Ah, I misunderstood your OP - I took it to mean you had managed to boot into 'Safe mode' but hadn't been able to progress from there. I would say that the first priority is to salvage any data off this computer that you need and isn't already backed up. Assuming that you have access to another computer, one of the simpler ways to do this is to use a 'live' - ie self-booting - copy of Puppy Linux and some form of external drive. You can get Puppy from here :
Once you have created the CD, power up your computer, put the Puppy CD in the drive, power down and re-boot. Your computer should now boot into Linux ! On the desktop you will see icons for your drives and a file management utility similar to Windows Explorer. To make the drives active, you need to select them and click 'Mount', then you can transfer data to an external drive. However, I don't think you will be able to uninstall Windows updates with Puppy because of the differences in the types of OS - but you will be able to back-up your data.
The next step is to do a 'Repair install' of Windows. A repair install should not, but may, affect your data and applications - this is why you back up your data first.
If you have an install disc for Win 7 64 bit, proceed as for Puppy and let the computer boot from the disc. After you are asked about language and keyboard choices, you come to a screen saying 'Repair or Install ?'. Choose REPAIR ! Let it do its thing and hopefully, at the end of the process your computer will be working again. If it isn't, you may have to bite the bullet and do a full re-install, which, I agree, is almost more pain than it is worth.
If your laptop has a recovery partition, you can of course restore to factory values using this. Be aware that this process will almost certainly delete all your data on the computer as well as any applications you have installed.
If you prefer, you can get a legal copy of the Win 7 install disc from Digital River, here are the instructions, courtesy of noknojon, :
Digital River downloads
Hello - This is the word from Microsoft (as of 2 months ago) RE : Digital River-
Note that it was written by an Indian Microsoft helper, if any writing is a bit ?? off.......
For disclosure I have Copied and Pasted the reply to your basic question - - - - - - - - - -
These are retail installation media you can download and use to reinstall your copy of Windows 7 that came with your PC. The file is in the .ISO format which is a digital replica of a disc, you have prepare it after downloading it:
Download the corresponding edition of Windows 7 you have a license for from the following link. You can identify the edition on COA sticker attached to your machine, with at bottom or battery compartment (laptop) or top/side if its a desktop computer.
COA Certificate of Authenticity:
What is the Windows Certificate of Authenticity?
• Windows 7 Home Premium (x86) - 32 bit
• Windows 7 Home Premium (x64) - 64 bit
• Windows 7 Professional (x86) - 32 bit
• Windows 7 Professional (x64) - 64 bit
• Windows 7 Ultimate (x86)* - 32 bit
• Windows 7 Ultimate (x64)* - 64 bit
32 vs 64 bit
Is my PC running the 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows?
ImgBurn - In addtion to supporting the creation of CD's from .ISO files,
it supports a wide range of other image file formats, and it's free.
(BIN, CUE, DI, DVD, GI, IMG, MDS, NRG, PDI and ISO)
Note: Always use the slowest burn speed (4x or 2x) if offered a choice.
You will need to use your existing COA to activate Windows.
Oh, and just a side note - there is no need to quote full posts in your replies. Posts, with very rare exceptions (usually for serious breach of forum rules) stay in topics for ever. By all means use quotes to highlight something you mean to address, but it is very seldom necessary to quote a complete post.