Yesterday my copy of XP failed to reach the login screen (it would freeze just before). Therefore I started an in-place of Windows XP SP2. The installation advanced past entering the product key and then failed. In reading the setupapi.log, it appears there is a permission issue with the current registry causing the install to continually fail.
Since the install is so far along, I am no longer able to access the Recovery Console. I know how to restore the default registry hives, boot windows, then restore my original registry files and do a system restore. However I cannot get access to the Recovery Console to do so. I was able to remove the XP disk to cause the install to halt then do a SHIFT F10 to get a Command Prompt, but when I try to backup the existing hives and / or restore the original ones, I receive a message a process is already using them.
How can I boot XP to go directly to the Recovery Console before the setup starts so I can get access to them before setup does?
Thanks in advance. BTW, a complete format is not really an option as there is data on the drive I cannot lose nor do I have the time to reinstall dozen of software programs.