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Disappearing Start Menu

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#1 skenasis


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Posted 15 January 2008 - 03:35 AM

I hate for my first post to be a cry for help, but I've not been able to find help for my specific problem. As the title suggests, my start menu has vanished. I'm running XP with Service Pack 2.

When I initially turned my computer on, none of the text was in the default font. It was instead in one of the symbol fonts. This has been fixed by going into display properties -> appearance -> advanced and altering the font for each appropriate item. The computer was booting up extremely slowly, but this seems to have been fixed with altering the display fonts.

Back to the start menu. As opposed to the normal start menu, I have a thin grey bar - not unlike what appears when the start menu is set to auto-hide. When I hover over the bar, the mouse icon changes to the up/down arrow. However, when I left-click (and hold down the button) and drag, nothing happens. When I right-click, the normal popup menu appears, sans the 'Cascade Windows', 'Tile Windows Horizontally', 'Tile Windows Vertically' and 'Lock the Taskbar' options. I can still access the properties menu to change the auto-hide and locking options, but changing them does nothing. Changing between 'Start menu' and 'Classic Start menu' via the 'Start Menu' tab also does nothing. Minimized windows appear above the grey bar.

I thought that doing a system restore might help. Since I can't access system restore via the start menu itself, I did it by: My Computer -> C: -> Documents and Settings -> All Users -> Start Menu -> Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> System Restore. This gives the error "System Restore is not able to protect your computer. Please restart your computer, and then run System Restore again." Restarting my computer has no effect. I checked, and system restore is enabled. Going into Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Services, then right-clicking 'System Restore Service' and left-clicking 'Properties' (which is bolded) does nothing. When I right-click and instead left-click 'Start', it attempts to start and brings up the following error: "Could not start the System Restore Service on Local Computer. Error 1068: The dependency service or group failed to start."

I didn't install anything or make any changes before this happened. Just booted up the computer, and lo and behold, it's stuffed up. Help to either get a system restore happening or just bringing the start menu back would be greatly appreciated.
EDIT: And for some reason, I'm unable to access the internet on the affected computer. Since I'm using the internet on this computer without any trouble, I think it might be that my wireless card software isn't auto-starting like it normally does.

Edited by skenasis, 15 January 2008 - 03:38 AM.

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