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Windows XP Home - Log on/log off problem


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#1
mondyg

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Hello. I'm having this issue wherein my system goes to the user screen and doesn't let me log on. I'm the only user and I have no idea how to fix it. I'm afraid that I don't have my Windows XP disc in my possession, so I was wondering if there was any other way. If not, I'll try to obtain one somehow.
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#2
Mark D

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Howszit?

Does the system actually start and let you in, with the logon screen coming up after you haven't touched the keys in awhile? Or is it going straight to a logon? If it's going straight to a logon screen, how do we know that this is your system?
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#3
yevgenievich

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does it loop where when you hit log on it will automatically log off?
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#4
mondyg

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Hi you guys. Thanks for the replies.

does it loop where when you hit log on it will automatically log off?


It goes as following: it starts up normally, but instead of going straight to my desktop like before, it goes to the user selection screen which reads "To begin, click your user name". I click on my user icon (which is the only one) and it reads below it (1) "Loading your personal settings..." for a few seconds followed by a quick flash of my desktop wallpaper (2) "Logging off..." and finally (3) "Saving your settings..."

I've tried rebooting under Safe Mode but it does pretty much the same thing with Administrator.

Howszit?

Does the system actually start and let you in, with the logon screen coming up after you haven't touched the keys in awhile? Or is it going straight to a logon? If it's going straight to a logon screen, how do we know that this is your system?


I'm not exactly sure how to prove that it's my system. I guess you're just going to have to trust me on this one. I live between Texas and Minnesota and the XP disc that came with my Toshiba is somewhere between my two places. It goes straight to the logon screen. All I do is turn it on. Nothing conspicuous.

I will admit that I did something really, really stupid. I have Spybot S&D running on my system and I remember getting a warning about several incoming registry changes and I (stupidly) approved them because I wasn't thinking at all. I wasn't doing anything out of the ordinary so it didn't phase me to worry about it. There wasn't any immediate change. I turned off my computer for the night and the next day I got this problem. I waltzed right into this problem and it would've been prevented. I did a little bit of reading on this and only found solutions that included the XP disc.
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#5
yevgenievich

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you will either need a copy of winxp disk, erd commander or you can use networked computer.
if you have networked computer here is what needs to be done:
Straight from one of the microsoft articles:
Steps for rectifying this problem:


* Log on to a networked computer.
* Run Regedit.exe
* Point your cursor to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
* Select File > Connect Remote Registry
* Type computer name (infected computer)
* Navigate to the following location in registry of destination or infected computer



HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon


* Edit these two values in right pane:


Shell
Userinit


* Change these two values to

Shell=explorer.exe
Userinit = x:\windows\system32\userinit.exe


* Exit from Registry
* Restart Infected computer.
* You should be able to log on to computer.

Edited by yevgenievich, 10 January 2009 - 11:23 PM.

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#6
mondyg

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Hey!! Thanks for such a quick reply. I've tried the network instructions (repeatedly) to no avail. My computer has a really simple name, so I know I'm not making an error with that. It keeps telling me that that object cannot be found and I've tried the same thing with my dad's computer (which is on the same network) and it can't find his either, so I must be doing something really wrong or it's just [bleep]ed up. My dad told me that his friend has an XP disc so I might just try using his.
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#7
Mark D

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Howszit?

Sounds like something corrupted your registry. When you do get the disk, try the repair console 1st, (choose R at the 1st screen after booting up). It will ask what Windows system that you want to log onto and will list 1 C:\windows. Press 1 and then enter and hope no-one started your system with a Administrator password, cuz that is what it will ask next. Try just pressing enter, (blank password). If you do get to what looks like a command prompt, type CHKDSK /r and it will run a quick hard drive check. If it indicates that it is making repairs, it may fix your problem.

If that doesn't work, then I'd try to repair the current operating system, which it will ask you if you'd like to do it down the Install XP path ...(the bummer is that you'll have to enter the product key and re-activate once done..

Good luck
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#8
yevgenievich

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post up if you can get xp disk. There are few things in the recovery console worth checking if chkdsk /r doesn't fix the problem. There is a file in system32 folder that could've been deleted and usually i think it's called something like wsupdater.exe. The registry might be pointing to it but file dosen't exist creating the log on/off loop. Creating the file using userinit.exe file helps if that's the problem. I had log on/off loop recently but my system files were really screwed up and my registry was completely missing userinit stuff.

Edited by yevgenievich, 12 January 2009 - 11:12 PM.

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#9
mondyg

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OK, another stupid question (if you haven't noticed, I'm kind of computer stupid): is an XP Professional CD not supposed to work with my system (XP Home), or should it? My dad brought me his friend's CD and the CD is for XP Professional. It's unresponsive when I put it in or boot with the XP Recovery Console.
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#10
mondyg

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OK, I got the CD to work and ran it following Mark D's instructions and it repaired two problems, which made me hopeful. Unfortunately, when I rebooted, it took me to the login screen again and the problem is still there. I'm running it again just because I don't have anything else to do but I'm not confident that will do much. Anything else I can do via Recovery Console?
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#11
yevgenievich

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after you got cd working and log in as admin type in
cd system32
then
copy userinit.exe wsaupdater.exe
then
exit
and see if that works
if it does there is more that will need to be done if you get back in windows.
If it still doesn't work i would recommend downloading a copy of ERD commander

Edited by yevgenievich, 16 January 2009 - 10:45 AM.

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#12
mondyg

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Hey yevgenievich. I tried your solution but that did not work, so I started making an ERD commander CD. I'm not going to try to use it yet because I don't want to screw anything up or anything like that. Get back to me when you can.
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#13
yevgenievich

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You will need to burn the image to a cd. Once you have the disk you will need to boot of the disk. Once you are in ERD commander it will ask if you want to attach to windows xp installation. Press ok. It will try to load network stuff, just cancel.
One nice feature of ERD is if you had system restore enabled you can do system restore from ERD commander to earlier date. You could've also done it manually trough recovery option from xp disk but it's easier with ERD. To check the registry go to start->admin tools->registry editor
when registry editor opens navigate to this key:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon
when you have winlogon selected on the right you should see a key called "userinit"(along with many different entries) and in the value of it should be C:\windows\system32\userinit.exe
If it points to different file you can change it or create it if it doesn't exist by double clicking on existing one to change or right click then select "new" then "key". You can type the name Userinit for they key. Once created edit it with the path.
also check to make sure the key "shell" shows explorer.exe
also while you are there check the C:\windows\system32\ directory to make sure you have a file called userinit.exe.

Edited by yevgenievich, 16 January 2009 - 11:10 PM.

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#14
mondyg

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Hey again! I booted onto ERD Commander, went to Registry Editor and could not find Userinit under Winlogon so that might be the crux of my problem. Shell was there and linked to explorer.exe. I created a new key that runs to userinit.exe (which does exist under system32) but when I rebooted, the problem still wasn't gone. Have I exhausted all solutions to this problem? I tried accessing Spybot through ERD and was able to access the program. Is there a way to reverse registry changes via Spybot (which, if you reread my second post, is how I got myself into this problem in the first place)? I'm just thinking out loud.
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#15
yevgenievich

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i'm not sure if you can reverse the changes, usually if registry is edited there is backup made in mydoc folder. Try using system restore trough ERD commander to earlier date.
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