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Windows 7 Revovery

Posted on 2012-08-14
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Last Modified: 2012-09-05
My system's main drive died a couple of weeks ago.  I took it in to MicroCenter to have the drive restored.

I got the drive back today and have reinstalled it and am running into the following trouble.

When I boot up I get a message that my user profile is hosed up (User profile cannot be loaded).  I found some suggestions on the web that suggest I boot up in safe mode and then make some changes to the registry.

I've tried that and when I try to get into regedit, nothing happens.

I tried my Windows rescue disk and didn't get much help.  I do have a macrium rescue disk that gets me to a 3-month old copy of the system files from my SSD drive, but I don't think there's a problem with the SSD drive so I hesitate to recover that.

It's looking like all there is to do is reinstall Windows 7 and then go through the process or reinstalling every program.

Any better ideas?
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Question by:coachjim
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greyknight17 earned 668 total points
ID: 38294267
Did you bring it to MicroCenter to have the data copied to the new drive? It sounds like you are trying to restore it yourself. If you originally gave it to them to copy the data over, you should bring it back to them. Otherwise, if you want to try doing this yourself, you can try the following things:

Login to the administrator account or go into safe mode to gain access to Windows. Then read the instructions here on how to create a new profile.

One thing you can try if the above doesn't work out is to try reinstalling Windows 7 over the current version. It should preserve the programs and data files but I recommend backing up your data anyway just to be safe.
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by:bit_rot
bit_rot earned 668 total points
ID: 38294339
If the profile is corrupted, Windows should offer to create a new one for you (XP did at least) if not you will have to manually do it.

You should then be able to find the old profile with all of the data under c:\users\username.

I would then just move the data into the new profile and call it a day. You may have to take ownership over the old profile folder to get to it.

Check out this link for more detailed instructions
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-vista/fix-a-corrupted-user-profile
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by:nobus
nobus earned 664 total points
ID: 38295154
>>  It's looking like all there is to do is reinstall Windows 7 and then go through the process or reinstalling every program.<<  that's what i would do; probably the "recovery" did not recover the whole OS, and parts are damaged

what you can try is running a repair to see if that helps : http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/681-startup-repair.html
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by:coachjim
ID: 38295563
Thanks for all this.  Let me do my assigned reading and see what I can find.

One thing that occurs to me is that any profile information is more likely to exist on the old drive, not the one the data was recovered to.
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Author Closing Comment

by:coachjim
ID: 38367527
Sorry for the long delay, but I just got my PC back yesterday.  It turns out my initial suspicious were correct, I'd been hit by a virus.  The attack involved dropper and the action was hiding or destroying my Windows profile file(s).

After getting the same profile error messages when I got the "recovered" drive back, I found a new resource (UpTech Partners) and took the machine to them.  They started with a virus scan, removed the virus, and then struggled to figure out a way to recover my profile.

I finally remembered my Macrium system image file, got them the external drive where I saved the image files and my Macrium Reflect recovery disk.  They got me back.  I didn't have to reinstall Windows, didn't have to reinstall any software and only spent $1000.

Ouch.

I hope to get the $450 back from MicroCenter.

I'm delighted to have a real IT partner now with UpTech.  They put way more time into the process than they charged me for and if I had understood the significance of my Macrium backup, the process would have been a lot simpler.

Thanks for your help.
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