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HELP!! Registry Corruption on Windows XP!??!

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Meldread Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 03:57 PM
Original message
HELP!! Registry Corruption on Windows XP!??!
Yesterday I completely fried my other, main computer, which uses Windows XP. I currupted the registry when I got a bunch of bad spyware and some viruses and other crappy stuff. I couldn't remove them so I decided to back-up using an old registry save from several weeks ago... but that ended up making it worse.

Now as a result I cannot even log into Windows in Safe Mode!! I spent the better part of today trying to figure out what I could do to restore - or at least get a partly working - Registry so that I can get back into Windows and try and undo what I did.

I downloaded a file from the Microsoft website that allowed me to create 6 disks that was supposed to get me into the Recovery Console, and it worked... but I am stumped as of what to do next.

Any Tech wizards out there that can help? PLEASE?!
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jayfish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 03:59 PM
Response to Original message
1. I Suggest...
Edited on Wed Sep-28-05 03:59 PM by jayfish
the Computer Help And Support group.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

Jay
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Meldread Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:01 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Oh, thanks.
I didn't even know DU had a section like that.
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:01 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. Second that.
I think we've discussed the subject before.
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Meldread Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:08 PM
Response to Reply #1
6. Ugh.
I can't post there, it won't let me.
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jayfish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:57 PM
Response to Reply #6
34. See My Reply Further Down The Thread. -NT-
Jay
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mattclearing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:02 PM
Response to Original message
4. They will tell you to reinstall your machine.
Hope you had a decent back-up plan.
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jayfish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:04 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Oh, I Don't Know About That.
There are probably reg backups that she can get to using the repair console. She could also do an in-place upgrade that will re-install the OS without changing her current setup.

Jay
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mattclearing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:14 PM
Response to Reply #5
9. That's pretty much the same thing, though.
It certainly brings home the need for data integrity, though.
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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:09 PM
Response to Original message
7. can you get into safe mode command line
I assume you do not have a copy of Windows Xp that came with your system. If you do, there is another procedure to try, so let me know and I will walk you through it.

But if you don't try the following

If you can get into command line safe mode there is a procedure you can try that may get you back into safe mode and let you run the system recovery process.

Assuming you can get into that mode, do the following;

Log on as an administrator.
At the command prompt, type regedit to open a registry editor.
Navigate to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon subkey.
Modify the Shell entry to "progman.exe" (don't type the quotes), then press Enter.
Close the registry editor.
At the command prompt, type
shutdown -r
to reboot the machine.
After the system reboots, log on as an administrator; the Program Manager shell will start.
From the File menu, select Run and enter
c:\windows\system32\restore\rstrui.exe
to start the System Restore Tool.
Restore the system as normal. You won't need to set the shell back to Windows Explorer because the act of restoring the system state to an earlier point will accomplish this task.



The DU computer group won't do you any good as you can only post there if you are a donor.

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Prisoner_Number_Six Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
8. If you have vital files that are not backed up to other media
DO NOTHING.

Give your computer to a geek who will pull the hard drive and copy all your files to a backup disk.

ONLY THEN should you take the next step. If you do anything without backing up your hard drive first you will lose ALL YOUR IMPORTANT FILES.

If you DO have a current backup, then disregard and go ahead and reinstall Windoze.
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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:15 PM
Response to Original message
10. When you say you can not get into safe mode
what exactly happens? Describe it to me. There is a nasty one out there that when you fix it you get into a login/logout loop. That is very easy to fix so let me know if that is what is happening.
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Meldread Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:25 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. What is happening:
Well let me start with what happened. I was surfing the web and got a bunch of spyware I am not 100% sure if viruses were added as well or anything else. But I am 100% certain I got lots and lots of spyware. It was horrid.

Well, I lost connection to the internet after that (I have dial-up), and it wouldn't let me reconnect. I decided to shut down and load into safemode to begin removing the spyware. When I tried this using two spyware removing tools they both froze. They wouldn't work. I tried several times, after that I remembered that several weeks ago I had cleaned my regestry and made a backup. So... I decided to restore the old backup.

That seemed to work, windows rebooted it worked fine. Then, suddenly, while trying to remove the spyware again Windows shut itself down. It said it had Reg Curruption. I couldn't reboot into anything after that, not even safemode. It simply tried to load up normally, but then told me to press 'R' for the recovery console after I inserted the Windows CD.

Well I have the Windows CD but it didn't want to let me into the recovery console, so I used this computer - the one I am on now - to google to see what my options were. I found the Microsoft website had a file (WinXP_EN_PRO_BF) that allowed me to create 6 boot disks to get to the recovery console. I did that and went here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307545 / to try and figure things out. Unfortunately I'm stumped. I haven't seen a DOS Prompt since like 1993 or something like that.

My windows files are installed in C:\WINNT\ and I am there. But... everytime I try and carry out those instructions it doesn't work. I am completley, totally, 100% stumped.
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MaineDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:31 PM
Response to Reply #12
15. I have an issue too
When I start the computer I get a message that says "Windows can't start; reinstall Windows" and shuts itself down. I can't get into Safe Mode either.

I have Win98 and - like a jerk - can't find my restore disks.

I bought a new pc but I still would like to get into the old one to recover files. Good luck to you
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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #15
20. Your solution
Take your hard drive out of the bad computer. Set the jumper switch on it to either slave or CS (Cable select) Install the drive in your new computer and boot up. Copy files to new computer and you are done.

You may need to change the jumper on your new drive if it is set to single drive. If it is master or CS it should be OK.

Or, you can leave it set as is and temporarily swap it for the CD drive.
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MaineDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:38 PM
Response to Reply #20
22. Even if the OS is different?
The new computer is XP.

Thanks, by the way. I'm not sure what the jumper switch is but I'm going to look it up now.
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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:56 PM
Response to Reply #22
33. Sure
XP can read NTFS and FAT32.

Now, you won't be able to run any programs frrom the old disk but you can get data easily.

The jumper is on the back next to the power plug. There should be a label on top of the drive that will tell you how to set it. If not, you can google the drive and find out that way.

The jumpers aren't so much switches as they are little plastic connectors that short out two pins. You just pull them out and pop them in as needed.
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MaineDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:02 PM
Response to Reply #33
36. Thank you!
Edited on Wed Sep-28-05 05:03 PM by MaineDem
I appreciate the help.

And my apologies to Meldread for tagging my issue on to his 'puter thread.
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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:34 PM
Response to Reply #12
17. Try this
First, this is usually a safe thing to do, but if you have anything that you absolutely can not lose then do not listen to me and pleaee take it to a shop and get stuff backed up.

OK, boot from the XP cd. Do not go into the recovery console.

Select to install Windows XP (trust me). It will tell you that Windows is already installed and one of your options will be to do a repair install. Select that option, cross your fingers, and see what happens.

This will do a repair install that will not cause you to lose any data or programs installed.

If this works, you must immediately go to Windows update as you will have lost all the security updates since your version of XP was made. If it is service pack 2 then it isn't that bad but if not you could get hit again before you know it.

Oh, I am a professional and I do this all the time.

Good luck. :-)
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:24 PM
Response to Original message
11. Please respond to this.
Edited on Wed Sep-28-05 04:28 PM by kgfnally
EXACTLY what error messages appear when you try to boot Window$?

edit: I know you won't be able to remember every word. Just try to repeat any messages you don't completely understand. (No, I'm not trying to be condescending; Windows sometimes gets arcane when it tries to suicide.)
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Meldread Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:30 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. When I try and boot...
I get this message:
"Windows could not start because the following file is missing or currupt:
/WINNT/SYSTEM32/CONFIG/SYSTEM/"

It also tells me to insert the Windows CD and press R to get to the Recover Console.
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:38 PM
Response to Reply #14
23. Go to the following link.
Edited on Wed Sep-28-05 04:43 PM by kgfnally
DU hates Microsoft links. this is the link: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb ;EN-US;q307545

Remove the space that seperates the link from the plain text in this post.

PRINT THESE INSTRUCTIONS or write them down. This process should solve your problem.

(I've had this happen before, and I've usually just nuked the drive and reinstalled, but if there's data there you want to keep, you'll want to do as above, save off everything you want to keep in a different location, and then reformat and reinstall Window$.)
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jayfish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:50 PM
Response to Reply #14
29. Ok, From The Recovery Console:(UPDATED)
Edited on Wed Sep-28-05 04:56 PM by jayfish
copy C:\winnt\repair\system C:\winnt\system32\config <enter>

say "y" if asked to replace the file. Sounds like your hard drive is going bad. Look at your system log in "Event Viewer" for disk errors. Sorry Windows haterz but this issue probably arises from a hardware issue.

that should get you into the os with a recent copy of your system hive file.

Jay
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redacted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:30 PM
Response to Original message
13. Easier, faster, cheaper approach: Buy a Mac
You can now get one that works with almost all your current non-cpu devices new for about half the price of a budget PC system. And you'll NEVER, EVER have to endure torture like this.
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Meldread Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:31 PM
Response to Reply #13
16. That might be the case...
...but right now that isn't helping me. All my files are on the PC, which is custom built... and I have less than 30% of everything backed up.
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rbajai Donating Member (247 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #13
18. What kind of MAC do you mean?
The one's I've seen are all pretty restrictive in price, far more $$$ than PCs.
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redacted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:54 PM
Response to Reply #18
32. iMac Mini. About the size of a clock radio and under $400 on the street.
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KitchenWitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #13
19. Sorry, but "Buy a Mac" is not a helpful answer
I hate when Mac and Linux people pull that crap on message boards when people using Windows have real questions.

BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ thanks for playing. :evilfrown:
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SpiralHawk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:41 PM
Response to Reply #19
24. Mac may not qualify for your "helpful answer" category
Edited on Wed Sep-28-05 04:42 PM by SpiralHawk
But it does qualify for the "damn good and unbuggy" system category.

i made the switch to Mac and Firefox and all the rest, and now I know what computing is supposed to be like ...

I ain't never going back ...
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KitchenWitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:47 PM
Response to Reply #24
26. I understand that
but it is really a snarky response when someone needs help for a windoze system right away.

My next computer is going to be a Mac...but once I get the Mac, if anyone has a windoze question, I am not going to get on a message board and tell them to buy a Mac...That is just RUDE!
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redacted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:50 PM
Response to Reply #26
30. KW, what makes you think you can get on DU and be obnixious?
One more insult and this is going to a moderator, unless you apologize first.
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KitchenWitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:53 PM
Response to Reply #30
31. Be my guest
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billyskank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:28 PM
Response to Reply #30
41. Firstly
"get a Mac" is hardly cheap advice, and "use Linux" is not easy advice to follow either. I speak as a Linux geek myself. Switching from Windows to Linux is not a trivial task, and I would not recommend it to everybody.

Secondly, as far as I can see KitchenWitch has not broken any of the rules of DU, so alert away if you want, but I can't see the mods taking any action. She has not been obnoxious nor insulted anybody.
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Crazy Guggenheim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:38 PM
Response to Reply #30
42. Ooooooo .......
:popcorn:
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redacted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:47 PM
Response to Reply #19
27. KW, "pull that crap?" It IS a helpful answer.
I had nothing but trouble with a PC running Windows ME. Everything that could have gone wrong with the OS did. After the 3rd reinstall, when I got tired of wasting time with the Registry, we got rid of it and switched the software running on it in our office to a Mac with OS X. We've had no trouble since and it's the best thing we ever could have done.

If your time is valuable like mine is, you'd be wise to pay attention to what I said, instead of talking about me "pulling crap." I don't appreciate that. And every time somebody on DU gets pissy with somebody else here, some freeper in a red state reading that has a good laugh. Please think twice before you offend people here.
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KitchenWitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:50 PM
Response to Reply #27
28. Think about how you may have offended the OP
before you start castigating me for stating my opinion.
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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:07 PM
Response to Reply #27
37. ME is the worst OS known to man
Hell, Windows 3.0 was better than ME and it sucked pretty bad.

XP is a lot better than that and most of the problems people have now are due to viruses and spyware and we all know why Mac doesn't have problems with those. Because no one bothers hacking for just a 3% to 5% computer share.

That is not meant as a snub to the Mac, it is the truth. If Macs had half the share of the computer users they would have just as many problems with that stuff because there is no such thing as a secure computer or OS. Certainly not something based on unix. So long as people want their computers to be easy to use there will be security issues.

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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:00 PM
Response to Reply #19
35. Ahh, they always do that
I think it is the computer equivalant of shouting out to someone with a broken car to "buy a horse".

They don't mean any harm.

My only quibble with Mac people is one, Apple has poor quality control and have a bad hardware failure rate (my own and MAC friends' experiences) and that bit about the OS being rock solid is a myth. They are pretty solid but they don't put an emergency reset button on the Macs for nothing. :-)

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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:07 PM
Response to Reply #19
38. well, for that matter
The OP *could* use a live linux distro (like Knoppix or something else) and transfer the files on the HD to another medium :)

But that's only an option if the live linux distro is available.
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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:23 PM
Response to Reply #38
39. Hmmm
I haven't found one that will let me touch the HD. Guess I need to go looking again. I use one all the time to test machines without installing a HD. That and to freak people out. "Look it has no hard drive"

What would be great is one that would recognize my USB thumb drives and the HD. Then snap, copy, done.

Hmm, got to look into that.
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dennis00 Donating Member (216 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:37 PM
Response to Original message
21. powerscan
If you are infected wth powerscan, bootup. Look in the lower left corner of the powerscan page for a button that says something like "always start on bootup." Unclick that then reboot. XP should come up. Google "remove powerscan." The instructions are there. Warning, they are complicated if you've never been into your Registry. Run regedit to see what it looks like. BUT DON'T TOUCH IT without the remove powerscan instructions on paper in front of you.
This is for Powerscan. If you have something else infecting your registry, e-mail me. I'll try to help. From Dennis
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BringEmOn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 04:43 PM
Response to Original message
25. Damn, thought this was another Tom DeLay post.
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Crazy Guggenheim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:27 PM
Response to Original message
40. Where's the fire?? Let me take a look at this!!
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miss_kitty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:39 PM
Response to Original message
43. You can run 'hijack this',
http://www.tomcoyote.org/hjt/#Top

You copy the registry log, and post it to one a a few different forums
http://forums.tomcoyote.org /
http://www.geekstogo.com/forum
http://www.spywareinfo.com/forums /

I used Tom Coyote forum. Only qualified people are allowed to respond to registry log queries there. They look at your registry and tell you what looks bad...
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Crazy Guggenheim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:41 PM
Response to Reply #43
44. She can't get into Safe Mode.
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miss_kitty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 05:42 PM
Response to Reply #44
45. oops
never mind. :blush:
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