Starting Windows Virtual PC - error message can't start missing missing or corrupt file

receive the following message:
Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
windows\system32\config\system

running from w7 pro
DAveB_LDSAsked:
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Dan CraciunConnect With a Mentor IT ConsultantCommented:
Go to settings, then attach either an ISO or the physical unit where you have the recovery disk.

After that, boot the VM, press DEL repeatedly until you enter BIOS and setup boot sequence to start from CD.

http://www.howtogeek.com/59084/how-to-change-the-virtual-machine-boot-device-in-virtual-pc/
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Dan CraciunIT ConsultantCommented:
Probably corrupted registry due to improper shutdown of the VM.

Boot using a recovery disk and run chkdsk on it, or revert to the last restore point.

HTH,
Dan
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DAveB_LDSAuthor Commented:
How do you boot the virtual PC using a recovery disk?
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DAveB_LDSAuthor Commented:
Thank you for your help.

Is there any way of getting files from the virtual hard drive?
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Dan CraciunIT ConsultantCommented:
You can attach the vhd on Disk Management and give it a disk letter.
This will mount the vhd and allow you to see/copy files from the host system.
attach VHD
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DAveB_LDSAuthor Commented:
Great. Then I can just reload the whole virtual PC from scratch
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Dan CraciunIT ConsultantCommented:
Yup.

Note that backups for VMs are way easier than for non-virtualized systems: just copy the vhd, using VSS. Most backup programs can do this automatically.

Then your current problem would be: copy last night's backup and overwrite the vhd. Problem solved :)
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DAveB_LDSAuthor Commented:
Problem is Carbonite was not backing up the VHD (it was too big).  I attached the VHD as per your suggestion and am grabbing all of my files and settings.

What do you mean by copy the VHD using VSS?

How would I just create a brand new Virtual Machine and then copy back my files?

I only use the Virtual machine to run legacy DOS apps
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Dan CraciunIT ConsultantCommented:
When the VM is running you can't copy the vhd directly, cause you'll get a "file is open" error. So then you (or your backup software) use Volume Shadow Copy that creates a copy of the file and allows you to copy that.

If you have a snapshot or backup of the VM, revert to that and then copy over the files.

If you don't, install XP again, using the installation media.
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Dan CraciunIT ConsultantCommented:
BTW, since you have the VHD already attached, try running a chkdsk on it, after you finish transferring your files/settings.
If you're lucky, it should fix your problem and the VM will start again.
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DAveB_LDSConnect With a Mentor Author Commented:
I renamed the Virtual folder.
I placed a copy of XP in CD drive
Started the Virtual machine and hit delete on the keyboard (prior comment).
XP mode started installing all over again? (Why?)
Finished installation and then copied my files from the backed up virtual drive.
Back in business!
Thanks for your help
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