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Problem with windows xp home pc

Discussion in 'Software' started by Meltin, May 30, 2005.

  1. Meltin

    Meltin Bit Poster

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    Ive had a problem with a pc and wondered if anyone had any ideas. Its a new pc running XP Home.Twice now windows has refused to load giving the message about " windows could not start because the following file was missing or corrupt \windows\system32\cinfig\system ". It suggests running the repair option from setup but as I understand it this involves the recovery console which is not available in the home edition. After trying to start in safe mode and using last good configuration it says that HAL.DLL is missing or corrupt. As I said this has happened twice. Each time the pc has had norton internet security installed. This last time I have also installed spybot and made sure that all windows updates were up to date, however it is refusing to install 2 windows security updates KB873333 and KB890859. Has anyone and ideas?? Thanks.

    Mod Edit: moved to software forum (N)
     
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  2. nugget
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    nugget Junior toady

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    Hi Meltin and welcome to the forum.

    To do a repair install just put your cd in and reboot. It will boot from the cd and go through the normal installation routine. You will then get the option to do a new install or repair a current windows installation. Choose this one, then choose which installation to repair and follow the directions (not too many).

    This will replace any corrupt or missing OS files.

    HTH
     
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  3. Meltin

    Meltin Bit Poster

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    Thanks for the reply. It didnt seem to give me the option to repair it just went straight into a new installation with formatting etc. I didnt know whether this was because it was XP Home rather than professional? Also I was wondering what might have caused this since it has happened twice in 2 weeks on a new pc?
     
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  4. KeithNN

    KeithNN Byte Poster

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    Huh? :eek: Who told you that? It's available in my copy of XP Home...
     
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  5. nugget
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    nugget Junior toady

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    To install the recovery console go to the Run command on the start menu and type D:\i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons where D: is the letter of YOUR cd-rom drive.
     
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  6. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

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    Guys, the recovery option only seems to be available in the actual install disks of windows - so if you are in the situation I am in, which i suspect that our friend here is in, where you have an OEM install, and the manufacturer has supplied you with a recovery disk, all it does is wipe and start again. you also cant use it to repair windows! its a nightmare!

    The only thing i could suggest would be to lift the files from another PC running XP home and drop them into the required location on your own machine, if you can! If not, put all the files you want to keep in a safe place, then recover!

    Fergal
     
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  7. nugget
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    nugget Junior toady

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    Good point Fergal. I should have twigged that it's a new pc and nobody really buys win xp home, therefore it's an OEM. Still, after doing a clean install and then installing the recovery console as the first step he should be able to avoid the same thing happening again.
     
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  8. tripwire45
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    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Meltin, if you don't have any data you need to save, then go ahead and just blow away the current install with the recovery disk and go from there.

    If you have data on the machine that you absolutely must save and you can't get it off any other way, you could try to download and burn a knoppix disk. It's a flavor of Linux that will run the OS straight from the CD without having to install it on the HDD. You will be able to browse the file structure of the Windows XP Home machine and save your files elsewhere, perhaps transferring them across the network to another machine.

    http://www.knoppix.net/

    As far as how this happened, I can only guess that some virus or spyware got on board and caused the damage. If this is a completely new machine and started displaying this error out of the box, I'd complain to the place you bought it from and get them to either fix it or replace it. In fact, if the box is under warranty, you might want to save yourself the effort of trying to repair it yourself and just have the vendor or manufacturer do the job. Let us know how you get on.
     
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  9. Meltin

    Meltin Bit Poster

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    Thanks for the help guys. It would appear that the disc is only an OEM recovery disc. I have reinstalled everything for a second time and am hoping that with all anti virus /spyware in place that it should be ok this time. The only problem I have now is that a couple of the windows security updates fail to install when all the others have sucessfully. Has anyone else experienced anything like this?
     
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  10. Boycie
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    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    Meltin,

    This has happened to me from time to time. Although it appears there could be many reasons why one thing I would say is if it fails have a look at the error log (the display box that says it has failed and type it into the Microsoft Knowledge base).
    It is probably worth retrying after a restart too.
     
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  11. Jakamoko
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    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    I do know that if perhaps a theoretical person were using a theoretically invalid version of Windows with a theoretically blacklisted Product Key, that MS will refuse the PC the updates. All this is in theory though, and to be honest, doesn't sound like the case here. Theoretically.

    And before you lot start - the theoretical person is not me, It is a situation I have observed in the past. :)
     
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  12. Mitzs
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    Mitzs Ducktape Goddess

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    Meltin, if you think norton is causing this. Turn it off before doing your updates. Or just pull it off your computer completely and use AVG. They have a free edition that I've been using for several years now. It has never let down yet. Knock on wood.
     
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  13. nugget
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    nugget Junior toady

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    Is that with your theoretical friends Jak??:ohmy
     
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  14. Meltin

    Meltin Bit Poster

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    It looks like the problem with the updates was down to some file errors which showed up in chkdsk. They've gone through fine now. Thanks for the help people!

    I also use AVG on my machine too Mitz. This one was for my parents in law. Its amazing how much it slows the machine up.
     
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  15. Jakamoko
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    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    btw, I was NOT meaning to suggest anything untoward with the copy of Windows, or OEM disk you're using, Meltin - just that what a posted above IS a known reason why some Windows updates won't take.

    Just a general FYI for all :)
     
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  16. Meltin

    Meltin Bit Poster

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    No Problems mate I didnt read it that way anyway...
     
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  17. Mitzs
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    Mitzs Ducktape Goddess

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    Well I think what people pay for these computer they should get the real version of windows not an oem. If people would stand togather and start complaining about this it might help.
     
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  18. Mitzs
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    Mitzs Ducktape Goddess

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    Aren't all his firends theoretical? :blink

    sorry, I couldn't control my keyboard.
     
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  19. tripwire45
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    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    His friends are theoretical the way your duct tape is virtual, mitzs. :biggrin
     
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