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Computer won't get past the startup options


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#1 anabat1

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Posted 04 December 2010 - 12:15 AM

My computer won't get past the start up options (safe mode, safe mode with networking etc.). Before, I was able to start windows normally but not safe mode. Now I can't get past the start up options. Here's what I did to the computer:
I had the windefrag malware that I was trying to remove by runnning chkdsk F in XP using these instructions: http://www.ehow.com/how_2052292_run-chkdsk-f-windows-xp.html
The last thing I did was run>msconfig>/safeboot.
I am not an expert but I think this was supposed to restart the computer into safemode without pressing F8? And since my safe mode doesn't work for some reason, windows keeps going back to the start up option. Can anybody please help at least getting my windows to start normally again? Then I'll work on the win defrag malware problem.
Please and Thank you!

Edited by hamluis, 04 December 2010 - 03:56 PM.
Moved from internal Hardware to Am I infected ~ Hamluis.


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#2 AustrAlien

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Posted 04 December 2010 - 07:05 PM

There are several ways to go about fixing this situation: Let's try the most likely one first.

Do you have Windows XP installation CD?

If so, follow the instructions in the following link, under the heading:
Problems that can occur by forcing Safe Mode using the System Configuration Utility


If you don't have an XP installation CD, do you have access to (or can you borrow) any of the following?
  • A Vista or Windows 7 installation disk (in order to boot from, and access a command prompt)
  • A bootable disk of any kind, for example a Linux LiveCD
Do you by any chance, have the XP Recovery Console installed on your system (you would see it as an option to select each time you started the computer)?

Let me know if you have trouble, or none of these options are available to you.

Edited by AustrAlien, 04 December 2010 - 07:22 PM.

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#3 AustrAlien

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Posted 04 December 2010 - 07:19 PM

When you are able to get your system booted normally into Windows again ...

Please follow the removal guide at the following link (no need to use Safe Mode for this):

Remove Win Defrag (Uninstall Guide)

The MBAM log is automatically saved and can be viewed by clicking the Logs tab in MBAM. Copy and paste the contents of that report in your next reply. Be sure to post the complete log to include the top portion which shows MBAM's database version and your operating system.

Please post the log and let us know how the system is running now.

We can fix the issue of not being able to start Windows in Safe Mode if it still persists.
AustrAlien
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#4 anabat1

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Posted 29 December 2010 - 01:59 AM

Hi,
Sorry for the late reply. I've been using somebody else's laptop. Anyway, I cannot get a hold of an installation disk for windows. Is there any other way to fix the problem?

#5 AustrAlien

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 06:04 PM

It seems I have neglected to reply to your last post: My apologies.

Do you still need help?
AustrAlien
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#6 anabat1

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 07:27 PM

Yes, I do! Any help will be very much appreciated.

#7 AustrAlien

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 07:41 PM

We can get this fixed without too much effort.

Have there been any developments?

Are you still stuck with Windows trying to start in Safe Mode, but not being able to start and you cannot start Windows normally?
AustrAlien
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#8 anabat1

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 08:08 PM

yes. it's still trying to start at safe mode

#9 AustrAlien

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 08:33 PM

There are a couple of ways to go about this, but let's try using Puppy.

Download Puppy Linux (latest version 5.1.1, download size 130MB)

If you do not have a suitable program for burning an .ISO image to disk, please download ImgBurn and install it.
Open ImgBurn and use the "Write image file to disc" button to burn the downloaded .ISO image to a CD.

When you have Puppy Linux burned to a CD, then boot from the CD.
  • (You may need to follow the on-screen instructions to boot from a CD, or you may need to change the settings in BIOS so that the system boots from the CD before the HDD.)
  • Use as a LIVE CD operating system: Do not install. Puppy Linux will be loaded entirely into memory.
  • When booting from the Puppy CD is complete, you will see the Puppy desktop on the screen.

Find your Windows system drive (most likely labeled sda1), and navigate to the root of that drive and look for the file "boot.ini".

Open the boot.ini file.
  • It is simply a text file, so use the text editor within Puppy Linux to open the file (click on the file).
  • Delete the following switch: /safeboot:minimal Do not make any other change.
    If in any doubt, copy the content of the boot.ini file and post it here.
  • Save the file (save the changes made) and close it.
Exit Puppy Linux and remove the CD.

Start your Windows system. Does it start normally?
Let me know how the system is running.
AustrAlien
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#10 anabat1

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 09:43 PM

will this reformat my computer though?

#11 AustrAlien

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 11:21 PM

will this reformat my computer though?

No, this will not reformat your computer, or in any other way upset your existing Windows installation.

You wrote in your first post "The last thing I did was run>msconfig>/safeboot."
When you forced it to start in Safe Mode by using msconfig > safeboot, all you actually did was add the switch "/safeboot:minimal" to the end of the command in the boot.ini file to start Windows. Now, because you can no longer access Windows, you need to use another operating system (namely Puppy) to access the system and remove the switch from the command. That is the only thing my above instructions do: It will return your system to exactly how it was before you used msconfig > safeboot.

Please follow the instructions, and let me know if you have any trouble at any stage. If you can do what I have asked, your computer will then start normally, and we can then deal with the "windefrag malware" that you mentioned in your first post.

Edited by AustrAlien, 02 January 2011 - 11:23 PM.

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#12 anabat1

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Posted 03 January 2011 - 12:41 AM

how do i get from sda1>boot.ini? I can't find the boot.ini file

#13 AustrAlien

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Posted 03 January 2011 - 01:05 AM

You have made good progress: Well done.

Can you open sda1? What do you see inside sda1?

If you are in your Windows system partition, you should see a number of folders, and under them, some files. One of the first files should be boot.ini.

How many partitions are present in the system? (They will now be called sda1, sda2 and so on) Was your Windows system on the first partition of your hard drive, and was it called the C:\ drive?

If still having trouble, let me know the answer to my first two four questions.

Edited by AustrAlien, 03 January 2011 - 01:14 AM.

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#14 anabat1

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Posted 03 January 2011 - 01:25 AM

Stupid me, I didn't check sda2. The computer started normally now. Well, as normal as it can be with Windefrag.

#15 AustrAlien

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Posted 03 January 2011 - 01:34 AM

Well done!

Now follow my suggestion in post #3

Post the log(s) ... rkill and MBAM and let us know how the system is running when you have completed the removal guide instructions.
AustrAlien
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