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Vista Startup Repair Fails

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This is a Gateway Model MT6451 Notebook running Windows Vista Home Premium OEM OS.

This is my niece's and she thinks it's about 3 years old- probably a very early Vista version. Not sure if SP1 is on there. She knows next to nothing about computers -- she simply facebooks, stores iTunes and downloads photos from her camera. Never used email, very little word processing. Not sure if virus or Windows updates applied. Could be any state but I can't get into the system to look.

I saved all her files using Ubuntu to download to an external drive :) and would be able to do a reinstall of Vista but where would I get a disc? It was OEM and this is surely out of warranty.

The Startup Repair feature does not work. The error message is that "Windows cannot repair this computer automatically."

I know next to nothing about Vista. I tried using a recovery disc that's on the net burning an ISO image to a disc and booting with that. I get an error message that says the recovery disc is not compatible with the version of Vista on the unit.

As I said, this must be a very early version of Vista. Maybe they were issuing discs in the early days and she just lost the disc or hardly realized it came with one. In any case I don't have one.

What are my options here- buying a new Vista OS and installing it?
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