missing / corrupt file System\DRIVERS\pci.sys

Hewlett-packard / Desktop 750n
December 16, 2010 at 15:25:33
Specs: Windows 95
I have an HP Pavilion 750N Desktop running Windows 95. I can’t give you any exact OS info CPU or RAM info because I don’t remember it and I can’t get log onto the computer. I recently removed the hard case and cleaned the fan of all the dust that had built up. I used my small crevice tool on the vacuum and cleaned it out. I have done this before with no problem. Now when I turn it on, it won't boot up, it acts like it is going to boot, goes through the blue "HP" screen and then gives me the message... "Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: System\DRIVERS\pci.sys You can attempt to repair this file by starting windows using the original Setup CD-ROM. Select 'r ' at the first screen to start repair." So, I pressed 'r' at the first screen and it acts like it wants to start up; I get a blue screen with "HP" on it and then back to the above message.

Okay, so I put the original setup CD in and nothing, so I read a thread here that said to start it up and press F2 or F10, so I did that and now I get the message... "An unexpected error (536854784) occurred at line 1768 in d:xpclient\base\boot\setup\arcdisp.c Press any key to continue" When I press any key, it goes back to the original error message.

I would dearly appreciate any help that someone could offer, I am at my wits end. I know, I know, the first thing is, that I need a new computer, but if I could afford one, I would have already done that. I am using a different computer to ask this question.
Thank you, Cynthia

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December 17, 2010 at 20:21:26
Hi, Cynthia. 95 doesn't have a file called pci.sys, but it does have a file called pci.vxd and it would be needed very early on in the boot process. Just dropping in the CD and hitting a key to launch a 'saviour program' is just too good to be true even with today's systems.

I'm leary of the xpclient text in the path statment of one of your errors, but we need to see all of those you can post for us - good job there. Does this computer dual boot with XP windows? Any other OS installed along side of 95? Can you think of any other reason an XPclient would be calling out about "An unexpected error" because thats got me baffled some. NT and/or XP DOES have a pci.sys you see... And that makes me think that you are not booting 95 and thus belong in another group?

The file pci.vxd is to be found in the win95_15.cab file found on the 98 installation CD in the Win95 folder. You would boot up with a floppy that installs a DOS based CDROM driver and then you would navigate to the CD drive and change directories to Win95. From there you could run:

extract /E /L c:\windows\system win95_15.cab pci.vxd

and that would extract the missing file and place it where it needs to go. I suspect that next it would call our for another file when you attempt to boot it again, but let's hope not. Any joy?

In my experiance the boot floppies for 95 that install CDROM drivers don't work without some fussing about but it can be done if your persistant. Get a 95 boot floppy self extracting/creating file from http://www.bootdisk.com if you don't already have one. Double click the downloaded file to write out a boot floppy. You might have to edit the config.sys file to find and use the right CDROM driver that works with the drive you have - config.sys is a text file that tells DOS what drivers to load, you would open/alter it by typing:
edit config.sys

after you boot the floppy.


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December 18, 2010 at 09:34:34
If something is very awry, the MS messages cannot always be believed. They tend to get pulled out of the bag and might or might not help if the system is too badly screwed to produce meaningful messages.

There is always the possibility of coincidence but what strikes me is that you had been inside the machine, then having finished immediately hit trouble. It is very easy for some connector to get knocked or even something like RAM to move fractionally and hit previously undisturbed oxide on its connectors.

Before pursuing software and files any further I think you should take another peek inside the machine. Take out the RAM and clean the edge connectors with a pencil eraser, then pop the sticks in and out a few times which will remove oxide off the sockets themselves. Do the same with anything else that has edge connectors, such as the video card etc.

Push all connectors firmly home. Even better remove them and pop them back in again. Be very careful with any small ones, because what can look like a little plug can often break down into several tiny plugs. Not so bad one at a time but if you pull a group out it might prove hard to know where individual plugs should go.

Maybe its a long shot but I think there is little to lose by trying that first and it might just work. If it should happen to be a hardware problem then attacking the software can only add new problems to the equation, making it more difficult to fix.

We all live on a ball.

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December 18, 2010 at 18:53:16
I coulda sworn I posted to this thread a couple days ago.

Real men don't use AntiVirus; they just reformat

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