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I have acer aspire m3100. It has dual boot ubuntu 11.04 and windows vista 35-bit home edition. Either it was the psu or the motherboard died out on me and I recently made upgrades to my pc--

  • Asus M4N68T-M V2 MB Socket AM3 GF7025 Nvidia nForce 630a HT 2000
  • AMD Athlon II X2 250 3Ghz 2MB AM3 (65W)
  • Kingston 4GB 1333MHz DDR3
  • Thermaltake Litepower W0355 600W

Soon as I powered up the pc, it read my old hard drive and booted into ubuntu(by default). Seeing nothing wrong with the ubuntu system, I decided to boot into windows vista.

From GRUB, I choose windows vista as the OS to load. The farthest I got with the process was the startup repair where it was asking me to do start-up repair (or something like that), or load windows normally.

I choose startup repair, allowing it to finish, then the pc shuts down. On restart, I choose windows vista and I get a flicker of blue screen then the pc shuts down. Repeating the process, I found the message on the blue screen was IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL.

I googled this and from what I've read, it probably had something to do with the hardware upgrade (among other things). I also learned that acer has a backup copy of windows vista on drive d. Since I can't boot into windows, how can I reinstall vista using the copy from drive d(not caring if I have to reinstall ubuntu in the process) ?

On power up, I have tried pressing F8, alt+F10, F10, F11--nothing. I read somewhere that I should enable D2D in the BIOS, but couldn't figure out how to do that.

To sum up--how do I reinstall windows vista if I can't boot into vista?

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I am assuming that the IRQL error had something to do with the fact that the vista version was 32-bit, yet my RAM had more than 3Gb. I want to reinstall vista as 64-bit version thinking that might solve the problem. I need vista for work, and linux for everything else. Thanks! – Jim Syyap Jul 20 '11 at 8:24
That error msg could mean a lot of things. And no, you could have 96GB of RAM installed and you could boot up DOS on that machine. The amount of RAM is irrelevant to what OS you can install. – surfasb Jul 20 '11 at 8:29

The IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error will most likely be due to the new motherboard, the new board will require different drivers to those actually installed on your system.

Your best bet to re-install will be to boot from your Windows Vista CD, which will either have been shipped with your PC or you will have been prompted to create system disks when you first started the machine.

You can try to carry out a repair from your Vista CD, however this may not help you. At an early point in the install process you should see an option to either install a clean copy of Windows or repair the copy on your machine. Initially select the repair option, as if this works you shouldn't need to re-install your other software. If the repair option is not presented to you, or doesn't allow your computer to boot then you will need to do a clean install.

You will need to re-activate windows, and likely any other MS Software (such as Office) which you have installed.

Be aware that both the repair and clean install options on the Windows install media will overwrite GRUB, so you will also need your Ubuntu install media handy so that you can boot into the LiveCD and reinstall GRUB.

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You know what, the new motherboard needs to get updated anyway. I'll try that path and see what happens. Acer installed the vista back up copy on the pc's drive d. If the bios update doesn't fix the problem, I'll scout internet auctions for a vista dvd. – Jim Syyap Jul 20 '11 at 23:11
I have just updated motherboard drivers. Still can't boot into windows vista. – Jim Syyap Jul 20 '11 at 23:40

Try this first to correct GRUB problem:


Make sure you have OEM Repair DVD/CDs. If not, order the DVD/CD (@20 USD) to match your laptop from manufacturer, ACER. Anything else will be time consuming, frustrating and learning event.

On a funny side: Because you have a 35-bit operating system, not a 32-bit or a 64-bit.

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