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access denied(?) recov console (system32 reg err)

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hello and thanks.

i'm trying to repair the (system32) file damaged/missing problem.
yes i've read the article on the microsoft site.
i can only get to the recovery console(using the cd-rom), and when i try to type in the first
command (make new temp folder?) all i get is "access denied".
nowhere did it ask for an admin password.
although i have the password (my fathers, as it is his comp i'm trying to fix)
i'm not sure how to get the recovery console to let me fix it.(access)

also...i see something about a "safe mode" written in alot of help articles...(?)
when i try to boot up and hold f8, all it does is flash a screen very briefly with an image and text on it, beep 2 times then goes blank.

if i just boot up the computer and let it be..it always reads the "system32 missing/damaged"....

btw..i'm not a pc person..although i understand how this works, i prefer mac os for imaging and media software. this is my pops dell running xp that i'm trying to fix without losing some of the files he didnt backup. if i could get em off and then just wipe his comp clean,i would...there is nothing fancy about his set-up, almost an out-of the box dell.

thanks much!
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There are a couple of ways to get the info off the Hard Disk, but the simplest if you have another computer is to take the Hard Disk out of the machine that is having probelms, and put it into a working computer as a slave.

This will allow you to copy the info off the broken hard disk onto the working computer.

You can then put the problematic one back in the other PC and re-install windows on it.

FYI http://www.duxcw.com...Howto/hd/cpyhd/
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uh.... thanks. but i only have this mac ibook and a usb hardrive...so i dont think your suggestion will work.(at least from looking at that link)
we, max/protools/finalcut/photoshop users prefer macs...
i didnt find the link mentioning something i'd be able to do.
can a repair shop do this quickly and inexpensively?
its just this stupid system32 blah blah blah error.
thank god for macs. never had a virus..or anthing like this happen on one, osx or otherwise....
anyway...back to the drawing board.
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