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It is my friends computer so I am not very familiar with it, I am unable to get it to start. I can get to the logon screen but after entering the password there is an error (something to do with Roxio) and only the background loads. No Start menu, Taskbar or icons. If I boot it in safe mode it gets stuck on a black screen and don't even get the command prompt. I am confident that If I could get to the menu to edit startup programs then I could fix the problem... any Ideas?

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1 Answer 1

You can do a manual System Restore, this may correct the boot problem.

A. Connect your non-bootable hard drive to another computer, as a secondary drive or use a usb adapter or enclosure. If you can see your data on the drive using Windows Explorer, back it up Now, then follow the rest of these instructions.

B. Open Windows Explorer. Click on Tools|Folder Options|View. Check the box beside "Show hidden files and folders". Apply your change.

NOTE D: may not represent the hard drive you connected to your PC, it may be E: or F: or G:, it all depends on how many other drives (including cd/dvd) you have in your PC, So subtitute the appropriate drive letter in the instructions below.

C. Navigate to the D:\System Volume Information folder. You will see a folder named something like _restore{.........} the dots represent an alpha-numeric sequence. In this folder you will see folders named RP0....RPnn. Find the one with the highest number. These are your System Restore points. In the highest numbered folder you will see a folder named snapshot. In this folder are registry hive files which you need to recover your system:

_registry_user_.default

_registry_machine_security

_registry_machine_software

_registry_machine_system

_registry_machine_sam

D. Create a subdirectory; i.e, D:\Windows\TMP. Copy these files to the TMP subdirectory. Rename them:

default

security

software

system

sam

Note Be sure to lose the period (.) in the file named _registry_user_.default

E. Delete the files in the D:\windows\system32\config subdirectory with the same names.

F. Copy the D:\windows\tmp files to the D:\windows\system32\config. subdirectory.

G.Put your drive back in its original system. Your system should start normally. If you get the same error repeat the procedure and choose another folder ( RPnn) (next highest number). You can repeat this procedure choosing lower RPnn numbers until you get it booting again

If you are denied access to any folders you will have to take "Ownership" of the folders first. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/308421

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Sounds Like good advice to me, but I don't have an adapter for the hard drive... is there anything I could do via network cable? –  Link Feb 3 '11 at 2:56
    
I have never tried it, but you might be able to use a Linux boot CD to manipulate the files, it would have to have support for writing to a NTFS file system though. –  Moab Feb 3 '11 at 13:52

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