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Dell Inspiron 1501 Problem

1537 Views 4 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Old Rich
My Dell laptop has given me some grief,
I was trying to back up some files when the screen went blue and had an error messge on it.

I can not remember what the error message was.:sigh:

The laptop is about 2 yrs old now,
runs Windows XP Home Edition, version 2002, Service Pack 3,
160 GB hard drive, 2GB ram, AMD Turion.

I checked with a guy I know that is good with computers,
he looked it over and told me it has some bad sectors,
the guy told me that when he started it up,
the laptop was just a basic system,
meaning nothing I had on it was showing up (no antivirus or any files, etc.).

I contacted Dell to find out what could be done with the laptop as I have the extended warrenty,
I ran some tests as directed by Dell.
Dell said the results of the tests indicate a software issue not under warrenty.

They mention that if I pay their repair price (too much),
we could resolve the problem over the phone,
I just need to use the "operating system" disc that was sent with the laptop,
all my files (pics, music, data, etc.) will be useable just as before.

Does this make any sense?
Is there any way I could recover my files without spending money?

Dell has really made me mad with the lack of warrenty coverage,
and I get the feeling maybe the system was set up to fail,
maybe to get extra money out of me.:4-dontkno

I am not a happy camper towards Dell,
and I am still having to make payments on something I can't use properally. :upset:

I would like to recover the files I had/have on the laptop,
what options (other than paying Dell) can I make use of?
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to get the data off of it, you could try taking the hard drive out and hooking it up to another computer. I'd guess that its a SATA hard drive and the easiest way would be to get an external enclosure or a SATA to USB adapter. or if you have a desktop, you could hook it up internally if you have another SATA cable.

once it's hooked up, windows should see it automatically and you can browse the files on it and backup the files you want too.

As for the hard drive though, sounds like it's a bad drive, but Dells diagnostics are not as good as some others out there, but they won't replace a drive unless it fails their test. I might try an online chat with them or call them again and try being assertive with them, they will replace the drive usually, just need to be tough with them.
Agree with Madcatz . . call again . . anytime I have problems with any support I just thank them, hang up and call back . l chances are that you get a more cooperative person.

I would salvage any files I cherished and run hard drive and memory diagnostics.

diagnostics on the hard drive

and, click on the link to Memtest in my signature . . let it run on one stick at a time overnite or until it starts reporting errors

See this for how to make a bootable cd

Once you have the results of those two test, post back
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Thank you for your responses,
I think I may have worded my first post wrong.

The laptop works,
when started up it displays just like if you buy one without all the extra programs installed,
no anti-virus, no microsoft programs, etc.

It does show the used and free space of the hard drive,
so I believe the hard drive to be OK if it shows up when looking at "My Computer".

All the files and programs I had on it are not showing up,
I'm sure if I remove the hard drive and try to install it in to another machine,
I will have the same results as when I have the hard drive still in the laptop.

I would salvage any files I cherished
I would like to get my files back,
just not too sure how unless I pay Dell for them to guide me over the phone,
using my "operating system" disc.

Dell says all files will be on the laptop,
just have to retrieve them,
everything would be back to normal..... for a fee.:mad:

Anyone have an idea what they mean by that?

I feel that I have paid enough to Dell,
including for their extended warrenty (which they say doesn't apply),
yet they still want more.

I am not impressed with Dell and their customer service,
I don't want to give in to them.:sigh:


Not too sure if this would be helpful for my problem......

Dell Recovery Instructions
Here are the recovery instructions from Dell.

1. Reboot, and press Ctrl + F11 at the Dell logo.
2. The Dell™ PC Restore by Symantec screen will come up.
3. Select "Restore" or use the Tab key to highlight it and press Enter.
4. if you wish to continue, click "Confirm", or use the Tab key to highlight it and press Enter.
5. When the utility is finished, click "Finish", or use the Tab key to highlight it and press Enter.

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you can take the drive out and temporarily attach to a working pc to salvage files . . it works best if you attach to the secondary channel, the one with the CD/DVD drives.

How to slave a hard drive:

You may have to take ownership of the files first:
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