Deleted in error Windows.inf folder

Hewlett/Packard Pavilion
September 19, 2007 at 21:00:24
Specs: Microsoft Windows ME 4.9., 127.0MB
I used a computer cleaner named "Spring Cleaner" and deleted files I now know I shouldn't have. I lost my apps.inf file and I've lost my Windows.info folder. I've been reading the post on here (almost every one) and have gotten back my apps.inf file. I can't move it to the win.inf folder because on my computer I can't find it. Not even using search. This computer came with a set of ME System Restore Discs, which I can't run because I get the message that the apps.inf file is missing, I need to first put the apps.inf file into the win.inf folder. Can someone please help me get both of these things back and into their proper place. Thanks

Deirdre


See More: Deleted in error Windows.inf folder

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#1
September 19, 2007 at 22:07:07
The inf folder is usually hidden. Maybe that's the reason you can't find it. Open 'my computer', click view--folder options--view and then under 'hidden files' check 'show all files'. (That's how it is on 98. I think ME is the same.)

If it's there, the inf folder show show in the windows folder.


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#2
September 19, 2007 at 23:22:03
Dave....I know a little (very little)about computers. When I do exactly what you typed, I went to my computer - opened it - when I click view - it shows
toolbars
status bar
Large Icons
Small Icons
List
Details
(Plus a list of a few more things)

There is no other "view" that I can click - I'm using both the right and left side of the mouse. Thank you.

Deirdre


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#3
September 20, 2007 at 00:10:56
After you've opened My Computer you select the Tools menu and click Folder Options. Check this tutorial out...

How to see hidden files in Windows
http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/tut...


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Related Solutions

#4
September 20, 2007 at 07:44:51
Can you run System Restore from the Accessories, System Tools in the Start Menu Programs?

Life's more painless for the brainless.


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#5
September 20, 2007 at 12:12:02
If you can't get it copied via windows, then use 'msdos prompt' to open a dos box and with the file on a floppy disk in the a: drive type:

copy a:\apps.inf c:\windows\inf\

and enter. That should copy it to the inf folder--assuming it's still there. (It probably is, otherwise you'd be getting all kinds of unknown hardware errors.)


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#6
September 20, 2007 at 20:10:21
try to run system restore. i believe someone said it already. in your system restore calendar you should see system checkpoints. go to one of the checkpoints and try to restore your computer to a day when your computer was working fine.

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#7
September 20, 2007 at 22:09:55
Thanks everyone. I will try all suggestions. I know I can't run system restore because my C drive is too full (which is WHY I ran the cleaner to begin with, delete some junk, get some space, get restore to start.) Went into it (using suggestions here) and the manager box is checked, but the ram, and read ahead (both the 2 bars are almost at their ends) I'll try again to do what is suggested, and let you know. I just got off from work and didn't get to work on this until now. Again, thanks all for suggestions, and I'll try right now. PS, Daveincaps, how do I get a msdos prompt? Do I just type what you posted and do what the computer tells me. Thx.

Deirdre


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#8
September 20, 2007 at 22:51:26
Go to START-PROGRAMS and I think it'll show there. Or START--RUN and type in command and then click OK. To close the box type exit and enter at the prompt.

Scanreg/restore isn't going to work for deleted files--except of course system.ini, win.ini,system.dat and user.dat.


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#9
September 21, 2007 at 00:11:31
DAVEINCAPS, Viking, Jennifer, Rich....
I think I got this to work, but not sure if its temporary or not. THIS is what I did
1. Removed all entries off of my Outlook Express Blocked Senders List - 1338 entries. (Still want restore to work - as you can see, I NEED IT!)
2. Read the tutorial Viking sent on how to open hidden folders (thanks for sending an easy to follow guide.
3. Followed the tutorial and saw that I did have a Windows, subcategory inf file.
(I WILL BE UN-DOING THIS (to re-hide the folders) SO AS NOT TO MESS THIS UP AGAIN, but I did save the tutorial to my favorites.
4. Did a search for my apps.inf file. I found 3 of them, 2 with 2 cogs mashed together in the little box (one on C (ME) and one on D (XP), and one I copied off of this website but it was saved as a Windows document.
5.Once I had the folders open, I copied (moved with mouse and drag) the apps.inf into the inf folder. (WAS THIS what I was SUPPOSED to do?)
My folders were like this when first opened:
Windows
- inf
- CATALOG
i386
[+]QFE
Win2000
6. I closed back up My Computer, closed all open pages, shut off the computer and restarted it. It started like it used to.
NOW, MY REAL QUESTION
On startup - I read on here that I could ask the computer to restart on the last configuration that worked without error, (never payed attention to that line before,) and, since I have Windows ME on C-drive, and Windows XP on D-drive (on startup I have to choose which OS I want to start or it automatically goes to XP, I clicked that one, (start on last good config) and the computer started up without the "Missing apps.inf" banner, but did I really solve the problem or go around it by not letting the computer go where it was going to go.
(Hope I didn't lose anyone)
Again, thx everyone.

Deirdre


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#10
September 21, 2007 at 11:50:59
I think the 'last known good configuration' is a win 2000/XP option and is basically a registry restore. It wouldn't have affected the 'missing apps.inf' message since a registry restore doesn't restore apps.inf.

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#11
September 21, 2007 at 15:18:46
So...DAVEINCAPS....did I fix the problem with #4 and #5 above, because the banner no longer comes up. I haven't tried to read a disc yet...I guess I should do that to see if it's really fixed. Thanks so much for explaining things and not making me feel dumb for trying to fix it myself.

Deirdre


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#12
September 21, 2007 at 19:07:51
Yes, copying the apps.inf file to the inf folder keeps that error message from coming up. Of course, it's possible other files were deleted that aren't as obviously missing as that one. Errors about those may appear when opening whatever application uses them.

I don't know why, but 'missing apps.inf' is not an uncommon problem here. Usually restoring that one file is all that's needed.


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#13
September 22, 2007 at 23:36:17
Thats good you fixed the problem and got the file back to where it belongs. going back to the beginning, did you delete this file by accident or did your computer cleaner detect this as something bad. under rare circumstances system files can get overwritten with something else when certain programs get installed like adware ones, (does not sound like it happened to you). it might be a good idea to check and see if all your programs work properly (as Dave said other files could have been deleted that don't show errors right away.

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#14
September 23, 2007 at 23:41:42
Rich185....I used the Spring Cleaning 3.0 disc, and before it deletes anything it asks you are your sure. Well me, thinking it will only delete junk, said yes. Next thing I know, I get the apps.inf banner, and the computer wont even read the disks. With Windows ME, I got recovery disks, that I figured out how to get to work, but I have alot of files and junk on here that I didn't want deleted, so I tried to get the apps.inf back to the folder it needed to be. But EVERYONE on this topic was soo, helpful, and things were explained in layman's terms, even when I read other posts, and tried those things before beging my own request for help. I went to a different website for help on how to get my computer to start-up with Windows ME and not automatically go to Windows XP, and they started out with all this computer jargon, that took me out the box. They then just started talking to themselves, forgetting I didn't even know how to do the first thing they even suggested. This website is most definitely added to my favorites list, and I will look here just to see what's happening with others.

Deirdre


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#15
September 24, 2007 at 21:53:55
maybe your computer cleaner did detect bad files in that folder or something like that. another thing to point out(you probably know to do this often) is you should be clearing your temporary internet files folder out at least a few times every month. yep, using the recovery disks wipes your system out and basically reinstalls windows me to the time it was when you first got it. it would be a good idea to burn all your important files to disks.

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#16
September 25, 2007 at 01:27:04
Rich185 Thanks for the info. To try to resolve this problem from happening to begin with, I ALSO have on my Windows ME a program called "Acronis True Image" this is a program that will completely duplicate your hard drive, onto another disk in case I do something like this. The problem is I don't know how to work it. When I was just trying things, before I clicked the yes button (I'VE LEARNED, BELIEVE ME,)the program told me that I shouldn't move a copy of hard drive C (Windows ME), to hard drive D (Windows XP - the only other place it determined I could copy the hard drive to) because it will cause my computer to have problems. THIS I know not to do anyway, but it didn't tell me what to do as far as where to put it....SO...my question is do I have to buy some disks that will be large enough to hold my whole 20G hard drive info? I've never used the program, it's just sitting here on my computer. These are some of the things that I have on here that I didn't want to delete, so that why I really didn't want to run Windows ME Recovery disks. I've had to run them in the past a few times, when I've really screwed up, so I try to only do a few things, but now I'm trying to delete things to try to get my compute to set restore dates. It won't no matter what I do, and it says that I need to delete some stuff to clear up space. Even running defragement doesn't clear enough space...hence, the reason why I ran Spring Cleaning to begin with. Maybe it's time to do what you suggested and clear the cookies and things.
Sorry to get off on a tanget. Some of the things that Spring Cleaning does is:
Fix Registry: Fix errors in the Windows registry.
Clean Registry: Remove unnecessary registry enries.
Edit Registry: Find and edit registry settings.
I used the fix registry option, because I though it would help Windows figure out how I can gain space, or combine some info to gain space.
Also, I have Registry Mechanic. This program works, but it removes my task bar icons for a few hours, and then replaces them with others, (that still do the same thing) but I couldn't stand the change, and it doesn't play nice with my NOD32 or my AdsGone program, because it has something in it that does the same thing, and it wants to use its own, so when I sent the problem to the company, again they told me to send them a snapshot of what my computer was doing, but I didn't know how to do it, so I just removed the program from my computer, and have been trying to fix the problems that occur my self. Do you know of a defragment system that I could try to try to get more space so my system restore can make restore points?


Deirdre


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#17
September 25, 2007 at 12:44:28
I usually use the manufacturer's installation disk (the one that comes with a new drive) to clone a drive. It's a bootable floppy designed to setup a new drive. They all have a disk copy utility. It can also be downloaded from the manufacturer's site.

Defragging and registry cleanups don't do much to free up space. Uninstalling unneeded programs and files is really the only way.

A larger or additional drive is what you need. If you already have 2 drives, the ME and XP, it's probably not practical to add a third. The best thing may be to get a larger drive for ME and clone the old one to it. (I'm assuming there are two separate physical drives and not one drive with separate ME and XP partitions.)

But if you did have room for an additional drive you could store music and video files there (those usually take up a lot of room). Transferring the windows swap file there and the temporarily internet files would also free up some room.


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#18
September 25, 2007 at 23:45:18
i am not too familiar with duplicating the hard drive.  yes you would need to buy disks if you want to burn all your important files like songs, video, pics or whatever else you have.  do you have just a cd burner or can your drive burn on both cds and blank dvds.  blank cds can only hold 700MB of data, and any other files larger than 700mb won't fit on a blank cd.  as you can see it would take alot of blank cds to burn 20GB of stuff.  on the other hand, if your drive can burn on blank dvds, a blank dvd can hold something like 4GB. it would not take alot of these disks to burn 20GB of stuff. if you do get all your important files burned, then you can delete some of them from your computer to free up space, as your stuff will be on the disks. you can always copy the files back to your computer from the burned disks. you probably know how to delete the temporary internet files, i will explain it anyway. you go to settings, control panel, and click internet options and where it says temporary internet files click delete and make sure the box is checked for delete all off line content, then click delete files. i am not too familiar with computer cleaners. how much hard drive space do you have left.

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#19
September 26, 2007 at 00:18:18
Hey DAVENINCAPS and Rich185:
I do have 2 separate hard drives, ME in on the 20GB, and XP is on the 80GB
From your post above, what is the difference between these two: blank cd and blank dvd.
I do have a DVD burner. If I want to try to burn some of my programs onto the discs what size should I look for in the store?
It holds the round discs, and I also have that slot that you put those little square ones into.
I do have the installation CD that came with the 80GB hard drive (that is holds XP,)
but ME only came with Recover CDs and I don't think I can copy from them...They just want to reformat and delete everything.
I'm going to read up and figure this out, and get some of these programs moved. Sincerely.

Deirdre


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#20
September 26, 2007 at 15:56:00
A DVD will hold a little more than 4 gig. A cd will hold about 700 meg. So you're better off using a DVD. There are different DVD media types and you need to make sure whatever you use is compatible with your burner. But if you can get enough stuff copied to DVD you may free up the needed space on the hard drive.

If you were going to clone the ME drive using the manufacturer's utility you could use the one for either drive. That is, if for example the original ME drive was a Maxtor and the new drive was Western Digital you could use either the maxtor or western digital utility.

The recovery/restore disks wouldn't be involved in the copying process. It's possible the recovery/restore disks may not work with the newer drive should you later try doing a restore, although I don't think I've ever had a problem.

Given bios problems properly seeing some of the newer, larger drives you're probably better off getting one that's no bigger than what your PC already has. Since it's using an 80 gig for XP, your bios would have any problem recognizing another one that size for ME.

But again, if you get enough stuff copied to DVD then another drive won't be necessary.

". . . little square ones. . ."? Is that the floppy drive (drive a:)?


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#21
September 26, 2007 at 22:04:56
since you have a dvd burner, you would be better off using the dvd (as dave mentioned there are different dvd media types). There is DVD-R and DVD+R and there is even dual layer. you have to know what types of dvds your drive is capable of burning on, and the burn speed of your drive. can you post the specs of your dvd burner on here. i don't know how to burn programs, but you can burn the easy stuff like songs, video, pictures, documents, etc. yes the ME recovery cds or quick restore cds basically reformats the drive and deletes everything and reinstalls windows me back to the first time you had it. you got to try to get some stuff burned.

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#22
September 26, 2007 at 23:55:12
Thank you both. My DVD burner is 24x10x40. It will burn a DVD in approx 7 mins. Do either of you know of a system that will make Windows ME create restore points? r?) DAVEINCAPS, yes, it is "drive a"

Deirdre


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#23
September 28, 2007 at 20:40:14
thats a fast dvd burner, you must have got that recently. i guess you have been using it before. like i was saying in other posts if you have alot of video or songs, you can easily burn all those files on dvd. do you have your system restore enabled. usually system restore creates restore points on its own or you can create them manually. my system restore creates like about 3 to 4 checkpoints a week. some days i spend like 4 hours online then when i sign off, i would leave my computer on for like 30 minutes, then when i come back, i would notice sometimes it creates a restore point.

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#24
September 28, 2007 at 22:49:42
Rich185. System restore STILL won't work. Like you and DAVENINCAPS stated above I'm going to have to move some programs off of the C Drive (Windows ME). I've tried everything including thorough defrag and I still can't get enough space. My actual space is: C: Used 12.3 Free 6.24
D: Used 7.27 Free 67.1
My CD Burner, I got free with my 80GB harddrive. I had the Geek Squad (Best Buy) put them both in at the same time, Christmas 2004. I'm still working on the moving thing. I'm trying to figure out which programs I use the least, and will move them. I'm just waiting until my next off day to go and buy the CD's to burn the programs too. If I leave my computer alone for too long, sometime it's ok, and other times disk defrag starts up by itself. I'll probably try some of this, this Sunday, and I'll let you all know what happens. Thx.


Deirdre


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#25
September 28, 2007 at 22:58:24
I haven't ever done the ME system restore (you don't mean SCANREG/RESTORE do you?) but it sure seems like you'd have enough space. Someone more familiar with the process may know for sure. Maybe there's some other problem.

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#26
September 28, 2007 at 23:38:06
DAVEINCAPS, to try to get my computer to set a restore point, I click Start - Programs - Accessories - System Tools - System Restore. This is the only way that I know how to try to set a restore point. I even tried using safe mode to set a restore point, but to no avail. (Thus, the reason all this drama started to begin with, with Spring Cleaning 3.0). There has to be something that I'm missing or not deleting that is not allowing System Restore to work, I just haven't figured it out yet, so I keep reading blogs, questions and visiting Window error sites. Windows ME won't even create a restore point when I add a new program. Spring Cleaning was the last one added, (But since I'm afraid to run it, I think I'll remove it from my computer.

Deirdre


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#27
September 29, 2007 at 00:51:47
Windows ME system restore is extremely unpredictable to say the least, I would go as far as to say that it simply does not work over prolonged periods - and even less likely to be effective with super modern software.

In an ideal world you would purge (delete) _RESTORE and turn it off and use older 3rd party cloning software, such as Ghost, Acronis TI.

If you have to use it then regular periodic purging / deletion of _RESTORE and resetting is advisable. And even then you have no guarantees it'll save your bacon further down the line.

It is a liability, you have been warned.

Sebastian42's threads are an eye opener regarding system restore and the methods you can use to clear portions of _RESTORE / delete completely / and, or reset it.



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#28
September 29, 2007 at 09:10:43
6 gb left in the hard drive should be enough for system restore to work. i forgot to point out before, is that your system restore disk space use setting might be set too high. (mine is set on the default setting which is 6,500MB or 6.5GB). you may want to give that a check. i am assumming you know how to check that. usually leaving your computer on a long time with inactivity going, usually a restore point gets created. maybe you do have some other problem that prevents restore from working right.

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#29
September 29, 2007 at 09:40:43
Worth a read, check out the Data Store section of the article.

MS Article ID: 267951 - Description of the System Restore Utility in Windows Millennium Edition


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#30
September 29, 2007 at 18:13:21
Viking...Please see above posts....maybe 5-7 above this. You will see that I DO have Acronis TI, BUT, it's telling me to do something that I DON'T KNOW HOW TO DO, another problem for me (I explained in that msg what my computer told me) I guess I'll just have to keep trying to get extra stuff of the C drive that I don't use, and put it on removable CD's, and see if restore kicks back on. DAVEINCAPS, Rich185..what's the difference between CDs and DVDs? I'm going to look for some tomorrow so I can try to move some things, and want to at least try to make sure I buy the right thing for the job. Thx all, I'm still trying.

Deirdre


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#31
September 29, 2007 at 19:34:56
A DVD is going to hold about 6 times more stuff than a CD. A DVD burner should be able to burn both CDs and DVDs. But a cd burner only burns cds.

You say your DVD burner is a 24x10x40. I can't say for sure, but that sounds like stats for a cd burner (not DVD). You need to make sure which it is you actually have, a cd burner or a DVD burner. Do you know the model number?


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#32
September 29, 2007 at 20:52:02
DAVEINCAPS It is the Nero CD Burner, by Ahead Softwear. Will this do to move a little bit of stuff, or it's not the right product? Thx. Did I give you what you need to know, or I need to put the CD in?

Deirdre


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#33
September 29, 2007 at 21:42:24
That's the burner software. I was looking for the model of the burner itself. It may show on the posting screen or in Device Manager under 'CDROM'. Or if it really is a DVD burner it should say 'DVD' somewhere on its front panel.

I suspect though, that since the software is
'Nero CD Burner' you don't have a DVD.


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#34
September 29, 2007 at 22:04:32
DAVEINCAPS. Here goes.. On device manager it says: CD ROM
LITE-ON LTR 24102B
Will this work to transfer files I use least?
I don't have the model number because the Geek Squad installed this burner into my tower. The only part I can see if the front with the disc in a square, and the numbers 24x10x40x. I went to look at the box that it came with (the 80GB harddrive, but Best Buy must have thrown it away, I have the box with whatever was inside the tower before they put in the burner. I don't have a book, only the CD, so I really don't know how to find out the model number, sorry.

Deirdre


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#35
September 29, 2007 at 22:51:46
The LTR 24102B is a CD and not a DVD burner. So you'd use regular 700 MB CD-R disks.

You wouldn't want to copy (and then remove from the hard drive) anything in the windows folder or program files folder as windows will need that.

Your document files, mp3s and videos usually default to installing in the My Documents folder and it's likely anything in that folder can be copied and then removed without affecting system operation. If those files are elsewhere, say in a My Music folder then it too could be copied and removed.

You should probably go through the software you use to create and save documents, mp3s, videos (and whatever else you want to save) and see where the OS deposits the files.


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#36
September 29, 2007 at 22:56:33
Ok DAVEINCAPS, One final question. Would a DVD burner be a good investment for Christmas. Would it make doing this easier. Sales begin Nov 28. Thx for ALL the help you and Rich185 have given me.

Deirdre


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#37
September 29, 2007 at 23:34:16
It might depend on how much stuff you intend to copy off. If you manage to fill each cd it would take about 18 regular cds to copy the entire 12.3 gig. Of course you wouldn't need to copy it all, but at least whatever you do copy will require less than 18 disks. A DVD burner would take probably 4 disks to copy 12.3 gig, again assuming each was filled. A DVD burner would be more convenient but I don't know if the difference is worth it.

You also need to make sure your PC has the minimum requirements for a DVD burner. They usually require at least a fairly decent P-III, around 800 MHz.


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#38
September 30, 2007 at 00:48:06
"Viking...Please see above posts....maybe 5-7 above this. You will see that I DO have Acronis TI, BUT, it's telling me to do something that I DON'T KNOW HOW TO DO, another problem for me (I explained in that msg what my computer told me)"

Yeah, sorry, my bad. I quickly scan read the top and bottom of the thread. Still, you know what to do about/with system restore now :)



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#39
September 30, 2007 at 01:05:11
Well DAVEINCAPS, I don't have a Pentium® III Processor, just this little ole Pavilion I bought in 2001. It serves the little bit of computing I do well, when I'm not messing it up, so I guess I go and buy the 20something CD, and get to work. Thx...The computer is working well enough (if I don't mess with anything else,) so I guess system restore will just have kick in itself if it sees fit. This is my final question for real. What should I have my system restore set on in the file systems, currently it does it itself and its set at the max 2289.

Viking...No problem....A confused person like myself will take help from anyone. It even took me a minute to realize you were suggesting something that I already had. No harm, no foul. thx.

Deirdre


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#40
September 30, 2007 at 01:17:20
As above Deidre..

If system restore isn't working now then you are going to have to fix it, it's unlikely to suddenly "kick in". You will need a Windows ME start up disk to do it.

As for how big to set restore, the clues are in the MS article above also. Remember the larger the restore setting the more prone to corruption restore will get.


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#41
September 30, 2007 at 01:21:16
I'm not sure about the system restore stuff as I rarely use ME. Others may have ideas on that.

If you can get the necessary files copied off you might just want to format and do a fresh install of ME.


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#42
September 30, 2007 at 03:26:44
Ok everyone...On that note, I'm done. If I ever get it going right, I'll post back. Thank EVERYONE for all the help.
THIS website is the best by far....Deirdre

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#43
October 1, 2007 at 10:43:30
a blank dvd holds 4.5GB as blank cd holds 700MB. since you only have a cd burner you would have to buy blank CD-R 700mb disks (as dave mentioned). you would want to burn mp3 files, video files, and documents. if you get all those files burned then you can delete this stuff off the computer (as that would free up space). you should have no problem getting these files burned.

DVD burners are not even expensive anymore. Alot of computers being sold today actually come with dvd burners. if you did buy one it would not cost that much. then again like dave said would it be worth it. you would have less disks laying around as dvd can hold tons more stuff. if you have lots of video files over 700mb or if you do alot of video editing(such as from a digital camcorder) then a dvd burner would be worth it.

If your system restore setting is on the max which on yours is 2,289, this is probably the default setting. it is using about 2GB of your hardrive.

Hope we all helped, and if you run into a problem just post back.


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