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Windows XP won't boot missing hal.dll

Posted on 2013-07-01
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Last Modified: 2013-07-31
I've been going in circles with this error and I can't get past it.  Please help:

Problem 1: So I originially got the missing hal.dll error at system start up.
Solution 1: I used a Windows XP install cd and expanded the hal.dll into the windows/system32 folder.

Problem 2: I still got the hal.dll missing error.
Solution 2: I rebuilt the boot.ini file

Problem 3: Windows logo freezes during boot.
Solution 3: I repaired the installation.

Problem 4:  I got the missing hal.dll error again.
Solution 4:  Repeated solution 1.

Problem 5: still go the hal.dll error.
Solution 5: repeated solution 2.

Problem 6: It boot into safe mode once, got the login screen, and froze.
Solution 6: Restarted pc.

Problem 6: Boot into safe mode again, but this time it froze before reaching the login screen.  It froze after the loading xxxxx/mup.sys

And that's where I'm at now.  It seems silly to try and repair windows again, I actually repeated that process twice.

Any suggestions where to go from here?

Thanks in advance.
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Question by:Malamamoto
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39291752
It would appear that something has badly corrupted the registry and repairing windows is not fixing it.

If you really need XP, the way forward here is to back up (put the hard drive in a carrier, attach it to another computer and get the data from it), and then format, and re-install Windows.

Perhaps it is time to move on to a newer operating system instead of doing all this work on a dead OS.

... Thinkpads_User
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Author Comment

by:Malamamoto
ID: 39291758
The problem is there is some legacy applications on the system.  And when I say legacy, I also mean that there are no longer any installation disc's.  So reparing Windows seems like the best of all options right now.

If the registry is corrupt, what is the best way to go about repairing it?
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39291768
I have never seen any way to repair a registry that has been corrupted. It is not like one key is bad or something like that.

Is there no way to replace the disks?  What would you have done if the hard drive failed?  In fact it may be a hard drive or memory error that corrupted the registry.

.... Thinkpads_User
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Expert Comment

by:eexchangetech
ID: 39291774
First perform backup, only then perform below steps
Boot using a live cd, start command prompt, perform chkdsk.
If you don't have a live cd, boot using  windows 7 Installer and on the first user screen, press
SHIFT + F10 this will open cmd prompt perform chkdsk

Note : Before running chkdsk verify the drive letter assigned
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39291784
If there is hard drive corruption (not ascertained yet) a chdksk repair can make it worse, so only run in verify mode (not fix mode) to see if there are issues on the drive.

... Thinkpads_User
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Author Comment

by:Malamamoto
ID: 39291877
Running a chckdisk now....
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Author Comment

by:Malamamoto
ID: 39292059
chkdsk done, no problems.
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Expert Comment

by:arnold
ID: 39292117
What version of the windows XP install do you have?

Look into nliteos.net and see if you can integrate SP3 into the install as well as any drivers into an install disk.

UBCD might be the way to go that could let you explore te disk which might be denying and is the reason for all your issues.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39292311
since you have the mup.sys - you can have bad hardware
options :
-disconnect or disable all devices not needed for setup/repair and test (from bios also : sound etc)
-look for a similar mobo to test the problem

may i ask what happened -  causing this problem? it can lead us to the solution
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Expert Comment

by:Nice-Ghaza
ID: 39295084
Dear Sir,
           can you see the web Link  Carefully .they have  Option in this link
how to repair the window.i thinks so your problem will be sloved

http://www.wikihow.com/Do-a-Windows-XP-%22Repair-Install%22

Thank
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Author Comment

by:Malamamoto
ID: 39295248
I'm using XP Pro SP3 to do the repair install.

I'll try disabling all the hardware I can to get it to boot.

I don't know what was done prior to looking at it.  This is how it arrived.

nice-ghaza, I've already done those steps several times.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39295652
you can use my article for the minimum setup : http://www.experts-exchange.com/Hardware/Components/Motherboards/A_1945.html                  (Short-overview-of-how-to-troubleshoot-bad-hardware-when-a-pc-does-not-post)

and if the disk has problems, use this one :
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Storage/Hard_Drives/A_3000-The-bad-hard-disk-problem.html
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Expert Comment

by:Nice-Ghaza
ID: 39295837
Dear Sir,
               Can you try the Hard Drive in use Another system same Specification  and take the Date  after that unplug  old Hard drive .can you try  error Hard drive  in this system  repair otherwise Format the hard drive and create the New partition and installation.
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Expert Comment

by:LeeTutor
ID: 39359326
I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:

Not enough information to confirm an answer.
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Accepted Solution

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Malamamoto earned 0 total points
ID: 39359269
Update: I never figured out what the problem was, but I did figure out the solution.  I rebuilt the boot.ini, copy/paste the hal.dll file and nothing worked.  What ended up fixing it was to first update the BIOS.  This allowed me to boot to safemode.  Once in safemode, then I ran msconfig and disabled all services and startup apps.  If I only rebooted into safemode, the PC ran fine.  No missing hal.dll issues.  BUT, if I would boot into normal mode, the next time I reboot, the boot.ini would disappear.  I then started enabling services, I started with the Microsoft Antimalware service.  Just by blind luck, when I restarted the PC the boot.ini went missing again.  So rebuild the boot.ini for the 20th time, uninstalled MS Security Essentials, ran windows updates, then manually installed MS Security Essentials again.  Now I can boot to Windows in normal mode and have a protected PC.  BUT, I left everything else disabled because I'm exhausted from troubleshooting this PC.

What lead me to my finding was a site that I found that pointed to an IE8 update and an ASK toolbar application that was causing the same symptoms. This at least pointed me in the right direction to look at software because I was troubleshooting the hardware the entire time.  Oh I also mirrored the HD to another physical HD just to rule out HW issues.  Which the new HD did the same thing of course.

I hope this helps someone because this repeated missing hal.dll was a pain.
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Expert Comment

by:arnold
ID: 39359327
You should choose your last comment as the solution.
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Expert Comment

by:Nice-Ghaza
ID: 39359533
Dear ,  you have the issue in your computer  hardware. Can you check one by one
First Power supply, Ram, Hard Drive , if you have any Slot card Unplug the PCI Card  
Thanks
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Expert Comment

by:Eirman
ID: 39360785
Some useful tips here .... it would be a shame to let it drift off into the ether!
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Author Closing Comment

by:Malamamoto
ID: 39369554
This worked for me!  I'm a missing hal.dll expert now.  If anyone is looking for hal, just ask me.
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