Dimension 4100 - Invalid Boot Diskette error received randomly
I am getting an error message Invalid Boot Diskette Insert BOOT diskette in A: when I start the computer which is a Dimension 4100 running on Windows 98 working great for the past 5 years till couple of months. I first got this message about 6 to 7 weeks back. I tried to log in with an valid boot diskette but still no use. I tried playing with the set up options but still no use. Everythime I got the same error message. Then suddenly about two weeks after I saw that message, I tried to start the computer and computer started without this error message running the Scandisk with a message that my computer was not shut down properly. It was working fine for couple of days unitil there was a total power failure at my place. When the power came back and when I started the computer, I got the same error message. I thought may be there was some hardware problem. So opened the system, took out the hard drive, cables and put it back again. Still I got the same error message. Day before yesterday after about 10 days, when I started it, I did not see the error message. I was working the whole day and shut it down that night. Yesterday when I tried to start, I see the same error message.
I have tried disabling the floppy disk drive from the set up. Still same error message.
I did reformat my hard disk several months before using the dell resource and recovery CDs.
Any one seen this error message? Can any one please guide or explain what I need to do? It's puzzling to me as why it shows the error message sometimes and sometimes it is not.
The error you are receiving is related to the floppy drive. Try unplugging the floppy drive cables inside and then disable the floppy drive controller in the BIOS Setup as well as clearing the Event Log in the BIOS Setup. Then see if the error reappears on boot up.
Did you also clear the Event Log in the BIOS Setup? If the error is an old one it might be popping up as a reminder until cleared.
If the problem continues then I would try replacing the motherboard battery. A failing battery can cause a variety of erroneous boot up errors. Considering the age of your system a new battey maybe needed. A new 3-Volt, CR2032, coin cell battery will cost around $3 and is a relatively cheap item to replace. They are available at any Radio Shack, computer store and most discount stores.
If by chance the NVRAM was cleared when the battery was removed then the system will automatically redetect all the installed hardware on the next reboot. Since the BIOS settings will be defaulted back to their factory settings, you will have to change any personalized settings like the boot order, Quick Boot and Quiet Boot back to the way you had them. If you made no personalized settings then default settings will be just fine. You will also have to re-enter the time and date. Since you will be replacing the battery I would clear the NVRAM anyways just to make sure there are no conflicts that are adding to your problem. To clear the NVRAM just do this.......
With the machine unplugged from the wall remove the battery from the motherboard. Then with the machine still unplugged press the On button for several seconds to dissipate any remaining electrical charge on the motherboard. Then re-install the battery, plug the machine back into the wall and see if it will boot normally without the diskette error.