Hal.dll file missing after delete and rebuild of boot.ini

By Barganman04 ยท 11 replies
Sep 20, 2009
  1. Hello,

    I am looking for some help or advice if anyone can lend it.

    My computer:
    4 year old Inspiron 6000
    2gb ram
    Windows Xp Professional
    160gb Seagate HDD

    About a year ago my computer was afflicted with the white blinking underscore.
    I re-installed a fresh copy of windows, all my drivers and lost all my files. When this past week the white blinking underscore showed up again I was determined to not fix it if possible.

    Here is what I did:
    I entered the recovery console and entered the following string of commands.
    First I ran ChkDsk and at least 1 error was found.
    then I ran

    C:>Attrib -h C:boot.ini
    C:>Attrib -s C:boot.ini
    C:>Attrib -r C:boot.ini
    C:>del boot.ini
    C:>BOOTCFG /rebuild
    I titles it Windows XP Professional
    Under options I put /fastdetect
    C:>Chkdsk r/f/

    I tried this three times thinking I screwed up each of the first two....no avail

    Now my computer shows 3 different windows versions and each one when selected shows the error message for missing hal.dll

    How can I repair this and revert to having only 1 version of windows??
    Any advice is helpful.

    Point for consideration...my original windows XP Cd has been lost so I have been using a .iso I burned for the repair console.
  2. Ididmyc600

    Ididmyc600 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,415

    If you have an XP disk, just boot from it and look for "autorepair " as its running the setup...this will replace and repair any missing files and should get it going again...

    However i would like to point out that as the problem is a repeat then something else may be wrong with the system, such as a flaky harddrive
  3. Barganman04

    Barganman04 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Won't this cause me to lose "My Documents" and Anything on the desktop? I am in the midst of backing all that stuff up with an external enclosure but still would like to try to not lose it unless there are no other options.
  4. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

  5. Barganman04

    Barganman04 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I backed up my files and used the auto-repair function and It worked while thankfully preserving all files, drivers and settings.

    New issue, upon start-up the screen that says windows did not start successfully appears....when I select "Start Windows Normally"...XP boots up fine...Any thoughts as to why this could still be happening?
  6. almcneil

    almcneil TS Guru Posts: 1,277

    Glad you didn't lose your files!

    The warning that Windows didn't start successfully is not uncommon and can be caused by a variety of things. Usually it's because something didn't complete on the previous startup or shutdown. Often it's nothing. Only if you get that message and you cna't start normally, then there's a serious problem.

    -- Andy
  7. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    See if there is an Error in the Event Viewer that corresponds to the time of the 'Windows didn't startup,etc..' message:

    Start> Run> type in eventvwr

    Do this on each the System and the Applications logs:
    [1]. Click to open the log>
    [2]. Look for the Error>
    [3] .Right click on the Error> Properties>
    [4]. Click on Copy button, top right, below the down arrow >
    [5]. Paste here (Ctrl V)
    • You can ignore Warnings and Information Events.
    • If you have a recurring Error with same ID#, same Source and same Description, only one copy is needed.
    • You don't need to include the lines of code in the box below the Description, if any.
    • Please do not copy the entire Event log.

    Errors are time coded. Check the computer clock on message time.

    It sounds like the system is coming up on Safe Mode, which means there is still some existing problem. NOTE for when checking the Event Viewer: many processes don't start in Safe Mode, so if you see Errors saying for instance "DCOM doesn't start in Safe Mode', that's NOT what you're looking for.
  8. Barganman04

    Barganman04 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Andy, thanks for your help...The issue is because it bring the warning EVERY TIME the system tries to start now....If it was once, you would be absolutely correct....it seems there is still some underlying issue.

    Do you think running auto-repair again will solve the issue or is there an easier fix?
  9. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    Looks like three of us were posting at the same time! Suggest you give the Event Viewer a chance.
  10. almcneil

    almcneil TS Guru Posts: 1,277

    I think I know what the problem is. Your file system may also be corrupted. It's not uncommon that you need to fix the file system and do a Windows repair. It's looks like you were hit by spyware or virus and it corrupted your system. The corruption could be to both to your file system and your Windows system files. That why just the Windows repair isn't enough.

    You need to run CHKDSK from the Recovery Console. Enter "chkdsk /" at the prompt.

    -- Andy
  11. Barganman04

    Barganman04 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks to all who helped

    When I returned home from work today to boot-up my computer and troubleshoot once again, my problems randomly disappeared. I guess it is starting normally now directly to the OS and It seems everything is working fine. I will be sure to do a deep system scan with Bitdefender to check for any viruses that might have cause this. Anyone have any suggestions to addition "free" anti-virus or spyware detection software I can use in conjunction with Bit Defender? I know Ad-Aware is good...what others?
  12. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    Sometimes all is takes is a reboot!


    Here is my recommendation for security: you need 'layered' protection. This consist of: one antivirus program, one firewall and two or more spyware/adware programs.Here are my recommendations- all free and good:

    Use one known, good Antivirus Program and configure it to update regularly.
    Avira Free
    Avast Home

    Use one bi-directional firewall
    Zone Alarm

    (BitDefender is okay)

    Note: You should have only one software firewall. You may also use a router. Most routers have a hardware firewall in them. You can use both hardware and software firewalls together, but use only one software firewall.

    Please use the site addresses I have given. They are for the free versions, firewall only. Some companies have bundled programs.

    Use reliable and trusted anti-spyware/malware programs
    Each of the links below will help you set up the program and each has a download link:Use two or more:
    Always update these programs right before scanning.

    Install these programs for extra security
    • IE/Spyad This places over 4000 websites and domains in the IE Restricted list which will severely impair attempts to infect your system. It basically prevents any downloads (Cookies etc) from the sites listed, although you will still be able to connect to the sites.
    • MVPS Hosts files This replaces your current HOSTS file with one containing well know ad sites etc. Basically, this prevents your computer from connecting to those sites by redirecting them to which is your local computer.
    • Google Toolbar Get the free Google toolbar to help stop pop up windows.

    Here are some pointers to keep it clean: Note: Older versions of the Adobe Reader and Java should be removed in Add/Remove Programs found in the Control Panel.

    Make Internet Explorer safer
    This Tutorial will help guide you through:
    • Using Security Zones
    • Configuring Security Settings
    • Global Security Settings
    • Using the Content Advisor
    • Managing Active X Controls
    • Managing Java Applets
    • Managing Scripts
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