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Can't get computer to run

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by annielulu, May 24, 2009.

  1. annielulu

    annielulu StraightShooter

    Mar 10, 2007
    Las Vegas
    I have a second computer that stopped working awhile ago. I just unplugged it and hooked up another one.

    It has some data on it that I would like to view. When I try to get it to work this is what the screen says

    Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt


    Is there anything I can do to make it work again?

    Any help greatly appreciated
  2. betyourlife

    betyourlife on a GLOCK

    May 10, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    I think one of your registry files has been deleted or corrupted. Have you tried re-imaging the computer?

  3. annielulu

    annielulu StraightShooter

    Mar 10, 2007
    Las Vegas
    I don't know what re-imaging means. I don't know that much about computers. I need someone to walk me through it. I can print directions from this computer, then plug in the broken one and try to get it going.

  4. And he will lose his data .... :whistling:
  5. B.Mauser


    Oct 11, 2002
    Thornton Colorado
    I am not sure this will work if something is wrong with the hard drive but you might be able to access the data by pulling the hard drive from the old PC and installing it as a slave in the working one if they are desk tops.

    I have done this before and it saved my data. Its not that hard or time consuming to do.
  6. betyourlife

    betyourlife on a GLOCK

    May 10, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    Ah, I forgot he was trying to access files on the computer, not just fix the problem.
    Last edited: May 24, 2009
  7. KharToon


    Nov 2, 2007
    boot to Windows XP disk, select install. When it searches for previous windows installations and finds your existing windows install, select "R" for repair. This will replace all SYSTEM files but not overwrite personal files, programs or non system folders. This is known as a repair install. Most folks don't know it is even possible.
  8. betyourlife

    betyourlife on a GLOCK

    May 10, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    You know as funny as it is, when I went to do a clean install on my Vista machine, I remembered that you can do a repair install.
  9. WellArmedSheep

    WellArmedSheep NRA Member

    Apr 5, 2006
    This is what I was gonna recommend.
  10. annielulu

    annielulu StraightShooter

    Mar 10, 2007
    Las Vegas
    I can't find the disks that came with the computer that does not work. I did however come across disks for another HP Pavillion computer (this one) and tried to get them to work on the broken machine. All I got was a message to contact "support at HP".

    I thought you could reinstall with the same XP disks from any other machine with XP on it.
  11. hIGH_aND_mIGHTY

    hIGH_aND_mIGHTY The White Guy

    May 26, 2005
    Boise, Id
    You can if you have the right disc. Often time with computers from HP, Dell and the likes you just get an image restore disc. Those can be computer model specific and aren't true windows install discs. If you can get your hands on real install disc the other guys' recommendations are the best. Otherwise just take out the hard drive and put it in your new computer like B.Mauser said and it will typically read the hard drive no problem. You would be able to access it from "My Computer."
  12. Linux3


    Dec 31, 2008
    If you do a O.S. Repair you MIGHT fix the system and you might wind up with a clean install, losing all your data.
    Even if Repair works it will not rebuild your old registry so you will not be able to access your apps and maybe your data.

    Your could pull the drive as B.Mauser suggested and put it in a different system or if you just want to grab some data and files off it download Ubuntu Linux liveCD disk.
    Burn the .iso file to a cd.
    Boot the computer from the LiveCD. Don't click on the Install icon just run Ubuntu from the CD.
    If it's not totally corrupt you will be able to mount your Windows disk.
    Plug in a usb thumb drive and transfer your data from the Windows disk to the thumb drive.
    When reinstall Windows, or try Ubuntu Linux.
  13. Tennessee Slim

    Tennessee Slim Señor Member CLM

    Apr 14, 2004
    Mucus City, USA
    That error message most commonly means there's a problem with the boot.ini file (which is not an especially serious problem).

    Have you tried booting to Last Known Good Configuration?

    Failing that, if you boot off one of those repair CDs (like the ERD) and rebuild the file by hand with a text editor (use the boot.ini from another system as a template), I'd bet a month's beer money you'll be fixed.

    But if by some stretch that doesn't fix you, try this.
  14. MavsX

    MavsX The Dude Abides

    Jan 19, 2009
    Arlington, VA
    sounds like you need some sort of hard drive dock. You would plug in the dock into your computer that works. Then pull the hard drive out of the bad computer case. Insert hard drive into dock. Then you could view the files of the bad hard drive. And copy them to the new computer.

    Something like this:

    all i did was google, "external hard drive dock", just find out if your hard drive is a 'sata' or 'ide' hard drive.

    Good luck man.