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windows/system32/config/system file is missing or corrupt

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I have a HP computer running Windows XP Media eddition.

I started it up this morning and got the following error message: "windows/system32/config/system file is missing or corrupt. You can attempt to repair this file be starting windows setup using origional setup CD-ROM. Select 'r' at the first screen to start repair."

I have lost the the startup disc that came with the computer. I have asked HP and Microsoft and they both cannot help me. So I am asking you for help.

I just read many of the threads/topics and see one thread that appears to have the whole process I need to take care of the issue. Should I use the information in the thread or can someone help me from the start? I can download and save files to a disk on another computer. Just need to know which files and if I can use any disc.

Thank you so much.

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You can borrow the exact same version of Windows XP Media Edition (with the same Service Pack version if any) if you can and do a repair. It will not be a HP OEM version like the one they gave you when you bought your HP computer but you will still be able to try to repair the file mentioned.
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