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Windows Vista won't run, Startup Repair won't fix it, System Restore won't fix it

By hgraham
Oct 5, 2011
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  1. I have a Dell Inspiron with Windows Vista. On starting up, it says, "Windows failed to start. A recent hardware or software change might be the cause." then offers to "Launch Startup Repair" or "Start Windows normally".

    When asked to start normally, it tries to start, but fails, returning again to this page.
    When asked to launch startup repair, it opens the programme, scans the system for several minutes, and then says "Startup Repair cannot repair this computer automatically".

    When clicking on the diagnostic and repair details, it says:

    "Last successful boot time: 10/3/2011 3:42:52PM
    Number of repair attempts: 8

    Session details
    System disk = \Device\Harddisk
    Windows directory = C:\Windows
    AutoChk Run = 0
    Number of root causes = 1

    Test Performed:
    Name: Check for updates
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: System disk test
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: Disk failure diagnosis
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: Disk metadata test
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: Target OS test
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: Volume content check
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: Boot manager diagnosis
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: System boot log diagnosis
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: Event log diagnosis
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0
    Name: Internal state check
    Result: Completed successfully. Error code = 0x0

    Root cause found:
    Startup Repair has tried several times but still cannot determine the cause of the problem."

    Otherwise one can view the advanced settings:
    System Restore = "No restore points have been created on your computer's system disk. To create a restore point open System Protection"
    Windows Complete PC Restore = "a valid backup location could not be found. Windows cannot find a backup on this computer."
    Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool = didn't solve anything when scanned
    Command Prompt
    Dell Factory Image Restore = haven't tried but am avoiding wiping the whole harddisk clean for as long as possible..

    It will not go into Sfe Mode, and I don't know what's going on. It happened when I shut it down (by holding down the power button) mid update as it had frozen.
    What should I do? Thanks.
     
  2. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 12,167   +37

    What is the make of your harddrive?
     
  3. hgraham

    hgraham TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Um.. Sorry, not a computer pro, I'm afraid.. Where would I find that? Thanks!
     
  4. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 12,167   +37

    Download the free version of System Information for Windows (SIW.exe). When you install it and click it on it will give you a two-panel window. On the left and much smaller window is a list of various items you can click on and the information will appear in the larger right hand window.

    Scroll down until you find hardware and then look for the Storage Devices. Click that on and in the right window it will give you make/manufacture of your hard drive.
     


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