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Computer won't start after doing registry "fixes"


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#1 SoXfused

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 06:06 PM

Hello,

Yesterday, I used CCleaner to clean up my computer and I let it do "registry fixes" this time when I cleaned it. Well, after shutting down my computer and going to start it up again, my computer now won't start up! When I go to start up, the first screen that I get says is "BIOS Settings: F2, BOOT Menu: F10. After that the second screen I get says Press F11 to start recovery, NTLDR is Missing, Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart. That's as far as my computer will go when I try to start up and I have no idea what to do.

Please help. Thank you.

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 07:20 PM

Bleeping Computer DOES NOT recommend the use of registry cleaners/optimizers for several reasons:
  • Registry cleaners are extremely powerful applications that can damage the registry by using aggressive cleaning routines and cause your computer to become unbootable.

    The Windows registry is a central repository (database) for storing configuration data, user settings and machine-dependent settings, and options for the operating system. It contains information and settings for all hardware, software, users, and preferences. Whenever a user makes changes to settings, file associations, system policies, or installed software, the changes are reflected and stored in this repository. The registry is a crucial component because it is where Windows "remembers" all this information, how it works together, how Windows boots the system and what files it uses when it does. The registry is also a vulnerable subsystem, in that relatively small changes done incorrectly can render the system inoperable. For a more detailed explanation, read Understanding The Registry.
  • Not all registry cleaners are created equal. There are a number of them available but they do not all work entirely the same way. Each vendor uses different criteria as to what constitutes a "bad entry". One cleaner may find entries on your system that will not cause problems when removed, another may not find the same entries, and still another may want to remove entries required for a program to work.
  • Not all registry cleaners create a backup of the registry before making changes. If the changes prevent the system from booting up, then there is no backup available to restore it in order to regain functionality. A backup of the registry is essential BEFORE making any changes to the registry.
  • Improperly removing registry entries can hamper malware disinfection and make the removal process more difficult if your computer becomes infected. For example, removing malware related registry entries before the infection is properly identified can contribute to system instability and even make the malware undetectable to removal tools.
  • The usefulness of cleaning the registry is highly overrated and can be dangerous. In most cases, using a cleaner to remove obsolete, invalid, and erroneous entries does not affect system performance but it can result in "unpredictable results".

Unless you have a particular problem that requires a registry edit to correct it, I would suggest you leave the registry alone. Using registry cleaning tools unnecessarily or incorrectly could lead to disastrous effects on your operating system such as preventing it from ever starting again. For routine use, the benefits to your computer are negligible while the potential risks are great.
Louis

#3 SoXfused

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 07:26 PM

I understand that now, but is there anything I can do to get my computer working again? I know it must be working because the main internet modem and router are connected to that computer and I'm still able to connect to the wireless internet on other computers in my house (I'm typing this from another computer in my house).

#4 SoXfused

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 08:13 PM

I can still get into F2 and F10 but I haven't touched anything on those screens. I do know that when I press F2, I can get into the System Setup screen. In there, there are tabs that say Main, Advanced, Security, Power, Boot, and Exit. Will any of those things help?

#5 hamluis

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 08:57 PM

Obvious things I would try:

a. System restore

b. Repair install of XP or sfc /scannow command.

The "ntldr is missing" message is common.

How to troubleshoot the NTLDR Is Missing error message in Windows 2000 - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/318728

Ntldr Is Missing Fix, Romeo29 - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic170057.html

NTLDR Is Missing Fix - http://tinyempire.com/notes/ntldrismissing.htm

Lacking any of the tools to perform the above...and if the system uses a restore-to-factory-defaults mechanism...I suppose that's the path to take.

If it were my system...I'd find out what the F11 key does...before pressing it. That info should be in the system documentation.

Louis

#6 SoXfused

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 09:58 PM

Hi Louis,

If I press F11, I get Gateway's System Recovery menu and it's got something that says "System Restore Options".

It has two choices: One is "Full System Restore (Distructive)" and it says "WARNING - This option will format your hard disk and reinstall all factory shipped files. Use this if all other options fail to restore the machine to a satisfactory condition. All your personal data files and applications will be lost."

The second choice is Full System Restore (with Backup) and says: This option will move all Hard Disk contents to the "c:\My Backup" directory and install a new copy of Windows. This option will preserve your existing data files, however all applications and settings will need to be reinstalled. This option requires 4GB of full Hard Disk space for the new OS."

Should I try the second option? Does that mean all of my files (like pictures, music) will still be on my computer?

Do you suggest I try one of the above before trying one of the NTLDR fixes?

Thanks for your help!

#7 josh_the_techie

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 10:07 PM

Hi Louis,

If I press F11, I get Gateway's System Recovery menu and it's got something that says "System Restore Options".

It has two choices: One is "Full System Restore (Distructive)" and it says "WARNING - This option will format your hard disk and reinstall all factory shipped files. Use this if all other options fail to restore the machine to a satisfactory condition. All your personal data files and applications will be lost."

The second choice is Full System Restore (with Backup) and says: This option will move all Hard Disk contents to the "c:\My Backup" directory and install a new copy of Windows. This option will preserve your existing data files, however all applications and settings will need to be reinstalled. This option requires 4GB of full Hard Disk space for the new OS."

Should I try the second option? Does that mean all of my files (like pictures, music) will still be on my computer?

Do you suggest I try one of the above before trying one of the NTLDR fixes?

Thanks for your help!


If you do the latter option, where it moves all the contents to the C:\My Backup option, it will move everything that is on your current Windows installation to that directory and install a new version of Windows. That would be the direction I would take if I were you.
I used to use registry cleaners, but I now don't use them because of the risk they bring. IF YOU DO USE A REGISTRY CLEANER, please make sure that you backup the registry BEFORE you make changes to it. If anything goes haywire, you can restore the registry through the Windows Recovery Console from the Windows install disc.
Again, I DO NOT RECOMMEND THE USE OF REGISTRY CLEANERS.


#8 SoXfused

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 10:13 PM

If I do that, will all of my files like music and pictures still be on my computer?

#9 josh_the_techie

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 10:22 PM

If I do that, will all of my files like music and pictures still be on my computer?


Yes. It will move everything to that directory...including you music and picture files. What model of computer do you have? There is probably some documentation out there that can help you with doing this.


#10 SoXfused

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 10:32 PM

I have a 2006 Gateway with Windows XP (I don't know the exact model of my computer off the top of my head).

I'll go find the documentation for the computer and try it and see what happens!

#11 josh_the_techie

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 10:40 PM

I have a 2006 Gateway with Windows XP (I don't know the exact model of my computer off the top of my head).

I'll go find the documentation for the computer and try it and see what happens!


Okay...the documentation should guide you through the process of restoring Windows. Please let us know what happens!


#12 SoXfused

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 06:30 AM

Okay...the documentation should guide you through the process of restoring Windows. Please let us know what happens!



OK, I did the The Full System Restore with Backup and thankfully all of my files did back up and were saved! Of course all of the applications had to be reinstalled though and all of the settings went back to the default settings and all of the Windows Updates had to be reinstalled which took a few hours. But the main thing is that it saved all of my files, so that was a relief!

My computer is almost back to normal except I have two problems: One is that I no longer have a sleep mode or hibernate or a lock on my computer. It used to be that when I did alt+ctl+delete that it would give me a menu where I could lock and unlock my computer. Now whenever I do alt+ctl+delete it just gives me the task manager. Also, I used to be able to go to "Start" and it would give me the option to either Log Off or Shut Down. Now instead of Shut Down I have "Turn Off Computer". When I click that, it has Stand By, Turn Off, and Restart choices, but the Stand By one is grayed out so I can't choose it. Do you have any idea how I can get my "lock" and "hibernate" choices back?

The second problem is that my scroll bar is lagging whenever I pull it up or down. It used to go real fast, but now pages lag when I pull the scroll up or down and takes a few seconds to catch up. Do you know what the problem could be?

Thanks for your help!

#13 josh_the_techie

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 08:05 AM

Well...try going to Control Panel > Power Management. There should be some option to enable standby and hibernation mode. Missing graphics drivers can also prevent you from entering standby or hibernation modes.

Edited by josh_the_techie, 12 July 2011 - 08:23 AM.


#14 SoXfused

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 09:04 AM

Well...try going to Control Panel > Power Management. There should be some option to enable standby and hibernation mode. Missing graphics drivers can also prevent you from entering standby or hibernation modes.


There isn't a Power Management selection in Control Panel, but there is a Power Options - Is that the same thing? If so, when I click on it, I get a menu that has a Power Schemes section and a drop down box that has Home/Office Desk, Portable/Laptop, Presentation, Always On, Minimal Power Management, and Max Battery. It is currently on Presentation.

There is also a Settings For Presentation Power Scheme section and it has Turn Off Monitor and Turn Off Hard Disk and they are both set to Never.

Edited by SoXfused, 12 July 2011 - 09:05 AM.


#15 josh_the_techie

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 09:14 AM

Yes...Power Options is what we need. Now there should be an option to enable hibernation under the Hibernation tab. Check that and enable it. If there's no way to enable it, that means that your missing your graphics drivers. Is the screen unusually large?





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