Missing all user icons at logon screen!

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I have a problem - there are no user icons on my "interactive logon screen" - only the "Turn off Pete's Laptop" button down at the bottom left. I normally use the XP-click-on-your-username-next-to-the-sunflower-or-snowboarder logon screen. Pressing ctrl-alt-del does not bring up a logon dialogue box - at my logon screen I usually just click on one of my user profiles. I didn't do anything out of the ordinary on my computer before shutting down last night, and I have antivirus / malware software running always and nothing showed up prior to logging off - in fact nothing has shown up for ages.

Now I can't get into my computer at all, even using different safe modes - there are just no users shown. I've searched for "fixes" on MS-KB but can't find anything that resembles this problem except for an old post on this forum here. And what folk were saying to do on that thread was a little above my head. Sorry to be really thick, but can someone help me please?

My OS is XP SP2; I have 2 user accounts that usually show up - one is "Pete" (my usual one, a limited account) and the other is "System Protection" (admin account that I only use to install programmes and make system changes - habit of mine left over from Linux days) - I was using Pete last night. Guest and admin accounts do not usually show up as options to click on - never enabled them. My laptop came with a recovery section loaded onto a hidden (and hopefully protected) partition on the HD - unfortunately I don't know how to access this if I can't get into the comp. When I first loaded Windows I remember being prompted to make a Vaio recovery disk (actually there were 8 and it took a while) - but I'm also unsure how to make them work, and also on the original post about this people suggested I may just end up with the same problem, although please correct me if I've misinterpreted this.

Thanks in advance for people's input if there is any.

If we knew what we were doing, it wouldn't be called research, would it?
~~~Albert Einstein​


Posts: 6,908   +10
Sony VAIO. Typical problem. You need to call their tech support if still under warranty. If out of warranty, reinstall the 8 disc recovery set.
It may be a spyware, trojan, or virus problem, but that is not helpful if you cannot boot up to fix it.
The Sony VAIO does not allow a Windows XP repair... only recovery or restore of the original install set... so you may be forced to reformat and reinstall.
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