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Windows XP Troubles


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#1
Night_Zero

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Just registered here to post my issue and hope that someone could help.

Computer specs: Windows XP Media Center Edition, recovery partition loaded onto D, primary windows files on C. No disc given. HP.

Recently my computer has been having issues where when I run firefox it locks up my start bar and all programs except the one I am currently in. Generally just restarting would fix this issue. I do not believe this is virus or spyware related as I am fairly computer literate and am running Spysweeper, Antivir and Avast! on the system all updated.

So, during a stupid moment while my system was locked up I loaded into the recovery partition and was browsing through some menus. Anyway, I hit next and it started doing a destructive restore so I quickly powered off the computer. Then, when I loaded up the system I get the error: Windows could not start because of error in the system. Please report the problem as: Load DLLs needed for Kernel. So, I went back into the recovery console and now when I load up only have 2 options. D:MiniNT and D:Recovery Console (or something along those lines). Here is where it gets good. I cannot change directory to the C drive, its like it doesn't exist. However, I can execute commands to it. For example if I type dir C:\ it gives me the whole directory so the files are in place. I have attempted fixmbr, fixboot, etc. but it appears to be executing these commands to the D drive which is the recovery partition.

Now, I have used Ubuntu to copy the entire contents of the HD to an externel HD so I could reformat if required, however, the computer is roughly 4 years old and if I am going that route I will likely just buy a new PC for a copy of windows 7.

I am going home on lunch here shortly and I am going to attempt to pull the hal.dll from the recovery partition and replace the hal.dll on the C drive. If that fails I also have a copy of the windows XP home edition that a friend gave me to use to try doing an in place reinstall. However, I am unsure of if it will work as one, I can't see the C drive and two I have media center and this is a home CD.

Ideally I would like to get all the DLLs back so I can boot the computer as normal and maintain all programs etc. I have heard an in place install of XP will maintain data but you will have to reinstall all programs. Again, if this is true I may as well just buy a new PC. So, hopefully someone will have some good advice for me. Thanks.
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#2
Night_Zero

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Quick additional note. I have verified the boot.ini file is I believe correct and trying to point to \Windows on the C drive. So even though I can't see the C drive windows is still trying to boot from the correct place.
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#3
rshaffer61

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Why not do a Repair Installation of windows?
That keeps your data safe while replacing or adding missing files.
You will need the same version of XP as what is installed Home, Media or Pro
It will most likely have to be a OEM version also since it looks like it was preinstalled.



Repair Installation Instructions

· Insert your Windows XP CD in your CD-ROM and then Restart your computer.

· At the first post screen start tapping the Del key to enter System Bios
· Find the Advance Options or Boot Sequence screen.
· You will need to change the boot sequence so that the CDrom is first and the HD is second.
· Press F10 to Save and Exit and then press Enter to accept.
· The system will now reboot
· When the "Press any key to boot from CD" message is displayed on your screen, press a key to start your computer from the Windows XP CD.
· When you see the following message displayed on the Welcome to Setup screen, press ENTER
· To setup Windows XP now, press ENTER.
· At this point an option to press R to enter the Recovery Console is displayed. DO NOT SELECT THIS OPTION.

· On the Windows XP Licensing Agreement screen, press F8 to agree to the license agreement.
· Make sure that your current installation of Windows XP is selected and highlighted in the box, and then press the R key to repair Windows XP.
· Follow the instructions on the screen to complete Setup.

You can also go HERE
to read a step by step tutorial with screenshots.
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#4
Night_Zero

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Why not do a Repair Installation of windows?
That keeps your data safe while replacing or adding missing files.
You will need the same version of XP as what is installed Home, Media or Pro
It will most likely have to be a OEM version also since it looks like it was preinstalled.



Repair Installation Instructions

· Insert your Windows XP CD in your CD-ROM and then Restart your computer.

· At the first post screen start tapping the Del key to enter System Bios
· Find the Advance Options or Boot Sequence screen.
· You will need to change the boot sequence so that the CDrom is first and the HD is second.
· Press F10 to Save and Exit and then press Enter to accept.
· The system will now reboot
· When the "Press any key to boot from CD" message is displayed on your screen, press a key to start your computer from the Windows XP CD.
· When you see the following message displayed on the Welcome to Setup screen, press ENTER
· To setup Windows XP now, press ENTER.
· At this point an option to press R to enter the Recovery Console is displayed. DO NOT SELECT THIS OPTION.

· On the Windows XP Licensing Agreement screen, press F8 to agree to the license agreement.
· Make sure that your current installation of Windows XP is selected and highlighted in the box, and then press the R key to repair Windows XP.
· Follow the instructions on the screen to complete Setup.

You can also go HERE
to read a step by step tutorial with screenshots.


This was going to be the final step before reformatting however, from what I read while this does maintain the files and data it still wipes out programs, etc. and they need to be reinstalled. If I am going to be doing that I would rather just start from scratch on a new machine as this one is fairly old. Also, Media center from my understanding was never sold as a box item that could be purchased seperately. I have a win xp disc, will that work or will I need to order the media center disc from Windows?

Additional notes: I tried doing: expand D:\I386\hal.dl_ C:\WINDOWS\System32 and expand D:\I386\ntoskrnl.ex_ C:\WINDOWS\System32 then rebooting but this did not resolve the issue.

Second, I attempted to run in safe mode and it listed that it loaded ntoskrnl.exe then hal.dll then KDCOM.dll then gives the error about needing to install DLLs. Can assume this means the problem with booting lies in another file occuring after these 3?

Finally, I found this website and the idea seems sound but not sure if it'd work. http://forums.legitr.../about6705.html I am referring to the last section of the first post discussing installing windows a second time and copying over the newly created HAL files as well as potentially other windows files. Any thoughts on this? Thanks.
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#5
rshaffer61

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Looks like a parallel installation which will mean you have to reinstall everything.
A repair installation simply repairs or replaces missing or corrupted files. It does not hurt installed programs.
There are 3 types of installations:
  • Fresh Install... wipes everything and starts over
  • Repair.. replaces missing or corrupted files. It does not hurt installed programs.
  • Parallel.... installs a second fresh copy of windows and then you move the data over. Programs still have to be reinstalled.


Your only viable option is the Repair
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#6
Night_Zero

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Looks like a parallel installation which will mean you have to reinstall everything.
A repair installation simply repairs or replaces missing or corrupted files. It does not hurt installed programs.
There are 3 types of installations:

  • Fresh Install... wipes everything and starts over
  • Repair.. replaces missing or corrupted files. It does not hurt installed programs.
  • Parallel.... installs a second fresh copy of windows and then you move the data over. Programs still have to be reinstalled.


Your only viable option is the Repair


Interesting. Thats not what I had read though I believe you as I used to do this on win 95/98 fairly consistantly. Now, would this possible using a win xp disc or do I need to get a win media center disc from MS?
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#7
Night_Zero

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In addition I can get a copy of an XP Pro CD if that would make any difference over the XP Home CD in terms of performing a repair install or if I am required to get a media center CD from Windows.
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#8
rshaffer61

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A disk matching the version you have is the best method. Using another version I cannot say what will happen.
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#9
rshaffer61

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Also something that was just pointed out to me that I missed earlier.


I do not believe this is virus or spyware related as I am fairly computer literate and am running Spysweeper, Antivir and Avast! on the system all updated.


And the advice

3 antivirus? At best, 2, if Spysweeper was installed without the antivirus portion.


Can you explain this? Do you have Antvir and Avast both installed?
Was Spysweeper installed with it's AV also or just the spyware module installed?
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#10
Night_Zero

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Well, there was no repair option so I'm guessing I'm SOL at this point? Thankfully I was able to recover data.
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#11
rshaffer61

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No repair option for what?
What disk are you using?
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#12
Night_Zero

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Just tossed in the XP CD and it loads up fine, finds the C drive but there is no option to repair. My only options are delete the partition or install Windows XP.
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#13
Night_Zero

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Also something that was just pointed out to me that I missed earlier.


I do not believe this is virus or spyware related as I am fairly computer literate and am running Spysweeper, Antivir and Avast! on the system all updated.


And the advice

3 antivirus? At best, 2, if Spysweeper was installed without the antivirus portion.


Can you explain this? Do you have Antvir and Avast both installed?
Was Spysweeper installed with it's AV also or just the spyware module installed?



Yes, I am using both Antivir and Avast! Antivir is setup for a disk scan every other day with Spysweeper running opposite days except on the weekend. From what I've seen there are instances where Antivir will catch a virus that Avast! will not and vice-versa so I run both. Also, when I bought Spysweeper it was only an anti-spyware program (Around 4 years ago). I do believe the updated copy has anti-virus on it but I couldn't tell you for the life of me if it was actually on.
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#14
rshaffer61

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If any of those are running in real time as I know Avast runs all the time. You take a risk of false positive results.
We never advise to have more then one active AV running.

My only options are delete the partition or install Windows XP.

Once you get to the Install XP screen you click that. Then the next screen will give you the option to Repair.
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#15
Night_Zero

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If any of those are running in real time as I know Avast runs all the time. You take a risk of false positive results.
We never advise to have more then one active AV running.

My only options are delete the partition or install Windows XP.

Once you get to the Install XP screen you click that. Then the next screen will give you the option to Repair.


Yeah, I followed the instructions but the repair option was not valid. When I get to the install section I could only install but leave the file structure in tact but wiping out all windows files (desktop, documents, etc), install to a different partition or overwrite the existing windows installation.

I did read on several sites that if the partitions or master boot record got too messed up repair may not be possible.
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