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Can't boot from Windows install disk


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#1 billschmidt

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Posted 22 December 2016 - 02:10 AM

I have 64-bit Windows Business SP2.  After years of good operation, interrupted only by an occasional BSOD, last night it suddenly grew a syskey.  And before you ask, no I haven't allowed a scammer to modify access my UAC or modify my registry.  But I believe that one way or another, my registry has been modified.  Whenever I boot, whether in Safe Mode or normal Windows, I get the message "This computer is configured to require a password in order to start up. Please enter the startup password below."

 

Having read the excellent bleepingcomputer posts about syskey, I located my Windows install disk, and inserted it into the drive.  It's a retail install disk, purchased with my new computer in 2007, and I have the license key.  I also configured my BIOS boot device priority to boot from the CD before the hard disk.  However, the boot from the install disk isn't working.  Whether I select Safe Mode or normal Windows startup, after the list of .sys files or the Microsoft Windows animation respectively, the CD drive lights up and the disk whirs for a short time, then I get the syskey prompt.  I can't get as far as the language choice and the ability to click Repair your computer.

 

I have an ASUS P5K E3270 motherboard, with 4 Gb memory.  My BIOS is v02.58 from AMI.

 

Based on the posts I've read, I don't want to go the Linux repair route, because the posts indicate that removing the syskey that way may damage my system.

 

Is there any way to get the (bleeping) Windows install disk to boot?



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#2 billschmidt

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Posted 30 December 2016 - 01:07 PM

I've learned a lot in the last few days, including the answer to this question.  On my system, there doesn't seem to be anything I can do to consistently boot from the CD drive.  In many, many tries, I got that to work just once.  (I was able to do a system repair, but that didn't help to remove the syskey.)  However, I finally found out how to boot from a USB drive:  during the early part of the boot, I click the F8 key repeatedly, until a menu of boot devices appears.  The CD drive isn't in the list, but the USB is.  And selecting the USB drive at that stage causes the computer to boot from it.

 

I've also learned a lot about how to unsuccessfully attempt remove my syskey, and one of the things I learned is that Ubuntu (a Linux implementation) is not harmful, and is useful to find out what is going on.  I was able to make some attempts at fixing the syskey problem.  I'll search for an appropriate thread, or start my own, to discuss what I tried.



#3 JohnC_21

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Posted 30 December 2016 - 01:17 PM

If you can boot Ubuntu then try the following but I do not know if Vista has this folder, Windows 7 does.

 

Boot Ubuntu and browse to the following folder

 

C:\Windows\system32\config\regback

 

Are the dates of the Registry Hives before your problem? If they are then browse back to the config folder and rename all five registry hives with a .bak extension

 

Software

System

Default

Security

Sam

 

After renaming the hives in config copy the 5 hives from Regback to the config folder and reboot.



#4 billschmidt

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Posted 30 December 2016 - 02:11 PM

Yes, I tried that.  (See new thread How to remove syskey).  Any other ideas (please)?



#5 JohnC_21

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Posted 30 December 2016 - 02:14 PM

If replacing the registry hives did not work I don't have any other ideas sorry. Vista will no longer be supported with Security Updates after April of 2017. You may want to consider replacing Vista with Windows 7 if the computer can handle it or install a linux distro like Ubuntu or Mint.

 

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=20






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