|I agree with Stuart above. Something sounds goofy. If you made no OS changes then I would suspect this message may be from Malware of some sort. |
Have you tried booting into Windows Safe Mode by tapping F8 at startup or watching the startup screens for options?
BTW, if the files are crucial you should have kept copies of them. I hope in the future you will be more proactive. There are many alternative ways to recover any personal files.
If time is of the essence then I suggest you download a live version of Linux, like puppy.
Live versions run from the installed media (optical or flash). You boot to that media and you should be able to access and manipulate the files.
Post back on your preference.