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Registry Help - Cannot run .exe programs

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When I was trying to remove some malware, I screwed the pooch by changing the .exe registry entry and cannot run any .exe programs directly. Any shortcut to a program lists the type of file as 'x', and any attempts to open said .exe results in a Windows dialog asking for a program to open the file. Opening a saved document however, will open the associated application, such as Word or Excel. The start menu 'Internet' option also successfully opens my browser.

I had a restore point made before I changed the registry values, but the program to revert to the previous restore point will not now open. All help is greatly appreciated.
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If you have Windows XP CD...

1. Boot from the CD.
2. When the text-based part of Setup begins, follow the prompts. Select the repair or recover option by pressing R:

Posted Image

3. You'll find yourself at this screen:

Posted Image

4. Once you are at the Recovery Console you will be given at least one choice of Windows installations. Normally the choice you want is the number 1 choice. Click the number 1 key at the "top" of the keyboard and click enter.

NOTE: at this point your numbers to the right of your keyboard are turned off. If you insist on using these keys for your numbers remember to hit the Numbers Lock key before clicking a number over there or your computer will automatically reboot and you will have to wait through the previous steps to get back to the console.

5. You will be given a message asking for the administrator password. Unless someone or something has messed with your computer there is no password so you just click the Enter key.

6. This will bring you to a prompt that says:


7. Type:

cd \

Press Enter

Note: between "cd" and "\" there should be a "blank space" otherwise the command won't work

8. The prompt should now say:


9. Type:

cd system~1\_resto~1

Press Enter.

Note: If it gives an error "Access Denied" while accessing the folder, follow the method below

Type: cd \

Press Enter

Type: cd windows\system32\config

Press Enter

Type: ren system system.bak

Press Enter

(note the spaces between ren and system, and then between system and system.bak)

Type: exit

Press Enter

now the computer should restart, then follow steps 1-6

10. Type:


Press Enter

NOTE: When you hit enter it will list all the restore points folders like "rp1", "rp2" we have to see the last restore point to copy the file from a recent backup. If the restore points have more than one page then you have keep on hitting the key to view the last restore point folder.

NOTE: It is a good rule of thumb to choose the files from the restore point folder which the second to the last one.

11. Type:

cd rp{with the second to the last restore point number }

Press Enter

Example: cd rp9. if rp10 is the last restore point

12. Type:

cd snapshot

Press Enter.

NOTICE: Now the command prompt will look like this:


Note : restore point 9 assumed for clarity of the content.

13. Type:

copy _registry_machine_system c:\windows\system32\config\system

Press Enter

14. Type:


Press Enter.

Final note : If the above procedure won't solve the problem, repeat all steps, but in step 13 type:

copy _registry_machine_software c:\windows\system32\config\software

Alternatively, select different restore point.

If you don't have Windows CD...

Download Windows Recovery Console: http://www.thecomput...om/files/rc.iso
Download, and install free Imgburn: http://www.imgburn.c...hp?act=download
Using Imgburn, burn rc.iso to a CD.
Boot to the CD...let it finish loading.
When the "Welcome to Setup" screen appears, press R to start the Recovery Console.

Follow steps 3 - 14.

Thanks to Broni for the instructions
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