|... you could try Ubuntu free make a CD with the "iso" download which is bootable. When you boot-up (do not install) with it you should be able to navigate to your Vista files and burn them to dvd/cd or copy them to another device like a usb stick.|
... if you had activated before you should'nt have to go through the motions again
... did support not suggest that you try tapping <F8> key @ bootup select "Repair" then try System Restore (< click) by going "back" in time before the event. Try it!
... Posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties