In the unlikely event that Vista fails to boot is there a way to boot from, say, UBCD4Win, dump the event log to external media, then examine this data on another machine? I ran into a problem where all I could get was a black screen with a mouse pointer, no desktop, no error message....you get the picture. I eventually did a nuke 'n pave after saving the C:\Users tree, but it would have been nice to get a glimpse into where the problem lay. Thanks for any insight.
More aboutoffline event examination
you could try hooking the HDD up to another computer as a slave drive and locating the files that way...