Originally Posted by kmf
When you say you can play a DVD without booting the laptop, do you carry a paperclip with you to open the drive so you can insert the DVD?
It looks like you have never tried the EMP. You start your laptop by pressing the EMP button (the second button from the top , just under the Big Power button,which I believe also to change the screen size to 16x9 if you are using external monitor).
When the power is up, you can play your DVD or CD. No Windows OS or paper clip involved. It is just like a portable DVD player. The front button functions just like the DVD or CD player buttons, in addition to some of the F function keys, for example F8 to display the menu, and so on.
Since you have installed 'clean' your Windows, I don't think your laptop has this functionality anymore.
If you need to get the EMP back, you need to install the EMP first using the Express Media Player CD followed by the toshiba recovery DVD(CD). This is per the EMP manual.