Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

XP problems

  1. Jun 11, 2003 #1
    I recently installed XP Pro onto my comp, and added a 2nd hard drive, and upgraded my RAM. The computer started crashing everytime I'd run virus scan, and on and off when I do other operations, usually when trying to access my 2nd hard drive. The event viewer says that ACPI BIOS is attempting to read from an illegal port address which can lead to system instability blah blah. I looked online and there were a number of different solutions and I am not sure which one to follow. I won't list them here as there are a couple of diff. options--I just wanted to know if you guys had some input on what I should do to fix this problem.

  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 11, 2003 #2
    What is your system's configuration ?
    What m/board? What CPU ?
  4. Jun 11, 2003 #3
    Heh. I'm afraid I don't know my computer too well, and have no idea what motherboard I am using. It is an Intel Pentium III processor, 727 MHz.

    I'm not sure what you mean by configuration.

    I looked in properties and it says that the manuf. of my motherboard is Standard System device.... the driver having been provided by microsoft.
  5. Jun 12, 2003 #4
    Computer is cheap, buy a new one, you can get a good AMD-athlon with as low as 400 dollar.

    Go to buy it !
  6. Jun 12, 2003 #5
    Try this:

  7. Jun 12, 2003 #6
    Try and narrow your problem down.

    First, remove the extra ram, boot and see if you get the same issues. If you do, try putting the ram back in and remove the hard drive and see if that clears it up.

    Did you install XP onto a blank drive, or did you upgrade? If you upgraded, I would HIGHLY suggest backing up your important data and formatting the drive. A clean windows install is a happy install.

    Another thing you should do even if you manage to get it fixed is to search for updated drivers and BIOS. Check your motherboard manufacturer's site (or computer mfc. site, if you are using a pre-built computer) for updates to bios. If you are using a computer you built (or a friend built - anything not brand name) you will have to figure out what devices you are using and search their respective mfc sites for drivers. If you are using brand name, just go to your computer mfc site and get them there.
  8. Jun 12, 2003 #7
  9. Jun 12, 2003 #8
    Oh yeah, before I forget...

    Considering gave you sound advice so give it a go.
    You see, you installed more than one item which can add ambiguity to the problem. By running the computer with one new component at a time you are better able to see what might be causing the problem.
    Good luck.
  10. Jun 12, 2003 #9
    Heh, buy a new computer? You're talking to a poor college student.

    I will try narrowing the problem down, though after some research online I found that a ton of other ppl who install xp pro have been getting this error message, so a big part of me thinks it's the new operating system adapting to an older computer. Their suggestions were sort of confusing though.

    The installation was done over an old OS, I believe I formatted the disk before installing the new one though, so it would qualify as a clean install.


    sigh. (A futile effort at optimism and cheerfulness.)
  11. Jun 12, 2003 #10
    install linux and see how.
  12. Jun 12, 2003 #11
    Huh? See how to do what?

    (I must be going crazy, because I thought I had already posted a reply, but upon checking the thread, there was not one here.)

    And another questions is that I have been recieving warnings in my Event Viewer, telling me that my hard drive has predicted its own failure, and I should replace it ASAP. (How ingenious,I had no idea that they could predict their own deaths...) My question is that, as long as I have everything backed up (which I do,) can I just keep running this hard drive till it actually fails?
  13. Jun 13, 2003 #12
    Yes, as long as your data is saved elsewhere you can run it into the ground.

    You have installed XP Pro SP1, right? That should be your first step, if you think it is an XP problems. The run windows update and download the huge backlog of updates...

    For those who dislike MS, please refrain from posting about the huge backlog of updates for Windows :wink:
  14. Jun 13, 2003 #13
    I have 2 suggestions for you.
    First run a complete scandisk (including surface scan) on your harddrive that is predicting failure. You probably have a lot of damaged sectors, scandisk should be able to find them and mark them so that they aren't used. This should help a little bit.

    Second, and more importantly, connect your new harddrive so that it is the master. To do this just remove the jumper on your first harddrive and put it on the slave position, then on the new one remove the jumper and put it on the master position. They both must be on the same IDE interface (same cable). Now your new harddrive will be your C: drive. Reformat and reinstall windows on this harddrive. (I can elaborate if necessary.)

    You can keep using the soon-to-fail harddrive until it actually fails, but I'd just use it for nonimportant data, such as videogames and applications that you don't use too often, so that when it fails you don't lose anything vital. Or you could just remove it altogether and have one less thing that could cause you problems. I definitely would not use it to hold your operating system.
  15. Jun 13, 2003 #14
    Well actually, all vital information is kept on my 2nd hard drive anyway...I suppose I could just make a new partition and install the OS there after making it the master...

    I did run scandisk on the apparently damaged drive and it didn't tell me anything about damaged sectors. This is a long shot, but could it be predicting imminent failure due to the fact that I had to rig up a creative way of keepign it in the disk bay using strings, because the bay that my comp. came with didn't have a spot to hold a second hard drive, and, hypothetically, if the strings broke or something (I haven't gone inside the comp to check this yet), then it would be hanging in a pretty diagonal fashion...?

    Someone else also told me to run a stress test on the disk in addition to doign scandisk, but I can't find that option in the XP menus.
  16. Jun 13, 2003 #15
    Depending on the drive mfc, they normally have a diagnostic program you can run. Western Digital drives, for instance, include a diagnostic disk.

    Check the mfc website and see if they have one - best way to find out if there are truly errors.
  17. Jun 14, 2003 #16
    I believe the failure prediction is from the S.M.A.R.T. (Self-Monitoring And Reporting Technology) feature on your system board/harddrive.
    See this link for more info on the S.M.A.R.T. feature and what it monitors and can predict:

    The last paragraph states:
    Sounds like good advice to me.

    (edit:)P.S. The site link above has an excellent comprehensive BIOS guide. It starts here: http://www.pcguide.com/ref/mbsys/bios/
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2003
  18. Jun 14, 2003 #17
    thanks for your help guys. I'm actually leaving the country for the summer and my computer is not coming with me...is this something that I should take care of before I leave, or can it just sit in my room, turned off, until I return?
  19. Jun 16, 2003 #18
    It will be fine just sitting around, as long as it remains off.
  20. Jun 18, 2003 #19
    I think XP is great, ME is the troublemaker. I had ME for 2 years and my computer would freeze all the time and eventually the whole system crashed, I lost everything. It fried my sound system right off the computer. I just got a brand new computer with XP on it and I have had no problems.
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?