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Posted

When I got to work yesterday my partner left me a project - one of our systems was unable to boot. He'd already swapped it out, and wanted me to look into reviving the computer (I'm the more technically skilled of the two of us). Booting stalls with the error "hal.dll is missing or corrupt". I figured a repair install would be the way to go - quick fix, right? I put in an XP install disc, and it stops after displaying "Setup is inspecting your hardware". Out of curiosity, I tried to start with a Vista disc I had on hand. It booted fine, and got to the point of asking if I wanted to install. I didn't since the license is in use elsewhere and the computer wouldn't handle Vista. Tested the memory with Dell's provided diagnostics - no problems detected. My attempts at booting with a flash drive weren't successful either.

Outside of locating a PC with a floppy drive and making a bootable disc to put the file back on, I'm not sure what else to try.

Suggestions?

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Posted

[quote name='Hickoryvet' date='19 April 2010 - 14:37' timestamp='1271709474' post='592513810']
When I got to work yesterday my partner left me a project - one of our systems was unable to boot. He'd already swapped it out, and wanted me to look into reviving the computer (I'm the more technically skilled of the two of us). Booting stalls with the error "hal.dll is missing or corrupt". I figured a repair install would be the way to go - quick fix, right? I put in an XP install disc, and it stops after displaying "Setup is inspecting your hardware". Out of curiosity, I tried to start with a Vista disc I had on hand. It booted fine, and got to the point of asking if I wanted to install. I didn't since the license is in use elsewhere and the computer wouldn't handle Vista. Tested the memory with Dell's provided diagnostics - no problems detected. My attempts at booting with a flash drive weren't successful either.

Outside of locating a PC with a floppy drive and making a bootable disc to put the file back on, I'm not sure what else to try.

Suggestions?
[/quote]

Can you boot a linux live CD? maybe you can access the hard drive, and put the hal.dll file in the proper place (C:\windows\system32\hal.dll). You should be able to find a copy of it somewhere on the internet. If that doesn't work, take a look at this article: [url="http://pcsupport.about.com/od/findbyerrormessage/a/missinghaldll.htm"]http://pcsupport.about.com/od/findbyerrormessage/a/missinghaldll.htm[/url]

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Posted

Curious. If the computer had already been swapped, why not scrub the drive and fresh install for the next user?

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Posted

[quote name='Volatile' date='23 April 2010 - 18:00' timestamp='1272045626' post='592532136']
Curious. If the computer had already been swapped, why not scrub the drive and fresh install for the next user?
[/quote]


Hai, there see if this could help.

There are few different ways that the "missing or corrupt hal.dll" error may present itself, with the first listing being the most common:

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Posted

Have you tried doing a [url="http://www.memtest.org"]www.memtest.org[/url]?
It may not be the cause though as you booted from the Vista CD okay.
Could likely be a dead/dying hard drive though, if the memtest comes up clean, try putting the drive in another computer and see if you can do a chkdsk on it (and/or recover any data needed).

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Posted

Seeing its a Dell Optiplex 320, the main hard drive is SATA correct? Look in the BIOS and see what mote it is in [RAID, ACHI,ATA]. If it is in RAID or ACHI change it to ATA (or autodetect) save settings and see if there is any change. Could be why Vista setup reaches further than XP setup does.

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Posted

if you have a copy of spinrite lying around run that first.

Any computer that comes into my office that won't boot for what ever reason gets a spinrite scan before i'll even touch it. I want to make sure the hard drive is in good shape before wasting my time trouble shooting an issue that could be hard drive related.

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