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Winternals Commander Disc

Last response: in Windows XP
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November 28, 2010 1:35:00 AM

Anybody had any experience with this product? I have 2 XP PCs that I've attempted to use it to boot from.

One that refuses to boot either normally or in safe mode always gives me a BSOD when I use the Winternals Commander disc - sometimes it's an IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL, other times a PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA. This PC also is currently not even letting me to the repair console when booting from an XP OS CD. It just sits there after I enter the 'R', with a msg at the bottom of the screen 'Examining 131070 MB Disk 0 at Id 0 on bus 0 on atapi.'

The other PC does let me boot using the Winternals Commander disc, but it never lets me reset the passwords, using one of the utilities included on the Winternals CD. Actually it lets me believe that the passwords have been reset, but when I reboot normally and enter the new password I get the following msg:
'The system cannot log you on due to the following error.

The specified domain either does not exist, or could not be contacted.

Please try again or consult your system administrator.'

Any ideas on this product, or some other tool to resolve wither of these issues?
a b 8 Security
November 28, 2010 7:23:24 AM



On PC1, all the tools are available within Windows own CD if you have it. You need to run Checkdisk with the switch to find and fix any errors. Then run FIXBOOT and FIXMBR. Clearly the only way you can do this at the moment is by slaving your disk into another PC so you will need to right click the drive, go Tools and Check for errors, then tick both boxes.

I can't help you much with PC2 - just asking for help with passwords goes against Forum Rules. I think I am allowed to suggest there may be more than one login option in the drop down box that offers you the domain. You might see an option to log in only to the local computer and Winternals may have reset that for you.


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November 28, 2010 8:45:27 AM

Quote:

On PC1, all the tools are available within Windows own CD if you have it. You need to run Checkdisk with the switch to find and fix any errors. Then run FIXBOOT and FIXMBR. Clearly the only way you can do this at the moment is by slaving your disk into another PC so you will need to right click the drive, go Tools and Check for errors, then tick both boxes.

I have never slaved a drive. It is an SATA drive, but I'm worried about rendering the drive useless, and besides, I don't know how to do it.
Quote:
I can't help you much with PC2 - just asking for help with passwords goes against Forum Rules. I think I am allowed to suggest there may be more than one login option in the drop down box that offers you the domain. You might see an option to log in only to the local computer and Winternals may have reset that for you.

The password problem seems to be one that has simply 'arisen' on this PC. I'm not trying to break into someone else's PC. I'm trying to help a sick friend who is as clueless as I am about the cause. See this thread:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/253565-45-cannot-acce...
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a b 8 Security
November 28, 2010 9:05:11 AM

Put that drive in another computer as a data disk. Copy out everything you want to keep.

A re-install is also what Microsoft says to do if you can't get into the machine.

There is no more Winternals... Microsoft bought them in 2007.

The ERD is a great disk, but not a cure-all for some problems. Keep it around, it really can do some great things.

You can't reset anything because it is resetting the domain settings because there is no local user account present to reset. :( 
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I have never slaved a drive. It is an SATA drive, but I'm worried about rendering the drive useless, and besides, I don't know how to do it.
SATA drives are very easy. Just plug it into an open SATA port and connect power... that's it. Computer will "discover new hardware" (the drive) and make it available as a data disk. Use Windows Explorer to locate/copy/move files you want to keep.

When everything has been saved to another drive, put that drive back into machine and format, re-install Windows.


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November 29, 2010 2:26:11 AM

I hooked PC1 (the one with the SATA drive that wouldn't boot at all) up to a USB caddy and was able to save all the data onto a flash drive.

I then hooked the IDE drive from PC2 (the one that refused to let me change the passwords), and discovered that there's really nothing to save on it - no pictures, no documents, no applications that can't easily be reinstalled. So I'm going to reformat and reinstall XP.

Thanks for everybody's help.
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a b 8 Security
November 29, 2010 2:58:59 AM



Quote:
Thanks for everybody's help.


A happy ending. I like that.


:) 
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a b 8 Security
November 29, 2010 5:54:11 AM

boweasel said:
I hooked PC1 (the one with the SATA drive that wouldn't boot at all) up to a USB caddy and was able to save all the data onto a flash drive.

I then hooked the IDE drive from PC2 (the one that refused to let me change the passwords), and discovered that there's really nothing to save on it - no pictures, no documents, no applications that can't easily be reinstalled. So I'm going to reformat and reinstall XP.

Thanks for everybody's help.


[#0005ff]
Now for the bad news. When you don't have access to a user Account, looking in Documents and Settings will show folders as empty even if they're full. Passwords are there for good reason and if your friends had genuinely forgotten his, Safe Mode as Administrator could have been used to delete the password in Control Panel>User Accounts.
[/#000ff]
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November 29, 2010 7:26:41 AM

Quote:
Now for the bad news. When you don't have access to a user Account, looking in Documents and Settings will show folders as empty even if they're full. Passwords are there for good reason and if your friends had genuinely forgotten his, Safe Mode as Administrator could have been used to delete the password in Control Panel>User Accounts.

I did not know that.

But you misunderstand... They haven't forgotten any passwords - they never HAD any passwords on XP to begin with. The system just started one day making them enter an Administrative password, before Windows even started. They had never entered a BIOS password, so they had no clue as to what it might be.

I removed the CMOS battery and let the PC sit for a time. When I put it back, enough time had passed so that the BIOS reset itself, removing the password.

But then up pops Windows demanding a password to the only user it displayed in normal start mode - Guest. That is not my friend's User ID. His name is Mike, and that is his User ID. And when I booted into Safe mode, the only User was Administrator, and that also wanted a password. My friend had only the one User ID. And no password on it.

I'll try to talk to his daughter about whether he had any photos on the PC.

If he does, what could I possibly use to retrieve them before reformatting?
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a b 8 Security
November 30, 2010 5:14:43 AM

boweasel said:
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If he does, what could I possibly use to retrieve them before reformatting?
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Ordinarily, Guest would never have a password and if his account doesn't show in Safe Mode, it's been removed so the system it totally screwed. Try Recuva from http://www.piriform.com (the CCleaner people) or Google for Restoration2514 - both are pretty effective and free recovery tools.

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December 7, 2010 9:07:23 PM

Fotos were already backed up, so I reformatted & reinstalled. Thanks anyway.
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