People Still Get Blue Screens, Unmountable Boot Volumes

Crashed train station display
Creative Commons License photo credit: sethschoen

One of my most popular blog posts of 2008, judging by comments and hits on the post overall, was this one – Unmountable Boot Volume (Dell, Fix) – where I outlined in October 2007 some steps that can be used to get around that boot volume blue screen error on Windows XP.

Since I published the post, I haven’t had a blue screen error. Primarily because I moved over to a Mac and started using OSX, but that’s another thing altogether.

I’m amazed at how many people still get the issue – but moreso by some of the comments. Specifically people being told by customer support and technical support agents that the hard drive must be fried, people will lose all their data and they really have no hope.

I’ve been there. I’ve worked in a call centre. I’ve read the instructions from the screen as you step through the case. But I’ve also used my initiative and given people a few “off the books” instructions that would see them right, because you’ve experienced something similar yourself.

To those of who who managed to repair your drive from the steps included in the blog post and went on to become a regular reader and commenter in other areas, I’m glad I was of some assistance to you. To those people who seek out advice from blog posts and the web and get their own second opinion online, more power to you.

Sure enough, in the long run your hard drive might kick the bucket, but at least you’ve taken the initiative to seek out a solution online. Hopefully, when you arrive on it, it works for you too.

If you’re having an unmountable boot volume issue, click here for some steps to help you through it.

Keeping The XP Machine Rolling

Windows VistaIt looks like HP and Dell are going to continue shipping XP machines well past the June 30 expiry date, both manufacturers making use of “downgrade rights” offered as part of the Windows Vista license agreement.

While new XP orders will phase out from mid-June this year, new customers will be able to pick up Vista machines, pre-downgraded to XP on request, a practice I’ve seen many people make use of since Vista was unleashed on the public.

Barring the look and feel of the Vista interface, I’ve still not spoken with someone thoroughly happy with XP’s successor as a choice of operating system.

However, come June this will apply only to those ordering machines in the Windows Vista Business or Ultimate Edition specs as standard home models can’t be downgraded. The upside is, if you do decide to upgrade to Vista at any point after your purchase, the upgrade is already catered and paid for.

I’ll be weening myself off XP before the end of the year as it is. I’ve no intention at all of upgrading to Vista and with the purchase of the N95 now out of the way, the next target on the list is a new iMac for the house. The Mac Pro is just a little too far out of budget for the moment…