Windows did not start successfully...

By idling fire
Dec 4, 2006
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  1. Whenever I attempt startup, I receive this message:

    We apologize for the inconvenience, but Windows did not start successfully. A recent hardware or software change might have caused this.

    If your computer stopped responding, restarted unexpectedly, or was automatically shut down to protect your files and folders, choose Last Known Good Configuration to revert to the most recent settings that worked.

    If a previous startup attempt was interrupted due to a power failure or because the Power or Reset button was pressed, or if you aren't sure what caused the problem, choose Start Windows Normally.

    Safe Mode
    Safe Mode with Networking
    Safe Mode with Command Prompt
    Last Known Good Configuration (your most recent settings that worked)
    Start Windows Normally

    Use the up and down arrow keys to move the highlight to your choice.

    Seconds until Windows starts: 30

    ~~~
    I am unsure whether it froze before to cause the screen, though it is a possibility.
    However my results from selecting any of the options results in freezing, where the countdown stops at its current value, and keyboard becomes non-responsive. If I allow the countdown to reach 0, it will freeze then instead.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Preferably not resorting to formatting HD... I don't exactly have backups. *gulp*
    Thanks.
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu Newcomer, in training Posts: 9,431

    So what did you do before the trouble started?

    Test your RAM and test your hard drive.
    Boot into recovery console and run chkdsk on the file system. (Tell chkdsk not to attempt any repairs).
  3. idling fire

    idling fire Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Apparently, the PC was shut down intentionally and did so unusually "quickly." (I was not the user at the time.)

    Sorry, I do not know how to test my RAM or hard drive.

    From the recovery console,
    "CHKDSK found one or more errors on the volume."

    I am not experienced with the recovery console, so am reluctant to go further without consultation. (Wouldn't want to stuff things up for myself, being the relative newbie that I am.)

    So some further directions form here would be great.
    Thanks.
  4. Nodsu

    Nodsu Newcomer, in training Posts: 9,431

    Any chance of the culprit user having done something? Like deleting the Windows folder or installing/uninstalling some drivers?
  5. idling fire

    idling fire Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    I have managed to resolve the problem without having done anything... After exiting recovery console, the pc restarted, went to message, I selected "Last Known Good Configuration (your most recent settings that worked)" pessimisticly, and it completed startup. Yay.

    I'm still wondering whether the problem remains and has just been overcome though.

    The culprit user would not have intentionally deleted windows folder or dirvers, however possibly could have done so (thinking they were temporary files and manually deleting them). I will have to interrogate further.

    Thanks for that.
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