Reinstalling Vista without Connecting to the Internet

skeezix

Member
I have a Vista system that I used for several years without problems. Then 2 years ago I bought a Win10 system 2 years ago and I retired my Vista system and very rarely use it, maybe once every 2 or 3 weeks. After a week or so of non-use, it won't start and I have to go through a "repair" cycle. After I get the Vista system started, sometimes the screen goes black (but the LEDs are still on) and the keyboard and mouse are dead. This usually happens within 1/2 hour after starting. I disconnected the internet cable several weeks ago but I still have problems. I have run all of the system checks and everything checks okay.

Because I only use the system off-line, I am considering reinstalling the OS, this time without ever connecting the computer to the internet. The hard drive still has Drive X with its Windows rebuild system, and I also have the original CDs to start it with. Can I do this, and if so, what di I need to watch out for?
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows Vista SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP a6400f
    Memory
    3GB
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP 19-Inch
    Screen Resolution
    1080
    Hard Drives
    500GB
    Internet Speed
    Not connected

wither 3

Vista Guru
Gold Member
Hi skeezix- Someone else may have a better idea but it sounds like your PSU is dying.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Vista Home Premium 64 bit SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    Cyberpower
    CPU
    Intel Quad CPU Q6700 2.67 GHZ
    Motherboard
    NVIDIA 780i
    Memory
    4 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    MSI GTX 560 TI Twin Frozr
    Sound Card
    Sound Blaster SB Audigy
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Viewsonic VG2436
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080p
    Hard Drives
    Samsung HD 105SI
    WDC WD20
    Case
    Apevia XJupiter
    Cooling
    air
    Mouse
    Logitech MX 600
    Keyboard
    Logitech MX 3200
    Internet Speed
    30 Mbps
Hi skeezix,

I don't think you will face any issues when re-installing Windows Vista without an active network connection. Furthermore, if you have the original Recovery Media for your computer and/or Recovery Partitions intact, you will have even less to worry about as the drivers needed shall be installed right away.

If you are not able to activate the copy of your Vista without an Internet connection, you will be prompted to call Microsoft directly and provide their Automatic Activation System with the Installation ID of the product to finish this process.

If you face any issues in regards to drivers, you will always be able to download them from another PC and transfer over the Vista machine via USB flash drive.

Furthermore, I would also recommend checking your hardware, as the issues reported sounds like a hardware-related problem. Check the health of your hard drive via software like Hard Disk Sentinel for any bad sectors, run a memory diagnostic tool, and check your power supply as well.

Hope this helps.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Enterprise
    Manufacturer/Model
    MSI
    CPU
    Intel Core i7-6700K
    Motherboard
    MSI Z270 SLI+
    Memory
    32GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    AMD R9 390X 8G
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung U28E590D
    Screen Resolution
    UHD
    Hard Drives
    240GB Samsung SSD nVME + 120 GB WDC nVME + 3 TB Seagate
    PSU
    CoolerMaster RS600
    Case
    DeepCool Matrexx 55
    Cooling
    DeepCool RGBs
    Mouse
    MS WM1000
    Keyboard
    MS WK850
    Internet Speed
    200Mbps
  • Operating System
    Windows Server 2019 DataCenter
    Manufacturer/Model
    AsRock
    CPU
    Intel Core i3-2100
    Memory
    24GB DDR3
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung 2343nw
    Screen Resolution
    FHD+
    Hard Drives
    Too many :(
    Internet Speed
    200Mbps

townsbg

~~тσωηsвg~~
Vista Guru
Gold Member
I recently had to activate a 2008 r2 virtual machine and I was not given the option to activate by phone. However I found a command to force that option. You might try first backing up your activation tokens. If nothing else the command to follow is on this guide. How to Activate Windows Vista by Phone Activation « My Digital Life

I have not tested the command on vista but the application in the command is there. I suspect that it'll work for Vista as well.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows 7 Pro x64
    Manufacturer/Model
    Mid 2010 iMac
    CPU
    Quad core 3.2 Ghz Intel I3
    Memory
    8 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    ATI Radeon HD 5670 512 mb ram
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080 and 1440x900
    Hard Drives
    1 TB
    Other Info
    N/A

wither 3

Vista Guru
Gold Member
Thing about it is that he's able to boot into Vista but, afterwards, he sees the problems. I suspect he will see the same problems after reinstalling but I'm no expert (you already know that).
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Vista Home Premium 64 bit SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    Cyberpower
    CPU
    Intel Quad CPU Q6700 2.67 GHZ
    Motherboard
    NVIDIA 780i
    Memory
    4 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    MSI GTX 560 TI Twin Frozr
    Sound Card
    Sound Blaster SB Audigy
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Viewsonic VG2436
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080p
    Hard Drives
    Samsung HD 105SI
    WDC WD20
    Case
    Apevia XJupiter
    Cooling
    air
    Mouse
    Logitech MX 600
    Keyboard
    Logitech MX 3200
    Internet Speed
    30 Mbps

townsbg

~~тσωηsвg~~
Vista Guru
Gold Member
Yeah. I suspect that the PSU is out. Regardless that sounds like a hardware issue and not OS.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows 7 Pro x64
    Manufacturer/Model
    Mid 2010 iMac
    CPU
    Quad core 3.2 Ghz Intel I3
    Memory
    8 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    ATI Radeon HD 5670 512 mb ram
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080 and 1440x900
    Hard Drives
    1 TB
    Other Info
    N/A

skeezix

Member
What's a "PSU"? Power supply unit?

The first problem I had was that after a couple months of not turning the computer on, I would get what looked like a memory problem. Just a lot of garbage flickering across the screen. Don't recall what I did, but I think it was after I reseated the memory cards I was able to get to the HP boot screen. After finally doing a Factory Restore, Windows came up. Since then it's been various problems. For instance:
  1. My copy of CorelDraw version 12 would just quit on me without any indications.
  2. Or (more recently) the monitor screen would just wink out (go black).
  3. Or most recently, the keyboard and mouse would stop working and I would have to restart.
  4. Or (just now) the hard disk would shut down and the monitor would display the Windows Error Recovery screen.
If "PSU" means "power supply", I could check that out and replace it.
 
Last edited:

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows Vista SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP a6400f
    Memory
    3GB
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP 19-Inch
    Screen Resolution
    1080
    Hard Drives
    500GB
    Internet Speed
    Not connected

wither 3

Vista Guru
Gold Member
You're correct. Sorry I didn't spell it out.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Vista Home Premium 64 bit SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    Cyberpower
    CPU
    Intel Quad CPU Q6700 2.67 GHZ
    Motherboard
    NVIDIA 780i
    Memory
    4 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    MSI GTX 560 TI Twin Frozr
    Sound Card
    Sound Blaster SB Audigy
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Viewsonic VG2436
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080p
    Hard Drives
    Samsung HD 105SI
    WDC WD20
    Case
    Apevia XJupiter
    Cooling
    air
    Mouse
    Logitech MX 600
    Keyboard
    Logitech MX 3200
    Internet Speed
    30 Mbps

skeezix

Member
I appreciated the help I have received on this forum and want to thank everybody who responded.

After many years in technical support of computer peripherals and PCs, my gut feeling is there is nothing wrong with the power supply. I can't say for sure that the supply does not have some sort of intermittent, but right now I don't think so. Once Windows has started, it is rock-stable until it does it restart thing. Sometimes that is for hours, more recently it is for minutes.

I'm going to try one more "repair" by pressing F8 after the power button and go through the "Windows is loading files..." stuff. If that doesn't work, I'll reload the OS from the original HP media. If that doesn't work then I'll trash the computer.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows Vista SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP a6400f
    Memory
    3GB
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP 19-Inch
    Screen Resolution
    1080
    Hard Drives
    500GB
    Internet Speed
    Not connected

wither 3

Vista Guru
Gold Member
We can't say for sure that it's the PSU but it sure sounds like it. PSUs are cheap but, if you want to trash the computer, that's up to you.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Vista Home Premium 64 bit SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    Cyberpower
    CPU
    Intel Quad CPU Q6700 2.67 GHZ
    Motherboard
    NVIDIA 780i
    Memory
    4 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    MSI GTX 560 TI Twin Frozr
    Sound Card
    Sound Blaster SB Audigy
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Viewsonic VG2436
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080p
    Hard Drives
    Samsung HD 105SI
    WDC WD20
    Case
    Apevia XJupiter
    Cooling
    air
    Mouse
    Logitech MX 600
    Keyboard
    Logitech MX 3200
    Internet Speed
    30 Mbps

townsbg

~~тσωηsвg~~
Vista Guru
Gold Member
A PSU going bad can cause weird issues.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows 7 Pro x64
    Manufacturer/Model
    Mid 2010 iMac
    CPU
    Quad core 3.2 Ghz Intel I3
    Memory
    8 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    ATI Radeon HD 5670 512 mb ram
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080 and 1440x900
    Hard Drives
    1 TB
    Other Info
    N/A

skeezix

Member
A PSU going bad can cause weird issues.
Yeah, I know. I'm not 100% sure that it's NOT the power supply.

The last time I restarted the computer it came up telling me that something was wrong and that Windows could not be started. Then it displayed a menu of test functions for me to try, so I am putting it through 2 passes of a rather long HP memory test (after 5 hours the process is 44% complete, and that's before Windows even started). We'll see tomorrow morning how it did.

When 2 Vista Gurus tell me that they think it's the power supply, I take it seriously. When the problems first began, they were few and far between, and now it's only a matter of minutes. So I googled to see what I could find. Not sure what to think when a PS rated for 350 watts only puts out 329 watts. The computer came with a Bestec Model: ATX-250-12Z Rev. D7R supply.

I'm almost ready to pop for another supply. If you or Wither 3 could point me to a reliable power supply in the area of 300-400 watts and that fits this (ATX) computer along with where to purchase one, I'd really appreciate it.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows Vista SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP a6400f
    Memory
    3GB
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP 19-Inch
    Screen Resolution
    1080
    Hard Drives
    500GB
    Internet Speed
    Not connected

wither 3

Vista Guru
Gold Member
I did a search for your psu and found a bunch of them at ebay but they're either used or refurbished. This one has a higher power rating but it's new-


Here' a brand new one the same as yours-


Costs about $20 more.

You might check all the connections to your psu before buying.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Vista Home Premium 64 bit SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    Cyberpower
    CPU
    Intel Quad CPU Q6700 2.67 GHZ
    Motherboard
    NVIDIA 780i
    Memory
    4 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    MSI GTX 560 TI Twin Frozr
    Sound Card
    Sound Blaster SB Audigy
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Viewsonic VG2436
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080p
    Hard Drives
    Samsung HD 105SI
    WDC WD20
    Case
    Apevia XJupiter
    Cooling
    air
    Mouse
    Logitech MX 600
    Keyboard
    Logitech MX 3200
    Internet Speed
    30 Mbps

skeezix

Member
Read the reviews for the 2nd link. Most everyone said the cable(s?) were too short. It is unfortunate that nobody bothered to mention either the length of a correct cable or the length of the supplied cable. Not even the manufacturer includes that information. To me, that's just another "sell it and let the buyer deal with the no-fit problem".

It would be nice to know the length I need so I can measure what I have and then order the ATX extension if I need when I order the power supply. Would somebody here happen to know the length of the MB cable that comes with the supply?
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows Vista SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP a6400f
    Memory
    3GB
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP 19-Inch
    Screen Resolution
    1080
    Hard Drives
    500GB
    Internet Speed
    Not connected

SIW2

Vista Guru
Gold Member

My Computer

System One

  • CPU
    Intel E8400
    Motherboard
    ASRock1333-GLAN R2.0
    Memory
    2gb DDR2 800
    Graphics Card(s)
    nvidia 9500GT 1gb

townsbg

~~тσωηsвg~~
Vista Guru
Gold Member
I'm not a 100% certain that it's the PSU but I don't think that it's windows. I really do think that it's hardware be it PSU, memory, graphics, or worse the motherboard. Graphics issues could result in black screens but also corrupted looking displays however even with dead graphics you should still have lights on the keyboard. Memory issues would probably result in bluescreens however that's worth checking out. You might check the capacitors on the MB.

When the PSU on a previous computer went out it would just randomly shut off and then it got worse and started turning off after only a few minutes of use.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows 7 Pro x64
    Manufacturer/Model
    Mid 2010 iMac
    CPU
    Quad core 3.2 Ghz Intel I3
    Memory
    8 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    ATI Radeon HD 5670 512 mb ram
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080 and 1440x900
    Hard Drives
    1 TB
    Other Info
    N/A

wither 3

Vista Guru
Gold Member

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Vista Home Premium 64 bit SP2
    Manufacturer/Model
    Cyberpower
    CPU
    Intel Quad CPU Q6700 2.67 GHZ
    Motherboard
    NVIDIA 780i
    Memory
    4 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    MSI GTX 560 TI Twin Frozr
    Sound Card
    Sound Blaster SB Audigy
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Viewsonic VG2436
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080p
    Hard Drives
    Samsung HD 105SI
    WDC WD20
    Case
    Apevia XJupiter
    Cooling
    air
    Mouse
    Logitech MX 600
    Keyboard
    Logitech MX 3200
    Internet Speed
    30 Mbps
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