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#1
hal

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Hello: I have had this problem for some time and I am hoping you can help me out. In the begining I put the PC in stand by mode for some time instead of shutting down. When I went to get it up again up jumps a screen that had several options listed with the top line saying normal, but some lower line was highlighted and I figured the machine knows more than me so I pressed enter. (This is not the screen that I get when holding down ctrl at startup.) After that I had only four icons on the desktop-My Computer,Documents,network, and Recycle bin. Start up- Programs-nada. startup=empty. Everything else below programs is there and work.I have since installed Spybot and a popup killer ,plus callwave and they all appear when I click programs.Also whenever I click send to> in a menu it shows empty. Some time back, I don't remember how, I got the evil screen back and immediately selected normal and pressed enter. No change. I can create shortcut for some things to desktop, but if I want calculator,clipboard.notepad,ect. I have to open them up in Help,minimize,and close Help. Of coarse they are gone at next startup. In msconfig-config.sys there is nothing on the screen. Folder search for config.sys yeilds 50 files and I am thinking they are what I need in msconfig. ?? Please let me know what else I can tell you about this that might help. GenuineIntel--Pentium processor--48.0MB RAM--DriveC 1.5GB/960MB free-----DriveD 1.0GB/883MB free. Thank you for your assistance. hal. PS sure would be nice to have a complete system again.
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#2
admin

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This is pretty unusual Hal. My best guess is registry corruption.

1. Have you scanned your system for a virus?

2. Have you tried booting in safe mode to see if you get the same results?

3. Boot with a boot disk and try typing scanreg /restore. Select a date before the problem began, but not older than necessary. You'll also need to reinstall any programs added since the restore date.

You can find bootdisks here. WindowsME boot disk will be the easiest to use as you can type scanreg /restore at the A:\ prompt.
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#3
tazz1964

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hal
is your computer custom built or is it like a hp, dell ,ect. what sort of windows 98 disk do you have is it windows 98se from micosoft or a restore disk that come with your pc?
<_<
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#4
hal

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Good Morning: Answering questions. Yes, I scanned for virus when I installed Norton 2003. ( I have since uninstalled because it was slowing this thing way down. ) Am going to reinstall, but just the virus protection. I tried booting in safe mode earlier this AM and the machine was still the same. On the boot disk- These are uncharted waters for me, but what the heck. Admin, will the windows ME conflict with this 98SE system? Yes I need the most simple approach. I looked at these boot disc briefly, and may have another? before proceeding. I noticed that admin's item # 4 was gone when I opened the second time. I printed it out so will ask about it if #3 doen't work out. tazz: I have to assume this system is custom. I got this HP tower from a young fellow that does repair up in the city. I am sure he put the extra 1GB in this thing. The system is registered, but he did not provide me with any disk at all. I called and ask him about this some time back, and he said opps. I can get back to him if necessary, but please understand we are talking 200 miles plus $. (We are talking Texas here) Also, when using this boot disk, am I going to lose all my hotmail folders and addresses? Do I need to copy them? Please advise . Thank you,hal.
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#5
admin

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Hi hal,

Sorry, I removed #4 because I didn't want to confuse you, keeping focused on the task at hand. <_<

The Windows ME boot disk doesn't affect your current system at all. It just loads a simple DOS OS, and some basic troubleshooting tools. If you use bootdisk earlier than WinME you simply need to type "cd system\command" before typing "scanreg /restore". :D

Tazz asked about a restore disk becuase that would be a simple way to restore all your programs, however you'd lose all your data.

You shouldn't lose any information restoring your registry, however data loss is always a possibilty, if it's important data PLEASE back up before proceeding!
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#6
hal

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Good afternoon: I did as you said and got a boot disk on a floppy. I put it in prior to starting the PC. The screen said " Invalid system disk" Tried three times. Tried to see what was on the floppy- 817 Kb- but message said something about restrictions on this machine and contact the administrator. What admisistrator? The only one around here is my wife, and that's no help. Please advise if there is some hidden setting I can tweek to get this boot disk to spring into action. Thank you for your assistance. Hoping youall are having a good Thanksgiving. HAL
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#7
hal

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This is HAL again: Should I have had this popup killer turned off when I downloaded the boot disk? Thank you.
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#8
admin

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Hi hal,

After downloading the boot disk file, you need to run it from your computer. It will prompt you to enter a blank floppy disk, at which time the boot files will be copied to the diskette. When finished, use this diskette as your boot disk.
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#9
hal

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OK: I followed your instructions, and got in the front door. followed the bouncing ball and selected the oldest date ( 4 days ago) . It said "good registry" and when I did it again hoping to get a previous date, the screen said not started. I need to get back to the original date of this problem. What if I reset the clock back in time some few months ago, scrap the download from the computer, start with a fresh floppy, and pretend this problem just happened yesterday? Please advise. Thank you--hal
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#10
admin

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selected the oldest date ( 4 days ago)


I anticipated that, but it was worth a shot. I can get kinda ugly from here, so let me look into it a bit. This is where many computer shops would simply reformat and reinstall, but I'm pretty confident we can rebuild your registry, or do a dirty (reinstall) of Windows.

I'm on the way out the door right now, unless someone else steps in here, I'll get back to you tomorrow... <_<
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#11
admin

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I just re-read your topic Hal. Are the Hotmail folder and addresses the only files you're concerned about saving? Do you have any other programs installed on this computer that you don't have the installation disks for?

I'm concerned with the registry corruption, that you may have other OS errors as well. If you don't care about the files on it, then I would start all over and install Win98 clean to and formatted drive. You won't lose your Hotmail info as it's all stored on a server which you access online.
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#12
hal

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Admin: I do not know of anything that is worth saving outside of what you tell me is in the ISP server. There is something that I need to mention. This came to me last night during one of my nightmares. On drive D I recalled having a bad sector. I ran scandisk and it stalled out. Froze. Had to restart, and then tried to defragment . That sent me back to scan disk. I looked through my notes and found one that said "3855 bad sector 246888 "win 98\win98_74.cab' " Could this be the root of the problem? I had scandisk set to automatically repair, let it keep hammering away for awhile, the frame of a window came up but nothing in it. I tried alt cont del to shut off but that did not work. Bad bear shut down. I recall trying Norton 2003 Disk Doctor on it, but that did not work. Should I reinstall the disk Dr. and try again? Do I need to worry about this after following your next instructions? At any rate, please advise what my next step should be. (Go jump in the lake is not an option) If you tell me that I need to replace the drive D, is that any more diffucult than the phone modem, or a PROM in a PCM? This I can do blindfolded. I need to service the cooling fans anyway. Are these drives expensive? Please advise. Thank you. Hal.
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#13
admin

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The error you describe could be an early warning of hard drive failure, or it could perform fine for years. However, the file affected shouldn't have lead to your current problems. This may be added cause for more concern.

My opinion is that as long as your starting fresh, you might as well take this opportunity to upgrade your hard drive. I don't know where you're located, but in the US, if you shop around, a 40gb hard drive can be purchased for around $40. Actually, larger drives can be had now for >$.50/gb.

I'd buy whatever you can get the best deal on. My personal favorites are Maxtor followed by Western Digital.

In addition to having more storage, a modern 7200RPM drive will also increase your systems performance. If your budget allows, consider a drive with an 8mb cache, as this will further increase performance.

Replacing a hard drive is something an average user can easily accomplish. <_< We can walk you through it, and there are usually very clear directions included with the drive.

When replacing your drive, I'd get rid of both your current drives. You can create two (or more) partitions on your new drive. You'll see these as individual "drives" in Windows (C, D, etc).

A good practice is to install your OS (Windows) on one 5gb partition, and leave the remaining for programs and data. Then if you ever need to reformat and install, or upgrade your OS, you can format that partition, while leaving the rest of your data intact. :D

Please start a new topic, if you have additional questions related to installing a new drive. Hope this helps!
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