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Windows XP Won't Load

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Out of the blue, when I turn on my computer, I get a black screen with this message:

Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: \windows\system32\config\system. You can attempt to repair the file by starting Windows Setup using original setup CD ROM. Select r at the first screen to start repair.

I followed those instructions and when I select r, I get only one choice--to choose #1 c:\windows. I type 1 and press enter and nothing happens.

I also tried to setup Windows again--a new load, and when I get to the EULA, I press F8 as it requires to accept the EULA, and nothing happens.

What do I do? What could be the problem? HELP!

Thanks! :tazz:
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If your current Windows installation is not totally zapped yet, there is a folder C:\WINDOWS\REPAIR\ ---- There are some backups of critical system files in here, including the file named SYSTEM

I think this folder is probably intended for Windows to repair itself on demand, since it's not documented in anything I've read, but it should work manually as well. The folder is not hidden, so default view settings are okay. Right-click the file you need in the REPAIR folder, select COPY. Now open the folder C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\CONFIG and right-click and select 'PASTE'
to overwrite the file that's in there.
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