How do I repair corrupt system file

on boot I get message that '\windows\system32\config\system' is corrupt or missing and to use r (repair) option from the XP Pro Cd. But when I go to change dir to windows, access is denied. I tried "expand" but access still denied. What can i do repair file and how can i logon with Admin privileges
Thanks in advance
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  1. I believe you have to boot from your WinXP CD. Now, <b>DO NOT</b> choose <b><font color=red>repair</b></font color=red> by using <b>Recovery console</b> on its <b><font color=blue>Welcome to Setup Screen</b></font color=blue>, press <b>ENTER</b> (which starts the Windows Setup program) instead. After you accept its license agreement, Windows searches your system for existing Windows installation. When you reach the screen that lists your current system, select it from the list and press <b><i><font color=red>R</b></i></font color=red> to start repair process.

    :smile: Good or Bad have no meaning at all, depends on what your point of view is.
  2. I got that...
    when I booted from the cd I tried to skip the recovery console and go to repair the installation, except it didn't recognise my installation of windows, so I couldn't repair it. I ended having to go into the recovery console. when you enter the console, it shows a list of windows installations ("1. c:\windows" is probably the only one listed, unless you have more than one installed), and you type "1" and Enter. If the system file is trully corrupted then it won't even prompt you for the admin password. In order for me to keep my files intact and boot up windows, I had to manipulate the files in the \windows\system32\config directory. If you look at these two files in this folder:


    the "system" file is the windows configuration for your current windows. The "system.sav" file is the original configuration, as if you never set up anything on the computer (I think it is the file used for OEMs when the company ships you the computer with windows and all the software preloaded, but the user is allowed to set their admin password and set up windows). anyway, I just renamed "system" to "system.bak" (windows later deleted it), and then renamed "system.sav" to "system". I also had to retain "system.sav", for windows wouldn't boot with that missing. thus, there were two identical files: system, and system.sav

    windows booted fine, except I had to go through the setup process again, but all my documents, files, and programs were still there
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