I'm a software engineer, but everyone I know thinks I have the ability to fix any computer problem, so, a friend gave me their Compaq CQ62-231NR laptop, which won't boot up. He bought it used from someone else, so has no warranty, etc., but the machine is barely used - it's obviously close to brand new.
When booting, or testing the hard drive in the BIOS, it throws an error.
I've tried booting from a Windows 7 boot CD made on another machine. This gets me a little further. It shows the Microsoft Corporation/green progress bar screen for a few minutes, then goes black for a few minutes, then I see the white Windows arrow cursor, and it just sits like that forever - I let it sit for a couple days like that with no change.
Any suggestion on how to get this thing running again?