Cannot access Windows directory in recovery console on XP Pro

By newners ยท 4 replies
Feb 13, 2005
  1. After a minor, successful overclocking attempt (2.4G celeron to 2.68G), and then resetting everything back to normal in the BIOS, windows XP pro SP2 will not boot at all. After POST I get "windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt \windows\system32\config\system". I've read all the Microsoft info and threads re: recovery console and re-writing the registry etc. However, when loading up recovery console from the XP CD all I get is "C:\" rather than "1. C:\windows". If I try to change to the windows directory (using cd C:\windows) I get "access denied". I've run CHKDSK without any switches and it reports some errors on the drive.

    Does anyone know what is best to try next? I have another IDE drive spare and I am wondering If I should load XP onto it and then access the problem SATA drive from the new install in order to try and save as much data as possible before trying anything else?

    Should I then be able to run a repair install from the XP cdROM?

    Any advice greatly appreciated!
  2. patio

    patio TS Guru Posts: 482

    At the C: prompt the command should be cd\windows; not cd\C:\windows...
    patio. :cool:
  3. newners

    newners TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thnks for that, however, either command should work. I've tried yours and every other conceivable way but always get "access denied". The registry seems to be well and truly corrupted but I cannot use the well known microsoft fix as I cannot access windows from recovery console.

    I've done a full memory test and not probs there. I can't do a full Maxtor disk check because their utilities don't support their own SATA drives on a RAID controller! Everything in the BIOS seems fine and is back to normal. POST is fine.

    Is there any one out there who may be able shed some light on this? I don't want to loose data if at all possible. Will the idea of setting up another drive with XP on be worth trying (in order to retieve some data before re-installing on the problem drive) or should I simply re-install XP again on the existing drive and hope some data is resored. (can't get the other drive till tommorrow)

    Any help greatly appreciated.
  4. liamb

    liamb TS Rookie


    i read ur message from feb and i have had exactly the same problems. The error message changed though from what u got e.g. "replace missing or ccurrupt files" to "NTLDR missing please restart" but everything else is EXACTLY the same. I tryed using my windows xp disc to fix the problem but when i go into the recovery console to copy the files from my windows xp cd it says "access denied" even if i try and change directory it says "access denied". Did u happen to find a solution to this without losing any of ur files.

  5. newners

    newners TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I didn't find a fix for this one however, I manged to remove the hard drive with the corrupt OS on it, and put it in another PC. I was then able to copy all my data onto another Hard drive. I also tried to edit the registry on the corrupt system to allow recovery console access but that still didn't work. Antyway I managed to keep all the data and then went fot a complete reload of Win Xp. All fine now!

    All the best with yours

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