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Windows is missing file and wont start!

Last response: in Windows XP
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December 3, 2003 4:09:32 PM

hi i haven't posted much around mostly because win xp has worked pretty fine for me, until now. Abuot 5 days ago i had a problem with windows. i wake up one morning and i get an error saying that i'm missing windows/system32/config/system . I decide to end up using recovery console which doesn't not work in anyway possible because it says the errors aren't recoverable. i decide to just reinstall windows over the old windows. it work and i'm back into windows, just that i have a clean startup menu and a few other things which didn't matter. I restart and everything fine, until i shut down the computer overnight... the next morning, the same error comes up. i continue to do the resintallation again and windows is up again. i shut down overnight once again, the next morning i try to run windows installation again, only to find out the hardrive stops working. it keeps clicking and does not even allow me to run windows setup. the hardrive was shot. i run out to buy a new hardrive and set it up. the hardrive and a clean install of win runs fine, UNTIL i shut down overnight...the new hardrive was formatted and everything only to find out the same problems happens again. i reinstalled once again and the next morning windows ends up missing a file called hal.dll. i decide to buy a virus protection program and i run it on my old computer with the new hardrive as a slave. it found a few viruses and fixed it. i got the new hardrive working once again on my computer. well i was happy to think the problem was a virus...then i shut down overnight... this morning i wake up to find the computer is missing the system file once AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!(getting repetitive isn't it?) i restart and then more missing files come up. now here i am ready to shed tears and beat my computer to an pulp. what possibly could be wrong? i didn't everything when it was running last night, from defrag to registry cleanup and adwaware scans and virus scans. what the hell is going on? no matter what i do, i keep getting this problem, even after clean installs. My comp specs are a 2.8 ghz p4, 1024 pc2700 ram, 120 gig western digital hardrive, 80 gig western digitial as a slave, a radeon 9800, abit SR7-8X motherboard, a dvd rom drive, and a 48 x tdk burner. can someone help me before i decide to play baseball with my computer??? thank you
December 3, 2003 5:30:59 PM

You shouldn't have put the new drive in with the old one... The virus may have jumped across. Also, what kind of power supply are you running? It could be a power issue.

Here's what you do:

1. Pull out the old drive and don't use it for now.
2. fdisk /mbr and format c: on the new drive. Wipe it completely.
3. Download and run memtest86
4. Install windows.
5. First thing you do upon boot is windows update. That RPC exploit can nail you damn quick.
6. Reboot.

If something goes wrong then you're pretty sure it's a hardware problem at this point. You have a clean hard drive, the old virus infected one is not hooked up, and you haven't installed any drivers for driver problems. If it passes a reboot here, then go ahead and install your drivers. Do everything gradually and reboot often so you can check your progress.

Perhaps your windows CD is installing something wrong? If you have an older version of windows you may want to try that too.

Some day I'll be rich and famous for inventing a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet.
December 3, 2003 7:49:13 PM

Donttt overclock.

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December 3, 2003 8:17:54 PM

i'm pretty sure it's not a virus but who knows i could be wrong. what i did yesterday was take both the old harddrive and new one and used them both as slaves in my other computer. i bought norton anti virus 2004 and ran it on all hardrives. I found one virus but the specifications of the virus had nothing to do with the problems i have now.i even got rid of them and rescanned. my power supply is 430 watts so i don't tihnk i'm having a problem with that. Another problem is that when i try to get to recovery console by inserting the win xp cd and booting it, the system goes to a blank screen and hangs.... so i can't exactly even get windows installation or recovery console to run anymore. so i guess the formatting is out of the question....
December 3, 2003 9:19:22 PM

uhm quick question, could it be possible that the power supply stops feeding power to the motherboard after a certain amount of hours. Isn't it true that the power supply supplies a constant flow of energy to the motherboard at all time letting the hardrive and everything to retain it's memory? Could it be that the powersupply is stopping is flow of energy after a while and making me lose precious windows files?
!