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System font changed everything to windings cannot read anything - AT ALL!!

I have a computer that someone appears to have messed up.
Windows XP Home Service Pack 2

When you startup the system as soon as windows loads ALL the text on the system is in symbols, think its the windings font.
I cant read anything at all, so find it practically impossible to navigate the system to troubleshoot and resolve.
I can work out getting the command prompt up and this appears in plain simple english and readable! But practically everything in windows is screwed!!!

I want to re-install the system, but need to copy stuff off the drive - which due to the problems with the font I'm stuggling to do anything!!!

I have removed the disk from the machine and plugged into another, I can read most stuff on the drive ok but cannot access certain users doccuments and settings as access is denied!!
I then plugged back into other machine and managed to switch of passwords for all the users, plugged back in other machine but still getting permissions errors!!

Can anyone help me!!!!
Its Urgent!!!
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KevNet
Asked:
KevNet
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1 Solution
 
dxf224Commented:
Have you tried changing font back under properties...appearance ...advanced.....
when you get there you can click on the item box and change fonts from there.....might help if you were sitting next to  and doing corresponding steps with a second computer.
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dxf224Commented:
...you might or might not have to choose windows classic to do the change...   http://www.microsoft.com/resources/documentation/windows/xp/all/proddocs/en-us/display_change_window_fonts.mspx
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bullshooter5Commented:
Sounds like a "repair install" may be the order of the day.  "Repair Installs" done by the book preserve the data......don't do "repair console"  Do repair according to the proecdure below..... by the numbers:

http://www.michaelstevenstech.com/XPrepairinstall.htm

If you Windows disc is pre SP2, and you have subsequently installed SP2, you will not be able to access the "Repair Install" feature.

bs5
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bullshooter5Commented:
I don't know how long ago they messed up the computer but "System restore" might work also:

Start button>all programs>accesories>systen tools>System restore provided you can get back far enough pre screw up.

bs5
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KevNetAuthor Commented:
If I could read anything to follow the instructions might be mighty helpfull!!
As the command promt is ok was wondering if there is anything you can do from there?
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JMontaineCommented:
From dos goto c:\windows\system32\restore

type rstrui.exe

that will bring up system restore and you may be able to roll it back to your last restore point.
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bullshooter5Commented:
If you want to do a repair install try this (hopefully your disc contains SP2 or forget it)

Stick Windows disc in computer and boot into bios.....select boot from first device to cd -rom......save and exit.....reboot....watch close for the message, "hit any key to boot from cd rom"   do so and if you miss it reboot and double check BIOS for boot order.  Computer must be set to boot from CD-rom.

When Windows begans set up:

+=====================


<<To setup Windows XP now, press ENTER.

Do not select "Recovery Console" option

Accept the License Agreement

Select the XP installation you want to repair from the list and press R to start

Setup will copy the necessary files to the hard drive and reboot.  Do not press any key to boot from CD when the message appears. Setup will continue as if it were doing a clean install, but your applications and settings will remain intact. >>
=================

Quite frankly, this repair may not work.  you could have a virus and be in need of a clean boot

bs5

above excerpts  from :

http://www.michaelstevenstech.com/XPrepairinstall.htm

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RAID0Commented:
if you hook up the drive to a second computer as a slave and you get that access denied error, do this:

1) Boot up the computer into safe mode
2) Right click on the folder that you want access to
3) Click on Sharing and Security
4) Under the Security tab click the advanced button at the bottom
5) Go to the Owner Tab at the top
6) Check the box that says "Replace Owner on subcontainers and objects"
7) Once that finishes you should be able to access the folders
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