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windows xp system 32 config system failure notice at boot-up

by purejuiced / June 30, 2008 6:06 PM PDT

After running a defragmentation, I received a message that 6 mb of system 32 did not defrag. the system ran, closed, then when booted up the next day I received the windows 32 error. I have an OEM windows xp installed in the computer, a pentium III gateway, and i understand that common recovery proceedures cannot be used with success, because the OEM versions have embedded passwords and such. I have not heard strange sounds from my hard drive, previous to , and subsiquent to the problem. I wish to run chkdsk,to see if this can resolve the problem, if the OEM version will allow it. Is this possible, and the fact that I have a D drive slaved to the c drive matter?
Do I have any options? Please advise, am at my wits end, and do not wish to destroy what is left of my operating system.. I have made bo attempts as yet.

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Re: boot error

Can you give the full and litteral text of the error messages. I really doubt if they are "6 Mb of system 32 did not defrag" and "system 32 config system failure" or "windows 32 error".

There's no reason why the common recovery procedures won't work, at least not because of embedded passwords and such. But it's not clear to me at the moment what the common recovery procedures would be.

On the face of it, I'm suspecting the hard disk, especially given the age of the machine. The idea with hard disks giving trouble is to replace them. But, indeed, a chkdsk with surface check is a good idea to start with. You can run it from the recovery console, as shown in

Best of luck,



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update to windows 32 system 32 config failure
by purejuiced / June 30, 2008 7:03 PM PDT
In reply to: Re: boot error

Basically, after defragging, the defrag report is pretty much as i described, with the addedum that the systems "inability to defrag would likely cause errors and slowdowns"
After trying to boot up from "last known good configuration" the system still failed when reaching files under the category of Windows system 32 configuration.
the error message reads "Windows cauld not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: Windows\system 32\config\system,
The hard drive was installed 3 years ago when I upgraded the system, it is a Maxtor 40 gb.
The various sites I have looked up, including microsoft, warn that trying to recover the system with an OEM windows xp is not advisable as some of the registry will not repair.
My thought is that it is a hard drive error not caused by damage, but mishandled files, therefore is there any danger in using the chkdsk option? thanks for the imput.

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With a missing or corrupt registry ...
by Kees Bakker / June 30, 2008 7:07 PM PDT

all you can do is a System Restore. But it's unlikely to work.

Then it's time for a clean install of Windows XP. But - if it's a hardware issue indeed, that might fail also. Just try and cross your fingers.


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more info
by purejuiced / July 1, 2008 2:00 PM PDT

as of today, I received info that chkdsk utilities may cause overwrite problems and lop off there a way that i can run a diagnostic on my hard drive and detect damage my self, and if so, is it possible to run the repair applications on a OEM xp edition while maintaining integrity? Any advice other than reformatting my windows and posing my data?

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Re: more info
by Kees Bakker / July 1, 2008 5:21 PM PDT
In reply to: more info

I don't know of any better tool than chkdsk to check the integrity of the filesystem.

The three ways to NOT lose your files at a format:
1. If you already have them on a backup. That's the routine way.
2. If you take out the disk, mount it in an external USB-enclosure and copy everything you need to another PC temporarily. Then reinsert the disk and format it.
3. If you take out the disk, mount in in an external USB-enclosure and buy a new disk to install Windows on.

It's up to you to decide if your data is worth enough to warrant buying some new hardware like in #2 and #3.

If you've got the right XP disk you can try a repair install of XP. That won't format, just repair.


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