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BSOD Advanced Help


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#1 Jay18

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 03:45 PM

I need a little help. A customer brought in a computer with a BSOD error:

Stop: c0000218 {Registry File Failure} The registry cannot load the hive (file): \SystemRoot\System32\Config\SOFTWARE or its log or alternate

I've seen it before, and usually do a system restore or reload the hive from the system restore files. However, my customer is (a little too) thorough in keeping his computer cleaned and has deleted all good system restore points. I've gone back as far as I can to no avail. They all result in a BSOD.

I've checked memory, hard drive, stripped all unnecessary hardware, all the basics. I can boot into safe mode and schedule a chkdsk /f on next restart. Once I do that it boots into regular mode just fine. However, when I shut down it blue screens again on the next restart.

It seems I remember a MS article on this a while back, where some hardware or process writes to the hive on shutdown and corrupts the hive, resulting in the BSOD on subsequent restarts. I can't find it now, of course.

Anyone have any thoughts on troubleshooting this? I'm considering terminating processes one at a time prior to shutdown to see if there is a change. Is there a way to view the hive before and after to see what process is writing errors?

Dimension 4550
XP Pro SP3
Pentium 4 1.8GHz
512MB RAM

Thanks!

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 04:03 PM

Error Message When You Install Windows XP STOP c0000218 {Registry File Failure} - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/830084

Repair Registry File Failure, C0000218 Error - http://xphelpandsupport.mvps.org/how_do_i_repair_a_stop.htm

Louis

#3 Jay18

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 04:29 PM

Louis,

Thanks for the reply. I have tried the steps in both articles. The problem with the system restore files is that the customer regularly deletes restore points to save disk space. The disk is clean, and all hardware has been tested and seems to be okay.

I'm wondering if there is a way to compare the corrupt hive file and the clean hive file to determine what is causing the hive to become corrupt? I think something is writing to the hive on shutdown and making the machine unable to boot on subsequent restarts.

Thanks!

EDIT: In process of creating a new restore point in order to extract a good version of the SOFTWARE hive to compare with the corrupt one.

Edited by Jay18, 19 November 2010 - 05:10 PM.


#4 hamluis

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 06:36 PM

Sorry but I can't tell you any more than those links can :).

Louis

#5 joseibarra

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 06:46 PM

My notes have an issue similar to what you describe and the virtual finger was pointed at certain Norton/Symantec products.

The afflicted version was thought to be Symantec 9.X which reached it's end of life and is no longer supported.

The issue was corrected in a later release/new version.

Do you have any Norton/Symantec products installed, and if so, what kind and what versions?

Once you get the error, will a chkdsk /r from the XP Recovery Console clear it up for at least one more boot and then it is broken again?

Edited by joseibarra, 19 November 2010 - 06:48 PM.

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates.


#6 Jay18

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 01:23 PM

Do you have any Norton/Symantec products installed, and if so, what kind and what versions?

Once you get the error, will a chkdsk /r from the XP Recovery Console clear it up for at least one more boot and then it is broken again?


Norton is installed, but not being used. I will uninstall it.

A chkdsk /r will allow me to boot normally to windows on 1 subsequent restart. But once I shut it down, I get the BSOD when turning it on again.

Fwiw, I can log into safe mode all the time. I only get the BSOD when logging into regular mode.

EDIT:

Ummmm...so that worked. Jose, you, sir, are a life saver.

I uninstalled the Symantic Anti-virus from 2005 and I have restarted several times with no BSOD.

GENIUS!!! Thanks to all for the help!

Edited by Jay18, 20 November 2010 - 02:06 PM.


#7 hamluis

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 03:11 PM

Nice work, Jose :).

Louis

Edited by hamluis, 20 November 2010 - 03:11 PM.


#8 joseibarra

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 04:26 PM

Yea! Good job, Jay18 (you did all the work).

I really can't stand that error.

I will enhance my notes with this additional information...

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates.





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