also, ever since I finished loading the last of the drivers the laptop takes a really long time to load, especially the graphics driver. is that normal?
How long is this exactly.
My laptop takes about 2 minutes to load but I have a lot of startup programs.
I'd say a home user's laptop shouldn't be taking more then a minute or so to load.
! I would like to know how to format the D: partition,
Open start and hit run.
In the runbox type: "diskmgmt.msc" (without quotes)
Right click your D: partition and hit "Format".
Make sure you format this as NTFS
but I had another problem tonight when booting up. I got another black screen message and windows wouldn't load. this time it said windows\system32\config\systems was missing or corrupt. so I went into the recovery console and copied the file from the last restore point and now everything started up fine again, but I'm wondering... if I keep having problems booting due to missing or corrupt files, is there a larger underlying problem with the hard drive or mother board and I should have it looked at?
I've never had to deal with missing files so I personally don't know.
My advice would be to keep a close look at your C: drive's total diskspace (not free, not used, but total). If this is dropping over time your hard disk might be failing. If this just stays at a number then I don't think you'll have a bigger problem.
If you notice any other problems feel free to post back.