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XP Pro Error

By ajdemarco
Jun 13, 2014
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  1. I have been running XP pro for several years on my work computer because one of the programs will not run on the new OS's. This week on start up I got the error file Windows\system\config\security is missing or corrupt. Since I had a back up drive I took out the problem drive and installed the mirrored drive that had been out of the computer. On start up I got the same error. I had a 3 drive that was ghosted about a month earlier and had never been in the machine. I got the same error. After playing with it all day I got it to go until I shut it down and rebooted, got the same error. My last resort was a brand new drive with nothing on it, I installed XP started loading drivers and after loading the video driver it asked to be restarted, so I did. Same error. I cannot figure out why 4 drives now none of which were connected to the computer at the same time all are getting the same error. Is it possible something on the motherboard could be causing the problem?
    Thanks
    Andy
     
  2. Cobalt006

    Cobalt006 TS Maniac Posts: 1,855   +184

  3. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,361   +52

    I think you may have wrongly posted the file being complained about. Is it not ....\system32\config\...? You may indeed have a failing motherboard, but it is more likely related to the fact that MS has ceased support for XP.

    The file SECURITY is part of the entire OS registry, and that it could be corrupt on several copies is quite impossible. It points to a major new incompatibility such as the following link illustrates http://www.symantec.com/connect/forums/stop-c0000218-registry-file-failure-registry-cannot-load-hive

    If safe mode still works, you might try uninstalling any anti-virus you may have. Then don't go on the internet, of course. You must accept that XP is a dead duck now, and can only be used in totally safe private environments that do not interact with the internet.

    If you have older restore points, you may be able to find one that is from a time where the incompatibility was not present. Obviously if you get the PC working again you cannot update any applications on it without risking the same problem cropping up again and again.

    Since this is a work computer, you need to also consider if it is illegal to continue to use XP. This can be the case if the application you are using (the one that needs XP), is a financial package. If so, it will fail the auditor's requirement for 'approved, supported software'. Your options then are limited - get the software re-written or find and implement an alternative.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2014
  4. ajdemarco

    ajdemarco TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I did try exactly what you suggested and it would work for a very short while and then the same error would happen. I tried it on both a back up and a brand new NEVER before used drive. The new drive allowed me to install the motherboard drivers, MS Office and the Video drivers. Then it wanted to reboot after the video driver were installed and it was down hill from there.
     
  5. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,474   +329

    Sounds like one of the drivers were infected - - just where did you download from?
     
  6. ajdemarco

    ajdemarco TS Rookie Topic Starter

     
  7. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Maniac Posts: 499   +57

    Only one of your required programs needs XP. You could install Windows 7 on your works computer then install XP in a virtual environment. There are a number of programs that will allow you to do this with Windows 7. I have XP installed in VMWare player in Windows 7 because of several program incompatibilities. If anything goes wrong with the virtual OS it has no effect on Windows 7. If the same error crops up installing Windows 7 you know that it's hardware related.
     
  8. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,361   +52

    Regrettably, it usually turns out that the user is trying to run a 16-bit program - like dBase (database) or bespoke process control software that needs to access hardware via a serial or parallel port. Virtual solutions do not do that.
     
  9. ajdemarco

    ajdemarco TS Rookie Topic Starter

    The program I need to run is a cad type of program and it does have a key that needs to be installed either on the LPT port or on a USB port. The virtual machine sounds good if I cannot access these ports then that won't work.
     
  10. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Maniac Posts: 499   +57

    I'm posting this from XP Home SP3 running in VMWare Player though I have to say that for the first time there were problems. It failed to boot and after running chkdsk I booted into XP Safe Mode. From there I restarted in normal mode and it seems fine now. Very strange and nothing to do with Norton AV which I've not used for 15 years.

    I wanted to see if I could use a usb stick and yes that works. I can print from the virtual OS too with a usb connected printer. It takes a long time to install XP within a virtual machine and get things working but it does the job. Updates are particularly slow to install. These virtual applications have pretty strong support on their own forums and there is a business Workstation version on the VM site.
     
  11. ajdemarco

    ajdemarco TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I just tried to start windows in safe mode, but what ever is going on has disabled the keyboard also. I can't start windows, I can't repair it and I can't start over because it goes directly to the error message screen and then the keyboard does not work.
     
     
  12. Cobalt006

    Cobalt006 TS Maniac Posts: 1,855   +184

    Sounds as though your Mother Board might be going out.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2014
  13. ajdemarco

    ajdemarco TS Rookie Topic Starter


    That has kind of been going through my mind. I don't know what else would cause the same problem on 4 different drives that have not been in the machine at the same time.
     
  14. Cobalt006

    Cobalt006 TS Maniac Posts: 1,855   +184

    I agree. I would go towards the motherboard.
     
  15. ravisunny2

    ravisunny2 TS Ambassador Posts: 2,062   +8

    See if you can spot a domed capacitor on the motherboard.
     
  16. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,361   +52

    Download and write a portable linux to CD (e.g. puppy linux). Boot off it and if it won't work, it is conclusively a hardware failure.
     
  17. ajdemarco

    ajdemarco TS Rookie Topic Starter

    There are several capacitors that have what look like rust on the top. The inside of the computer has never been wet or had any moisture that I know of. If I scratch at the spot on the top of the capacitor it comes off. The may be starting to leak
     
  18. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 8,484   +233

    They are leaking. That's not rust but dried electrolyte from inside the capacitor. It can't be rust from external moisture because the outer shell of the capacitor is made of aluminum not iron or steel. Aluminum can corrode but it usually corrodes into white powder (aluminum oxide).
     
  19. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,361   +52

    Then you need a new PC, and may have trouble installing XP again (UEFI bios on most new motherboards, and so on and so forth). So before making a decision on a new PC, ready-built (Win 7 or 8.1 with start menu), it would be wise to discover if your 'XP only' application will actually run on Win 7/8.1 after all. Or if not, will it run in a virtual environment. Yes, we live in interesting times......
     
  20. ajdemarco

    ajdemarco TS Rookie Topic Starter

    The program will not run on win 7/8. It does run on a virtual machine over Citrix. I would not purchase a ready built but will replace the MB, CPU and memory. I just replace the power supply and have new drive already. Will start over.
     
    Cobalt006 likes this.
  21. Cobalt006

    Cobalt006 TS Maniac Posts: 1,855   +184

    Good luck , Hope all goes well. Lets us know how it turns out.
     
  22. ravisunny2

    ravisunny2 TS Ambassador Posts: 2,062   +8

    The capacitors can be replaced. Do you know any electronics wiz in your area?

    My cousin does this kind of repair regularly.
     
  23. penn919

    penn919 TS Enthusiast Posts: 158   +12

    I would also consider using this as an opportunity to finally migrate to different software. You can't keep using Windows XP forever, so you might as well take the plunge now.
     
  24. ajdemarco

    ajdemarco TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well that is easier said than done. My employer has not upgraded the cad program so I am stuck using XP. I do have win7 on my other computers.
     


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