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Computer Will Not Boot Up windows/system32/config/system file missing


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#1
Skqck

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Okay, so here is the situation. I have a Emachines, model number W6409, running Windows XP Media Home Edition 2006. When I try to boot up the computer I get a message that says, windows/system32/config/system file missing or corrupt. I have already tried booting in safe mode and last known good configuration but I still get the same missing file or corrupt message. I do not have a Windows XP cd so I downloaded Windows Recovery Console. I ran CHKDSK /R and after completion there was a message that said it had resolved one or more problems. I rebooted but I still received the same error message. So in the windows recovery console I then tried the commands,

ATTRIB -H C:\\boot.ini
ATTRIB -S C:\\boot.ini
ATRIB -R C:\\boot.ini
del boot.ini (after enter I got message missing files not found)
BOOTCFG /Rebuild

It said the scan was successful and ask me to rewrite the boot sector, I said yes and rebooted but now I get a screen asking me to choose which operating system I want windows to start and after I Choose the operating system, It gives me the same error message, windows/system32/config/system file missing or corrupt. I just want to know whether or not if I should just trash this computer or can it be saved?
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#2
Macboatmaster

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Welcome to GeekstoGo

Please see post 2 on this link
http://www.geekstogo...ing-or-corrupt/


I am not quite certain that you completed the last cmd with the required Y as explained on the link.

This may make it a little clearer for you

  • bootcfg /rebuild
  • Tthat will scan your hard drives for any Windows XP installations and then display the results. Follow the remaining steps to add your Windows XP installation to the boot.ini file.
  • The first prompt asks Add installation to boot list? (Yes/No/All).

    Type Y in response to this question and press Enter.
  • The next prompt asks you to Enter Load Identifier:.

    This is the name of the operating system. For example, type Windows XP Professional or Windows XP Home Edition and press Enter.
  • The final prompt asks you to Enter OS Load options:.

    Type /Fastdetect here and press Enter.
  • .


and did you run the fixboot cmd.


I recommend you go back and try again.

If it still does not work, when you post back we can try something else.
Do you have Data you wish to ensure is secure by way of your photographs (images), documents etc,
I am not proposing a reinstall but you may wish to esnure it is secured.
If so DO this
http://www.geekstogo...over-your-data/


That guide takes you to a puppy install download but not the 5.20 Lupo as there is a new edition.
Use the 5.20 and then follow the guide
Here is the separate link to 5.20 Lupo
http://ftp.nluug.nl/....2/lupu-520.iso

Note an ISO file - as per the link and no doubt the download you used for the RC
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#3
Skqck

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I'm sorry for the misunderstanding but I guess I should have mention that in the first post. But yes, I did do all of the steps that Broni had mention. Did You want me to try it again and see if it works on a second go around?
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#4
Macboatmaster

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No need to apologise my suspicion was caused by the - which operating system choice.

I had a feeling you had NOT typed in the Windows Xp media Home Edition 2006.

As along as you are sure you did as explained by my colleague Broni
there is little point in trying that aspect again.

Did the computer shutdown OR did you have to force a shutdown etc.

If it is not the boot.ini data it may well be a corrupted registry normally caused by a froced shutdown when it is being written to, especially during updates or new software install

If you want the data securing proceed as I have suggested and when you have done that I will give you the next step to attempt repair.
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#5
Skqck

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Now I don't know if it made a difference but from what I remember I typed in Windows XP Home, then I typed /fastdetect, Y for yes so it can write a new boot sector then fixboot, then typed exit and the comp rebooted
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#6
Macboatmaster

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That is why it is asking which you wish to boot to.
SO what does it offer please
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#7
Skqck

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It says windows xp home and windows xp media center edition but whichever one I choose I still get the error message
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#8
Macboatmaster

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Ok, as I said, that is why, you have created a boot ini for xp home

YES I do recommend you go back and start again.

I do not expect it will solve the porblem, but at least we will be sure.

You have not indicated if you do wish to ensure data is secure - you may already have it backed up - caould you indicate that now please as I am signing off for a couple of hours.

If you are going to use Puppy that will give you chance to do so
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#9
Macboatmaster

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Use PUPPY first if you wish to ensure your personal files are secure, just in case the problems are caused by a failing hard drive


AFTER securing your data try this
Put the CD back in, boot back to that.
Go back to Recovery Console and follow this procedure PLEASE be careful that you follow it exactly.
Note the space between cd and the rest of the command. Ditto for copy.

When you get to the recovery console prompt:

* Type cd \ and press "Enter".
* Type cd system~1\_resto~1 and press "Enter".
* Type dir and press "Enter".

After you press enter you will see a list of folders (like rp1, rp2) If the list of restore points has more than one page then press the "Enter" key until you reach the end of the list

* Type cd rp {number of the second to last folder in the list} and press "Enter". (Example: Type cd rp9 if rp10 is the last restore point.)
* Type cd snapshot and press "Enter".
* Type copy _registry_machine_system c:\windows\system32\config\system and press "Enter".
* Type copy _registry_machine_software c:\windows\system32\config\software and press "Enter".
* Type exit and press "Enter".

Your PC will reboot.

If you get an access denied error when doing the above, then do the following at the recovery console:

* Type cd \ and press "Enter".
* Type cd windows\system32\config and press "Enter".
* Type ren system system.bak and press "Enter".
* Type exit and press "Enter".

Your PC will reboot, go back into the Recovery Console and start from the beginning.
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#10
Skqck

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I will now go back and retry all the steps and no, there is nothing that I need to save at this time.
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#11
Skqck

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Okay I redone the steps that was listed by Broni and all it did was create another windows xp media center option to choose from when starting windows. I tried the next steps and when I entered cd system~1\_resto~1 and pressed Enter I get a message that says, "the system cannot find the file or directory specified." I went ahead and typed in "dir" and it does pull up a list of things but all I see on this page is a date bracket, time bracket, a bracket with a letter "d" some of them have a letter "a" or "arhs" or "d hs" or "d rh" and in the last bracket it looks like it shows the files or data that was modified or saved.
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#12
Macboatmaster

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Please clarify that you did not type that command at the C:\>Windows prompt as if you did it will not work

The restore files are not in C Windows they are in C: so you have to type the CD \ first to return one directory to a C prompt
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#13
Skqck

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When get into the Recovery Console it first ask me which windows installation would I like to log onto. I enter the number 2 for c:\windows, then I entered cd \ then enter, next I entered in cd system~1\_resto~1 and pressed Enter I get a message "the system cannot find the file or directory specified." So these were the steps I took. Let me know if I did it incorrectly.
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#14
Macboatmaster

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Sorry about this, but the slight confusion is because you have created another boot.ini for XP home

What is the choice and try the one you have NOT eg what is number 1.

So at this screen what is shown
Posted Image

If you still receive the report it cannot find the file
Make the Puppy CD please and post back when you have that and the computer has booted from it.
I know you said you did not want to save any data, but we are going to use it for something else.
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#15
Skqck

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In slot NUMBER 1 it says D:\MiniNT, Option Number 2 says C:\Windows
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