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XP Boot Loop

Posted on 2010-11-08
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
Computer with XP Home was infected with several viruses.  After trying to remove them when we rebooted we kept getting the screen that said "windows unable to boot - click here to select safe mode...etc..    

Regardless of what we selected it came right back to same screen.   We ran repair, tried fixboot - all with no success.  

We then decided to just upgrade the pc to XP Pro.  Loaded fine.  We went through the Windows update and rebooted.  Guess what?  Back in the same loop.  

Tried repair / fixboot.. No success.  We then ran Kaspersky Rescue Disk 10 Boot CD.  Found some viruses, and removed.  

Still loops as described above.  Short of reformatting the drive and starting all over - any fixes to this?
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Question by:kwick
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7 Comments
 
LVL 27

Accepted Solution

by:
David-Howard earned 500 total points
ID: 34089290
If it's my system and infected that badly I would slave the drive, copy over data I deemed important and then reformat that drive. You have no idea what could be lurking on it at this point. (Rootkit's, etc.) You may get advice that get's you past the boot loop (and that's fine). But it's been my experience that after a point it's like putting a bandaid on a shotgun wound.
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Expert Comment

by:stephen_c01
ID: 34089819
Agreed, you might have a deep root kit that is now corrupt, but you cannot trust the machine again unless you wipe it.
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Expert Comment

by:toroblanco2002
ID: 34089850
It could be a resident virus that infect program when they load on memory or a combination of viruses like a retro virus can by pass or attack intivirus software.  Also, it could be the drive is faulty do you hear any clicking noise on the hard drive? If there's clicking noise on the hard drive more than likely the hard drive is bad and needs to be replace.
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LVL 63

Expert Comment

by:SysExpert
ID: 34089863
I agree. I usually make sure I have an image of the OS of any machine that I use regularly so that I can restore to a known state.

I hope this helps !
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LVL 47

Expert Comment

by:rpggamergirl
ID: 34089960
More likely that the malware added a bad subkey or value in the registry and it's still there.
For example if malware added "Userinit.exe" subkey in the IFEO key with a bad Debugger value, and when the bad file was removed the reg entry was left behind.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options\userinit.exe

You could try doing a repair of corrupted registry.
Using Recovery Console:
Windows XP - Repairing a corrupted registry hive.
http://web.mit.edu/ist/products/winxp/advanced/registry-corruption.html
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:Arun Kumar V
ID: 34103304
Hi,

Press F8 before the Win Xp loads and choose Do not disable automatic restart and check what is causing the issue in the blue screen, suspect for the fault hardware driver

if there is a virus scan the system with Windows Live OneCare safety scanner http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/default.htm (Connected as a secondary to another drive)

Regards
Arun Kumar V
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Author Closing Comment

by:kwick
ID: 34168865
Reformatted, reinstalled, problem went away
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