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Son's computer


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#1 annracca

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 04:59 PM

My son's girlfriend had just gotten done with a virus scan when we had a power glitch (it's a common thing with our electric company). When she booted the computer back up, she got the log in screen (choose a profile). She clicked the profile she wanted to use and it showed the desktop for a few seconds without icons before going back to the log in screen. An error came up, saying that 'Windows cannot start because there is a missing or damaged file'.

When trying to run an XP installation disk in Safe mode (regular safe mode - safe mode with networking does the same thing as normal startup), the system says that it cannot find the disk, no matter which cd drive it's in. (Even now, getting to Safe mode is iffy - he says they got it to get to Safe mode possibly once or twice.) To fix this, our computer repairman says that it will take $60 to reinstall Windows XP.

Is there anything we can do on our end to avoid the cost of professional help?

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 05:33 PM

System manufacturer and model?

FWIW: You cannot run an XP install CD from safe mode...what would be the point, since you cannot reinstall XP on itself, as long as XP is open? In order for any install of XP to be repaired by a reinstall...it must be totally closed, which is why installing files from an optical drive works only when XP has not been entered.

That said...recovery disks may be different. Recovery disks are issued by the manufacturer of systems (e.g., Dell, HP, eMachines, etc.) and are not the equivalent of a Microsoft XP CD...even though the uses (in part) may coincide and some of the files on the CD are files used to install XP.

Soooo...to give you the right advice, we need to know which you are calling "XP installation disk."

Thanks :thumbsup:.

Whenever there is an error message that provides clues on situations where the system is stifled...it's good to write those down. There are a zillion possible errors for XP and there is no generic cure (other than a clean install) for whatever might be wrong.

Louis

#3 annracca

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 05:53 PM

The 'XP installation disk' is just a Windows XP disk like you'd go and buy from a place like Office Depot. His computer is an HP Pavillion XT978 (s/n US14362029) according to the letter that the computer repair shop wrote (we're trying to get our electric company to fix it using their insurance since the glitch was thier fault, but so far, no luck).

Does any of this help?

#4 hamluis

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 06:20 PM

Yes, thanks :thumbsup:.

Since you have what sounds like a MS XP CD...let's try running chkdsk /r from the Recovery Console on the CD, as a first step.

How to use CHKDSK in the XP Recovery Console - http://pirules3.14.googlepages.com/recovery_console_chkdsk

First, you'll need to go into the BIOS/Setup...and change the boot options...so that your CD drive is the first option available.

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/documen...p;product=62752

Once that change is made and saved (press F10, it will save BIOS changes and reboot the system). then you should be set to access the Recovery Console on the XP disk.

Once the chkdsk /r has completed, it will boot into XP (hopefully).

Louis




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