Windows\system32\config\system error on boot

By ChiCubs05
Feb 3, 2008
  1. when i start my computer i am displayed with the error

    "Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:

    it says i can repair the file using the windows start up cd by pressing 'r' at the first screen, but as i arrive there i can't find out what to do. could somebody please help me with my problem. i'm getting an itouch in the mail tomorrow, and need my desktop to get it ready!
  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    1. Insert and boot from your Windows XP CD.
    2. At the first R=Repair option, press the R key
    3. Press the number that corresponds to the correct location for the installation of Windows you want to repair.
    Typically this will be #1
    4. Enter in the administrator password when requested
    5. cd \windows\system32\config
    6. On the command lie type:
    ren system system.bad
    7. On the command lie type:
    copy \windows\repair\system
    8. Take out the CD ROM and type exit

    If that doesn't work, refer here for instructions on Repairing Windows

    Microsoft's Windows XP Professional Repair Install step by step
    Microsoft's Windows XP Home Repair Install step by step
  3. ChiCubs05

    ChiCubs05 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 32

    thank you! i am able to boot into windows now, all of my stuff is there. but none of my drivers or it seems registry files work, ex audio, networking... is this normal?
  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Yes this can happen.

    Strangely try restarting again (but whilst in Windows you may want to back up immediately)

    We can get the drivers back, but not the data
  5. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,145   +597

    1- the files located a (5) above are the REGISTRY files
    2- performing on (6) has regressed the SYSTEM registry to a bare minimum

    you need to recover from a System Restoe Point.

    the procedure referencing the \repair folder is only STEP-1 of a THREE step process documented here:
  6. allmightypuff

    allmightypuff TS Rookie Posts: 37

    iv seen that several times before. although i dont have that problem now, i do know that it always asks for the admin pass. the problem is there is no admin pass, so i usually just skip the repair and do a simple overwrite WITHOUT formating the partition. so why does it ask for a password when there is none?
  7. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,145   +597

    did you try just hitting <return> or <enter>??
  8. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

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