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Readers Questions. 

IF01798 

Q. My PC boots up to a Black Screen with a message that my Hard Drive does not exist.

 

A.  99% of the time this is caused by a dying or dead CMOS battery. CMOS is where all the basic BIOS setting are stored and when you power off the system the battery provides enough power to keep that data alive. Lose the data and the system has no idea what to do when it starts.

 

Here is a possible fix.

 
1.
Before this happens access your CMOS settings by holding down either the Del or F2 key when you boot up. There will be a line on the bottom of the screen that says Press Del or F2 to access setup.
 

2. Once in CMOS go to each page and write down the settings or use a digital camera to take a pic of each page.
 

3. Buy a new battery. It is wise to replace this battery every two years whatever. Although there are utilities around that can backup CMOS settings having them written down of photos of each page is far more secure, as long as you do not put the information in a "Safe Place" To help you along with these three basic steps to get a system back to working order you can be assisted with some extra useful tools.

 

For analysing deep problems FileMon, RegMon and Process Explorer are three excellent free tools available at http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/default.mspx

Let me know if you need anything else.

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