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It started yesterday when my computer randomly shut down (very quickly). I had not installed anything, and the computer didn't overheat, I was just watching videos. When I started it back up, it was unable to boot correctly, and went straight to startup repair, which did nothing (it did say ci.dll was corrupt).

After some messing around, I finally got it past the login screen with the mode "Disable Driver Signature Enforcement", but it would shut down shortly after my IMs loaded. Finally, it started working normally by starting in this mode and disabling the wireless abilities. I could still get online with a cable.

I ran a virus scan using avg and malwarebytes, but little showed up. Then, after doing some reading I thought I might've been infected with tdl4/alureon/etc. or some variant (my google pages were being redirected), and got Hitman Pro to try and fix the problem (I heard it could)

Then at some random point again, my computer shut down, and will not start in any mode! It will shutdown and reboot right at the beginning, and will not even make it to startup repair unless I make it do so. I can access the cmd now (it crashed previously) from the startup repair tools, so that's currently my only option to do repairs

What should I do? I think my mbr may be pretty messed up. I am using Windows 7 on a Gateway laptop.

It now says "A patch is preventing the system from starting"

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See… – Moab Jun 21 '11 at 17:04
If you think you are infected, download this tool to make a bootable scanner CD, boot from it and scan the – Moab Jun 21 '11 at 17:07

Sounds like it's probably just Windows being crappy. But to rule out it being a hardware problem, I suggest you either install another hard drive and try a fresh install of Windows for a bit... Or boot up off a Live Linux CD and run on that for a bit - if your machine doesn't die horribly on Linux or runs fine on a fresh version of Windows, then you can at least know the problem is a configuration issue with Windows.. Nothing worse than thinking a hardware problem is actually a software one. I'm sure many people have gone nuts because of that sort of thing.

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The easiest thing for you at this point is to backup your data and re-install Windows 7.

To backup your data, you can use your favorite live CD (Ubuntu, Ultimate Boot CD, etc) to boot the computer and backup your files to another harddrive. Another option if you have a blank harddrive around is to install Windows 7 on the blank harddrive and then slave your old harddrive.

Trying to dig out viruses or fix odd boot issues can be very time intensive. This is not to say that they aren't worth trying. Moab gave you a link that will help you to uninstall a patch known to prevent Windows 7 from starting. Moab also provided a link to a bootable CD that would scan for viruses. Either of those alone could solve your issue. You won't know until you try.

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The least drastic thing to try is booting the Windows 7 DVD and doing a "Repair Install". This assumes you have a real Windows DVD, not a "recovery disk".

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