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OS restore MCE 2005 from Gateway OEM restore disk


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#1 cocoam

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Posted 20 April 2010 - 07:41 PM

I was infected with the XP Antivirus 2010 trojan/virus at the end of February. I've never been infected with anything before, and although I have some computer savy, I've never installed an OS or had to use my Gateway OS restore disk before. The trojan/virus locked me out of Task manager, antivirus software, and the internet, and at one point would not let me turn the system off. I panicked and did a destructive OEM Restore . I thought I was fine because I did a full, supposedly mirror image, backup to my external HD about one to two weeks prior. Although the virus would not let me safely remove my external, I had it set to not require that and immediately jerked the USB out when I realized what was happening (who could not know what was happening with that piece of work!?!!).

Please let me explain that my original license for Windows XP MCE 2005 was for a Gateway system that the mobo PCI slot failed on and a local computer company rebuilt my system and reinstalled under that license (supposedly), but what they did was make a ghost/mirror of old system for backup and simply put everything else except mobo and new RAM sticks back in. Media Center did not work correctly for about four months (and was constantly back in to them to try to fix the problem). The computer went out of warranty with them and I got tired of trying to resolve the issues. I even had to call Microsoft to reactivate my license myself. :thumbsup: My HD failed during one of the intervals I actually had the computer back and had to install another one - which they transferred ghost/mirror to. I explain all of this before the current issues in case they may bear on the current issues as well. Media Center continued to have problems - some recorded TV programs, but not all, within a series will not delete. A 'read only' file cannot be deleted or a Disk error message comes up on these. The files are gone in the Recorded TV folder, but they continue to list within Media Center TV series with these errors.

I completed the OEM restore function and in my ignorance immediately installed the .bkf backup file thinking that it would reinstall everything just as it was before. The actual backup took 28+ hours to complete and verify when I did it, but only took 4+ hours to reapply and I thought that very odd. I had to reactivate OS license based on the sticker the local computer Co put on my case (they kept the old case and the Gateway sticker info). I signed up with Microsoft Update to get the system updates/patches back in place and then installed drivers for Hauppage tuner, GPU and other devices, but I did not update mobo drivers (someone just told me today that if I wipe the drive I must do that). My old system had MPEG2 codec via preinstalled Cyberlink Power DVD and I tried to update that, but although there is a program folder it does not show in Add/Remove as it did before and I cannot update driver for that (program interface comes up, but it will not play or open DVDs). Nero 6 was supposed to be part of the OS, but I could not update drivers for that and it will not function. I had a Nero 7 Essential disk that came with optical drive so I installed that but received a lot of errors even though it appeared to continue to install and place icons on desktop and showed in Add/Remove. I uninstalled and reinstalled with the same errors and Add/Remove now showed one Nero 7 with Nero icon and a second installation with a program icon. The program icon Nero would not uninstall from Add/Remove. Was able to uninstall via MS cleanup utility, but :C/Program/Nero is still there and all files populated. It is gone from Add/Remove. I reinstalled Nero 7 and received the same errors, continued to supposedly install and showed in Add/Remove with Nero icon, placed all icons out on desktop. Would not function and gave error messages when tried to use. I uninstalled again via Add/Remove (its gone) and installed an OEM Nero 8 Essentials without errors (but it requires purchased MPEG2 function, so I can't play DVDs with that either). The popluated Nero 7 file is still there in Programs folder.

**PLEASE NOTE: I downloaded Malwarebytes and ran that and it found some Hkey 'disable firewall' things (still have mbam log) that AVG 9 did not catch - and this was after I applied the .bkf file. I do not know if this was from the XP Antivirus 2010 or not.**

MS update provided Realtek and nVidia GPU drivers automatically (but I did go directly to mfg's for updates to be sure current). MS Update would install some patches/updates, but would not install others even though they were listed in High priority and most were Security updates. I own and continue to use Office 2000 Professional because its what I have and has worked in the past. It is now out of service with MS and I could not install any updates from MS office site and Outlook would not open (would download but not install). MS Support finally forced a few updates (not office) and two days later, after trying repeatedly to open office and outlook, they miraculously opened and worked (did nothing else in the interim time). None of the .Net Framework updates would install even though they showed up in High priority. Media Center finally worked, but will not play in fast-forward or rewind as before (counter moves, but I have to guess where to stop it to get past commercials), and when I press play again sound is normal speed but picture is like slow-motion, frame-by-frame jerk, or it won't play at all (even though sound is going). I sometimes have to exit Media Center altogether and come back in and it will only start playing from the point before I pressed fast forward or rewind instead of exactly at the Resume point. It will not play DVD's at all. I found the MPEG2 codec file that local cmptr co loaded (don't know from who), but found in via cnet and reinstalled. I also found a Nastaveni codec that they also installed - even though its listed as a download on cnet (or was), it showed no longer available. A dashboard for Nastaveni comes up when I click in the file, but it does nothing and does not show in Add/Remove.

Because Ms Updates would not install (download but not install) and because priority for installations was changing from High P to Optional on some of them everytime I looked at the Ms update dashboard, I finally contacted MS Support via the free e-mail service. The first two reps only dealt with Update issues. They finally forced the .Net Framework updates onto my computer and Media Center failed completely. I had to restore to an earlier point (but the .Net Framework 3.5 family update remains on the system). After the .Net Framework install IE8 will work, but will not go to some sites I've been visiting for forever, or will not drill down into topics on those sites that it will go to. I've tried adjusting security and compatability, but nothing has worked. I have now gone through two reps and escalated to a third engineer who is restating the error/problems incorrectly and advised me to do a repair "XP" install even though I've told them from the get-go (and repeatedly) that I have MCE 2005 and only a Gateway OEM Restore disk. They will not answer basic questions even though I've asked them repeatedly: 1. Is there a way to do a repair install from a restore disk? 2. Is there a way to determine if the .bkf backup produced by the MS application is corrupt and if so, is there anything I can do about it? 3. Is the sequence that I applied the .bkf file incorrect and given me the result I have? 4. Can I use the MS backup utility with any kind of confidence in the current system, or do I just have to lose it all? (they did respond that I could back up manually and told me how to do it, but never answered any other question with a "yes," "no," "don't support that," or in any other way.

I found an open source application called WinFuture xp_iso_Builder.exe that will supposedly convert an OEM restore disk to a bootable ISO full-install. Supposed to be able to do a repair installation from this. Comments from users state that it worked for them, but I was unable to find a report from anyone with the MCE 2005 and that concerns me.

I am now forced to probably do another destructive install and try to backup from a corrupt OS. I've been to The Green Button and no one has replied or even read my post. I desparately need to know how to do this the proper way this time around and if it is possible that my .bkf file is still good or even worth worrying about. I did all of this on my own and via the "free advice" way because I'm unemployed (darned economy) and cannot afford geek repair. I'm trying to earn some income via computer, but can't be assured that something else isn't going to fail and IE8 function has me almost dead in the water. Can someone help me? I have kept complete track of everything done via MS Support and all of the error jpg.s if there is a way to salvage what I have or of interest for future diagnostic purposes.

Thank you for any and all help!!!

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 20 April 2010 - 08:22 PM

Well...I can't tell you much about restore/recovery disks...other than that such have to be used in conjunction with instructions from the system manufacturer.

These disks are not intended to be the equivalent of MS Genuine XP install CDs...they are intended by the manufacturer to function as a device to restore the system to the state it was in when first purchased.

Louis

#3 cocoam

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 02:05 AM

hamluis,

I understand that the OEM restore disks are install disks that the OEM's added specific system ident locks to. And yes, it installs the system back to original Gateway state. I still have the mfg's instructions that came with it and that I followed (nothing special except to sign on afterwards to their site and get updates through Big Fix, but their system doesn't recognize my system anymore). When the system was new all Big Fix did was direct me to turn on MS auto update and told me what specific updates to get from MS - basically I activated MS autoupdate through the Big Fix Panel as well as thru MS and soon deactivated Big Fix as an annoyance. So many people have had problems with the OEM restore disks (hardware fails for pitty sake), but we purchased an OS license and should have the right to use these and not be locked out (Dell is the only OEM that appears to be trying to address this issue). I searched and found the open source WinFuture xp_iso_builder.exe with the hopes that that might be the answer - and it appears to be for some folks, but no one with MCE reported success (or failure) that I could find. Do you know of anyone else who has used such a restore-to-install disk converter application? Bad or good stories?

Is there any way to find out if my backup .bkf file is corrupt, and if so is there anything I can do about it? I could purchase another install disk at great hardship right now, but I would like to be able to use my backup if I can. Like many these days, just about every important file I have is in there.

Should I apply all updates, drivers and software (like office) before I apply a backup? Is there a secret sequence to do this? I hate that I'm so ignorant of these seemingly simple things, but I can't find any info other than the sequence is important with Media Center in particular - just no specifics. I simply hate that I didn't just make a mirror drive instead of using MS's bkf! I have waaaay too many degrees already from the school of Hard Knocks, but it looks like I qualify for another one soon.

#4 cryptodan

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 01:02 PM

If after using their system recovery disk, then them not being able to detect it anymore maybe you need to install the drivers off the accompanying driver CD that is also shipped with some OEM's.

#5 cocoam

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 04:58 PM

Hi Cryptodan,

This particular one was an all inclusive restore cd with OS and drivers (states on label and instructs) and I did double check for that when I originally got it. I did not uninstall any drivers after the restore. However, the drivers on the cd are for the hardware on the computer when I bought it and is one of the identification locks they put on it - I guess if they don't load and work Gateway can't see them. It is an all new system now because first the mobo failed, then HD's, I upgraded GPU and tuner and replaced the really yukie optical drive (generic Tiwanese thingy that they replaced once during warranty) + added second opt drive.

The only thing I did not do, and did not know that I needed to do when I installed in February was download mobo/CPU drivers, but when I do again I'll do that too.

Thanks for the suggestion, though! I really appreciate you guys taking the time!!

#6 cryptodan

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 05:01 PM

Is it a similar motherboard to the same one that was installed? Or did you buy this motherboard and installed it on your own?

#7 hamluis

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 05:48 PM

Generally speaking...you cannot use recovery/restore disks made for an OEM-installed motherboard...on a replacement motherboard...that's the same as trying to use it on a different system.

Such disks are made to be compliant with the original hardware installed. Changing said hardware and trying to use disks made for different hardware...isn't likely to work.

This is by the design of the original system manufacturer.

Louis

#8 cocoam

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 10:38 PM

Louis,

Thank you for your reply. That is why the restore-to-install disk converter application is so very appealing. And, you're right...it hasn't worked for me yet!! It makes me angry that the OEMs did that to the consumers (of course MS went right along with it for the MCE and is paying the price offering service to try to help folks afterwards -- and why they changed tactics with Vista and 7). I don't have any recourse with Gateway now, so that's why I'm hoping someone in bleeping computer has some kind of experience with this. The mobo I have is totally compliant for an XP MCE 2005 OS installation, so there should not be any reason why I can't use the disk other than they never wanted anyone to (planned obsolescence --- and the mobo failed almost exactly one month after warranty expired!). My license works with MS just fine, and as far as they're concerned, I'm entitled to use it.

#9 cocoam

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 10:48 PM

Cryptodan,

The motherboard I have now is different - the mobo that came with the computer failed almost right after the warranty with Gateway expired. The mobo is compliant for XP MCE 2005 OS. Sorry I got out of sequence replying to you and Louis, so you can take a look at my reply to her as well.

I just got a reply back from the MS support engineer who says that Gateway is the one who has to step me through the restore disk -- but that is not what the instructions say that came with the disk; although Gateway will not help me now.

Have you had any experience with other OEM restore disk owner's use of WinFuture's xp_iso_builder.exe application?

Thanks again for taking the time to think about my problem and help me.

#10 cocoam

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 11:01 PM

Louis,

I think you're trying to tell me in a very nice way to just bite the bullet and buy the OS disk...right? I would love to just pick up the phone or go to NewEgg or Tiger and drop the $150 (item + shipping) without a second thought, but I can't really do that until I'm totally convinced that I HAVE to spend it --- things are extremely tight right now. If they weren't I would be all over it. I'm totally frustrated and weary at this point.

I can't thank you enough for taking the thought and time to even try to help me. Before I came to bleeping computer no one was replying and I was spending hours and hours trying to find info for myself. MS support has been totally helpful within their purvue, but don't want to respond negatively or tell me they don't support stuff and its been going very, very slow.

:thumbsup: All the best.

#11 cryptodan

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Posted 22 April 2010 - 12:09 AM

Cryptodan,

The motherboard I have now is different - the mobo that came with the computer failed almost right after the warranty with Gateway expired. The mobo is compliant for XP MCE 2005 OS. Sorry I got out of sequence replying to you and Louis, so you can take a look at my reply to her as well.


The bolded text is why Gateway Support site is not detecting your Computer anymore.

Might as well throw that CD away, and get Windows 7 Ultimate as it comes with Media Center.

#12 cocoam

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Posted 23 April 2010 - 01:05 AM

Hi Cryptodan,

I'm a little slow answering back today with a lot going on. I've considered it since I did find a Windows 7 (OEM but full install) at just about $40-50 more than the MCE at Tiger, but Other software that I have to use everyday in business is not compatible and I am really watching every penny I spend right now. MS Support has offered to look into information about how to use the restore disk from Gateway for me since I do own the license (they've received a lot of flak for allowing MCE OS be locked up in proprietary release because hardware fails -- in my case it failed rapidly). I don't know if MS can help me, but I should know something the next couple of days. If they can't help me I'm very tempted to attempt using the open source software "WinFuture xp_iso-builder.exe" that I talked about in my first post. If it doesn't work, then I'm no worse off than now and will just have to part with the bucks to get a functioning OS. Or even go to Ubuntu and a free-ware player llike VLC or something. I've never used Ubuntu (can't think of the other open source OS just at the moment...tired), but I'm so accustomed to Windows I'm not sure I can make the transition. I could always try it - again, wouldn't be any worse off than I am now!

Thanks again! If you come across anything on your end I would appreciate hearing about it!

All the best.

#13 cryptodan

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Posted 23 April 2010 - 01:08 AM

When you started to experience issues why didnt you send it back to Gateway, or order an exact copy of the motherboard. You can buy parts for them.

#14 cocoam

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Posted 23 April 2010 - 10:13 AM

The motherboard failed one or so months after Gateway warranty expired. I tried to get help from them, but they just wanted to sell me a whole new computer - even started listing systems available and prices. They advised me to talk with their tech assistance via phone, but they wanted to charge me so much money per minute/call (can't remember what). I was emphatically told that they could not advise or help me at all unless I paid the money (if I remember correctly it was something like $25 per/??). The person I did talk to kept saying things like "when the mobo fails there's not much you can do...just as well to buy a new computer."

The local computer company who did the job for me was a "real piece of work" in that they told me I could not get the same board (only to find out afterwards that they were carrying them on their shelves - maybe not the exact same one, but same style!!!! That's commision sales for you). I complained loudly to owner who kept saying they'd fix the OS to work Media Center, but they did not in the end -- and I still didn't understand the real issues to force them to do it. Never built my own computer (again, in the end - hind sight is always 20-20 "pearl of wisdom" and all that). They told me that transferring the OS to that system wouldn't be a problem (shouldn't be a problem), but I did not know enough at that time to realize why I was having problems.

I've since gotten a better education about my system, in particular, and tech issues in broad sense, but doesn't do me any good after the fact, eh? At this point it would be cheaper to buy an OS install CD than replace the mobo and case and time and learning curve to do it myself. Don't have the money.

All the best.

#15 cryptodan

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Posted 23 April 2010 - 12:43 PM

Can I get the service tag or model number off your computer so I can do some research for you and find a motherboard for it so you can use Gateway Update Services and your MCE Disk?




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