a repair install they should be safe. i always advice backing up personal files before doing a repair install, but i've never lost data so far when doing one.
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Old 08-04-2006, 04:10 AM   #4
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Ctrl Alt Del could be an answer for my problem. going to try it right away. let you kwow the resuilt
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Old 08-04-2006, 10:34 AM   #5
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put in another h/d and install windows,then slave the old hard drive into the computer and pull off his pics



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