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I have a dual boot system with WinXP (home) and SuSE Linux 9.0. The Linux side is working fine, but I started having problems with WinXP running very slow (CPU 100% utilized all the time - with no programs running!). I had an "expert" work on the computer, and now I can't even boot XP! She apparently downloaded a driver of some sort which killed it. The boot screen appears, and the little animation at the bottom of the screen moves in short bursts, but Windows never loads. I have a feeling that I need to re-install Windows XP.
I have tried to re-install XP. In the process, I have to load a driver for my serial ATA hard drive. The process continues until windows says it must re-boot. The installation is supposed to continue where it left off - but the dual boot choice at startup seems to de-rail the process. It tries to load Windows from the hard drive and it hangs again. The installation does not continue from where it left off.
Can anyone offer a suggestion as to how to re-install Windows with Linux still present? I do not want to have to format the hard drive, as I am afraid that I'll lose my Linux installation (it took a fair amount of effort to get everything working). If I tell Windows to do a completely new installation, it informs me that there is already an OS installed and that the re-install may kill the existing installed OS. Is Windows referring to the original XP installation, or to the Linux installation? Again, my concern is not to have to also re-install Linux.
What is your bootloader ? LILO? Loadlin ? Grub ? While Windows re-installation will rewrite your boot sector, you'll have to reinstall LILO ( if you are using it) It will be a good idea to have Linux boot disk in order to restore the Linux boot-loader. The dual boot system is probably not the reason for de-railing the Windows installation process.
Here are a few things that you can try (without re-installing any OS).
-boot in safe mode (press F8 when prompted)
ask your 'expert' friend which driver she upgraded then re-install the M$ driver.
-enable the bootlog facility (again f8 after boot and choose the bootlog option)
re-boot wait for XP to crash then reboot in safe mode and check out c:\windows\ntbtlog .txt
the last line is the last thing windows tried to load (probably the cause of the crash)