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system32 corrupt or missing


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#1
londonkj

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Hi there,
I have just attempted to turn on my laptop (Acer travelmate 8000 with XP professional)
and received the very concerning message below:-

''Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SYSTEM

You can attempt to repair this file by starting the Windows Setup using the original Setup CD-ROM.
Select 'r' at the first screen to start repair.''

What could have caused this? a virus perhaps? and what would be the best way to recover this without any loss of data?

Many thanks in advance.

regards
londonkj. :whistling:
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#2
Retired Tech

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Start the System Restore tool at a command prompt

1. Restart your computer, and keep tapping F8 during the initial start-up until you get options, select Safe Mode with a command prompt then press enter.

2. Log on to your computer with an administrator account or with an account that has administrator credentials.

3. Type the following command at a command prompt, and then press ENTER:


%systemroot%\system32\restore\rstrui.exe

4. Follow the instructions that appear on the screen to restore your computer to an earlier state.

Look for the most recent system checkpoint created before the errors to restore from

For additional information about the Safe mode with a command prompt, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

http://support.micro....com/kb/315222/


A description of the Safe mode boot options in Windows XP


If no change

You can use this guide to repair XP

Possibly, you will need to boot the PC and keep tapping the delete key until the PC enters set up. Change the boot order to CD ROM Drive then hard drive, press F10 then press enter, load the XP CD then type Y then press enter, as it reboots, look for press any key to load from CD, press enter

You will need the product key to complete this

XP Repair Install

Windows XP repair feature won't delete your data, installed programs, personal information, or settings. It just repairs the operating system

After running XP Repair you will need to install all Windows Updates

Microsoft Update
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#3
londonkj

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Hi keith,

thanks for your prompt response,
i attempted the reboot and f8 etc, but it gave me the same error message before i got a chance to log on as admin.

will i need to find the cd rom and also will this affect existing data on my computer?

cheers :whistling:
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#4
Retired Tech

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You will need an XP CD for the repair, it does not affect data and setting, however, you will need to run microsoft update afterwards

You can borrow a same version as was originally installed XP CD to do this, but, you must use your product key, not the one from the borrowed CD

If you downloaded SP2, you need an XP SP1 CD
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#5
londonkj

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hi keith,

i am still on sp1 after unsuccessfully trying to load sp2 a long time ago. and it has worked ok since then.
i have recovery disks 1 and 2 from acer, does this sound right? and i think i have the correct product key, (a large string of alpha numerics)
i am rather nervous as i really dont want to lose any info from my pc,

cheers
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#6
Retired Tech

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Recovery CD's are different, is Acer easy to get hold of, you need to know what the recovery CD options are
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#7
londonkj

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after about 30 mins on hold i spoke to acer,
he suggested the use of the recovery disks, but warned that the data on the c partition would be lost.
is there a way of recovering windows without the need to do this?
and how can i back up my hard drive so as i dont lose anything?
does this sound a viral thing? as a friend had borrowed it yesterday so not sure what he was doing on it.


cheers
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#8
Retired Tech

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I will come back to you on this, just want to check a few things
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#9
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Are you able to borrow an XP SP1 CD to run the repair option as in post 2

You can also try it with the recovery CD, follow it carefully and cancel if you do not see exactly the same screens throughout
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#10
londonkj

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hi there,
what screens shall i compare it to?

and if i use an sp1 disc will i lose existing data on my c drive?


cheers
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#11
Retired Tech

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The ones here

http://www.geekstogo...p?showtopic=138

The data remains intact
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