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Recovery incapability

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HP Pavilion desktop - A1230n - Media Center PC
Windows XP Pro Media Center Edition

Connect using Comcast ethernet cable
Have Maxtor external HD

Acronis True Image 9.0
McAfee security
Windows Firewall
SpySweeper, AdAware, SpyBot, Trend Micro Anti-spyware, CCleaner, Diskeeper Lite, Belarc, HiJack This

I don't know exactly what I did, but here's what I remember (before I arrive at the "tragic" results) -

Resizing some pictures. Realized I was taking up more space by keeping both sets. Decided one had to go-will keep resized ones on "C" and move the originals to "G"

Started "G" and began to copy from C to G. Got message that there wasn't enough room on G. Gave me the option of Disk Cleanup, which I did - resulted in 16K of compressed old files.

But then I got the idea of getting some of the stuff off of G. Started deleting stuff I didn't need on a "storage" drive. Using MY COMPUTER, I opened G. I removed some programs - Adobe Photo, one version of AOL, (Comcast) Desk Doctor, Real Arcade games, Trellian, Belarc

Then I ran Disk Cleanup again.

Then I ran Diskeeper Lite. Analysis of G showed 0% free space and suggested I need to move some stuff to another volume. So, I did more single file deleting. I got back close to 3000 in space, so I tried to run Diskeeper again and it did nothing. [Note: when I run it on the C drive my screen is about half full - when I did G, the screen was totally full!]

Later on, I wanted to copy something to MS Works (I'm out of black ink, so I wanted to change it all to blue or red or whatever and print it)- but, I got an error - the kind that says it's sending the report to Microsoft-McAfee asked for access to send it, which I granted once) (Since I couldn't use Works, I made myself a shortcut for Wordpad and did my printing)

I went to PC Tools, and to Application Recovery to "fix" Works. It read that if a pre-installed program was acting up, use this tool to reinstall it. But to uninstall it first. That made me nervous, so I decided to install (using this tool) something first, uninstall it using Add/Remove. and reinstall it to see if that worked. It did, so I proceeded to uninstall MS Works through Add/Remove. Went back to Application Recovery, ran the reinstall of MS Works and it ended saying reinstall successful. IT LIED! It was freakin' gone now!

Application Recovery states that if that doesn't work, go back into the tool and go to the next step. The next step is actually System Recovery-I proceeded, but got the error "STOP: C0000218, Registry File Failure. The registry cannot load the hive (file) \SYSTEM ROOT\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SECURITY or its log or alternate. It is corrupt, absent, or not writable."

This is the same problem I had before when I tried to do the complete system recovery in order to "repair" Internet Explorer and whatever else has been wrong (regarding the missing .msi files) (which is why HP sent me all of those disks listed below)

I couldn't get the PC back "up" without using the Acronis boot disk (I thankfully made months ago)

[Note: I tried to use that Acronis to recover, but couldn't find the "archive" they referred to - actually had no idea what I was doing.]

So, this is my new status - worse off than before and still unable to recover - even though, I have the disks I made the day I brought the computer home. I have a set of recovery disks directly from HP, including the supplemental disk for the Media Center, and I have the recovery console disk sent to me by HP. But, I do not have installation disks. I would be happy to reformat and reinstall Windows, but that would require that I BUY the disks and the license. UNFAIR! HP really has consumers by the proverbial balls!

Have no idea what to do next. I have a crappy IE and no MS Works. And who knows what else!
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    Je suis Napoléon!

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the "recovery" disks should be all you need to format and reinstall thus making the pc exactly as it was when you got it from the factory...but that WOULD cause you to lose all data on the machine..of course if all your important stuff is over on the external drive...you should be fine with that...

it SHOULD be a matter of booting from the first recovery disk and letting it go from there....if those cd's aren't capable of recovering the system (then they shouldn't call them recovery disks right?)....then HP often times has a built in destructive recovery tool...usually accessed with ctrl f10 during boot
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