mpaneth
2 Bronze

Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

Something is going on in my Inspirion 6400 and I would like to start from scratch again, so I tried to do a PC restore using the <Ctrl><F11> keys at bootup, as per the manual.
 
<Ctrl><F11> doesn't seem to work and the system just boots into XP.
 
Is there any help as to what I am doing wrong?
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8 Replies
jmwills
7 Gold

Re: Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

Does your machine ahve the restore image on it?  Has it been altered?
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tommyo1954
5 Rhenium

Re: Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

Also make certain you're tapping F-11 at the Dell splashscreen.
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mpaneth
2 Bronze

Re: Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

Using Logical Disk Manager there are 3 partitions on the disk, an EISA, C: and a 3GB FAT32 partition, so I assume the FAT32 partition is the restore partition.
 
Yes I press Ctrl-F11 when the Dell screen shows on startup.
 
If I press F2 instead I get into the BIOS so the keyboard is working at that time.
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dg1261
3 Zinc

Re: Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

Sounds like you've got part (1) below, but maybe you don't have part (2).



Troubleshooting steps:

(1) Are you sure you have a DSR (PC Restore) partition? When you boot into XP, take a look in Disk Management (Start>Run>"diskmgmt.msc") and look at the schematic "map" of Disk 0. If you see an "unknown" partition of about 3-5 GB at the end of the disk with no drive letter, that suggests your DSR partition is still there.

(2) Do you have a Dell MBR? This is easily overwritten, so even if your system shipped with the Dell MBR, it might not necessarily still have it. The telltale sign of the Dell MBR is a black screen with a single blue line at the top, with "www.dell.com" in white-on-blue letters. This screen should appear for 2 seconds between the POST phase (Power-On Self Test, with the giant blue Dell logo) and the XP splash screen (when XP starts to boot).

(3) If the answer is yes to both, then make sure you're pressing Ctrl+F11 at the right time. When the POST phase starts, you'll see the blue Dell logo, there will be a brief delay, then the "F2" and "F12" prompts will appear in the corner of the screen. After POST completes, you'll see the 2-second pause with the blue-line, followed by the XP splash screen.

You must press Ctrl+F11 after the F2/F12 prompts appear, and before the end of the 2-second blue-line pause. Hold down the Ctrl key, press down the F11 key, then release both keys together. (Note: contrary to urban legend, it's okay to press the keys more than once.)



Dan Goodell
Inside the Dell PC Restore Partition
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mpaneth
2 Bronze

Re: Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

The partition is there.
 
It sounds like I may have lost the MBR as when I boot I get a Dell splash screen with the F2 and F12 options, but I don't get the screen with the single line with www.dell.com on top.
 
How do I ge tthe MBR back?
 
I have a couple of other Dell laptops 510, 610.  Can I copy the MBR from them?
 
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dg1261
3 Zinc

Re: Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

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mpaneth
2 Bronze

Re: Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

It worked perfectly.
 
Thank you for your fantastic help.
 
Mike
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dg1261
3 Zinc

Re: Ctrl-F11 (PC restore) doesn't work

Glad to have helped.
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