Are you running X. If so how do you start it?Does the same problem present itself on tty2, tty3 etc?Of course it could be related to your screwed hard disk.
For a start you need to find out what you are using. Is it network manager or something else?Once you know what you are using look at the logs for related errors etc. and post the relevant details here.No one will know how to fix the problem without any information at all.