SBS2003 won't boot, Active Directory Error 0xc00002e1

Error on boot after a power outage along the following lines: 

Directory Services cannot start, error status: 0xc00002e1, Please click OK to Shutdown this system and reboot into directory services restore mode

Booted into Safe Mode (AD services restore) and tried the following:

  1. Determined the NTDS location (it was the default: c:\windows\ntds\)
  2. Renamed the edb.chk file and try to boot to Normal mode   <-- no good
  3. ESENTUTL /g c:\windows\ntds\ntds.dit”   <-- no good
  4. restored the entire NTDS file from last ShadowProtect backup   <-- sorted

StorageCraft ShadowProtect saves the day again....

PITA Windows 8 ultrabooks- installing Windows 7

Until Windows 8 is ready for primetime (in the corporate realm, at least) we have been rebuilding any that clients buy with Windows 7. A common problem with these 'made for Windows 8' machines is that the BIOS doesn't operate as we have been used to - UEFI in particular is a PITA.

On a Samsung Series 9 Ultrabook the following steps need to be performed:

  1. Create a USB install drive
  2. Press F2 (repeatedly) to get to the BIOS
  3. Disable 'Fast Boot'
  4. Disable some drive security settings (can't remember right now)
  5. Set the USB-HDD to be the default boot drive

Once the Windows install starts, it falls at the first hurdle - can't find any drives. The error I continually received (regardless of the combinations of BIOS settings) was:

"A required CD/DVD device driver is missing"

The fix was a bit obscure - no idea how anyone figured it out - and super simple. When the mesage above is encountered, exit almost all the way out of the current installation until the 'install' button is all that is displayed. Then unplug the USB drive, and plug it into a different slot. Press install, and you are off to the races.

Rebuilding the oldest pc in the world

A client has handed me a dinosaur computer that 'hasn't been used in a while' - he is after a cleanup of the existing Windows XP, so it can be used as a spare machine.

Problem 1. There is only 256mb of RAM. I can't remember the last computer I saw with that little RAM - at least it is DDR, so I probably have some lying around somewhere...

Problem 2. It isn't running Windows XP. The splash screen comes up with the Windows 98 logo...

Problem 3. Even Windows 98 doesn't run on this thing... it hangs on boot. So a new install of Windows XP it is.

Problem 4. The CD drive is dodgy. This thing is starting to drive me nuts...