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Invalid System Disk Message on Laptop

Lilli writes in with a troubleshooting question

Question:
I am having a problem with my laptop and have been searching the internet looking for help but with no success. Is there any chance you would be able to help me out please? I have a Hewlett Packard OMNIBOOK 5700CT which is extremely old I know, but has been working fine until yesterday. Now when you turn it on, A screen appears which reads: 150 MHz Pentium CPU External Cache: 512k Enabled Invalid System Disk Replace the disk, and then press any key I have tried everything, but nothing seems to work. If you could help me, I would be very grateful. Thank you for your time Lilli.

Answer: The message you are getting means that your hard drive is no longer bootable. Its hard to say what the reason is because there is no one definite cause. Your hard drive itself may have physically gone bad or you may have some corrupted system files. If you can figure out how to get into the BIOS then you may want to make sure that the drive is still recognized by the computer.
 
If you aren't getting any specific error messages as to what files are corrupt or missing if any then you may be stuck doing a reinstall of Windows. If you have your recovery CD that came with the laptop then you can use that to reinstall your system. Keep in mind that the recovery CDs that come with laptops usually wipe out the computer and put it back to the state it was in when you bought it meaning any programs or files you added since then will be gone.
 
If you have a Windows 95 CD and boot floppy then you can boot to the floppy disk and reinstall Windows. With Windows 95 and 98 you can reinstall Windows without harming your programs or files. It's always a good idea to do a backup if you can just in case though.
 
If you don't have a Windows 95 boot floppy disk here is a link to download one.
http://www.bootdisk.com/bootdisk.htm
 
Here are some instructions for reinstalling Windows 95 if you have the CD. If you see anything about using Fdisk or formatting you don't want to do that part or you may end up erasing your drive.
www.pcguide.com/proc/sw/w95inst-c.html 

If none of these methods work for you then you can take the laptop to a shop and have them recover your data and replace the hard drive.



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