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BSOD - STOP c0000135 - winsrv not found - XP unbootable


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#1 DeLuk

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Posted 18 November 2011 - 12:12 PM

Greetings to the forum. :)

I'm again found in need of some expert assistance please...

Problem:

Get the following BSOD on boot (just after the Windows splash screen / before the welcome screen comes up)

STOP: c0000135 {Unable To Locate Component}
This application has failed to start because winsrv was not found. Re-installing the application may fix this problem.


Here's how the story went:

Had just made the routine malware scans (all reports came up clean, so I'm rulling out malware as eventual cause) and was in the process of updating a couple of programs, namely:

Upgraded Firefox to version 8, plus uninstalled Java, Adobe AIR and Shockwave and Flash players, to next install the due updates. Rebooted. All ok. (Perhaps it's worth mentioning that earlier this same day a Windows update had also been installed. From later checking the updates logs and dates, I figure it has been KB2641690.)

As in the meantime not having the chance to install those pending Java and Adobe updates, eventually so I turned the computer off. (Somehow I think I recall it shutting down somewhat faster than it usually does, but maybe at this point I'm just already hearing and seeing things!) As later turning it on again, and moving out to another room whilst it was booting up (it's no fast machine), I noticed it "re-beeped" as if it were re-booting, so I came to check what's up, and indeed it was re-booting on loop. Turned off the automatic restart on system failure (F8 screen) and could now see the BSOD as described above.

Tried booting to both Safe Mode and Safe Mode with command prompt, but no luck, the same BSOD came up each time. Tried "Last known good config", and no luck either.

At this point (and since the hard drive seemed to, at each reboot, be slower than usual to respond/start; but again, perhaps I'm now just hearing and seeing things...) so we even considered to go and unplug the hard drive cables, and re-plug them back, just to ensure that all was well connected. And while at it, also the RAM memory modules and the CPU fan/sink were removed, cleaned up, and placed back again. None of this made no difference, however.

Next, booted with a UBCD4WIN boot CD (use to build one from time to time, to have in handy) and searched for winsrv to find that there was a winsrv.dll in, among a couple other places, C:\Windows\system32\ and C:\Windows\system32\dllcache\ (same version in both these folders, 5.1.2600.6125) and in C:\Windows\ServicePackFiles\i386\ (different version here, 5.1.2600.5512).

Went online from there to do some search on this BSOD and first move in line seemed as obvious to be to replace winsrv.dll in C:\Windows\system32\.

Booted to the Recovery Console (it's been installed on the hard drive some long while ago... though it was actually the first time I was ever entering it) and first of ran chkdsk c: /r. (I do run chkdsk regularly, plus defrag, but in any case.) On first scan it encountered and fixed some errors. Did another check and no errors were reported this time. Rebooted to see if that would eventually have solved the case. No luck, though, and the BSOD came up again.

Booted to the Recovery Console again, then, to go on with trying to replace winsrv.dll in C:\Windows\system32\. First tried to replace the file with that from the dllcache. I had previously noticed that that folder was compressed as so were all the files in it (though I cannot recall whether I recall it being like that the last time I looked at it?... is it normal for the dllcache to be a compressed folder?...) and so I tried it first by using the expand command. Expanding the compressed winsrv.dll from the dllcache failed, so I next tried by first removing the "compressed" attribute off the file and then copying the file to C:\Windows\system32\. Rebooted. Yet the BSOD was still there.

I even attempted it by booting back with UBCD4WIN, uncompressing the whole C:\Windows\system32\dllcache\ folder as so every file in it, and then copying the file right there, while booted with UBCD4WIN. Also no luck.

Back again to the Recovery Console, and with a reboot in between each attempt to check if the case was solved, I further tried replacing winsrv.dll in C:\Windows\system32\ with the backup of it in C:\Windows\ServicePackFiles\i386\ and also in the i386 folder from the XP SP3 slipstreamed CD I had made while ago (both these winsrv.dll are, by the way, the same version, 5.1.2600.5512). No luck either. (Just an added note, though, just to note that, as the file in the i386 folder in the XP CD is compressed, yes, I have therefore used the expand command.)

I've also been here already: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/885523 But I'm figuring it's of no help to my case(?), since neither is an SP2 install involved, nor there's any such T.V. Media software installed on this computer, so I don't know?...

By now I have also ran the due hard disk diagnostic test for errors (given that's an IBM DeskStar, the tool used was Hitachi's Drive Fitness Test) and it does report some corrupted sectors. I had actually never ran that test before. I was, however, aware that there are corrupted sectors in the drive, as chkdsk has reported it long ago. And it's the same 44 KB as before (meaning 11 sectors, I figure?). I did now run chkdsk also from UBCD4WIN (since running it from the Recovery Console does not report how many KB are in corrupted sectors) and it reports the same 44 KB it has reported since long. So I'd assume that there aren't any "new" corrupted sectors?... Which in turn would lead me to also assume that it must not be a "corrupted sector problem" the eventual cause of the no-boot problem now?... Or would all this be just wrong assumption to start with?... (Leighman here, so, each piece of new learning is always much appreciated, and thank you in advance for every bit of your generous patience with every bit of ignorance that may pour out of this noob's mouth... :unsure: )

So, at this point my doubt is: any further step I may take to try to resolve this in any easier way, before eventually moving on to a Windows repair install? (Will be a first time too, if I'll have to go for that ... :unsure: )

Should I try any further command from the Recovery Console (fixboot, fixmbr, bootcfg /rebuild)?

Should I try restoring the registry with a backup? (I do have ERUNT installed and could try it. I'm just a bit hesitant because of those programs, Java and Adobe, which I had meanwhile uninstalled, after the last ERUNT backup was created... How relevant is that, that I would be restoring the registry with a backup which refers to programs which are no longer installed?... I'm aware that the registry can also be restored via Recovery Console using the backup in C:\Windows\Repair\, but, checking the "last modified" date of the backup stored in there, it's from 2004, so I'd figure that's no option to consider (?), not when having the ERUNT backups, which are only days/hours old...)

Should I eventually even try the option offered by the Drive Fitness Test tool, "Sector Repair"? (As for this one option, it's the one I'm most hesitant about, not to say afraid, as I'm not sure what it might result in?... :unsure: Can't find much about it in the tool's user guide, and have even e-mailed support for enlightenment, but am still on stand-by for a proper reply, as the first one wasn't enlightening at all...)

Any further thoughts and advicing is very much appreciated, and again, thank you already for your kind patience and time. :) I'll try to check back whenever I have a chance. Thanks much once more.

P.S. I'm sorry I forgot to mention this before as it may be of importance for your best analysis. While booted with UBCD4WIN (tried it in more than one boot after repeating the crash) I did search also for dump .dmp files (hidden and system files showing) but none relevant was to be found... C:\Windows\Minidump\ is empty and there is no main memory dump file in C:\Windows\...

I should also at this point highlight my particular thank you to usasma for both his valuable posts which were a precious guidance point for starts:

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic138692.html

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic176011.html

Edited by DeLuk, 19 November 2011 - 06:28 AM.


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#2 bludgard

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Posted 21 November 2011 - 11:11 PM

How old is the computer?

#3 DeLuk

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Posted 22 November 2011 - 05:50 AM

Hello bludgard and thank you for your reply.

The computer is, I believe, around a decade old. Bought second-hand and here at home since 2004. Windows folder date: 2002 (never formatted since here at home). BIOS date: 04 February 2001.

#4 bludgard

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Posted 22 November 2011 - 07:13 AM

Your issues are more than likely tied to failing hardware, specifically the Hard Drive. Try connecting another hard drive and install Windows to it. If it runs, you have found your culprit. If you still experience like problems, it may be time to replace the machine. :mellow:
You can run diagnostics on the HDD, but that stress (by my experience) will have only a negative effect on the drive.

#5 DeLuk

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Posted 22 November 2011 - 11:23 AM

Thank you for the addition bludgard.

Well, I suppose it can't be taken as much of a surprise, if it's coming off hardware, namely HDD failure, after all this long... :mellow: Can't, though, test it with another drive at the moment...

In any case, think I'll try the rebuild of the boot.ini file and fix the boot sector and master boot record, in the Recovery Console, to see whether eventually it produces any effect. (I'm assuming it will do no harm otherwise, or?...) If no luck, then I'll go for the registry restore. And if no luck either, so I'll venture with a Windows repair install...

In the event that none of this brings solution to the issue, then we'll see what shall go next...

And thank you once more.

#6 kenith

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Posted 22 November 2011 - 02:02 PM

try this

#7 DeLuk

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Posted 23 November 2011 - 09:48 AM

Thank you for the suggestion kenith. Indeed, running system file checker was too among my initial intentions, after check disk failed to resolve the problem, as I was hoping it eventually might as well be run from the Recovery Console. But, from what I could understand, from what I read then, it can't?... Or?...

#8 DeLuk

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Posted 24 November 2011 - 02:19 PM

OK, I've now tried the options as mentioned in post #5. Not much success, however...

Rebuild of the boot.ini file made no effect, as didn't either the fix of the boot sector. (At this point I was, though, left with a doubt/curiosity regarding the rebuild of the boot.ini file, as I thought bootcfg /rebuild would, if I may say it this way, "reset" the boot.ini file, yet seemingly it was rather edited, causing a second line reading "Microsoft Windows XP Professional" to be added to the boot menu?...)

As for the fix of the master boot record, and as it returned the message below, so I decided not to go ahead with it anyway.

This computer appears to have a non-standard or invalid master boot record.
FIXMBR may damage your partition tables if you proceed.
This could cause all the partitions on the current hard disk to become
inaccessible .
If you are not having problems accessing your drive, do not continue.
Are you sure you want to write a new MBR?


ERUNT registry restore followed, but it also made no difference.

And so I next went for the Windows repair install (Michael Stevens guide used for reference: http://michaelstevenstech.com/XPrepairinstall.htm). And that's where I'm stuck now... All the repair process went ok/as expected up untill the Windows splash "Please wait..." screen following the second reboot (screen 16 as shown here) when it just hang. (And it's hang for a few hours already now.) So I'm found unsure of what should be the next move?... :unsure: It is suggested here to boot back to the Recovery Console and run chkdsk /r. But, agreeing with the doubt expressed by another user there (for as "stupid" as it may sound :unsure:) how indeed to boot back to the Recovery Console in such a case that the repair install got stuck and has not completed yet?... :unsure: Should I power off the PC? Hit the reset button? Or?...

Any further guidance is much appreciated. Thank you greatly.

#9 bludgard

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Posted 24 November 2011 - 05:48 PM

Run diagnostics and checks on the disk. Surely it couldn't hurt matters at this point.
Healthy disks can take the stress a whole lot better than failing ones.

#10 DeLuk

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 07:24 AM

Well, eventually I powered off the computer, after a couple more hours. (Hope to have chosen the right option...) Booted back (leaving the XP SP3 CD in the CD drive nonetheless) and, (excuse my shout of contentment but) hooray, it did now boot to Windows, apparently all being normal... :thumbsup: Rebooted a couple times again... All ok it seems (i.e. no further BSOD showing back)...

I did anyway run chkdsk on reboot (reported no errors) and decided to repeat the repair install all along, just to verify whether the hang would repeat too. Unfortunatelly so it did, at the very same point, the Windows splash "Please wait..." screen... <_< In any case, and as before, upon new boot, it booted to Windows, again seemingly normally... A few reboots more, new chkdsk round, and as before, it all appears ok... (Apart from a couple errors showing in Event Viewer, as it did in first time, but that's for further checking next...)

So, I think I'll take it as good now... (It's one resilient old machine, I gather. Old, but resilient. :P) Will catch up on whatever needs updating or eventually reinstall, possibly run a double check with also sfc, for a rested conscience after the hangs, and go from there... Will too take your suggestion, bludgard, and eventually later do some further checkup on the hard drive... (Speaking of the hard drive, by the way, a note just to add that, on reboot, it's back to sounding "normal" as I remember it before, no longer seeming as it did slower to respond/start as when the BSOD was happening... Intriguing, I wonder?... And perhaps I wasn't hearing things then, after all?...)

Just once more, thank you all, greatly, for your generous patience + effort + time! :) (And fingers crossed that things may go smooth now... :rolleyes:)

P.S. Then again, may anyone wish to kindly add any further quick enlightenments with regards to those lil' question-marks I went on leaving behind along the way, it would certainly be most appreciated just as well. As I was saying in the very start, every bit of new learning always is, by this humble leighman... :blush: And humbly thank you one time again.

Edited by DeLuk, 25 November 2011 - 10:25 AM.


#11 hamluis

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 08:53 AM

:thumbsup: , nice work by everyone.

Louis

#12 DeLuk

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 10:28 AM

I'll second that again: :thumbsup:

And yet again too: thanks! :)

#13 bludgard

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 02:24 PM

... system file checker ... I was hoping it eventually might as well be run from the Recovery Console. But, from what I could understand, from what I read then, it can't?... Or?...


Glad it is resolved to your satisfaction, DuLuk. :thumbup2:

I'll start the ball rolling on the question put forth above by spouting abundant knowledge and showing my true ignorance :wink: :
On XP, sfc /scannow can be run without the OS install media. However, if the files that need repairing are corrupt at the source, the install media will be required. Same with Vista and 7. It is always beneficial to have the proper install media handy when fiddlin' around with a machine. One never knows; there may (pronounced: Will) come a time when it is actually needed. :lol:

#14 AustrAlien

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 11:59 PM

leighman

I noticed the word used a couple of times, and it had me stumped ... until now.

It suddenly hit me: I'm pretty sure that you meant "layman".
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#15 DeLuk

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Posted 26 November 2011 - 09:47 AM

@ AustrAlien:

Yes indeed, "layman" is what I meant and mean, and I just can't figure how the heck this time around I put it as "leighman"?!... :huh: And even repeated it a second time, what the...?! :blink: I mean, duh @ myself, I write that rather often, and have written it correctly so many times before even in this very forum! (*sigh* If doing a search for "layman" you will actually find quite a handful of topics by me where I've used the word, one even here in the XP forum... *sigh*) I reckon I just didn't take notice of my mistake and can only apologize for it (and quietly and embarrassingly laugh at my own self). Sorry indeed. And further as I no longer have the chance to edit both previous posts to correct the word there, unless eventually a mod can?... I'm just terribly sorry, again, for the mistake... :oopsign: (And then again for my English being not the best for sure either...)

@ bludgard:

First of, allow me to say I much appreciate the spouting, "the more the merrier" if I can apply that to sharing knowledge too. :lol: Thus thank you for yet the additional input (and the patience for "spouting" it). :thumbup2:

Regarding running system file checker without the XP install disc, yes, I understand it can be done, as it first checks the files against those backed up in the dllcache, i.e. the "source" as you called it, correct? And yes, I do too understand that, in the event of the files in the dllcache being corrupt, then the install disc becomes required, to become the next "source" to check against, correct too?

The doubt wasn't quite that, though, as to whether sfc could be run without the install disc, but rather if, and then how, it can eventually be run in such a case when one cannot boot to Windows?... Is that possible to do, run sfc without being booted to Windows in the first place, for instance, as I wondered then, do it from the Recovery Console?... I realize sfc is not among the commands available?... I had Googled a bit then and ran across contradictory info?...

On the other hand, I think the Windows repair install itself just gave me the answer to another of my question marks left behind: regarding the dllcache being a compressed folder. I see it is indeed, as now, after the repair install, it just turned back to being compressed, so I take that to be the default, right?... It does now lead me to another question, though: in the event of having to replace a file in the system32 folder with its backup from the dllcache, does one then have to first "uncompress" the file? Hmm, I have had to replace files with dllcache backups on previous occasions, and don't recall ever "uncompressing" them beforehand, or being requested to, and the operations never failed nor did I ever get any error message afterwards... (Then again, only recently I became aware that the files and folders with their names in blue, it's actually for them being compressed... Ouch, I bet that sounded far too noob, didn't it?... :whistle:)




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