To begin with, when I try to boot up, I get the following message: Windows could not start because the following file is mising or corrupt: \windows\sytem32\config\system This all started after an improper shutdown (locked while loading XP) To clarify, I was running Windows XP Pro SP1. Now I'm forced to use a Linux live-cd (phlak) to use this computer at all.. I have been reading about this problem for awhile now, trying to find a solution, but I still haven't found anything. First of all, I've tried the recovery console. I've used chkdsk, and when I use dir, I can see all my files and folders, but I can't do anything because I get an access denied, and when I try to use the logon command it does nothing. Absolutely nothing. Secondly, I've tried some of the other advice on this forum about starting a new windows setup, then choosing the repair option. However, after agreeing to the terms I have no option to repair, it just displays my partition. I've been reading, searching, and trying everything I can think of, but to no avail. If anyone has any advice on what I can do (I really don't want to have to reformat, I have alot of data I don't want to lose..) I would really appreciate any help. Also I'd like to say that I can follow advanced instructions.