I get some error message on a blue screen

posted in: Blue Screen Error | 17

I have had my Acer TravelMate 4501LCi laptop for nearly 2 years. I switched it off as normal yesterday but when I switched it on today for some reason it wouldn’t boot up. It starts and as it tries to load Windows I get some error message on a blue screen which only stays on for about a second so I can’t read it. Then it reboots itself and I get a message saying there has been an unexpected error etc and asks me whether I want to try booting again normally, or in safe mode etc. I’ve tried in safe mode and all the other options but it just does the same thing. When the Windows XP logo appears and it seems to be loading, it then takes me to this blue screen with an error message and then straight away reboots itself. I’ve had no problems like this before, and it seemed to be working fine when I switched it off yesterday. Any ideas and suggestions would be much appreciated.

A blue screen error might occur because of corrupted software or a faulty hardware and there is no way to say what’s causing the problem without some testing. Very often you might get a blue screen error (BSOD) on startup because of a bad memory module or a bad hard drive and you should test these parts first. If you have two memory modules installed and you can easily access them, then try removing them one by one and start the laptop after each removed module. If you have only one memory module, then you’ll have to test it. Download Memtest 86+ for memory testing and Hitachi Drive Fitness test for hard drive testing. Both utilities are free and they are pretty accurate. When you test the hard drive, run the utility in advanced mode (not quick). If the memory module or the hard drive failed the test, then most likely you found the problem and you’ll have to replace it to fix the laptop.
If the memory module and the hard drive pass the test, then I would try to reload the operating system back to factory defaults. I’m not sure about Acer laptops, but usually you can do that if you use a recovery DVD or set of CDs. To start the recovery process you have to place a recovery media inside the CD/DVD drive and make the laptop boot from the drive. After that you follow the wizard to finish up recovery.
Before you reload the laptop back to factory default, you have to back up any important data from the hard drive because it would be erased and reformatted. To access the data, you can remove the hard drive and connect it to any working desktop PC using a USB hard drive enclosure (slower data transfer) or laptop IDE hard drive adapter (more advanced but faster data transer).

17 Responses

  1. my comp has always had reoccuring problems and last night it started again. What happens now is windows XP opens on the screen but the blue screen ( the one where you type in ur username to access the comp) does not open. It shows the windows XP logo and just restarts over and over. Is there any way I can fix this /OR access the memory as I had many things on there and save it so it is not lost.

  2. Laptop Freak

    Hlinderfelt,
    You’ll have to download the Memtest86+ on another working computer and burn it on a CD (of make a bootable floppy disk). After that you boot the laptop from this CD (of floppy) and run the test.
    Here’s one more suggestion for you. Remove the hard drive and start the laptop without it, do you still get a BSOD error? Start removing devices (battery, DVD drive, wireless card, etc…) one by one and test the laptop after each removed device. Find out which one is causing the problem.

  3. Hlinderfelt

    We are getting the blue screen of death for a second and then the computer reboots, and does the same thing over and over. How do I down load Memtest if the computer is just rebooting to the blue screen flash and so on. We have tested the modules and it made no difference.

  4. thanks for the reply but i have now resolved the problem it was so simple i have seen so many people with this acer problem. my problem was the screen did not work the cooling fan came on as i powered up and went off as normal
    the dvd drive went through the motions and the hard drive just span no activity at all my laptop is an acer travelmate 290 and it does involve a complete stripdown but it was as simple as the bios had jammed just as your
    pc might freeze the remedy was as simple as de-soldering the bios battery waiting five minutes and re-connecting it plug the various components in and test before rebuilding.

    Hope this will help people
    Regards paul

  5. Laptop Freak

    Paul,
    Try this. Remove the battery, unplug the AC adapter, press and hold down the power button for 30 seconds. Plug the AC adapter and test the laptop.
    Try reseating the memory module. It could be a memory related issue.

  6. hi i have an acer travelmate 290 i was using it left it for a while and i thought it went into power save mode as it shut down when i pressed keys to wake it again there was nothing now when i try to boot it all i get is the cooling fan powers up breifly as usual and stops the dvd drive looks for a disk and the hard drive spins but no data is read from the disc and the lcd screen stays blank no text nothing also the usb ports still supply power any comments would be appreciated

    regards paul

  7. AMI PORAT

    Dear Laptop Freak,
    Thank you for your vision! I ran memtest86 and voila – the user-added memory module showed 240 errors! I removed it, ran a new memtest with the on-board, system memory only and everything returned to normal. Thanks a million! Please post the awfully misleading previous symptoms -looked like a corrupted HDD- so others can avoid my headaches. Thanks again,
    Dr. Ami Porat
    Music Director
    Mozart Classical Orchestra

  8. Laptop Freak

    Ami Porat,
    Have you tried testing the laptop memory? It could be just a failing memory module. Download and run Memtest 86+ overnight and see if it comes up with errors. Do not make any conclusions after the first pass, sometimes it might pass 4-5 times and fail on the 6th time. By the way, if you have two memory modules installed, try removing them one by one and test the laptop after each RAM module installed. If you have only one module, try moving it into another slot (to make sure it’s not a bad memory slot on the motherboard).

  9. Ami Porat

    The story of my Satellite 1905-301 adds a few more stanzas to the drama. Blue screen error, followed by “ntfs.sys corrupted or missing.” Booted from the WinXP Pro CD, copied the files over, the system worked for a few hours (just long enough to restore all my previous settings and install my 20 programs.) Of course, the BSOD error returned in force, followed by a slew of errors: “ntfs.sys corrupted,” “pci.sys corrupted,” “fastfat.sys corrupted.” I suspected a failing Hard Drive so I replaced it with a spanking new Hitachi 7,200rpm 60G Travel Star. I restored the system from the original Toshiba DVD’s to factory status, I upgraded to XP Pro, I did a little victory dance when everything worked + much better speed (the faster drive,) only to have the same rain on my parade – the BSOD and the previous *.sys errors all returned. Obviously it was NOT the HDD. Have you seen this behavior before? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  10. Computer Discounts Guide

    The best way to figure out what is causing a blue screen is to look for the stop error on the blue screen, which looks something like this: stop 0×00000050

    This is basically the computer telling you what caused the error, in computer language. These are usually pretty general, but doing a google search, or searching microsofts support site for the stop message (support.microsoft.com) will generally turn up something.

    It will usually refer to something very general, like memory module, or cpu error, but it will at least point you in the right direction and help you narrow the error down quite a bit.

    Most blue screens that i’ve come in contact with have to do with software or drivers I recently installed, but it could as easily be failing hardware or a piece of software being corrupt, or something like that. Hopefully this will at least put you in the right direction.

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