black screen, windows corrupted or missing

October 4, 2011 at 11:37:15
Specs: Windows XP
black screen saying windows\system32\config\system is missing or corrupted i have tried everything all the f keys and rebooting options i do not have a cd i have windows xp on a toshiba laptop

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#1
October 4, 2011 at 18:48:37
Your problem was caused by essential Windows data getting corrupted.

It's quite possible for that to happen if your hard drive is in the process of failing.

FIRST, test your hard drive.

Test your hard drive with hard drive manufacturer's diagnostics.

E.g.
Seagate's SeaTools will test (almost) any brand of hard drive.
http://www.seagate.com/ww/v/index.j...

Do the long test.

The Dos bootable versions of SeaTools can test the hard drive when Windows will not load properly, or even when the drive has no data on it.

If the drive itself passes the test, any data problems on the drive can be fixed one way or another.
........

If the drive itself passes the test.........


See this:

How to recover from a corrupted registry that prevents Windows XP from starting
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307545

NOTE that you can choose to PRINT that article from online.

You MUST replace all the files it tells you to replace with their backups when you have a brand name system installation, otherwise the procedure won't work.

After those files have been replaced, Windows will work, but you will need to re-install MANY things.

You can do that procedure with anyone's XP CD

OR
You could make yourself a bootable CD that has an operating system installed on it, that can read the data on your hard drive (it's probably on a NTFS partition, possibly a FAT32 partition) e .g. a Linux CD, boot your computer from the CD, and do the same things as in the procedure with that.

OR
You could install your problem drive in an external drive enclosure, connect the external enclosure to the Toshiba laptop via a USB connection, and do the same things as in the procedure with that, to your hard drive, then install your hard drive back in your computer.

NOTE that the external drive enclosure MUST be plugged into a USB port that can supply the full max spec 500ma of current - if you plug it into a USB port built into the laptop, it will probably work fine.
...............

The BEST way to fix this problem is to run a Repair installation of Windows procedure

How to do an XP Repair installation step by step:
http://www.windowsreinstall.com/win...


- after that has finished running, Windows will work, and you will need to re-install the least possible things

- but you must boot the computer from a suitable XP CD to do that.

Suitable CD.....
- a brand name labeled XP Re-installation CD or similar that came with your brand name model when it was new, or one that is part of a Recovery disk set that you made by using a program supplied by the brand name to make your own set, or one that is part of a Recovery disk set you bought oniline from the brand name's web site for your specific model.

- a regular Microsoft OEM XP CD for the same version of Windows as on your computer - Home, Pro, or Pro 64 bit. It doesn't matter whether it has SP1 or SP2 or SP3 updates included - those can be re-installed later - but it must have SP1 updates if your hard drive is larger than 137gb hard drive manufacturer's size.
It has the Microsoft holograms on it, and "For distribution with a new PC only. " printed on it

- a brand name labeled XP Re-installation CD or similar that came with a different brand name model will probably REFUSE to run the Repair installation procedure or install XP from scratch on any compute except one that's the same model or a model in a small group of models that were made at the same time.


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