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Trouble with repairing Win XP Pro

Posted on 2005-04-18
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Last Modified: 2011-09-20
I have win XP Pro SP2 latest release running on my machine.  The specs for my machine are as follows:  K7S5A mob, running Athlon XP @ 2100 with 512 MB DDR RAM.  No issues so far until one day prior when I have lost access to my Sony DRU 500A DVD/CD-ROM.  I searched on the net and found a solution to delete the "UpperFilters" and "LowerFilters" from specific registry keys in order to fix it.  After doing this I lost access to my keyboard and mouse.  The only feasible solution to me at the time was to do a Win XP Repair from the original WinXP Pro CD which I proceeded to do.  While running the repair process from the original Win XP Pro CD I got the error "the file 'asms' on Win XP CD-ROM is needed'.  I then searched the net and found a solution offered by Microsoft that asked for the "UpperFilters" and "LowerFilters" to be deleted again.  See: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;Q311755
After doing this I lost (again) the access to my keyboard and mouse while the repair is in progress.  Now when I reboot the machine I get the message "Setup is being restored" which takes me to the same 'asms' file missing error, but not having access to my keyboard or mouse I cannot get out of this repair loop to continue the repair process.  So, I am stuck here until I can find a way to gain access to my keyboard and mouse.  Therefore, I need serious advice on how I can set the WinXP repair process to start over again and restore my keyboard and mouse access so that I can continue the repair process to the end.  It would appear to me that if I knew how to edit the WinXP registry somehow and tell it to start the repair process again that would allow me to continue.  I own a copy of NTFSDOS Pro if that would be helpful and I know my way to navigate inside WinXP registry.  Can one of you experts offer me a solution out of this mess?  Thank you.
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Question by:vincev123
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Expert Comment

by:Ric Tutero
ID: 13811118
click start-->run-->--sfc /scannow, insert the XP cd when prompted.
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Author Comment

by:vincev123
ID: 13811154
As I mentioned in the message above, I do not have access to the keyboard or mouse and WinXP is stuck in the Repair process loop.  I need to gain access to my keyboard and mouse and since WinXP is looping in the setup process, SafeMode will not come up either.  Any other recommendations?
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Expert Comment

by:craylord
ID: 13811227
This is my new favorite repair utility. I've used Knoppix for data/system recovery, but it has trouble with NTFS. Use the bartpe program below to create a bootable cd. If you have access to a Windows XP pc, can install the program on that pc and have access to a burner on that pc. It will create a bootable iso image that will let you access a NTFS formatted drive (xp). When creating the image it has the option to burn straight to a cd, if desired. Install bartpe and run bartpe. Select build, wait while it builds the iso, and then burn it to a cd. Stick the cd in the crashed pc and boot. Pay attention, you will have to press a key to boot into it or select the cd rom as the boot device. If you get into the bartpe environment, follow the instructions in the links or try what's below. It's easy to user cause it's a graphical interface. 1000 times better than the recovery console. Since this is a bootable cd, it should help with your keyboard and mouse problem.

After booting into bartpe, use the go button on the lower left and run the plugin/program a43. This is the program to access your c: drive. From here you can move files super easy. Bartpe ignores permissions and will allow you to copy your files off the hard drive or move system files like the SAM, SECURITY, DEFAULT, SYSTEM, and SOFTWARE (very critical) files with ease. I think you want to do the latter.

You will want to browse to the c:\system volume information\_restore{somecrazylongnumber}\ Find the rdp folder with the highest number or second highest. The highest means the latest or time it worked last. You can view them by date and select one from when the laptop was last working.  Within these rdp folders there is a snapshot folder with multiple files. The following five are what you're looking for. (You will have to rename them when they are copied to the c:\windows\system32\config folder.)
_REGISTRY_MACHINE_SAM   will be renamed as SAM in the config folder
_REGISTRY_MACHINE_SECURITY will be renamed as SECURITY in the config folder
_REGISTRY_MACHINE_SOFTWARE will be renamed as SOFTWARE in the config folder
_REGISTRY_MACHINE_SYSTEM will be renamed as SYSTEM in the config folder
_REGISTRY_USER_.DEFAULT will be renamed as Default in the config folder
Copy them to the c:\windows\system32\config folder.
Rename them as DEFAULT, SECURITY, SOFTWARE, SYSTEM, and SAM (rename the existing files before copying over them, like default.bad security.bad, etc.) Reboot. If you still cant login, at the very least, you can boot back into bartpe and copy your data off the hard drive through the network or slave it to another system.

You can find Bart's Windows PE disk here -
www.nu2.nu/pebuilder/ 
A full set off instructions for Barts PE disk on this site -
http://www.tek-tips.com/faqs.cfm?fid=5362 

Also if you load the files from c:\windows\repair it is basically a fresh install. These files are created when the OS is first installed. You would have to go through the work of reinstalling all programs or going into the rdp folder i described above and then back into the system recovery console again
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Expert Comment

by:Dale May
ID: 13811283
If you have lost your keyboard and mouse you will now want to consider doing a complete install.  Reformate, and get a fresh start.  I'm sure you have done a backup.
put the win-xp cd into the tray and start.
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Author Comment

by:vincev123
ID: 13811346
I own also ERD2002 (Emergency Rescue Disk by Winternals) and I was able to boot into the NTFS environment and use Windows Explorer easily.  Under the "System Volume Information" folder I found 2 "_restore???" directories, however since I do not have System Recovery turned on under WinXP the files were very old there from 2003.  Therefore, I do not believe that these would be adequate to replace the newest files.  Any other recommendations?
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Author Comment

by:vincev123
ID: 13811362
I do not wish to start from scratch since I have many programs that I need to use and I would have to re-register.  That would be a nightmare.  Besides I do not have a backup either.  All files appear to be there while looking under the ERD2002 environment with Windows Explorer.  Please offer other solutions that deal with restarting a new WinXP repair process.
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Expert Comment

by:craylord
ID: 13811370
There wasn't any rpXXX folders within the "_restore???" directories? My pc only has one "_restore???" folder but the rp folders within are what you need.
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Author Comment

by:vincev123
ID: 13811493
There are 2 subdirectories called RP0 and RP1 under the "_restorexxx" directories.  However, these contain old files from 2003 since the Restore Points and System Recovery was turned off from 2003.  It takes a lot of extra resources to run so I turned it off initially.  
So this really does not help.  However, the good news is that I am able to run "regedit32" as well as Windows Explorer under the ERD environment so if I knew which registry keys to edit to let WinXP know to restart a new repair and abandon the current repair process the issue would be resolved.  I am awaiting other recommendations..thank you  
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Expert Comment

by:JinLei
ID: 13812515
You have a NTFS system partition, don't you ?
Do you have other FAT partitions ?

Try to boot system use other BootDisks that support NTFS and CD-ROM access,And Then access to the XP setup CD-ROM, copy all the files in \i386 folder and its subdirs
to your FAT partitions.

Restart the computer, and then start the Setup program again,When you receive the error message, click Browse, and then type the path of the I386 folder on the hard disk.
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Author Comment

by:vincev123
ID: 13812594
I have set my BIOS to boot only from the CD-ROM and finally the WinXP Pro Repair process started again from the beginning.  I was able to re-install WinXP from the setup disk.  Therefore, I have resolved the problem on my own.  Very tricky stuff :)
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