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Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

I have an Alienware M17+ from the start of 2010, which has run quite well until thrursday, where I encountered a bad problem.

When I wanted to resume it from standby the fan was running wildly, while nothing was showing on the screen. I restarted by removing the power and battery (since it wasn't responding to the powerbutton). But on restart I got the "OS missing" message. Since I once had a problem where I accidently had switched to use the wrong harddesk to boot from (I have two 500GB harddisks configured as one drive), I went into BIOS and changed the configuration of the harddisks (both the SATA configuation and which drive was bootable) a lot of times. But I still got the operating system message and a PXE E-61 error (check cable..) or just a prompt.

I might have aggrevated the problem by the changes (I don't know if the changes can cause problems) but I still get Operating system errors and can't start.

tried running the diagnostics disk, but got the error: "System-error, this system is not recognized as a supported Dell PC" eventhough the disk came with the machine, so I don't know what to do now. Is it a simple configuartion problem or are one of the harddisks dead, and how do I get access to the content on my harddisks then? Can I boot from a CD with the CD's included? Please help!

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8 Replies

Re: Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

Hello Christian Forslund,

I would request you to run the Pre-Boot System Assessment (PSA / ePSA) Diagnostics to check the functionality of the hardware components installed in the system. Run the test and check if gives any error code. Note down the error code and update me with the same, would let you know the next course of action. 

Awaiting your response!

Thanks & Regards
Allan D
#iworkfordell
To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region USIndia. For Dell support videos click Here.

If a post answers your question, please click "Yes".

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Re: Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

I have now run the PSA and the first part of the test found no errors. The second part also completed pre-boot system assessment with no errors found, but it couldn't find any diagnostic utility partition (I haven't been able to use the diagnostic CD either, because it says my system is not a dell computer, which seems weird).

So no errors found, but the diagnostic utility not found either.

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AndrewSi
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Re: Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

Try changing the system BIOS setting to default, if that doesn't work I'd say you have a bad HDD, you may be lucky and be able to retreive the hard drive info with a recovery tool or maybe with a windows recovery disk, but it would be more luck than anything else, if these solutions dont work you may have to take the HDD into a specialized data recovery service if the stuff on your HDD is important, so start saving your money, as data recovery can be expensive.

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I would say that with the info you provided about the hard drive not being recognized as a dell product that its faulty, if you have another HDD then the easiest way to tell would be to swap them over and try the re-installation DVD

Re: Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

Hello Christian Forslund,

Please try resetting the BIOS to defaults as suggested by Andrew Si and let us know how it goes.

Thanks & Regards
Allan D
#iworkfordell
To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region USIndia. For Dell support videos click Here.

If a post answers your question, please click "Yes".

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Re: Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

Itried resetting the bios, but with the same error, but I believe that I already had resat them a few days ago.

I found a manual in the pinned thread in this forum about the issue, where it mentioned  'how to restore your computer' using f8 to reach safe mode, but I never reach the menu but only a prompt.

But on a f-drive I have seen some diskutilities, where it is mentioned that it should only be used after talking to a Dell person.

On another forum, someone suggested that I remove the harddisk and put it into an empty slot in another computer to check it. Would that be a good idea, and would it be possible on a really old laptop (this one is 10 years old). But I will only try that if everything else fail.

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RE: Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

Hello Christian Forslund,

Apologies for the delay in response. Due to the DCF Downtime I was unable to reply. You may try installing a known good hard drive on this computer and check if that works. In case it does, consider replacing the faulty hard drive. 

Please write back with your findings. 

Thanks & Regards
Allan D
#iworkfordell
To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region USIndia. For Dell support videos click Here.

If a post answers your question, please click "Yes".

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RE: Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

Hi Allan.

Since my last post my problem has been solved. The IT-technician at my job looked at my computer and managed to solve my problem. Appearently there was no problem with my harddisk, but the machine was unable to find Windows. Using another Windows CD he found safe Mode and after that the system restarted as it should.He couldn't say exactly what the problem was, so I can't say more about the problem or the solution.


So my problem is solved now, and you may close this thread.

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RE: Operating system missing on Alienware M17+

Hello Christian Forslund,

Thank you for the update.

I am glad the issue is fixed. Please write back to the forum if you need any further assistance. 

Thanks & Regards
Allan D
#iworkfordell
To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region USIndia. For Dell support videos click Here.

If a post answers your question, please click "Yes".

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