Windows Config Error

I have run accross a few computers showing this error message before it boots to windows-
WINDOWS/SYSTEM32/SYSTEM/CONFIG file is missing. Insert Windows setup disk and press "r" at the first screen.
I have tried using the Windows Setup Disk and this never works. Why is this file being corrupted? Is it a bad hard drive or a virus deleting this file?

Has anyone come accross this?
tonyarm99Asked:
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Alan Huseyin KayahanCommented:
           Most probably it is caused by a power surge. The path you located contains OS registry database hive files.
           *You should try chckdsk /p   or chkdsk /f  , when you press R and come to DOS screen.
           *If it doesn't work, you should boot from OS cd, the DONT press R, press enter and continue. Setup will ask you that there is already a Microsoft OS installed, then choose repair.
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tonyarm99Author Commented:
Did that- Did not work
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Alan Huseyin KayahanCommented:
            *No way. You might have took a different path. I dont mean pressing R as you are told in setup welcome screen. Would you please tell me what you have done step by step?
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tonyarm99Author Commented:
No, I did that, both ways, pressing r at the initial screen and the way that you are speaking of. It did not work either way
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Alan Huseyin KayahanCommented:
                    * Well it looks like somehow write protect is on by BIOS (some BIOS es has this capability) or bootup antivirus by BIOS which rejects write operations. Because once you repair the installation by choosing the installed os and go on repairing (it says press esc to not to repair in this window), setup process has to go on normally even the config files are deleted.
                      *Load your BIOS to defaults and try again
                      *Try making a new installation WITHOUT formatting and deleting the old WINDOWS folder, to a new folder.
                      *If None of above works, you may have a corrupt mobo or hdd or IDE cable.
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willcompCommented:
I believe what we're dealing with here is actually the System registry hive --- Windows\System32\Config\SYSTEM instead of a "config" file.  That's also what MrHusy is trying to tackle.

A repair install, which you haven't been able to do so far, or a registry repair will be required.  The repair install does not always work, but usually does for the system hive.

XP Repair install instructions:
http://www.michaelstevenstech.com/XPrepairinstall.htm

Registry repair instructions:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307545
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willcompCommented:
What is happening when you try to enter Recover Console or start a Repair install?  Does setup recognize hard disk?  SATA hard disk?

I need more information than "it didn't work" if you want my assistance.
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johnb6767Commented:
"Warning Do not use the procedure that is described in this article if your computer has an OEM-installed operating system. The system hive on OEM installations creates passwords and user accounts that did not exist previously. If you use the procedure that is described in this article, you may not be able to log back into the recovery console to restore the original registry hives. "

Registry repair instructions:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307545

Thats the warning at the MS site for the above link....You just have to be careful doing it, because it can potentially lock you out of the Recovery Console.

The following link has a procedure by venom96737 that works around the backup registry files, and gets them straight from the restore points (if SR is enabled)
http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/XP/Q_22000853.html







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willcompCommented:
Or you can do it the easy way by booting from a Bart PE CD and using its file manager to manipulate files rather than having to deal with recovery console.

I know about MS warning, but have yet to see a PC that was affected.  It would have to be a system builder set admin password.
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Alan Huseyin KayahanCommented:
            Hi tonyarm99
               Please let us know how did you end up, or current condition of issue

Regards
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tonyarm99Author Commented:
Still no solutions guys.
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johnb6767Commented:
tonyarm99

Any updateS?
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